Thursday, March 31, 2016

THROWBACK THURSDAYS: LISA FRANK

If you grew up in the 80’s and 90’s you have probably heard of Lisa Frank. Certainly you would recognize her handiwork. I had piles of stickers, pencils, and folders of rainbow unicorns, painting pandas, smiling orcas, and neon tiger cubs. When you see Lisa Frank merchandise you have to admit that the shiny, happy, glitter explosion has its own unique style. Seriously so magical. I look at these images and I am transported to my childhood.

Growing up I was drawn to neon cuteness, presumably the same way I was drawn to Freezy Freakies, Unico, and anything a bright dayglo pink. Everything was so colorful, so adorable, so…me as a kid. She was the epitome of cool for me. And I needed to own all of the things. I know I had at least one Trapper Keeper that was Lisa Frank.


Some cool facts about Lisa Frank. She started her company when she was 24 in 1979 (makes me look incredibly…le sigh). That same year she received a million dollar order from Spencer Gifts (a place I spent a lot of time at). Most of the designs were airbrush painted until the 90’s where things switched to computers. It began with stickers and her own unique characters then expanded.

Lisa Frank is still out there. While now everything is contracted out you may have seen some clothing at Urban Outfitters. There is even a Tarot set. She will always have a place in my heart. I seriously need more adorable jaguars in my life or Princess cats.

Were you or are you still a Lisa Frank fan? What was your favorite design? Did you like the inclusion of people later in Lisa Frank’s career. Do you still own Lisa Frank stuff?

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

TUESDAY TRAILERS: CAPTAIN AMERICA - CIVIL WAR

I am not a huge fan of the Civil War story in the comics however I do like the overall basis of it. The movie looks like it strays from the comic book adventures and that is a good thing. And yet I look forward to seeing a potentially new group of supes from the Marvel universe make their debut and become more important in the MCU. I also am looking forward to seeing Tony and Steve square off. Steve wants to believe that Bucky can atone and believes the best in people even when he has seen their worst. Tony is arrogant, always has been, but Ultron knocked him down a few pegs. Now he has to try even further to prove that he is right, that he knows what is best…for everyone even if it means fighting against his friends. It will be interesting if he eventually makes it to Director of SHIELD. I am still marking my calendar for this one. I can’t help it. I am super excited and will always be a Marvel girl. What do you think? Plans to see it?


Summary: After another incident involving the Avengers results in collateral damage, political pressure mounts to install a system of accountability, headed by a governing body to oversee and direct the team. The new status quo fractures the Avengers, resulting in two camps, one led by Steve Rogers and his desire for the Avengers to remain free to defend humanity without government interference, and the other following Tony Stark's surprising decision to support government oversight and accountability..…Opens May 6, 2016.

Friday, March 25, 2016

10 CLOVERFIELD LANE: A REVIEW

10 Cloverfield Lane (2016)
Directed By: Dan Trachtenberg
Written By: Josh Campbell and Matthew Stuecken
Genre: THRILLER/MYSTERY/SCI-FI
Rated: PG-13
Time: 103 min
Starring: John Goodman, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, and John Gallagher Jr.
Plot: After getting in a car accident, a woman is held in a shelter with two men, who claim the outside world is affected by a widespread chemical attack.

Comments: I knew nothing about the film until the trailer surfaced a few months ago. The trailer didn’t show a lot which is a good thing. It had a great cast which included John Goodman and Mary Elizabeth Winstead. Goodman looked wonderfully creepy and crazy. While not a sequel to Cloverfield it looked like a different story but same universe. After much convincing while my father was visiting we went and saw it.

Michelle (Winstead) flees her apartment and fiancĂ©, driving away into the night to parts unknown. Visibly upset she ignores any phone calls from her fiancĂ© as well as the radio reports about a large unexplainable southern blackout. Suddenly her car skids and tumbles off the road before anyone really knows what is going on. When she comes to she finds herself in an underground bunker, her wounds tended to, but she is chained to the wall. Howard (Goodman), her rescuer, is a strange doomsday prepper who explains that he cannot let her leave for the world they knew is gone. Chemical attack, WWIII, or aliens….Howard isnt sure, but he knows that Michelle’s only chance at surviving is to stay there. Along with Emmet, Howards neighbor who helped him build the bunker, they try to figure out what is happening and how to trust one another. But is everyone telling the truth?

Let’s get some little things out of the way. The soundtrack was wonderful. Thank you Bear McCreary (Battlestar Galactica, Outlander, The Walking Dead). It complemented the film well since there is very little dialogue. Its jarring when it needs to be and quietly menacing in other spots. The trio of Goodman, Gallagher, and Winstead was amazing. There was tension, confusion, anticipation, laughter…so many scenes I would love to talk about. But this is one of those films that I think it is better going in not knowing a damn thing.

One of the things I really enjoyed was the keep you guessing aspect. Goodman does this oh so well. You think you have things figured out and then you wonder if it’s all just a red herring. Then you start wondering again. Things make sense. Then they don’t. As I said John Goodman is bloody fantastic. Sometimes he is creepy and controlling, only a few fries short of the Happy meal. And then another moment he is likable, funny, and garners some sympathy.

As a whole I thought it was a good film, though not an amazing film. While some elements were no surprise, I was entertained. I happen to like the film more without the last twenty minutes, but understand its inclusion (admittedly this is why I did not give it 4 popcorns). For a first time big feature film Trachtenberg did a great job. Worth seeing.

Rent/Cinema? Cinema. I thought the tension was delightful and worth seeing on the big screen.

3.5/4 popcorns

MARCH LOOT CRATE: VERSUS

A couple of years ago I was struggling to find a unique anniversary gift for the Rogue and after looking at all of the goodies offered on Lootcrate I decided to give it a go. We have been happy about it ever since. Granted The Rogue gets all the t-shirts for his ever growing collection, but I get a good share of the goodies as well. This month’s theme was Versus. I wasn’t insanely thrilled about this crate as I knew it would probably be a little DC heavy and I am more of a Marvel girl. The Rogue was excited because he got a monthly gift as per usual.

** Exclusive Star Trek Shirt: Yay Spock. This shirt from Quantum Mechanix has Spock and Mirror Spock. Not our favorite tee to come out of Loot crate, but striking and I know that E will get comments on his cool shirt like he usually does. Really happy that a t-shirt is now in every loot crate this year.

** Daredevil/Punisher Reversible Beanie: This was my favorite thing from the crate though it rarely gets cold enough around here for me to actually warrant wearing a hat. Damn you California sunshine.

*** Batman V Superman Mighty Wallet: We have seen Mighty Wallets everywhere, but never bought one. Not sure how durable they are and not sure if E will actually use it as One: he’s not a huge DC fan and even less of a fan of the film coming out. Two: He loves the wallet he has. I do think I have the perfect person to gift it to however.

***Alien V Predator Vinyl Figure: We love vinyl figures. They can be found everywhere in our home. This little Predator is so damn adorable. The Xenomorph is just as cute. I wish the Predator’s mask came off, but that’s because I adore their ugly little mugs. We know exactly where this little guy is going.

***Exclusive Harley Quinn Comic Book: I do love Harley and I really enjoy when Loot Crate puts comics in the crates every now and again. This one has Harley going on her very own adventure for looters when she finds a genie bottle at the bottom of the sea. I wonder if any of the creators of it will be at ECCC?

*** Alien/Predator Pin: I love that the pins are more lapel pins than the button pins. This time the pin unlocks a complimentary rental of either Aliens or Predator from vudu.com. Cool, except we already own both films. I thought this month’s magazine was great. The Rogue really loved the Spot the Spock and wishes that it was available as a poster so that he could hang it in his office.

So for an exchange of $13.37 + $6 shipping, we got chock full of dead themed goodness. I am estimating about $40-50 worth of goodies though again you had exclusives so that is hard to put a price on. So far we have been very happy about our loot crates. What’s you think of this month’s Loot Crate if you are a nerdy looter like we are? If you are interested in signing up or just want to learn more, head on over to “Loot crate” . You can use the code “SAVE3” to save $3 off your first box.

Now because I love Loot Crate so much I also do their Level Up Box as well and get a couple of Accessories every month as well. This month it is hair ties (which I use a ton) and some bestie necklaces.

*** DC Hair Ties: Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman hair ties. Love these. I have long hair and am constantly putting my hair up. While this type of band also falls out of my hair a bit quicker, They look great on my wrist when it’s not holding my hair back. I may not be excited about the movie, but I still like Batman, Supes, and Wonder Woman. I have Batman in my hair as I type. Totally worth it.

*** Batman V Superman Bestie Necklace set: This is the second time I have received a bestie necklace set. As a woman past the age of 16 it doesn’t hold as much excitement for me. Wearing them separately not a bad thing, but again I am not a huge DC fan and so I cannot really see myself wearing these a whole lot. However my friend Lisa will adore these both and probably wear one when she drags me to the movie later this weekend.

Level Up will run you $15, but like Loot Crate you get more happy goodies and I have been happy with it for the last couple of months. Like I said, if you are interested in signing up or just want to learn more, head on over to “Loot crate” . You can use the code “SAVE3” to save $3 off your first box.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

DISPLACEMENT: A TRAVELOGUE - A REVIEW

Displacement: A Travelogue
Written by: Lucy Knisley
Paperback: 161 pages
Publisher: Fantagraphics
Language: English
February 2015
Genre: Travelogue/Memoir/Graphic Novel

In her graphic memoirs, New York Times-best selling cartoonist Lucy Knisley paints a warts-and-all portrait of contemporary, twentysomething womanhood, like writer Lena Dunham (Girls). In the next installment of her graphic travelogue series, Displacement, Knisley volunteers to watch over her ailing grandparents on a cruise. (The book s watercolors evoke the ocean that surrounds them.) In a book that is part graphic memoir, part travelogue, and part family history, Knisley not only tries to connect with her grandparents, but to reconcile their younger and older selves. She is aided in her quest by her grandfather s WWII memoir, which is excerpted. Readers will identify with Knisley s frustration, her fears, her compassion, and her attempts to come to terms with mortality, as she copes with the stress of travel complicated by her grandparents frailty.

+++++++++++++

“Whenever I travel through crowded places, I'm struck by how human beings en masse are so incredibly hideous, while individual humans can be so heartbreakingly beautiful. Congregated: ugly, ubiquitous, and repellent. Individually: nuanced, intricate, beautiful, and unknowable. Fragile, separate, singular...fascinating. This just kills me.”

Lucy Knisley is one of my favorite graphic novelists ever since I read French Milk when it first came out. In fact because I loved that book so much I started picking up comics again. I was sad that I did not get the chance to speak to her last year at Emerald City Comic Con due to my travel arrangements, but Kristin did get Displacement signed by her. It just took me a while to read it.

Lately I have felt old. The icons from my childhood are passing on (David Bowie & Alan Rickman most recently). My parents are also getting older, just like me and the Rogue. California has made me feel my age in ways that I never expected. Maybe it is a combination of everything, but I have been more aware of my mortality move than ever before. It weirds me out.

Unfortunately, I lost most of my grandparents when I was in my twenties all in the span of about 9 months and I have never really been close to my surviving Grandpa. And yet this was a story I could relate to in other ways, deeply personal ways. I cannot imagine taking my 90 year old grandparents by myself on a cruise (It would have been a hoot in any case if you knew my Granny). And yet that is exactly what Lucy did. She was reeling from a breakup and set out on adventures. This was one of them. She also brought along her grandfather’s memoir about his time in the war.

Allen and Phyllis, Lucy’s Grands, are 93 and 90. They did not travel a lot when they were younger, but have decided to go on a cruise with a group from their assisted living home. Neither of them are really capable of handling daily living by themselves, so Lucy volunteers to be their caregiver on the week long cruise. She was not sure what to expect. She knew it would be a story, but what kind? Comedy gold? A bonding trip with her grands? A frustration fest? A chance to have Caribbean Adventures? A depressing insight into her Grands’ deteriorating health? Maybe all of the above? Yes perhaps it was all of the above. Plus Lucy weaves in excerpts from her grandfather’s memoir along with memories of life with her grands when she was younger. Sure we get the reflections on mortality, but more as well.

Things I liked: Lucy is insanely talented…and honest. I think that is what I love about her. I am a voyeur through her works of art and storytelling. I learned a lot from this glimpse into Lucy’s life. I also learned that cruises may not be for me even though the Rogue really wants to go on one next year. I learned that it is hard being a caregiver, even if we all knew that already. It’s even harder to see the mortality of those you love. We want our family to be immortal. Its sobering when we realize that they are not. Lucy goes through a ton of emotions on that cruise: fear, sadness, frustration, anger, joy, laughter, and nostalgia. Quite the gambit.

I also wasn’t as close to my grandparents as I wish I could have been when I was older. I wish I could have learned more about their lives before they became grandparents. I wish I could have added even more memories to the ones I already have. This book made me miss them. It also made me think I should do more traveling with my own parents. Now if only we could afford to do it. *smile*

I think the thing I loved the most about this book though were the excerpts from her grandfather’s war memoir as an Air Force pilot. As an Air Force brat with my own father in the Air Force and then Guard growing up I felt a kinship to these stories. Even if they did take place in World War II. It is also a glimpse into who her grandfather was when he was younger. When it is mixed with his current state, it just left me thinking.

This book, as I said, invoked a lot in me. Including guilt. While Lucy may not adventure into completely new territory she is honest with this. She feels the repulsion at age and frailty, is frustrated by small things her grands do because of the far that she might be like that someday. But also she is aggravated at her other family members who did not go on the cruise, at the passerbys who shoot dirty looks at her grandfather who has wet himself, or the organizers of the cruise who seem to spend very little time caring for the group (they were at an assisted living home people). Above it all she loves them so deeply and that is achingly apparent in Displacement. I think in writing this book she reconciled quite a few things and I am happy that I went on that journey with her.

Things I didn’t like so much: Something, I still cannot seem to put it into words, made me not fall absolutely in love with this. And yet I have very little faults with it. Perhaps because it stirred so many emotions in me. Perhaps because I wanted more. At times this felt safe. Almost too safe. I guess I just wanted more and I know that she can do more. Such a slight quibble though. I am still placing it on the shelf along with her other books.

Buy or Borrow: Buy.

Part of: Standalone

Also Recommended: Please try Lucy’s other books French Milk, Relish, and An Age of License. Other great graphic novels are American Elf by James Kochalka, Everyday Matters by Danny Gregory, and The Three Shadows by Cyril Pedrosa

3.75 out of 4 happy bibliosnark bookmarks 

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

TUESDAY TRAILERS: FINDING DORY

Finding Nemo is one of my favorite films. I quote it…a lot. When I am feeling sad, I watch it. When I am feeling happy I watch it. When I go to aquariums with the Rogue, it is a full blown Nemo show. I am on board for a sequel even though it looks like I may like annual trips to aquariums a bit less. It looks funny. It looks cute and probably full of even more dialogue for me to quote. Now I feel the need to go make a plush Whale Shark. What do you think? Plans to see it?


Summary: "Finding Dory" reunites Dory with friends Nemo and Marlin on a search for answers about her past. What can she remember? Who are her parents? And where did she learn to speak Whale?.…Opens June 17, 2016.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

TRIGGER WARNING: A REVIEW

Trigger Warning
Written by: Neil Gaiman
Paperback: 310 pages
Publisher: William Morrow
Language: English
October 2015
Genre: Collection/Anthology/Fiction

Multiple award winning, #1 New York Times bestselling author Neil Gaiman returns to dazzle, captivate, haunt, and entertain with this third collection of short fiction following Smoke and Mirrors and Fragile Things—which includes a never-before published American Gods story, “Black Dog,” written exclusively for this volume.

In this new anthology, Neil Gaiman pierces the veil of reality to reveal the enigmatic, shadowy world that lies beneath. Trigger Warning includes previously published pieces of short fiction—stories, verse, and a very special Doctor Who story that was written for the fiftieth anniversary of the beloved series in 2013—as well “Black Dog,” a new tale that revisits the world of American Gods, exclusive to this collection.

Trigger Warning explores the masks we all wear and the people we are beneath them to reveal our vulnerabilities and our truest selves. Here is a rich cornucopia of horror and ghosts stories, science fiction and fairy tales, fabulism and poetry that explore the realm of experience and emotion. In Adventure Story—a thematic companion to The Ocean at the End of the Lane—Gaiman ponders death and the way people take their stories with them when they die. His social media experience A Calendar of Tales are short takes inspired by replies to fan tweets about the months of the year—stories of pirates and the March winds, an igloo made of books, and a Mother’s Day card that portends disturbances in the universe. Gaiman offers his own ingenious spin on Sherlock Holmes in his award-nominated mystery tale The Case of Death and Honey. And Click-Clack the Rattlebag explains the creaks and clatter we hear when we’re all alone in the darkness.

A sophisticated writer whose creative genius is unparalleled, Gaiman entrances with his literary alchemy, transporting us deep into the realm of imagination, where the fantastical becomes real and the everyday incandescent. Full of wonder and terror, surprises and amusements, Trigger Warning is a treasury of delights that engage the mind, stir the heart, and shake the soul from one of the most unique and popular literary artists of our day.


+++++++++++++

Neil Gaiman is one of my heroes and one that I hope to meet some day. When I need an escape it is his stories I instinctively go to. When I want something with a little bit of teeth, I go to Gaiman. And when I want to let my imagination run wild I reach for Neil’s works. It is through him that I learned to love comics through the Endless and so many more things.

Now if you are new to Gaiman and have no idea what I am talking about when I speak of the Endless or Coraline or Good Omens, or even Shadow Moon, this may be a good place for you to start. As you know I love anthologies. Short fiction is not something that every writer is good at, but I think Neil excels at it. I love short stories, the brief glimpses into a world. I love how there is perfect beginning and end and I don’t have to read thirteen books into a series. They are easy for me to pick up, though not always to put down. And they are usually varied, almost like listening to a soundtrack or seeing Paris Je T’aime.

It took me a while to pick up Trigger Warning and then David Bowie died and I read The Thin White Duke that Gaiman had posted. I also started being in short fiction mode. I needed snippets and episodes. I needed Gaiman.

Trigger Warning begins with an intro by Neil where he tells you about the origins of each of the tales. I prefer to read them after I read each of the entries as I didn’t want his explanations to color my enjoyment of any of them. But it is lovely to read about the ideas behind each of them. I will try to remain as spoiler free as I can on each of the stories. I will say I loved them and this will join the many other beloved books and collections I have on my shelves. It is not perfect, but some of the stories made a definite impact and whisked me away. It was exactly what I needed.

The Stories:
Making a Chair: A simple poem about the writing process. If you are a writer you may relate to it quite a bit. A thought it was a lovely way to begin the collection.

A lunar Labyrinth: A tribute to Gene Wolfe, it features a traveler who loves roadside attractions and oddities. He loves the idea of a maze that forms only when the moon is full, but one must be wary of what else lurks within the labyrinth. I loved this story.

The Thing about Cassandra: The imaginary becomes real. I want to say so much about the tale, but I don’t want to give it away. This was one of my favorites. I love the idea behind it, the twists and the turns, and the fantastical nature of it all. I would love to see this in visual form as an episode of Outer Limits or something.

Down to A Sunless Sea: The sea promises so much. It promises adventure and new worlds, but also so many tears. A woman tells the tale of her son as the rain pours around. So sad and dark. Short as well, but worth the read.

The Truth Is a Cave in the Black Mountains: One of the longest stories in the collection, this is the story of a strange little man who seeks a guide to a mysterious cave. It is a story about the truth, of revenge and regret, and a cave that is said to hold many riches. It is a dark and sad story with amazing imagery. It is also crushingly beautiful in the way that it is told. Maybe I have been watching too many episodes of Lost Girl, but I could see the Blood King making the trek up the mountain. I also envy those who saw Neil read it live with a string quartet and Eddie Campbell’s art. Lucky bastards.

My Last Landlady: The rent may be a bit too high for one tenant. Great. Again I love the imagery. I can see them all, eyes to the shore, watching the landlady.

Adventure Story: Adventure can mean many things. Maybe even Pterodactyls. Fun and light story.

Orange: The answers on a questionnaire for one teenage girl. Quirky and fun, but I didn’t really enjoy the format. Just took me out of it.

A Calendar of Tales: These snippets, the collection within a collection, were based on tweets. What a great idea. One tweet per month, one tale per month. Its a bit of a mixed bag, but there are some standouts (May, July, August, September, and October) I really love the way the way were written.

The Case of Death and Honey: A Sherlock Holmes story involving a trip to China and a certain honey and the bee that made it. It’s a bit odd and yet perfectly Holmes like. I enjoyed it.

The man who Forgot Ray Bradbury: This is a tribute to Gaiman’s mentor and someone who captured my imagination growing up as well. But it also holds some resonance as I remember the friendship between Gaiman and Terry Pratchett. I cannot imagine losing pieces of my life, names, faces while strange little tidbits remain. A good story, a nice tribute, but also a sad one.

Jerusalem: A tale about Jerusalem Syndrome. Not one of my favorites. For me it was one of the weakest. Just a little meh for me really.

Click Clack The Rattlebag: Another one of my favorite stories. Perfectly creepy and a tale I wish I could see visually as well. Loved it. I adore it when Gaiman does horror.

An Invocation of Incuriosity: A time travel piece that was bit too odd for me.

And Weep, Like Alexander: Ever wonder why we don’t have flying cars or jetpacks? Cute story. Now if he could just invent the Kardashians that would be great.

Nothing o’Clock: Yay Doctor Who. Seriously Gaiman should write more Doctor stories. I think this would make a great episode. The paper masks of the enemies remind me of the film ‘The Strangers’ except the masks are even creepier because of their simplicity. You know that someone is wearing a mask. You are worried to know what lies beneath the mask or why they are choosing to wear one. It is that creeping horror, the one that is just on the fringe of your sight. So creepy and wonderful and completely Doctor Who.

Diamonds and Pearls: A fairy tale, but one with prostitutes, drugs, stepmothers, and just a little bit of magic. I like the contemporary or modern fairytale nature of it.

The Return of the Thin White Duke: I picked up Trigger Warning after Bowie died and Gaiman posted this story who inspired the story. It is beautiful and I hope Bowie had a chance to read it. ‘You are here to rescue yourself’. What a gorgeous little tale.

Feminine Endings: Be wary of living statues. I can imagine that living statues learn many a thing. I love the love letter as creepy as it might be..

Observing the Formalities: A poem with Maleficent as the narrator. It is a shame that people no longer observe proper etiquette. If they had just followed proper formalities…

The Sleeper and the Spindle: Speaking of Sleeping Beauty. Yay! A lovely mashup of Snow White and Sleeping Beauty/ I always wanted Snow to be a bad ass. I love that Snow has found her own strength and courage. She is her own hero now and I could want for nothing more. My favorite story of the bunch.

Witch Work: A little poem about a witch and her magic.

In Relig Odhrain: Another poem about a Saint or perhaps a druid.

Black Dog: Shadow Moon stops by an old village pub. Everyone seems perfectly nice and harmless, but Shadow knows better. Everyone has ghosts. It is a great story about jealousy and rage, but also about the past. The prose in this story deserves a shiny gold star. Seriously, you have passages like…The mummified kitty that looks as if it ‘had been constructed out of tendons and agony’, or ‘Shadow imagined the black dog squatting on the roof, cutting out all sunlight, all emotion, all feeling and truth’. Amazing story. