Friday, July 27, 2007

And so it ends

I got my free Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows last Saturday. (Thanks Powerbooks!)

I love this cover of Entertainment Weekly!

Unlike the past years when the books were launched, this time I went shopping with Vince first (for a washing machine), then researched for and wrote my article for Seventeen magazine, then I dashed off to the grocers for some fresh food and then prepared dinner for my darling husband (who quietly did all the chores--mine included--without asking for my help because he knew it was Harry Potter weekend, God bless Vince!). I guess I put off reading because I didn't really want my days with Harry to end. But end they must.

Finally at 10 PM, I settled into bed and opened the very last book of Harry Potter's adventures. I did not put it down till I finished it at 6:15 AM.

Okay, I won't put any spoilers here but since I don't know anybody who's finished the book and wants to talk about it, I am going to vent my frustration at not being able to discuss it with anybody here.

I liked Deathly Hallows even though it certainly isn't the best book in the series. It lacks the rich and almost obsessive details of the other books, and the range of emotions, too. It feels very rushed towards the end (you can almost hear J.K. Rowling's brain go, "Oh dear, must meet the deadline..."). I accept how Rowling ended the story even though there are still a lot of loose ends hanging about annoyingly. But the whole series is a feat, amazing and spectacular in its scope. I am reading the first book again (yes, I am a nerd) and I am struck time and again about how she truly planned everything from the very beginning. With your knowledge of the ending, tiny telling important details now jump out at you practically in every chapter. Which makes me more excited to read the whole series again.

Ah, but I have so many books on my shelf. In the last two months, I've read The Diana Chronicles by Tina Brown, Diana: The Last Word by Simone Simmons, America's Queen: The Life of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis by Sarah Bradford, Stolen Lives by Malika Oufkir, Carrie by Stephen King, and Beowulf: A Retelling by Robert Nye. Then there's Deathly Hallows of course. I am still in the middle of Six Wives: The Queens of Henry VIII by David Starkey, Lisey's Story by Stephen King, and Once Upon A Time: Behind the Fairy Tale of Princess Grace and Prince Rainier by J.R. Taraborrelli. Oh, and I am also still going through Sorcerer's Stone again.

As you can see, I love biographies, history, royalty, fantasy, and horror! Gee, that's 11 books in eight weeks. But that's not enough. Stephen King said in his memoir On Writing that writing is a full-time job so spend four hours of each day reading and four hours writing. King, I adore you but I have a magazine to make, a husband to please, a home to keep, a family to attend, and a blog to update!

But I try. I really really try...

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Hello from Topaz Horizon!

Well, this is a surprise! Most of my readers are from the U.S. of A.! Hi y'all! How's it like in the land of milk and honey? Greetings from the pearl of the orient!

I guess I should start using just English in this blog, and not insert Tagalog expressions here and there.

Well, thanks for stopping by, international readers! Drop me a note!

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Hey there, Delilah! Give this a listen.


Long distance relationship na, unrequited love pa!

It's such a sweet, sad and hopeful song nevertheless. And I love the story behind it. Delilah DiCrescenzo is a real girl (the kilig story in next week's People magazine) who inspired Plain White T's Tom Higgenson to write this song. They met and he was so smitten, he blurted out that he'd write her a song. Thing is, he's never done anything like that. So every time they'd chat online (they didn't go out since she was already with someone else), she'd tease him about the so-called song. So finally, Tom just sat down and wrote the damn thing. Now, the song is #3 in Billboard's Hot 100 and #1 on iTunes. Not bad, not bad at all!

Woody Allen once said 90% of success is showing up. Just show up with the song, dammit, and you'll be a roaring success!

But did the song work the way it was supposed to? Nah! Delilah says the song was "the most romantic gesture" but hey, "we'll just remain friends."


This song just makes me cry every time I listen to it. Strange, as I've never been in a long-distance relationship. But it speaks volumes of loneliness and faith, and the cheerful determination not to succumb to the desperation and the sadness of being far away from the one you love--it just really breaks my heart!

Okay, in case you want to sing along, here are the sad and lovely lyrics that are just full of longing and hope:

Hey there, Delilah, what's it like in New York City?
I'm a thousand miles away but, girl, tonight you look so pretty
Yes, you do. Times Square can't shine as bright as you
I swear it's true

Hey there, Delilah, don't you worry about the distance
I'm right there if you get lonely, give this song another listen,
Close your eyes, listen to my voice--it's my disguise
I'm by your side

Oh, it's what you do to me
Oh, it's what you do to me
Oh, it's what you do to me
Oh, it's what you do to me
What you do to me

Hey there, Delilah, I know times are getting hard
But just believe me, girl, someday I'll pay the bills with this guitar
We'll have it good, we'll have the life we knew we would
My word is good

Hey there, Delilah, I've got so much left to say
If every simple song I wrote to you would take your breath away
I'd write it all, even more in love with me you'd fall
We'd have it all.

Oh, it's what you do to me
Oh, it's what you do to me
Oh, it's what you do to me
Oh, it's what you do to me

A thousand miles seems pretty far
But they've got planes and trains and cars
I'd walk to you if I had no other way
Our friends will all make fun of us
And we'll just laugh along because
We know that none of them have felt this way
Delilah, I can promise you
That by the time we get through
The world will never ever be the same
And you're to blame

Hey there, Delilah, you be good and don't you miss me
Two more years and you'll be done with school
And I'll be making history like I do
You'll know it's all because of you
We can do whatever we want to
Hey there, Delilah, here's to you
This one's for you

Oh, it's what you do to me
Oh, it's what you do to me
Oh, it's what you do to me
Oh, it's what you do to me
What you do to me

This song is for Mariel and Alvin. Be strong, be strong.