Monday, December 30, 2013

Some Great Literary Catchphrases

Flavorwire published an article online last week called The Greatest Literary Catchphrases by Alison Nastasi. One of these phrases is even appropriate to this time of year, if you are lacking in holiday spirit. There are some phrases that are well known, but there were a few where I knew the saying but had no idea where the phrase came from. See how many you know, and check out the article by clicking on the title above. As always, happy reading!!




1. "Bah! Humbug!"- Ebenezer Scrooge from A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens                   FIC DICKENS

Where would those individuals who lack Christmas spirit be without this particular phrase to voice? 



2. "Old sport."- Jay Gatsby from The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald             FIC FITZGERA

You have probably been called this or heard someone being called this before. Though I don't think that F. Scott Fitzgerald intended for his phrase to be used sarcastically, as it so often is now. 



3. "Big brother is watching you." - from 1984 by George Orwell        FIC ORWELL

Whether you know this phrase from its meaning in the book, or you just know it by the name of the reality television show, most everyone is aware of this issue.



4. "The old ultra-violence." - from A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess   FIC BURGESS

This is one that I had never heard before, but apparently the characters work "ultra-violence" on every unsuspecting character that they come into contact with.



5. "So it goes." - from Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut          FIC VONNEGUT

This deep and meaningful (and fatalistic) phrase is used over 100 times in the novel. Things will happen in the way that they have happened and will continue to happen, as "so it goes." 



6. "Constant vigilance!" - Albus Dumbledore from Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J. K. Rowling    J FIC ROWLING

I personally have not heard many people saying this out loud, unless it has been in reference to Dumbledore, but he does have a point. Even though most of us aren't dealing with Death Dealers or "He who must not be named," it is useful to always be aware of what goes on around you.  


7. "All that glitters is not gold." - from The Merchant of Venice by William Shakespeare       822.33 SHAKESPE


Of course, this is just one of the many phrases of wisdom that come from the playwright and are constantly used, but it is a good one to think about.  






8. "Can't live with them, or without them." - from Lysistrata by Aristophanes      882.01 ARISTOPH

Of course, Aristophanes was speaking of women.     I am sure that everyone has heard this phrase used in this context, at least once in their lives (whether they are referring to men, women, children, dogs...).




9. "Catch-22" - from Catch-22 by Joseph Heller
FIC HELLER

I am sure that most everyone has been in a "Catch-22" at least once in their lives. It is a little bit worse than being "stuck between a rock and a hard place," as usually neither choice you make will turn out to be good (at all). 



10. "Begin at the beginning." - from Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll                                    J FIC CARROLL

A very simple but deep phrase from the King of Hearts, followed by "and go on till you come to the end: then stop." 


11. "The Horror! The Horror!" - from Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad         FIC CONRAD 



I have heard this phrase many times, and I had no idea where it came from. Even though Conrad used this phrase during a most dramatic death scene, most people now seem to use the phrase more sarcastically, though. 





12. "Ships that pass in the night." - from the poem The Theologian's Tale: Elizabeth from Tales of a Wayside Inn by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow 811.3 LONGFELL

Another saying that I have heard over and over and did not know the reference to. How many times in dramatic romances have we heard about these ships. Where would all of those characters be without Longfellow?

Saturday, December 21, 2013

The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon SF SHANNON

The year is 2059, and 19-year-old Paige Mahoney lives in Scion London. In an alternate reality, Jack the Ripper was rumored to be Edward VII, who Scion believes brought the "curse" of clairvoyance to the world, through his misdeeds. In Scion England, it is illegal to use any kind of clairvoyance (accessing the ӕther), even though there are many different kinds of "voyants" to be found (there is a chart at the beginning of the book), and it is considered treason for voyants to use their abilities for financial gain. Scion puts offending voyants in the Tower, and many are eventually executed (or so society believes). 

 Paige is a special kind of voyant, a "dreamwalker," whose spirit can leave her body and invade the minds' of others. Her ability forces her to work in the criminal underground of voyants, within the syndicate system (a surprisingly well organized system) for the mime-lord, Jaxon. She uses her ability as "surveillance" on any activity in the ӕther that is going on in Jax's section. 


On a trip home to visit her father, Paige's train is checked, and she is forced to use her ability in a way she never has before, which leaves a man dead. She is not caught immediately, but during the night at her father's apartment, men in red shirts (not the Scion's) burst into her father's apartment looking for her. She tries to get away, but they manage to catch her. When Paige wakes up, she finds that she was not taken to the Tower, as she thought she would be. Paige, along with thirty-nine other voyants and amaurotics (non-voyants), has been brought to Sheol I (the "lost" city of Oxford) by the Rephaim, an alien race from the Netherworld.

The Rephaim are working with Scion, with the ultimate goal of ruling Earth. The Rephaim need voyants (the red-jackets), supplied by Scion, to help them protect humans from the Emim, another more bestial groups of aliens that, the Rephaim claim, wants to feed on humans. The group Paige is in is part of the Twentieth Bone Season, a period that only comes once every ten years and exists to add to the number of the red-jackets. There are two tests to become part of the red-jackets, though. The first is tied to the person's ability. The second is a fight with an Emim. Failure in either task leads to becoming a performer, one that provides entertainment for the others and is looked down upon by all. 


Each member of the group is assigned a keeper (one of the Rephaim), who train their voyants and take "care" of them. Paige is the only one taken in by the Warden, a really strong Rephaite who seems to have secret motives of his own. As Paige, named XX-59-40 by the Raphaim, learns more and more about her new situation and the Rephaim, the more she wonders if the situation is as clear as the Rephaim, especially one of their leaders, Nashira, would have her believe. She also knows that she needs to get out of Sheol I, for the sake of her life and the protection of her syndicate. One attempt at rebellion, twenty years ago, ended in failure, but failure is not an option for Paige. 

The Bone Season was one of the titles that I had put in the Popular Reads for the Fall Season blog post, as it has been highly anticipated on many of the popular fall reading lists. I was intrigued by all of the genre-blending that Shannon seems to be using in the story. There are elements of a dystopia: Scion is not the salvation from clairvoyance that the amaurotics believe it is; science fiction: a future setting with advanced technology and social issues; fantasy: paranormal elements and two groups of aliens that did not come from the stars but another dimension, and there is also some romance and action mixed in there, too. With so much genre-blending, though, you really have to pay extra attention to the first few chapters. Shannon throws a lot of terminology and world building that will be important to the plot later on in the book. It was a story that very easily sucked me in, and even though there were a few issues that I had with some of the elements of the story, I look forward to reading the next book in the series.     

     

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Tearjerkers

I know we are in the "most wonderful time of the year," according to some, but everyone still needs a good cry every now and again. Here are some great stories to help you with all of your crying needs.  

Just a warning, though, you may want to have a box of tissues close by while enjoying these stories. 




P. S., I Love You by Cecilia Ahern         FIC AHERN


Holly never believed that she could live without her husband, Gerry, having known him since high school and considering him the other half of herself. Then Gerry succumbs to a terminal illness, and Holly doesn't have a choice. They had both joked about his making a "list" for her of things to do if she lost him, but soon after his death, Holly finds out from her family that Gerry created the list, in the form of letters, in order to keep her occupied during the first year after his death and to help her move on. As everyone would imagine, it is a very hard process, but with the support of the letters and the craziness of her friends and family, Holly finds the strength to continue on. 


Note: Unlike the movie, the main characters are in Ireland (and are Irish). The movie is located under DVD PS.   




The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards         FIC EDWARDS


On a terrible winter's night in 1964, Dr. David Henry is forced, by a blizzard, to deliver his own twins. His son comes out just fine, but he discovers that his daughter is born with Down's Syndrome. Deciding that he needs to protect his wife from this development, the doctor decides to tell her that the baby died. He gives the little girl to his nurse, Caroline, to take to an institution. Caroline, however, falls in love with the little girl and decides to become her mother, leaving town to hide the secret. Neither the doctor or nurse know just how much their decisions will impact the lives of everyone around them. 


Note: This book was also made into a Lifetime Movie, located under DVD MEMORY.



The Fault in Our Stars by John Green                               YP FIC GREEN


Hazel knows that her lungs don't work right and that her thyroid cancer is terminal. Then she meets Augustus Waters during a Cancer Kid Support Group meeting. Augustus is in remission, but he is very taken with Hazel and completely determined to ignore her attempts to "save" him from her death. Can they both deal with a relationship that has an expiration date?


Note: This book is also in audio format under YP AD FIC GREEN, and we have it in e-book format.



Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston               FIC HURSTON


Janie Crawford has been told how to live her life by so many people and never gets to make choices for herself. Returning home to Eatonville, Florida, after having run away from it two years earlier with a love affair, she tells her life's story to best friend, Pheoby. It is a look into the life of an independently minded woman having to make some hard choices (or have them made for her) during the 1930s and 40s, dealing with poverty, abuse, and even a hurricane. 



Note: This book is also available in audio under AD FIC HURSTON and in video under DVD THEIR.




Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer             B MCCANDLE


In April of 1992, Christopher Johnson McCandless decided to give his savings (of over $20,000) to charity, get rid of most of his other possessions, and travel (by walking and hitchhiking) up to the wilderness a little north of Mt. McKinley in Alaska. He was seeking a knew life and a new way of thinking. Unfortunately, what he utimately found up there in the wilderness was his death.  Jon Krakauer, a contributing editor to Outside and Men's Journal, retraces McCandless' steps on his journey, and by looking at his diary, letters, and some notes that McCandless left behind, he seeks to solve the mystery that was McCandless' goals and, ultimately, his demise.

Note: This book is also available in audio under AD B MCCANDLE and in video under DVD INTO.





Atonement by Ian McEwan                  FIC MCEWAN


It is summer of 1934, and an 13-year-old girl, Briony, witnesses a completely innocent act by her sister, Celcilia and a servant's son, Robbie. When a great act of violence is committed, Briony blows everything out of proportion, accussing Robbie of the crime, and in doing so, instigates a great wrong against two people who mean a lot to her. Unfortunately, her choices also lead to great suffering by these two, and her need for "atonement" from them both.

Note: This book is also available in large print LP FIC MCEWAN, and we also have the movie under DVD ATONEMEN.




The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch with Jeffrey Zaslow            
B PAUSCH

There are many professors who give their "last lectures" to their classes, wanting to impart some final wisdom to their students before moving on, but for Randy Pausch, a computer science professor at Carnegie Mellon University, learning that he had terminal cancer meant that it really would be his last lecture. So he wrote his last lecture on "Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams," intending to inspire his students, and many others, to live their lives to the fullest and make sure to help further the dreams of others.  

Note: This is also available in audio under AD B PAUSCH.





All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque            FIC REMARQUE


Paul Baümer is just 19 years old when he and his fellow classmates enlist in the German army at the beginning  of World War I, but no one expects the carnage and suffering that will take place in the trenches.  As the war drags on, many of these young soldiers wonder whether they can survive the conflict, and if they do they, whether they will ever be the same again.

Note: This is also a movie under DVD ALL






The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein

FIC STEIN

Enzo knows that he is not like other dogs and does not seem to think in the same ways that they do. Hoping that he will be human in his next life, he decides to educate himself about humans by watching television and listening to his owner, race car driver, Denny Swift. 


Note: This book is also available in e-book format.





The Color Purple by Alice Walker   FIC WALKER



Celie pours out her feelings into a series of letters (to God and her sister) about the abuse (sexual, physical, and verbal) that she suffers at the hands of the men in her life (her father and her husband), her separation from the sister she tried so hard to protect, and many other hardships. These "letters" are the only ones that hear her thoughts and feelings, as she tries to show that she is a person and deserves to be heard. 

Note: This is also available as a movie under DVD COLOR 






You can find more tearjerkers here on the bibliography. There are some copies of the bibliography available to take with you next to the catalog computers. Happy reading!


Wednesday, December 4, 2013

"Not without my daughter" by Betty Mahmoody with William Hoffer

Betty Mahmoody was married to an Iranian doctor who was practicing medicine in the United States. They went to visit his family in Tehran, Iran in 1984, just six years after the Shah of Iran had been overthrown by revolution and Iran had become an Islamic theocracy, with an Islamic cleric at its head who oversees the President and Parliament to ensure that the government is operating in accordance with Islamic law. 

Toward the end of their two week visit, Betty’s husband Sayyed informed her they would be staying in Iran.  The rest of the book chronicles Betty’s resistance to this decision and her struggle to find a way to leave Iran with her daughter, Mahtob, who was four years old at the time.

