Thursday, June 10, 2010

I Capture the Castle - Book v Movie

I Capture the Castle is a favourite book of mine. It's just one of those books you sink into and, you know, they live in a old rambling castle, which is just about the coolest setting for a book ever. I would love it to be the setting of my life :)

Cassandra has the most addictive voice that makes you fall in love with her and see the world through her eyes. And it was written over sixty years ago, but still features one of the charming-est YA female protags ever :)

It's one of those books that I knew I should read (being a classic) and then was definitely surprised how much I loved it when I did read it. I have been known to procrastinate on reading classics, because, well, they're classics and my brain somehow correlates that to mean boring. Blame my high school texts for that.

This is one not-boring classic.

Here's a blurb from GoodReads: 
I Capture the Castle tells the story of seventeen-year-old Cassandra and her family, who live in not-so-genteel poverty in a ramshackle old English castle. Here she strives, over a six-month period, first in a sixpenny book, then in a shilling book, and, finally, in a splendid two-guinea book, to hone her writing skills. And it is within these pages that she candidly chronicles her encounters with the estate's new, young, and handsome American landlords, the effects of her sister Rose's marital ambitions, her writer's-blocked father's anguished and ultimately renewed creativity, and her own hopeless, first descent into love.
By the time she pens her final entry, she has "captured the castle"--and the heart of the reader--in one of literature's most enchanting entertainments.

Then there's the movie

Sometimes I get nervous about watching movies that are from my fave books (you know they just can't be as good) BUT I really love the movie. 

It's different to the book, but so well cast that I really felt Romola Garai (also from Atonement) made the perfect Cassandra. And Rose Byrne plays her sister Rose, and Rose is one of my fave actresses -- and she's just so lovely in this. I just can't help but love her in her spoiled beauty. Bill Nighy is the dad and he's pretty unbelievably awesome. And the setting is just gorgeous. And I'm not even one of those people who use the word gorgeous. 

The movie uses Cassandra as a voice over narrator, which I'm normally not into, but I thought it was perfect here, it helped translate that charming voice from the book onto the screen. 

And I keep using the words charming and perfect. Huh. 

Speaking of perfect...

And then there's Henry Cavill. Which just takes Steven to a whole new level*. If all else fails, you know you'll enjoy the scenes in which he appears ;)

I am definitely recommending them both, the book and the movie (and Henry Cavill, too, while I'm at it :). I'm split on which I prefer more, as they both use their medium well to tell the story. The book's great if you're in that rainy day read kinda mood. If not, the movie is just as appealing and the storyline is unpredictable: two sisters, two brothers, one hot gardener-type-boy who turns to modelling (cue some nice scenes there), a ramshackle castle, crazy father, love and unrequited love all charmingly told and that's just a snippet of the story.

So, have you read the book? Seen the movie? Planning on either?

I recommend watching the trailer until the end :) It's very cute...

And on a side note. The Brief History of Montmaray is a YA book that was recently released and is being compared to I Capture the Castle. Has anyone read it yet? I know I'm intrigued...

* of hotness, that is.


  1. I haven't read capture the castle but that movie preview looks so charming! I've seen capture the castle at the book store before and I think I'm going to have to get it now.

  2. THERE'S A MOVIE?!?! ... Oh my gawd, I'm so behind. Must go watch it nowww!
    Didn't read the book until a couple of years ago, but I LOVED it when I finally did. It feels so modern and true-to-life, even though it was written a long time ago -- but I guess that's the mark of a classic ;)

  3. I have not read the book, but I definitely want to now. And the movie looks very sweet too. Great post, I love comparing the books to the movies :D

  4. I haven't read the book or seen the movie, but I've been obsessed with Henry Cavill for a while now. lol :D

  5. @ Melissa - your library would definitely have a copy. In fact,. my library has the dvd as well, b/c it's a splendid library like that :)

    @ Ellen - I know! That was me too when I realised! And, I only realised because I was, ah, investigating Henry cavills career :) I hope you love it!

    @ bclement - Oh, yeah, it's worth looking at :)

    @ Becca - loving your confession :) I have some healthy Cavill appreciation myself.

  6. I love the book I didn't know anything about the movie. Running off to net flicks now - thanks!

  7. You have no idea how much I love you for writing this post.

    I Capture the Castle is one of my all-time favorite books. It's seriously my life's ambition to live in a castle. Plus, Cassandra has such a strong, lovely voice. I can't even express my love for this book coherently XD.

    The movie is pretty awesome too! But I definitely like the book better.

    And I need to check out The Brief History in that case :)

  8. Hey Choco :)

    yeah, I probably like the book better - but mainly b/c I like reading better than I like watching movies. And I love your life ambition :) Good luck with that ;)

    @ Alexa - I hope you enjoy the movie!



Thanks for the commenty love :)