A lot is going on for J.K. Rowling at the moment, what with the recent publication of Lethal White, the most recent Robert Galbraith book, and the approaching premiere of The Controversies Crimes of Grindelwald. And now she’s got one more item on her list: a lawsuit against her former personal assistant, Amanda Donaldson, for over $30,000.
Rowling is accusing Donaldson of taking advantage of her access to Rowling’s personal bank accounts by using them to buy herself fancy makeup, fancy candles, and two fancy cats. It is currently unknown whether the cats were bought together or if the second cat was purchased after it was decided that a single cat was not enough.
Amanda the Menace | Image Via The Sun
Donaldson is defending herself by claiming that all expenses were business-related. Clearly these were business cats, you guys.
In the interest of playing fair to both parties, here’s a hot take: maybe just let her have it? I mean really, who is she hurting? Listen, I have no idea how many dollars (or pounds, I suppose) an assistant makes, but probably not as much as J.K. Rowling. According to Forbes, she was worth $650 million dollars last year; that is an amount of money my tiny poor brain can’t even conceptualize. Also, J.K. Rowling didn’t even notice the money was missing! These expenses were brought to her attention by accountants, because of course if you are making an amount of money up in the high hundred millions, you’re hardly going to miss 30k. By the way, by my calculations, 30k is only 0.00461538461538% of 650 million.
I cannot help but admire Donaldson in all this, I mean, two cats! Joanne the Scammer would be proud. Maybe I’m projecting.
Image via Giphy
Kidding aside, the lawsuit matters more in the principal sense than the fiduciary sense. While I’m sure Rowling is not terribly put out by the financial loss, the invasion of privacy conducted by Donaldson is certainly troubling. The lawsuit is likely going to be a long one, as lawsuits always are, but hopefully a solution is found eventually.
Featured Image Via DailyMail.co.uk and The Telegraph
‘Tis the season and one of the greatest times of year folks: sweater weather! And if you want to be the one everyone notices while staying warm, then Penneys has you covered. Literally.
Herrevealed Primark’s new release on some festive Harry Potter sweaters. However, they’re not just any sweaters; they’re Harry and Ron’s Christmas sweaters! All fans can recall the cozy scene in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone with Harry and Ron opening their Christmas gifts by the fireplace. Well, now you can do that too! Even without the fireplace. Primark’s deep navy blue and warm maroon are both marked with a single golden “H” and “R”. Just like in the film!
Images Via Her
Take a look at the material; it looks deliciously soft and just as it does in the movie. For only 18 bucks how can you go wrong? You’ll be as recognizable as you will be comfy.
We love Halloween- it’s scary, campy, and you can be whatever you want to be (which you can mostly do all the time, unless what you want to be is a ghoul or a sexier version of something decidedly unsexy). Unfortunately, getting down to the last episode of your favorite show is not the fun kind of scary. But if your show is on this list, here are some spooky, whacky, and genuinely frightening reads to tide you over.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Those of us with Buffy nostalgia face a challenge that can be scarier than the show itself- the fact that the show’s been finished since 2003. But if you can’t live without the misadventures of the teens quietly (and sometimes NOT so quietly) defending Sunnydale from monsters, why not explore an untold part of that story?
Patrick Ness’ The Rest of Us Just Live Hereexplores the lives of background characters in a nondescript town like Sunnydale for those of us who have never fought a vampire with our bare hands (or, you know, with anything else). Teenagers beset with their own slew of issues try to exist as the Chosen Ones deal with their zombie cops and spooky blue lights from outer space. This genre-bending book merges fantasy with reality as Ness explores how ordinary human lives fit in with the high stakes of genre fiction.
Unlike with Buffy, anyone who watches Supernatural knows there’s no shortage of content. Now entering its fourteenth season, the cult classic has thrilled viewers since 2005 with its story of two inseparable brothers who save lives, hunt monsters, make questionable choices, and fight with each other nonstop.
V.E. Schwab’s Viciousis a twist on the typical superhero story, following two former classmates who were once as close as brothers. When a string of bad decisions puts the friends in uncomfortably close contact with the world of the supernatural, some lives are saved- and others are lost. The mercurial relationship between Schwab’s protagonists may remind you of Supernatural‘s infamous brothers, and the hunting definitely will.
This hit TV show taps into 80s nostalgia in a serious way, and so modern books just won’t always sate your craving. You can take the edge off this with a book with the story that inspired last fall’s pop culture phenomenon: Stephen King’s IT.
Written in 1990 and set in the mid 80s, the story also focuses on a gang of kids taking on a threat that adults in town don’t understand. Featuring a familiar camaraderie, the Losers try to stop the entity that they have discovered, attempting to save both their town and themselves. And is there collateral damage? Well, isn’t there always?
The Walking Dead
Zombies might seem to be the territory of genre fiction and pop culture, but that isn’t always the case. Literary superstar Colson Whitehead’sZone Oneblends genre and literary fiction as it explores not the zombie apocalypse exactly, but what happens after.
With the mixture of tenderness and violence that viewers expect from The Walking Dead, Whitehead explicitly wanders into the thematic landscape of zombies, discussing at length the kind of moral and existential questions that many zombie stories only hint at.
American Horror Story
It might be hard to decide what will get you your AHS fix, given the wide range of premises the show offers. Erin Morgenstern’s The Night Circusshares a similar versatility, blending elements of magic and witchcraft (like AHS season 3) with the creepy aesthetic of a sinister traveling circus (season 4). With a flair for the strange, cruel, and dramatic, The Night Circus’ range of amoral characters and tragically doomed human connections are reminiscent of all seasons of AHS.
While not explicitly a horror show, Black Mirror’s one-off dystopian plot lines terrify audiences with their creativity… and plausibility. Often focusing on motifs of alienation and technology, the show provides us with a horrifying reality that we both can and cannot imagine. A YA classic, Scott Westerfeld’s Ugliesdepicts a dystopian world in which, on their sixteenth birthday, teenagers undergo surgery to become Pretties- artificially enhanced beautiful people with equally beautiful lives (sounds exactly like being sixteen, right?). Unfortunately, life is not quite as beautiful as it appears. And unfortunately, that’s not all the surgery does.
Featured Image Via 2glory.de. All in-text images via Amazon.
This weekend shook up movie goers with two highly anticipated hits: Venom and A Star Is Born. Although Venom raked in plenty of dough at the box office, it was A Star Is Born that stole the show with its beautiful and heart-wrenching story.
The film is the fourth remake so many questioned what it could really bring to the table, but fans have been left stunned. The romantic musical hit has an essence all its own. The story follows a once successful singer who stumbles across a struggling songstress. What happens next is a whirlwind journey through the beauty and hardships of love and life. If you’ve seen it, then I’m sure you could still get emotional at the passing mention of it. It was that powerful. However, if you want to stick with the book realm and get into your feelings, here are four reads if you loved A Star Is Born.
They had nothing in common until love gave them everything to lose . . .
Louisa Clark is an ordinary girl living an exceedingly ordinary life—steady boyfriend, close family—who has barely been farther afield than their tiny village. She takes a badly needed job working for ex–Master of the Universe Will Traynor, who is wheelchair bound after an accident. Will has always lived a huge life—big deals, extreme sports, worldwide travel—and now he’s pretty sure he cannot live the way he is.
Will is acerbic, moody, bossy—but Lou refuses to treat him with kid gloves, and soon his happiness means more to her than she expected. When she learns that Will has shocking plans of his own, she sets out to show him that life is still worth living.
At thirty-six, Hope McKenna-Smith is no stranger to bad news. She lost her mother to cancer, her husband left her for a twenty-two year old, and her bank account is nearly depleted. Her own dreams of becoming a lawyer long gone, she’s running a failing family bakery on Cape Cod and raising a troubled preteen.
Now, Hope’s beloved French-born grandmother Mamie, who wowed the Cape with her fabulous pastries for more than fifty years, is drifting away into a haze of Alzheimer’s. But in a rare moment of clarity, Mamie realizes that unless she tells Hope about the past, the secrets she has held on to for so many years will soon be lost forever. Tantalizingly, she reveals mysterious snippets of a tragic history in Paris. And then, arming her with a scrawled list of names, she sends Hope to France to uncover a seventy-year-old mystery.
Hope’s emotional journey takes her through the bakeries of Paris and three religious traditions, all guided by Mamie’s fairy tales and the sweet tastes of home. As Hope pieces together her family’s history, she finds horrific Holocaust stories mixed with powerful testimonies of her family’s will to survive in a world gone mad. And to reunite two lovers torn apart by terror, all she’ll need is a dash of courage, and the belief that God exists everywhere, even in cake…
In the blink of an eye everything changes. Seventeen year-old Mia has no memory of the accident; she can only recall what happened afterwards, watching her own damaged body being taken from the wreck. Little by little she struggles to put together the pieces- to figure out what she has lost, what she has left, and the very difficult choice she must make. Heartwrenchingly beautiful, this will change the way you look at life, love, and family. Now a major motion picture starring Chloe Grace Moretz, Mia’s story will stay with you for a long, long time.
Sydney’s handsome, charismatic older brother, Peyton, has always dominated the family, demanding and receiving the lion’s share of their parents’ attention. And when Peyton’s involvement in a drunk driving episode sends him to jail, Sydney feels increasingly rootless and invisible, worried that her parents are unconcerned about the real victim: the boy Peyton hit and seriously injured. Meanwhile, Sydney becomes friends with the Chathams, a warm, close-knit, eccentric family, and their friendship helps her understand that she is not responsible for Peyton’s mistakes. Once again, the hugely popular Sarah Dessen tells an engrossing story of a girl discovering friendship, love, and herself.
Most booklovers have a group of friends who enjoy books nearly as much as they do, if not more. You kind of have to; who else are you going to discuss plot twists and favorite characters with? There’s always your cat or dog, but that conversation can get a little one-sided…
All your friends offer unique perspective so you need them around to have your literary get-togethers. However, they can be lovely and a handful all at once sometimes, but you’ve got them down to a science. Here are the six classic bookish friends we all know and love.
1. The humble reader
This is a good one to have in the friend group. When they’re reading you won’t even notice they’re there. They stay quiet, concentrated, and their eyes scan over the book as if they’re trying to decode something. Or are they? These folks are so laid back, they’re not trying to brag about how widely they’ve read, but when you want to discuss your latest read, they’ll have some of the best thoughts to share! How do you people do that?
Some of these guys need to take it down a few notches. You got nearly halfway through the book you started a week ago? They finished two in that time frame. You’re starting one new book you like? They just started two different trilogies. You thought of a few reasons for the character’s transformation throughout the novel? The just studied every page and are currently publishing their own critical analysis… We get it, you love to read.
3. The speed reader
These machines aren’t braggy and they certainly don’t take their sweet time reading over the page. They mean business and they move fast. You’ll usually find them in a comfy spot huddled up with their book surrounded by a vibe that says “I’m not paying attention to you, so if you want to ask me something… don’t”. They move quickly and silently from book to book. They won’t brag about it either, this is all pleasure and who’s got time to talk when you can read War and Peace in three days?
I am related to this kind; I know it well. The seventh Harry Potter book and no sleep? Sure, not a problem. Nothing around these readers exists! Who needs real world responsibilities when you can just read without blinking for hours on end? But as sleep deprived as they are, their views on the book are short, simple, and to the point. This ain’t a race, but they will read 24/7 if they could, so try to keep up
Boy, do they have a lot to say. Whether it’s about the book they’re reading, the book you’re reading, or the book someone else is reading, they have plenty to chat about! They may even spill a few spoilers that you don’t want to hear, but they don’t mean any harm. It’s clear that they’re just so excited to discuss the book they don’t realize they’re breaking the unspoken rules! Silly bookworms.
6. The one who’s never on the same page
The booklovers who follow their own path are the ones who are hard to have in a book club. If you want to be those friends who read the exact same thing at the exact same time, just forget it. If you’re reading one book, they’re reading another. If you’re reading the hottest release, they’re reading something obscure. Or if you’re getting to the end of a good read, they already finished one and are taking a book break. They read what they want, when they want, and how they want. Respect for these people who just don’t give a hoot.
I hope you found your book BFF somewhere on this list.