The book did well in this country but sold particularly well in Europe, where cross-cultural marriages are more common, and where conflicts regarding individual rights can surface.  Betty soon found out that under Islamic law, she was an Iranian citizen by marrying an Iranian, and her husband had control over her and their child. 

The book is fairly long but realistic, as over the 18 months before Betty and Mahtob’s escape, we see Betty trying different tactics and succumbing at times to depression, despair and even apathy.  Her husband keeps her a virtual prisoner, beats her and for a time even keeps her from being with her daughter.

A film was made of the book, which was criticized for being anti-Iranian.  You do see the culture from Betty’s eyes, and she finds some habits of Iranian housewives lacking in hygiene, although it is not clear that this is widespread.  She does find friends and helpers, both Iranian and foreign. 

Sayyed Mahmoody died in 2009, never seeing his daughter again, who refused any contact with him.  He documented his side of the story with a book and with a video made with Finnish journalists.  He denied that he had been abusive towards Betty and maintained that she had agreed to move to Iran, so that he, as a doctor, could give medical help during the Iran-Iraqi war. 

Betty Mahmoody has received a lot of thanks from abused women who found similarities in their situations to hers, although they were not in a foreign country as she was.  It’s a book to make you think about marriage and people’s expectations of marriage, regardless of what culture they live in.

The book is listed here in our catalog. 

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

25 Best Sci-Fi Books of All Time, According to the Internet

Business Insider just published an article on the 25 Best Sci-Fi Books of All Time, and their information came from two Redditt lists (which is where the "according to the Internet" part comes in). There are several key books to the genre, that may come as no surprise, but I will let you make that decision. So take a look at the list, and see if you agree with those individuals who put in their votes. As always, Happy Reading!!!

The following are summaries of the top ten books, but you can visit the article through the link above (or at the end of the list) to take a deeper look at the other fifteen. 



1) To Your Scattered Bodies Go by Philip José Farmer     SF FARMER       (we also have the movie under DVD RIVERWOR)

(We have this work, along with the second book, The Fabulous Riverboat, under the title: Riverworld)

The first book in the Riverworld Saga begins with everyone who has ever lived on Earth suddenly finding themselves in a new world by a river. All their food is provided, but there is no clue as to the purpose of their new existence. Sir Richard Burton is the first to find the waystation, and Burton and a band made up of Alice Liddle Hargreaves, a Neanderthal, a Holocaust survivor, and an alien decide to travel the river to find out who brought this whole thing about and what their intentions are. 



2) The Shadow of the Torturer by Gene Wolfe        
SF WOLFE

(We have this work, along with the second book, The Claw of the Conciliator, under the title: Shadow & Claw)

The first book in the The Book of the New Sun series, this book follows Severian, who is an apprentice in the Guild of Torturers. Severian is soon exiled from the only home he has ever known, when he commits the ultimate sin of his guild by showing mercy to his victim. However, it seems that Severian has a bigger destiny than just that of a torturer.    




3) Anathem by Neil Stephenson
SF STEPHENS  and   AD SF STEPHENS

Fraa Erasmas is a young "avout" living in the Concent of Saunt Edhar, (a monastary-like place) which protects the scholars of mathematics, science, and philosophy inside it from the outside "saecular" world and its influences (and technology). During the rite of Apert, fraas and suurs leave the grounds of the concent, and the concent opens its doors to visiting "extras." Neither side is quite prepared, though, for the threat that is coming, and both sides will have to work together, if they want to stop it. Erasmas soon finds himself a key player in the chaos that is coming.




4) Revelation Space by Alastair Reynolds
SF REYNOLDS

The first book in the Revelation Space series, scientist, Dan Sylveste, knows that the Amarantin civilization was destroyed just as it was on the verge of discovering space flight. Now, he needs to solve the "riddle" of the Amarantin, before it happens again, and he will need the help of the dangerous cyborg crew aboard the starship, Nostalgia for Infinity. There are forces at work that want to stop him, because there was a good reason for the destruction of the Amarantin. 



5) The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. Le Guin
SF LEGUIN

One of the books in Le Guin's Hainish Cycle, The Left Hand of Darkness is considered, by many, to be a "groundbreaking" work of science fiction. Genly Ai, a human man, visits the alien winter world of Gethen as an emissary, where he hopes to discuss with the beings of the planet, the Gethians, their planet's being included in the growing intergalactic civilization. However, he must learn to understand the ways of the Gethens, however different they are, and have them understand his ways (and those of the civilization), in return.




6) I, Robot by Isaac Asimov
SF ASIMOV    (we also have the movie under DVD I)

There are three laws of Robotics: 1) a robot may not cause harm to, or allow a human to come to harm 2) a robot must obey orders of humans (unless it violates the first law), 3) a robot must protect its existence (unless it violates the first or second law). I, Robot is a collection of stories that Asimov wrote about robots from the 1940s and 1950s.






7) The Sirens of Titan by Kurt Vonnegut
FIC VONNEGUT

Malachi Constant is the richest and most depraved man on Earth, who takes part in several interplanetary wars, traveling from Earth to Mars to Mercury and to Titan. Constant finds out that all of the incidents within his travels came at the hands of Winston Niles Rumfoord. Kurt Vonnegut was a big inspiriation for Douglas Adam's The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (I think you will see it too). 




8) Contact by Carl Sagan
SF SAGAN            
(we also have the movie under DVD CONTACT)

After years of scanning the galaxy for any signs of communication from other life forms, a team of scientists, including Eleanor Arroway (the person who discovered the first communication), belive they have found what they were looking for. However, this discovery brings up bigger, more dangerous questions of not just traveling out to meet these new lifeforms (using the plans for the "Machine" that they sent), but if they really should. Sagan also gives scientific explanations on how things work. 


9) Red Mars by Kim Stanley Robinson
SF ROBINSON

The first book in the Mars Trilogy, Robinson looks at the colonization of Mars in the year 2026. A group of one hundred colonists is sent to begin terrforming the red planet. Each member of the group seems to have a different reason for traveling to Mars, and each person's personality also leads to conflict amongst the group. There also apear to be some in the group that would prefer that no changes be made to the planet at all.    



10) Pandora's Star by Peter F. Hamilton
SF HAMILTON

This is the first book in the Commonwealth Saga. It is the year 2380, and the Intersolar Commonwealth is made up of more than 600 worlds, stretching 400 lightyears in diameter. The worlds are connected through transport "wormholes" (tunnel like transportation). An astronomer, Dudley Bose, observes the vanishing of a star. Since it is too far out to reach by wormhole, the startship, Second Chance, is sent to find out what happened. Will they find more than they bargained for?




11) The Mote in God's Eye by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournell   SF NIVEN

12) A Canticle for Leibowitz by Walter M. Miller, Jr.  SF MILLER & AD SF MILLER

13) Excession by Iain M. Banks           SF BANKS  

14) Starship Troopers by Robert A. Heinlein  SF HEINLEIN (we also have the movie under DVD STARSHIP)

15) Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K. Dick  SF DICK (found within the book, Four Novels of the 1960s) & AD SF DICK  (we also have the movie under DVD BLADE for Blade Runner)

16) Ringworld by Larry Niven          SF NIVEN

17) 2001: A Space Odyssey by Arthur C. Clarke    SF CLARKE  (we also have the movie under DVD 2001)

18) The Forever War by Joe Haldeman    SF HALDEMAN

19) Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson       SF STEPHENS & AD SF STEPHENS

20) Neuromancer by William Gibson   SF GIBSON

21) Hyperion by Dan Simmons (we have the first two books in the series under Hyperion Cantos)    SF SIMMONS

22) Foundation by Isaac Asimov   SF ASIMOV

23) Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card  SF CARD & AD SF CARD &               e-book
released in theaters on November 1st

24) Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams   SF ADAMS (the whole series can be found in The Ultimate Hitchhiker's Guide) & AD SF ADAMS  & we also have the movie under DVD HITCHHIK

25) Dune by Frank Herbert  SF HERBERT (we also have the movie Dune under DVD DUNE and The Children of Dune under DVD CHILDREN)




Once again, if you want to check out the article for yourself clink on this link.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Sister Carrie by Theodore Dreiser



This book was first published in 1900.  The print edition that the Moore Memorial Public Library has is the same book that came out in 1900, with the addition of background notes and criticism.  “Sister Carrie” was Dreiser’s first novel.  The story takes place in Chicago and New York, cities in which Dreiser had had experience writing and reporting for different publications.  Carrie, a young 18 year old from Columbus, Ohio, comes to Chicago to live with her older married sister and to find work in the huge bustling city that people were pouring into at the rate of 50,000 people each year. 



Dreiser knew these statistics from his work in journalism, and his familiarity with the social economic classes at the time helped his novel writing.  But he is first and foremost a great storyteller.  While critics at the time found his writing clumsy or ponderous, the reader is conscious of nothing else but his or her interest in the character, and in anticipating what will happen.  Dreiser takes his narrative slowly, and we thoroughly experience the drabness and restriction of Carrie’s sister’s apartment that she shares with her husband.  As part of the struggling lower class, in 1889, they can’t look much farther than getting their wages –her husband cleans refrigerator cars in the stockyard – and paying their food and rent. 



Carrie got a glimpse of another kind of life when she met Drouet, a salesman, on the train on her way to Chicago.  He is a success at his work, and shows it in his dress and in his ability to pay his way in theaters and hotels, and to dine in restaurants with handwritten menus and red carpets. After she has tried to make her way alone, and gotten bruised in the process, Carrie encounters Drouet again.  He offers her a way into this big city, and all that it offers. 



While “Sister Carrie” brought censure on itself by having as its heroine a “fallen woman”, Dreiser saves Carrie from that censure by showing us her modesty, her desire to be married, and her own self-reproach for her actions.   We can see hers and the other characters’ limitations.  Dreiser lets us see their dreams, and how little import in their lives those dreams actually had.  This is his contribution as a “naturalist” writer. 



While reading Dreiser may make you somewhat melancholy, the steady growth of Carrie makes the book worth reading.  She is a woman in a man’s world, but a woman with aspirations, and with tenacity. 
You can find the book here in our catalog.

“For Greater Glory”, a film directed by Dean Wright



Wright was a visual effects supervisor and producer in major films such as “The Lord of the Rings”.  “For Greater Glory” is the first movie he directed.  In an interview, Wright calls himself a “Method” director- needing to feel the emotions of the characters that he’s shooting, and to feel those emotions as authentic. 

Some critics have faulted “For Greater Glory” for being too heavy on the emotions, milking the audience for a tearful reaction by playing stirring music nonstop, and prolonging sorrowful and upsetting scenes.  The movie is about the peasant force in Mexico that rose up in 1926 against the anti-clerical President Calles, whose regime had been persecuting the Catholic faith.  The rebels were called “Cristeros”.  The movie shows how the rebellion was ignited by the brutality exhibited by the Federales, the government troops.  Wright highlights the historical figure Jose Sanchez del Rio, a young boy who was martyred in the rebellion and was beatified by the Church in 2005.  We see the rebellion through his eyes as he witnesses his parish priest killed by soldiers.  Many believers today wonder how they would behave in a similar situation, and in the film, we see some Catholics turning away and others standing firm. 

The acting is good, and while I do agree that they should have spoken Spanish instead of English, that is not a big hurdle in watching the movie.  The rhythm and timing of the film is well done, and that helps enormously with the intimate and emotional exchanges. 

The exact historical picture is not delineated in the film. It is not clear from viewing “For Greater Glory” that in actuality many citizens just stood by and watched, and that the rebel force was in the minority, although the rebellion was very effective.  We see principal players, like the US ambassador,  trying to make a deal with Calles for oil interests, and we hear of Rome’s shifting stance, which was not in open support of the rebellion.  The result of the rebellion was that some religious liberty was restored, although the rebellion failed to bring down the government.

Wright takes artistic liberties in portraying the rebellion’s leader and other key historical figures, to suggest how circumstances can accelerate your belief and propel you into a life-changing situation.  The leader, General Gorostieta, was indeed hired by the rebels and was not a believer.  Wright takes some poetic license by putting Jose Sanchez del Rio, the young boy, under Gorostieta. In the film, Gorostieta slowly takes to the boy, and is compelled and strongly affected by Jose’s faith. 

One reviewer took issue with the fact that the movie seems to be only concerned with the Catholics, and that other religions are not given equal “time”.  Well, in that time, in Mexico, religion pretty much was the Catholic Church.  Viewers can decide for themselves whether the Catholic faith, through the Cristeros, adequately defended the right to religious freedom.