Tuesday, September 30, 2014


I dig Cronenberg. This film, opening some time early next year is all about celebrity, but of course because it is Cronenberg there will be a dark side to it all. John Cusack plays L.A. psychotherapist and life coach Stafford Weiss who has made his fortune with self-help books promising happiness. His wife Cristina (Olivia Williams) is the overbearing manager of their 13-year-old son, Benjie (Evan Bird), a TV star and recent drug rehab grad. Their estranged daughter, Agatha (Wasikowska), has just been released from a psychiatric hospital and befriends limo driver and aspiring actor Jerome (Pattinson). Among Stafford’s celebrity clients is Havana Segrand (Moore), a fading star who dreams of reprising her late mother Clarice’s (Sarah Gadon) starring role. Ambitions, ghosts, death, and all manner of vices bedevil the cast of characters. What do you think? Plans to see it?

Summary: A tour into the heart of a Hollywood family chasing celebrity, one another and the relentless ghosts of their pasts...Opens 2015.

Friday, September 26, 2014


September means a lot of things: colder weather, the leaves changing colors, apple cider, pumpkin everything and the return of my favorite shows. Now I have loved my little summer shows such as Outlander, SYTYCD, Legends, and the Quest, but I am ready to return to my old favorites and as mentioned in an earlier post some new friends to make. It’s funny when I look at the schedule below because I have become far pickier with my television than I used to be (though I can’t really tell that). There are also very few shows that I need to watch live because of the lovely invention called a DVR. In fact I binge watch a lot of my shows when I finally do have free time and do a couple of episodes at a time. There are shows I have on in the background when I am crafting or cooking, you know the ones you half watch, and ones that I need to sit down and watch. There are ones that are better watching a couple at a time and ones that I wait to watch until I am in a particular mood. E doesn’t get it since we have Hulu and Netflix. It’s okay. He doesn’t have to get it.

*New Shows

•Once Upon A Time (ABC, Sept. 28)
•Resurrection (ABC, Sept. 28)
•The Walking Dead (AMC, Oct. 12)
•The Affair (Showtime, Oct. 12)*
I know Finn will continue to watch Homeland and Revenge, but I am waiting for a binge watch on Netflix, plus I am behind on both. Of course Sundays are also Masterpiece Theatre for me on PBS, but the shows vary.

•The Blacklist (NBC, Sept. 22)
•Forever (ABC, Sept. 22)*
•The Big Bang Theory (CBS, Sept. 22) (Will move back to Thursdays after football)
I am a little behind on the Blacklist but I should be able to punch it out before the premier now that it is on Netflix. Monday is promising to be my lightest of nights which is fine by me.

•The Flash (CW, Oct. 7)*
•New Girl (FOX, Sept 16)
•SHIELD (ABC, Sept. 23)
•Supernatural (CW, Oct. 7)
I am looking forward to the Flash because I still love some DC verse, but skipping Gotham. Also super excited about SHIELD, yea Lucy Lawless.

• Arrow (CW, Oct. 8)
• American Horror Story: Freak Show (FX, Oct. 8)
• The 100 (CW, Oct. 22)
E and I have been binging on Arrow so I am ready for the new season. As odd as it is I continue to watch American Horror Story mostly due to my love for Paulson. The 100 is one of those shows that I watch while doing other things but the little twist from last season has perked my interest a bit.

• Scandal (ABC, Sept. 25)
• How to Get Away with Murder (ABC, Sept. 25)*
• A to Z (NBC, Oct. 2)*
• Gracepoint (FOX, Oct. 2)*
I just finished the last episode of last season yesterday of Scandal, so I am ready for this season. Whoo hoo. How to Get Away with Murder looks promising and I need at least one more comedy so I am willing to try A to Z. White Collar’s last season (sniff) doesn’t air until November and Finn will continue her love for Elementary (I am behind). Pretty much looking forward to David Tennant every week though.

• Constantine (NBC, Oct. 24)
Friday is usually the kiss of death for many shows, but it is getting colder and I tend to hibernate, so it works out for me as this may be my catch up day. Basically Constantine is the one show I am praying, praying doesn’t suck because I am really looking forward to a decent Hellblazer incarnation.

And that is my tv schedule until November. We will discuss the Midseason shows like iZombie and Agent Carter when we get closer. All I am saying is thank god for DVRs.

Saturday, September 20, 2014


It’s been almost two weeks since Destiny’s release. As many of you may know E and I played the Beta (insert link there) quite heavily when it was available earlier in the summer, but we have been very excited to finally tackle the full game. I liked the Beta, so do I still like the game now that I have played it through the entire story mode? Keep in mind there are some decent DLC plans headed our way as well. I have noticed that the reviews aren’t what I thought they would be. I am not going to repeat a lot of what I said in my earlier review but expand a bit more.

The one thing that comes to mind when I think of Destiny is how frakking gorgeous it is. My favorite planet is Venus with its Yellowstone like starkness on one side, and lush tropical environments on the other. I love just looking up at the sky and admiring the stars above. I love the fireflies when you are down fighting Thralls on the Moon, such a small touch but a gorgeous one that I noticed. I like the dunes of Mars, the ruined wastelands of a city, the small touches of expiration dates, rusted out cars, and Aurora Borealis at night. I want to explore it more just as I wanted to do so in Titanfall (another gorgeous game). I want more worlds. I want more pretties basically.

I am only level 22 right now, but I have managed to unlock the shaders finally which allow you to customize, to some extent, your armor. Because let’s face it you may love your high defense armor, but then it is yellow and also your bracers don’t match. Now my warlock can be my Mass Effect colors of magenta and teal just like I like it though I would be very happy with some purple or straight black or maybe some black and red.

The infamous loot cave which is now no more
The loot system is broken. Oh so broken. Which is why we have the Murdercave/Lootcave on Earth. Now I know there are some people who say that doing the daily strikes, etc are the way to go. But last night when E and I played (we only recently discovered said cave) I went from level 22 to level 24 in half an hour because of the loot generated. And the best part of loot crate isn’t the farming potentially good engrams, it’s when the entire map decides to mass against you. Oh so much fun. But to be brutally honest for someone who is decent at shooters, but who could get a lot better, the murder cave is great target practice for me. Can I get my grenade just perfect? How many headshots can I get? Am I worth a damn with my new legendary gun? Can I hold the cave alone while E messes with his inventory or reloads?

But back to the loot system. I am not really a PVP person as I have had too many bad experiences. Recently in the past year COD was decent but that is also because I had E and our friends Bryan, Anuk, and Cal to play with. We had strategies. It was fun. But thus far Bungie has not enticed me with its Crucible even if you may get decent gear (though E really hasn’t). Missions prove to be largely disappointing when it comes to gear. And one of the most frustrating things is to find an elusive purple engram only to have it turn into blue gear. Or materials. Which might be fine if I have all sorts of Legendary and Exotic gear, but I don’t. I am still rocking the Rares.

My character happily sitting in a tree at the Tower
The Tower is still not a social lobby for players. Sorry Bungie. If you wanted a social aspect, you have yet to give it to me. Sure we can have a tree party dance off (as you can see the tree is my new favorite place to chill as I go through my inventory or wait for E to finish before we’re off planet hopping) or kick around the soccer ball. I can even wave hello which is bowing for me, but there is still no real way to say ‘hey, want to go on a raid?’ “Ooh like your armor/moniker.” “Hey back up you’re ruining the spawn.” “nice shot” “thanks for reviving me” “About to go super on these guys please don’t take my kills as I am trying to finish this bounty”, etc.

Now as I mentioned before in my earlier review, I understand that Bungie wanted to make it friendly for everyone and as a girl with a girly moniker and who likes to wear purple or pink armor, I certainly got my share of asshats when I used to play Halo. Let there be an ignore button then. While E and I may have our raid party of 6 when we get to level 26, what about those who don’t? (Though as I write this he could go do it, but I don’t think our friends are quite there yet.) How are they supposed to find other peeps to play with if there isn’t a social aspect? Just skip it? How about joining a guild?

It’s a short game mission/story wise. Which is a shame. The story was formulaic, but it did a good job of leaving me wanting more. Perhaps too much though. I feel like I shouldn’t have to learn the lore of the land by reading my grimoire cards. And you must admit it is fairly abrupt. Now of course the world may expand just like any MMO and the reveal of us (link to baddie speculation) being the baddies (link to Mitchell and Web youtube video) may occur (I am kind of hoping for it actually…what a nice change).

Now in the past few days the Queen’s emissary has shown up with his own set of bounties/missions to win back her favor, but really we just replayed the last mission again on a certain difficulty so the story reveals nothing more. I did get an awesome chest piece last night, though I really want the shaders that the emissary is selling. There is also DLC expected this winter that may include new planets to explore and perhaps more storylines (like hmm, how long was my character dead and how exactly did I come back? Am I a necromorph?).

Now I am okay with stories being short. To be honest I wasn’t expecting Mass Effect style storytelling. And yet I was hoping it might be on par with say…Borderlands. However, it is not. I guess all of the hype and such led me to believe that there might be more substance. It isn’t really there for me. I also would like some different bounties. Make it varied. Say so many shots using a certain gun. Maybe grenade kills, etc but I have not seen them as of yet if they have been options. If you are going to do a short story with a lot of grinding, at least introduce new and fresh things as often as you can. And don’t make us pay for all of it. They are doing their best with the new Queen stuff and the daily heroic mission, strike, nightfall, etc. I just want more as I don’t really see myself continuing with Destiny once Borderlands, Shadows of Modor or Dragon Age inquisition come out. But perhaps that is the nature of gaming though I will say that Mass Effect 3 had me every weekend for a year and E can second me on that. I have no doubt that Dragon Age Inquisition multi will have me doing the same thing.

Oh dear god the dialogue and voice acting is not good. When E plays PVP I want to laugh at the absurd voiceover, but nothing compares to Dinklage’s reading of some horrible lines (trust me I really like Dinklage…GoT, Death at a Funeral, Station Agent, etc). There is even a drinking game that you drink whenever it is clear that he has no idea the context or what the words mean. It is a very easy way to get drunk and a running joke between E and I. Of course there are some of the voice actors who know how to handle okay dialogue (looking at you Nathan, Gina, and Claudia…take me with you) and are a pleasure to hear.

I love that there is matchmaking in the strikes, but for the daily strikes, nightfall, heroic missions, and of course the raid there is no matchmaking. So you hope you have five other friends who are on the same system as you are (not all of our friends have moved over to the One yet) and can play at the same time. So how do you get a group of peeps together if there really isn’t a social aspect to your MMO? While I have been smart enough not to get involved with PC MMOs (as I have no willpower and know that I would be hooked the moment I started one) they are far more social and accessible for single players than Destiny thus far. But maybe that will change.

The story is incomplete, but if you are going MMO style on a console you tease and hope that people stay put long enough for you to expand the story and the universe. While I know there is a bigger picture and bigger plans, I cannot help but be a little frustrated and I know that I am not the only one. There have been hints that other places on Earth will be available such as Chicago, Mumbai, etc and more planets in the future hold promise, but am I willing to shell out the money for each?

Nitpick: Hilarious when we meet the Queen of the Awoken and her brother. The story definitely treats you as if you are human instead of the other races you can choose to be. I was awoken so the quest to find out who and what they were was kind of funny. Um…hello. Female Awoken with awesome purple hair right here. I might have been dead at one time, but you think my ghost would have known the difference.

3 out of 4 controllers.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014


One of the great things about Fall is that my favorite TV shows begin again along with some potential new favorites. Though E doesn’t always understand the DVR when we have a perfectly good Netflix, I happen to enjoy being caught up and spoiler free on some of my favorites. Here are some of the new potentials for me and dates for some of my returning favorites.


Forever (ABC – Sept 23)
The Skinny: Doctor Henry Morgan (Ioan Gruffudd), New York City's star medical examiner, has a secret. He doesn't just study the dead to solve criminal cases, he does it to solve the mystery that has eluded him for 200 years—the answer to his own inexplicable immortality. This long life has given Henry remarkable observation skills which impresses his new partner Detective Jo Martinez (Alana De La Garza). Each week, a new case and their budding friendship will reveal layers of Henry's long and colorful past. Only his best friend and confidant, Abe (Judd Hirsch) knows Henry's secret. Sounds a lot like New Amsterdam I know (which I liked by the way), but I love Ioan (He’s in one of my favorite films Solomon and Gaenor) and I want him do things…on tv, film…I’m not picky.

Gracepoint (FOX - Oct 2)
The Skinny: The inevitable American remake of another Brit show (Broadchurch overseas and I loved it earlier this year), but still starring one of my crushes (David Tennant) so you know I will watch. This 10-part mystery series features Detective Emmett Carver (Tennant), who must figure out who killed a young boy in a sleepy seaside California town.

A to Z (NBC – Oct 2)
The Skinny: "A to Z" tells the story of Andrew (Ben Feldman, "Mad Men," "The Mindy Project") and Zelda (Cristin Milioti, "The Wolf of Wall Street," "How I Met Your Mother") - a pair that almost wasn't - and all that happened from the day they met. Andrew and Zelda will date for eight months, three weeks, five days and one hour. This program is a comprehensive account of their relationship - from "A to Z." It’s a tv version of 500 Days of Summer because this is not about them living happily ever after. Worth a shot. Plus I need more comedies to watch.

Constantine (NBC – Oct 21)
The Skinny: I love Hellblazer and I love me some John Constantine. Based on the comic of the same name it follows Constantine (Matt Ryan) whose soul is damned to hell. He fights to protect innocent people by using his knowledge of the supernatural to send evil back where it belongs. He’s blonde and a brit so that is a step in the right direction. Probably the show I am looking forward to the most so please don’t suck.

State of Affairs (NBC – Nov 17)
The Skinny: Each day the president is faced with dozens of life-and-death decisions, and to prioritize the biggest international crises facing the country, one top CIA analyst - Charleston Tucker (Katherine Heigl, ) - assembles the President's Daily Briefing (PDB). Aside from the political minefields she has to walk, Charlie has a close personal relationship with President Constance Payton (Alfre Woodard) because she was once engaged to her son before a tragic terrorist attack took his life. Charlie survived that attack and is now determined to bring the perpetrators to justice while still protecting the country.

The Flash (CW – Oct 7)
The Skinny: Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) was eleven when his mother was killed and his father was falsely convicted of the murder. Raised by a detective, Barry is now a brilliant CSI investigator. Barry's latest obsession is a particle accelerator, but at the unveiling something goes wrong and Barry wakes up after nine months in a coma to find that he has super speed. If I am going to be a DC gal then the CW is where I will be with Arrow and now the Flash. Sorry Gotham.

So, where is Gotham you ask. Sorry folks I am so not excited for the series. I have tried. Really I have tried. I am going to let Finn watch this one and if it is so awesome that she begs me to watch it then maybe I will give it a try.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

The Art of How To Train Your Dragon 2: A Review

The Art of How To Train Your Dragon 2
Written by: Linda Sunshine
Paperback: 160 pages
Publisher: New Market Press
Language: English
May 2014
Genre: Non Fiction/Art

Here is a look behind the frozen fjords and ice caves of Berk at the making of the sequel to a beloved animated classic. This full-color, lavishly illustrated book features more than 650 paintings, drawings, sketches, models, film stills, lighting studies, color keys, story boards, and photographs. Along with quotes from all the principal filmmakers there is also an introduction by the writer/director Dean DeBlois and a foreword by Gerard Butler, the voice of Stoick.

In this brilliantly conceived sequel, we are on a journey of exploration to new lands, four-winged dragons, long-lost love, vicious and powerful enemies, and ginormous Bewilderbeasts.

How does a movie of such imagination and magnitude come into creation? Well, you begin with an incredibly talented team of artists, writers, engineers, animators, modelers, and tech wizards and you let their creativity soar. The result is a stunning, original vision—bigger, better, and fiercer than ever—of an earth-shattering, fire-breathing sequel to the legendary story of Vikings and dragons in the frozen north.


I love art books, especially art books for films that I absolutely love (my favorite is the one from Mirrormask). I loved the original How to Train Your Dragon and the sequel looked equally amazing. Hiccup and his friends from Berk are five years older. Berk has become a dragon rider haven and the new character, city, and dragon designs reflect that. It’s a beautiful little film. So of course I was excited to get this copy of the Art book to review by Linda Sunshine.

