Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Page-to-Screen: Pride and Prejudice

Confession time, BuzzReaders. When I was young I hated reading. Wait, let me correct that, I thought I hated reading. Secretly, I loved books like Babysitter's Club, Sweet Valley High, and Nancy Drew (yay for the upcoming movie, by the way). But I thought those books didn't count. They weren't the kind of books we had to read in school so they must not have been worth very much.

Fast forward to my freshman year in college. I'm trudging through my first semester of Lit Hum (a mega-intense year-long literature class all Columbia students have to take). We get through the Bible, Sophocles, and St. Augustine (oh the painful memories). I go to the next book on the list. It has a lovely painting of a young girl in a pearls and an ephemeral gown on the cover. Hmm, this looks promising.

That night in my dorm room I read Pride and Prejudice cover to cover. Jane Austen made me a writer that night because I realized that books could be both fun and valuable--though I have of course come to realize that value is entirely subjective. When I first saw the previews for the BBC production of P&P my heart thudded. I didn't know any of the cast (at the time) but I knew--just knew--it was going to be the best movie I ever saw.

I diligently recorded the first airing, meticulously pausing over the commercials. (Yes, these were the days before Tivo.) During the course of the six hour-long episodes I remember marveling at every break that there was still so much more to go. Then Colin Firth as Mr. Darcy dove into that pond and emerged with his shirt plastered to his chest and I forgot how to breath.
Jennifer Ehle was a delightful Lizzie, exactly the sort of girl I would want to be if I live in Regency England. She could hold her own against terrifying rich matrons like Lady Catherine, scheming sleazes like Wickham, and brooding hunks like Darcy. No wonder she has inspired so many strong-willed heroines.
The settings were absolutely amazing. Beautiful Lyme Park played the role of Darcy's Pemberley, and I knew exactly how Lizzie felt when the carriage emerged from the trees and the mansion came into view. What wouldn't you give up to be mistress of such a place? (Oh yeah, you'd get Mr. Darcy, too.)Like all great romances, P&P ends with a wedding. A double wedding, actually. One of the things that still amazes me about this story is that there is nothing sensual, sexual, or remotely physical until after marriage, and yet somehow the sexual tension is as strong as the hottest contemporary romance.
I still have that copy from my freshman classTo be honest, I saw the Keira Knightly version but I can't remember anything but the kiss at the end because the BBC version brought my every imagination to life perfectly. There's only room for one Mr. Darcy in my heart, and Colin Firth isn't about to budge.
GROWING UP GODLY [soon to be retitled], Summer 2008 Dutton Children's Books

what I'm reading ... Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (I couldn't resist.)

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Book-to-Movie: THE STAND Stands Tall

I never would have read my favorite-book-turned-into-a-movie if I hadn’t been broke. It was my first apartment, my first experience with making a paycheck last, and the only unread book I had around was a Stephen King novel that a friend had left after visiting me.

Horror was not my genre--especially now that I was living alone. But out of desperation for a new read (that I didn’t have to pay for), I cracked it open. And almost immediately, my world spun off its axis...

Yeah, it was horror...but it was also some of the most vivid, memorable characters and storylines I’d ever read.

It’s a big book--800+ pages--and I took it everywhere until I finished. Almost immediately, I started it again because I couldn’t get the characters out of my mind.

So...years later, when a TV movie was announced, I was filled with trepidation. How could they possibly do my favorite book justice?

Part One came, and I sat down warily. Only to be so totally swept up by the intro scene and the music (“Don’t Fear The Reaper” was a genius choice) that I fell just as hard and fast. The casting and acting was terrific, the story closely followed the book, and some parts gave me even greater insights into the characters and storyline.

So, now? The person who didn’t read horror owns THE STAND in the three book formats (paperback, original hardcover version and unabridged hardcover), and the movie in two (VHS and DVD). As well as most every other book Stephen King has written.

A special shout-out to the friend who left the paperback on my coffee table all those years ago!

What I’m Reading Now: The Celebutantes by Antonio Pagliarulo

Top Ten Uses for An Unworn Prom Dress
How to Hook a Hottie, January, 2008
The ABC’s of Kissing Boys, Spring 2009

Monday, May 28, 2007

Bringing Fiction to the Big Screen

So, this week here at Books, Boys, Buzz, we're talking about our favorite books that have come to the big screen. I have to admit, I have a ton of favorite books that have been made into movies or TV specials that it's hard to just choose one. And, since I get to start the week out, I'm afraid I might steal someone else's I'll stick to two examples. (What? Humor me! LOL!!)

Okay...first and can I NOT choose this book as the most amazing thing ever put on the movie screen? guessed's a no-brainer...wait for it...Gone With the Wind. What, you couldn't predict that? It's a masterpiece. The book was amazing. A phenomenal snapshot of our American culture and life at a very tumultuous time in our nation's history. The characters are 3D, identifiable, brave, couragous, and real.

First time I read the book was in seventh grade. We had to do a Civil War book report (yeah, in the south, we studied the Civil War every year), and I asked if I could read GWTW. My teacher, Mrs. Jordan, (pronounced Gerrrdun) said it was "too grown up" for me. But I insisted and told her I'd do a great job. I couldn't believe how different the book was from the movie, which I had seen a few years earlier with my parents when it was re-released. In the book, Scarlett has two children before Bonnie Blue. There's also a lot more indepth information about the culture and what happened to people following the war, but still, there's the amazing chemistry and relationship between Rhett and Scarlett. (I got an A+ on the report, by the way.)

Who better to play these star-crossed lovers than Vivian Leigh (clearly, the most gorgeous human ever to exist) and Clark Gable (ditto on the gorgeousness):

My second favorite would have to be, without a doubt... Bridget Jones's Diary This book had me at "hello." Amazingly funny, realistic, identifiable...just perfect. I've read the book three times and I still cry-laughing over it. Helen Fielding did a perfect job capturing the singleton life. And, I have to admit, Renee Zellweger did a fantastic job bringing Bridget to the screen. I was skeptical when it was announced, but she pulled it off. Charming, funny, and relatable.

Let's face it, though...the reason we flocked to the theatre was because of one thing: Mark Darcy. More importantly: Colin Firth.

Even in the ridiculous reindeer jumper...

How could Bridget even CONSIDER Daniel Cleaver? I have a thing for Colin Firth. So sue me. LOL!

As for teen books, there are so many classic books that have been made into teen movies. Shakespeare's Taming of the Shrew was immortalized in 10 Things I Hate About You and Hilary Duff did a very charming version of Cinderella in A Cinderella Story. And what about Alicia Silverstone as Cher in Clueless which is a modernized version of Jane Austen's classic, Emma.

What's your favorite teen book to a movie? What makes you love it?

Marley = )
Sorority Rush Begins - May 2008
Rush - A Sisterhood Novel
Pledge Class - A Sisterhood Novel

Puffin Books

What I'm reading: Tina Ferraro's Top Ten Uses for an Unworn Prom Dress

Saturday, May 26, 2007

The Rules

When it comes to girls, there seem to be certain rules that guys have:

1) Don’t call her the day or two after she gives you her number... For some guys this stretches to a week. (Ugh. If you’re going to ask for the digits, guys – use them!)

2) Don’t let her know you really like her at first. (Yeah, we like the mystery....not!)

3) Don’t get all mushy with her in from of your guy friends. (Wouldn’t want them to think you actually like her – see #2 above.)

This stuff is kind of helpful when if comes to writing guy characters – even if you’re writing in 1st person from the heroine’s perspective, you still have to be aware of the guy’s emotional arc. You know?

Some basic girl rules:

1) Don’t go on a date with a guy your friend is crushing on. (This one can be hard to follow – but it could save your friendship! And, really, she’ll get over her crush eventually, right?)

2) Don’t call a guy’s friends to check up on his whereabouts. (Unless you are fully convinced the dude is a cheater, let me add – because if he’s not, then he is going to be pissed you’re trying to track him down.)

3) Don’t call him or text him too much, or he may get overwhelmed. (This one is pretty true. What is that thing about how women use 3x as many words in a day as men?)

My own rules are pretty simple.

1) Don’t date a guy with too many rules. (i.e. picky eaters who hate every vegetable imaginable and email you ahead of time with their list or guys who are too set in their ways to have fun or try something new.)

2) Don’t tell your mom about a guy until you’ve been on at least three dates. (Otherwise, she will try to invite him to Grandma’s house for brunch!)

3) Don’t date a guy who chews tobacco. (Uh, duh!)

4) Always call or email to thank a guy for a date, even if it was just coffee! (This is just polite, people. Even if he doesn’t call you ever again, at least you’ve been classy. )

5) If you have to break up with someone, do it in person – or at the very least on the phone. No voice message goodbyes, text breakups, email dumpings, or Post-it dismissals. No aside here -- that’s just so uncool.

So, do you have your own personal rules? Or, if you’ve already snagged your Significant Other -- what were the rules back when you first met?
Happy weekend!
Heather Davis is the author of
Never Cry Werewolf
coming in 2008 from HarperCollins
What I'm reading this week....Leaving Paradise by Simone Elkeles!

Friday, May 25, 2007

Where are they now hotties.....

I got to thinking. We are always posting pictures of the hottest guys going these days, but what about the guys we USED to drool over when we were teens. I realize that our teen demographic probably won't recognize most of these guys, but you can all Google, right?

One of my first celebrity crushes happened in 1984. I dare any of you to tell me that you didn't want to be Elisabeth Shue sitting at a fire on the beach listening to Banarama that year. Okay, so now that I know that Ralph Macchio was 23 when The Karate Kid came out and I was, like, eleven, it's kind of creepy. But that didn't stop me from plastering the inside of my locker with pictures of him that I cut out of TigerBeat.
Ralph is doing a little more writing and directing these days, but he does make an occasionally appearance. One of my favs was seeing him on Entourage a few years ago. He was playing a married man trying to sneak out of the house to go to the Playboy mansion with Pauly Shore. It was hysterical. He's nearing fifty now (so scary) but at least he's not so scrawny. I think he still looks pretty dang good. Thanks for for being my first celebrity crush, Ralph.

A few years later, my dad got remarried and I got a step-brother who reminded me so much of Ralph that it was just creepy to like him anymore. The new crush would have some serious shoes to fill. A little show called, Blossom, came on the air and Ralph was a distant memory. Hello, or WHOOOOA (for those of you with a really good memory), JOEY LAWRENCE. He wasn't the little pip squeak from Gimme a Break anymore. He had a bod to die for and a head of hair that any girl would kill her. Plus, he could sing, kind of.

He's dropped the Y so he's just Joe now. Hairless Joe. I'm kind of over the whole Mr. Clean look but he's still doing pretty good. He's popped up in episodes of CSI, an ABC Family movie a few years ago, Dancing with the Stars, and my favorite, Confessions of a Sociopathic Social Climber with Jennifer Love Hewitt a few years ago. If you haven't seen this one, rent it, it's awesome. I was prepared to stay with Joey until the end, but I was completely blindsided by another celebrity crush. Sorry, Joey.

In my defense, I was double-teamed so I didn't have a chance. Yes, I'm talking about The Corey's. Who didn't love these brothers from another mother?

Some of my favorite movies are Dream a Little Dream, The Lost Boys, The Goonies, License to Drive, and Blown Away. Sadly, they both got caught up in childhood fame and lost themselves to drugs. Corey F. has been sober for quite some time and seems happily married with a gorgeous little boy. Corey H. has had a much bigger struggle and I didn't post a now picture because, quite honestly, they were all very disturbing. But I think he's back on track and found out while looking for info on them that they are going to be doing a reality show on A & E together that starts this summer. I will definitely be tuning in!

So, did you have a crush on any of these guys? If not, who was your biggest teenage crush?

What I'm reading...Bloom by Elizabeth Scott



All that matters is what's long as your outside is wearing the tiara!

REVENGE OF THE HOMECOMING QUEEN, July 3,2007, Berkley Jam Books


Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Hump Day Hotties: Drawn That Way

When I realized we had a theme-free Boys week coming up, I started to panic a little. I'd posted so many hotties already, how would I ever find the perfect guy or guys to immortalize this week? Then it hit me. There was an entire segment of the hot boy population that had been completely neglected! [I am so ashamed.] So, without further ado, the babes of animation.

1. Aladdin (Aladdin) -- fave boy from the wrong side of the palace walls.

2. The Beast (Beauty and the Beast) -- fave boy cursed into a hideous but loveable beast.

3. Milo Thatch (Atlantis) -- fave super-geek.

5. Hercules (Hercules) -- fave strong man and original hero.

4. Prince Eric (Little Mermaid) -- fave somewhat dense but totally romantic prince.

5. Captain Li Shang (Mulan) -- hands down overall fave.

6. John Smith (Pocahontas) -- fave explorer.

7. Prince (Sleeping Beauty) -- second fave boy who kisses good enough to wake the cursed.

8. Tarzan (Tarzan) -- fave wild jungle skater boy.

9. Prince (Snow White) -- fave boy who kisses good enough to wake the cursed.

10. Prince Charming (Cinderella) -- fave boy who will do anything to find the girl.

So, have I missed any? Who are your favorite boys of animation?

[soon to be retitled], Summer 2008
Dutton Children's Books

what I'm reading ... Karma Girl by Jen Estep

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Going Fishing?

A couple weeks ago we did a “Would You Ever...” week and I asked if people would pass up the opportunity to see their celeb crushes. I told how I had, and some people commented that I was nuts--which believe me, I understood! To this day, I’m not sure I made the right decision.

Since then, I heard the news of a hand and foot print ceremony at Grauman’s Chinese Theater, featuring three hot A List actors. I thought back to my blog, then again to this hottie happening.

Should I go?

What if my fears came true, and these guys weren’t all I expected?

What if I gave up a day of writing only to see the tops of other gawkers’ heads?

Or what if...what if...

That’s when I decided, Oh, come on, Tina, live a little!

So two weeks from today, Tuesday, June 5, you just might surf onto this page to find a sign that reads: “Sorry, No Blog Today. Gone Fishin’”.

"Gone Fishin’ in Ocean’s 13." (But don't worry, I'll return to dish the dirt...)

What I’m Reading: Secret Society Girl by Diana Peterfreund

Top Ten Uses for An Unworn Prom Dress,
How to Hook a Hottie, January, 2008
The ABC’s of Kissing Boys, Spring 2009

Monday, May 21, 2007

Cute Guy Quiz!

What do you find the most attractive in a guy?

  • Cute Eyes
  • Hairstyle
  • Mysterious accent
  • Talent
  • Pretty-boy looks
  • Adorable
  • Loyalty
  • Courage

What is the most important quality in a guy?

  • Loyalty and support
  • Excellence in everything
  • Success in business
  • Knowing how to do the right thing
  • Goal oriented
  • The power to do what is right
  • Protecting others

What is your dream guy?

  • A guy who is modest, protective of me, and perhaps he'd be famous too.
  • Cute, clumsy, and always there for me
  • He'd have courage, humor, a big heart, a certain disregard for rules
  • I like athletic, dedicated types, who can focus on a goal and stick to it
  • Mystery, charm, genius, a bit of a bad boy too, that'd be perfect in a guy
  • Someone who is loyal, fair, nice, and yeah, being handsome wouldn't hurt either
  • Someone with wealth, power, and self-confidence

Let us hear your thoughts!

Marley = )
Sorority Rush Begins - May 2008
Rush - A Sisterhood Novel
Pledge Class - A Sisterhood Novel
Puffin Books

Sunday, May 20, 2007


Like the other BBGs, I love this week's theme as well. Today I'll do casting for my debut novel HOW TO SALSA IN A SARI. This is the story of Issa Mazumder and Cat Morena, arch-enemies who are suddenly step-sisters and have to learn to live together under one roof.

ISSA MAZUMDER is a studious, good-girl who decides to fight fire-with-fire against her "wicked" new stepsister, Cat Morena. For Issa, who's half African-American and half Indian, I pick Parminder Nagra of ER and BEND IT LIKE BECKHAM. Parminder has that great combination of lookingsuper-intelligent, yet can get gorgeous just fine if she needs to.

For Issa's arch-nemesis, the beautiful latina CAT MORENA, I pick Vanessa Ferlito from GRINDHOUSE. This young Latina looks just like Angelina Jolie from 10 years ago and she is perfect as the cool, icy, passionate Cat Morena who hates that her life is being taken over by her new "perfect" step-sister Issa.

For Issa's mom the glamourous, bohemian mother, ALISHA, I pick Catherine Zeta Jones. Catherine is the person I imagined the whole time writing the story and I even refer to her in chapter 1!

For Diego, the Cuban-American stepfather of Issa and father of Cat, I picked Ted King from General Hospital. Oooh, Latino, slightly dangerous, and handsome :)

For Issa's best friend and crush, I picked the way-too-old-for-the-role but too-perfect Sendhil Ramamurthy from Heroes.

I do have to agree with the people who say that casting people of color is very hard in movies. My choices (espeically for people in their teens) were pretty limited. We got to get more people in color in Hollywood (especially hot young teen girls) people!!!

Have a great week!

Dona Sarkar-Mishra
HOW TO SALSA IN A SARI - January 2008 from Harlequin's Kimani Tru

Saturday, May 19, 2007

NCW starring....

Yay! I love this week's theme. I get to cast my debut novel, in between doing revisions on my... uh... debut novel.

Never Cry Werewolf

What would you do if you (considered by some, including the parentals, to be the least trustworthy person on the planet) were trusted with your crush's dangerous secret?

Could you avoid crying wolf when the full moon is only days away?
Cue the scary music...

Shelby Locke is a recent transplant to Beverly Hills by way of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Her dad's invented a drug that's revolutionized cosemetic surgery procedures and the family is finally rolling in dough. Shelby's a little unsure of herself and where she fits in to the glamourous life, but she does know one thing... she's a little boy crazy. When her stepmother Honeybun catches her out past curfew with a boy again, Shelby's sent to brat camp for the summer. Shelby's not expecting anything more than 'smores and therapy... but then she meets Austin.

My Shelby is... Amber Tamblyn

I've loved Amber since the Joan days, and she was terrific in the Traveling Pants movie. She's got the perfect mix of sarcasm, seriousness, and likability my Shelby needs to possess.

Austin Bridges the III is the son of a British rockstar. He's an artist at heart, very sensitive yet withdrawn since he's hiding the family's hairy little secret. With his anti-change serum confiscated, Austin's got to find a way to break out of camp before the full moon reveals all. In Shelby, he sees someone he can trust and hopefully count on to help him solve the problem.

My Austin is... wait for it.... Heath Ledger!

I know you're all SHOCKED beyond belief that I would pick Heath. :) Actually, I had him in mind (with a little bit of Orlando thrown in for good measure) when I wrote the first draft. He plays the standoffish type really well... yet he's got a warmth to him that makes him so appealing.... yum.

Happy weekend!


Heather Davis is the author of
Never Cry Werewolf
Coming in 2008 from HarperCollins

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Revenge of the Homecoming Queen...starring.....

I have been dying for today to get here all week. Like Tera, I kind of felt like I was cheating because I've had a clear picture in my mind of all of these characters for a very long time. Since none of you have read the book yet (except, TLC) it will be fun to see if you agree with the actors I picked once you read the book. Because you ARE going to read the book, right? :) Aspen Brooks~ My heroine is sassy, sophisticated, and smart as a whip. She is also occasionally so full of herself that you want to smack her upside the head with her favorite Dooney, but in the end that's why you'll love her. The only person I can ever see doing Aspen's character justice is Hayden Panettiere. I first saw her in Racing Stripes and knew that she would be perfect. Of course, she's exploded due to her Heroes fame (which sadly, I've never watched). I think Hayden is trying so hard to portray herself as a positive role model that it makes me heart her even more!

Rand Bachrach~the unconventional homecoming king who makes Aspen realize there is more to life than Dooney's. The actor I would pick for Rand's role (and I just know you couldn't see this coming) is Shia LaBeouf. I swear that he was my pick way before he got all hot. Seriously.

Man, that boy makes me drool! Okay, sorry, moving on.

Angel Ives~ Angel is Aspen's nemesis and lives to make her life miserable. She is the head cheerleader of the Seagals and doesn't mind stealing another girl's boyfriend. I needed someone beautiful who could fight dirty. I like Alexa Vega. She was so awesome in Spy Kids and I think she would definitely be an awesome Angel.

Lucas Riley~ Aspen's boyfriend and quarterback of the Comfort Seagulls. Lucas is the hottest guy in school but isn't exactly on the honor roll each semester. I think from Cody Linley from Hoot would be perfect.
Tobi Groves~ Every girl has to have a trusty sidekick and Aspen is no exception. Tobi has been by her side since pre-k even if Aspen tends to take her a bit for granted. I loved Kristin Stewart in The Panic Room with Jodie Foster and now she's all grown up. I think she would shine as Aspen's b/f/fMiss Hott~ the high school principal who has to put up with all of them. I think Ricki Lake would be a perfect Miss Hott, although she would have to bulk up again for the role.

That was a blast! I can't wait to hear what you think of my choices.

What I'm reading....Marked by P.C. & Kristin Cast