Based on the books by Cressida Cowell, How to Train Your Dragon is chock full of dragons and their riders. They are absolutely beautiful and the drawings of main character designer Nicolas Marlet reflect that. Of course Artist Zhaoping Wei provides the more finished look to the characters.

Now I love Art of Books because I love being able to thoroughly look and drool over things I may have only seen on screen for just a short time but took so much time and imagination. Now I get to take my own time and peruse to my heart’s content. Animation in particular has so many talented people working on everything from landscapes to lighting to costumes.

The book is divided into sections with quotes from those involved with the film. There are details about Hiccup’s gadgets, a very in-depth look at some of the costumes (hello Cosplayers out there), the different dragon designs, the environment and the props. I loved reading about Berk with all of the new additions that it make it as happy for the dragons of Berk as it does the Vikings.

Things I loved: You know I love the dragons of course and I cannot help it if Toothless is my favorite. Just look at him. He is adorable. There are some great new designs this time around. Some massive, some wee and cute. There are elemental dragons and ones with very distinct personalities. I will say that there is less about the dragons you met from the first film and just a smidge on Toothless compared to the new dragon designs. I am okay with this as the new beasties are impressive. There is also some insight on how they created such a variety of dragons.

This book also uses DreamWorks Animation AR which is a free app that allows you to point your phone at certain pages that will either play a clip from the film or the storyboards. There are only a few instances of this feature and a cute little feature I suppose (I just wish there had been more).

Things I didn’t love so much: There weren’t a lot of downsides to this book. Sure the font could always be bigger or I could get more art of my favorite scenes and characters, but that is just nitpicking. I was happy to receive it, loved the film, and will look quite nicely with the other art books I have. That’s about it.

Buy or Borrow: Buy. A great addition if you loved the film. Not only does it give an amazing behind the scenes look at how the film was brought to life and all of the hard work and effort that went into its creation, but it’s just gorgeous to look at.

Part of: Stand alone

Also Recommended: Some of my favorite movie art books that I would recommend are Mirrormask: The Illustrated Script by Neil Gaiman and Dave McKean, Moulin Rouge Art Book by Baz Luhrmann, and the Serenity Visual Companion by Joss Whedon.

3.75 out of 4 happy bibliosnark bookmarks 

Saturday, September 13, 2014


I recently discovered a lovely little blog meme from Happy Indulgence Books which is all about gaming. Right up my alley right? It helps that both are fellow book bloggers. Whoo hoo. So I am a little late to the party and that is what I get for just finding out about it. Every month there's a new gaming-related question to answer, you also share a recommendation, and what game you're currently playing. Allons-y!

What's your favorite gaming genre? 

I play a little bit of everything. If you asked me this same question a couple of years ago I would have said strictly RPGS, hack and slash and point and click were my favorite. I was a PS3 fan though I still had an original Xbox. And then I met E. Now I love shooters like Call of Duty. My heart will always belong to games like Mass Effect that blend my old favorite RPG with a shooter. But I am willing to try everything. Only recently did I become attached to the addiction of Minecrack…seriously Minecraft has taken over my life. Well at least it did until Destiny showed up last week. I really can’t choose just one genre as I find merits in many.

My Recommendation – Chime

"Single player game seeks significant gamer for musical puzzle fun. Me: unique, compelling, creative and demanding. You: quick-witted and open-minded with sharp reactions and a deep love of music. Let’s get together and play something beautiful. Featuring music by Moby, Paul Hartnoll (Orbital), Philip Glass, Fred Deakin (Lemon Jelly) and Markus Schulz. No less than 60% of the purchase price of Chime will go to charity."

This and Flower are two of my oh holy hell I am stressed out and need to relax stat sort of games and the reason I may have chosen it this month is because I may be feeling that way (sometimes working at a University can make you a little grr arghy is all that I am saying). Chime is kind of like Tetris, but with music. Personally I like the PS3 version a little bit better, but I still play it a ton on the Xbox. I like to beat my scores…continually and for some reason I find it incredibly relaxing. Because let’s face it, sometimes shooters just amp me up more instead of instilling the zen. Plus charity. Whoo hoo.

Currently Playing

I have been waiting for Destiny so I haven’t been playing anything too much recently unless you count the above mentioned Chime, Minecraft, and the occasional continuation of The Last of Us. For September I have vowed to finish one of my 80% games (I know you understand this problem). It’s the game you almost finished, but never quite made it because look squirrel. Tomb Raider, Sleeping Dogs, Heroes’ Crown, Contrast, and Lollipop Chainsaw are my casualties. And I want to fix that. Right after I finish playing the heck out of Destiny which may continue through this week.

Monday, September 8, 2014


Wow, its September already. Where did my summer go? Actually where did the year go? University is back in session and with it my job gets a little crazy. That is what you get when you add a population in the span of two weeks. But I don’t mind…okay only a little. It does mean that my days go by quicker.

I love September. I love the chill starting to creep into the air, new seasons of my favorite shows returning and new ones to check out. September means Autumn with jewel tones, changing leaves, and the return of everything pumpkin or spice. It means football games and tailgates, bonfires with smores, even more zucchini from the garden, and breaking out the hoodies and sweaters at night. Autumn and Spring are my favorite seasons as they are a bit balanced. I get the best of both hot and cold. Yea September. Here are my warm fuzzies expected to be out this month in gaming, movies, and books.

Genre: Horror
Stars: Rose Leslie, Harry Treadaway, Ben Huber, Hanna Brown

In short: Young newlyweds struggle as their honeymoon spirals mysteriously into chaos. Nice buzz around it. (September 12)  

Hector and the Search for Happiness
Genre: Adventure | Comedy | Drama
Stars: Rosamund Pike, Simon Pegg, Stellan Skarsgård, Toni Collette

In short: A psychiatrist searches the globe to find the secret of happiness. (September 19)

The Maze Runner
Genre: Action | Mystery | Sci-Fi | Thriller
Stars: Dylan O'Brien, Will Poulter, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Kaya Scodelario

In short: Thomas (Dylan O'Brien) is deposited in a community of boys after his memory is erased, soon learning they're all trapped in a maze that will require him to join forces with fellow "runners" for a shot at escape. Based on the YA Novel. (September 19)

The Box Trolls
Genre: Animation | Adventure | Comedy | Family | Fantasy
Stars: Ben Kingsley, Jared Harris, Nick Frost, Richard Ayoade

In short: A young orphaned boy raised by underground cave-dwelling trash collectors tries to save his friends from an evil exterminator. Based on the children's novel 'Here Be Monsters' by Alan Snow. (September 26)

The Equalizer
Genre: Action | Crime | Thriller | Drama
Stars: Denzel Washington, Marton Csokas, Chloë Grace Moretz, David Harbour

In short: A former black ops commando who faked his death for a quiet life in Boston comes out of his retirement to rescue a young girl and finds himself face to face with Russian gangsters. One of E’s picks. (September 26)

The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell (Sept 2)
In short: Following a scalding row with her mother, fifteen-year-old Holly Sykes slams the door on her old life. But Holly is no typical teenage runaway: a sensitive child once contacted by voices she knew only as “the radio people,” Holly is a lightning rod for psychic phenomena. Now, as she wanders deeper into the English countryside, visions and coincidences reorder her reality until they assume the aura of a nightmare brought to life. For Holly has caught the attention of a cabal of dangerous mystics—and their enemies. But her lost weekend is merely the prelude to a shocking disappearance that leaves her family irrevocably scarred. This unsolved mystery will echo through every decade of Holly’s life, affecting all the people Holly loves—even the ones who are not yet born. A Cambridge scholarship boy grooming himself for wealth and influence, a conflicted father who feels alive only while reporting from occupied Iraq, a middle-aged writer mourning his exile from the bestseller list—all have a part to play in this surreal, invisible war on the margins of our world. From the medieval Swiss Alps to the nineteenth-century Australian bush, from a hotel in Shanghai to a Manhattan townhouse in the near future, their stories come together in moments of everyday grace and extraordinary wonder.

 The Winter Long (October Daye #8) by Seanan McGuire (Sept 2)

In short: Toby thought she understood her own past; she thought she knew the score. She was wrong. It's time to learn the truth. Already in my hands people. Already in my hands.

Shifting Shadows: Stories from the World of Mercy Thompson by Patricia Briggs (Sept 2)
In short: Mercy Thompson’s world just got a whole lot bigger… A collection of all-new and previously published short stories featuring Mercy Thompson, “one of the best heroines in the urban fantasy genre today” (Fiction Vixen Book Reviews), and the characters she calls friends… Includes the new stories…“Silver” “Roses in Winter” “Redemption” “Hollow” …and reader favorites “Fairy Gifts” “Gray” “Alpha and Omega” “Seeing Eye” “The Star of David” “In Red, with Pearls”

Maplecroft (The Borden Dispatches #1) by Cherie Priest (Sept 2)
In short: Lizzie Borden took an axe and gave her mother forty whacks; and when she saw what she had done, she gave her father forty-one.... The people of Fall River, Massachusetts, fear me. Perhaps rightfully so. I remain a suspect in the brutal deaths of my father and his second wife despite the verdict of innocence at my trial. With our inheritance, my sister, Emma, and I have taken up residence in Maplecroft, a mansion near the sea and far from gossip and scrutiny. But it is not far enough from the affliction that possessed my parents. Their characters, their very souls, were consumed from within by something that left malevolent entities in their place. It originates from the ocean’s depths, plaguing the populace with tides of nightmares and madness. This evil cannot hide from me. No matter what guise it assumes, I will be waiting for it. With an axe.

Egg and Spoon by Gregory Maguire (Sept 9)
In short: A fantasy set in Tsarist Russia. Elena Rudina lives in the impoverished Russian countryside. Her father has been dead for years. One of her brothers has been conscripted into the Tsar’s army, the other taken as a servant in the house of the local landowner. Her mother is dying, slowly, in their tiny cabin. And there is no food. But then a train arrives in the village, a train carrying untold wealth, a cornucopia of food, and a noble family destined to visit the Tsar in Saint Petersburg — a family that includes Ekaterina, a girl of Elena’s age. When the two girls’ lives collide, an adventure is set in motion, an escapade that includes mistaken identity, a monk locked in a tower, a prince traveling incognito, and — in a starring role only Gregory Maguire could have conjured — Baba Yaga, witch of Russian folklore, in her ambulatory house perched on chicken legs.

The Iron Trial (Magisterium #1) by Holly Black & Cassandra Clare (Sept 9th)
In short: From NEW YORK TIMES bestselling authors Holly Black and Cassandra Clare comes a riveting new series that defies what you think you know about the world of magic. From two bestselling superstars, a dazzling and magical middle-grade collaboration centering on the students of the Magisterium, an academy for those with a propensity toward magic. In this first book, a new student comes to the Magisterium against his will -- is it because he is destined to be a powerful magician, or is the truth more twisted than that? It's a journey that will thrill you, surprise you, and make you wonder about the clear-cut distinction usually made between good and evil.

The Infinite Sea (The 5th Wave #2) by Rick Yancey (Sept 16th)
In short: How do you rid the Earth of seven billion humans? Rid the humans of their humanity. Surviving the first four waves was nearly impossible. Now Cassie Sullivan finds herself in a new world, a world in which the fundamental trust that binds us together is gone. As the 5th Wave rolls across the landscape, Cassie, Ben, and Ringer are forced to confront the Others’ ultimate goal: the extermination of the human race. Cassie and her friends haven’t seen the depths to which the Others will sink, nor have the Others seen the heights to which humanity will rise, in the ultimate battle between life and death, hope and despair, love and hate.

Made for You by Melissa Marr (Sept 16)
In short: Bestselling author of the Wicked Lovely books Melissa Marr’s first contemporary YA novel is a twisted southern gothic tale of obsession, romance, and murder. A killer is obsessed with Eva Tilling. Can she stop him, or will he claim her? When Eva Tilling wakes up in the hospital, she’s confused—who in her sleepy little North Carolina town could have hit her with their car? And why? But before she can consider the question, she finds that she’s awoken with a strange new skill: the ability to foresee people’s deaths when they touch her. While she is recovering from the hit-and-run, Nate, an old flame, reappears, and the two must traverse their rocky past as they figure out how to use Eva’s power to keep her friends—and themselves—alive. But while Eva and Nate grow closer, the killer grows increasingly frantic in his attempt to get to Eva.

An Age of License: A Travelogue by Lucy Knisley (Sept 22)
In short: Acclaimed cartoonist Lucy Knisley (French Milk, Relish) got an opportunity that most only dream of: a travel-expenses-paid trip to Europe/Scandinavia, thanks to a book tour. An Age of License is Knisley s comics travel memoir recounting her charming (and romantic!) adventures. It’s punctuated by whimsical visual devices (such as a new experiences funnel); peppered with the cute cats she meets along the way; and, of course, features her hallmark drawings and descriptions of food that will make your mouth water. But it’s not all kittens and raclette crepes: Knisley s experiences are colored by anxieties, introspective self-inquiries, and quotidian revelations about traveling alone in unfamiliar countries, and about her life and career that many young adults will relate to. An Age of License which takes its name from a French saying is an Eat, Pray, Love for the alternative comics fan.”

Soulminder by Timothy Zahn (Sept 23)
In short: In this new book by the author of "Blackcollar "and the #1 "New York Times"-bestselling "Heir to the Empire, "Timothy Zahn imagines a technology that could alter our perception of life and death foreverFor Dr. Adrian Sommers, a split second of driving while distracted leads to tragedy--and obsession. His family destroyed, he devotes his entire being to developing Soulminder, a technology that might have saved his son as he wavered on the edge of death. Sommers's vision is to capture a dying person's life essence and hold it safely in stasis while physicians heal the body from injury or disease. Years of experimentation finally end in success--but those who recognize Soulminder's possibilities almost immediately corrupt its original concept to pursue dangerous new frontiers: body-swapping, obstruction of justice, extortion, and perhaps even immortality.

Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld (Sept 23)
In short: Darcy Patel has put college and everything else on hold to publish her teen novel, Afterworlds. Arriving in New York with no apartment or friends she wonders whether she's made the right decision until she falls in with a crowd of other seasoned and fledgling writers who take her under their wings… Told in alternating chapters is Darcy's novel, a suspenseful thriller about Lizzie, a teen who slips into the 'Afterworld' to survive a terrorist attack. But the Afterworld is a place between the living and the dead and as Lizzie drifts between our world and that of the Afterworld, she discovers that many unsolved - and terrifying - stories need to be reconciled. And when a new threat resurfaces, Lizzie learns her special gifts may not be enough to protect those she loves and cares about most.

Rooms by Lauren Oliver (Sept 23)
In short: The New York Times bestselling author of Before I Fall and the Delirium trilogy makes her brilliant adult debut with this mesmerizing story in the tradition of The Lovely Bones, Her Fearful Symmetry, and The Ocean at the End of the Lane—a tale of family, ghosts, secrets, and mystery, in which the lives of the living and the dead intersect in shocking, surprising, and moving ways. Wealthy Richard Walker has just died, leaving behind his country house full of rooms packed with the detritus of a lifetime. His estranged family—bitter ex-wife Caroline, troubled teenage son Trenton, and unforgiving daughter Minna—have arrived for their inheritance. But the Walkers are not alone. Prim Alice and the cynical Sandra, long dead former residents bound to the house, linger within its claustrophobic walls. Jostling for space, memory, and supremacy, they observe the family, trading barbs and reminiscences about their past lives. Though their voices cannot be heard, Alice and Sandra speak through the house itself—in the hiss of the radiator, a creak in the stairs, the dimming of a light bulb. The living and dead are each haunted by painful truths that will soon surface with explosive force. When a new ghost appears, and Trenton begins to communicate with her, the spirit and human worlds collide—with cataclysmic results. Elegantly constructed and brilliantly paced, Rooms is an enticing and imaginative ghost story and a searing family drama that is as haunting as it is resonant.


Dance Central Spotlight (Xbox One) - September 2
Don't Starve: Giant Edition (Vita) - September 2
Sims 4 (PC) - September 2
Destiny (Xbox One, PS4, 360, PS3) - September 9
Gauntlet (PC) - September 23
Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor (Xbox One, 360, PS4, PS3, PC) - September 30

Did I miss anything?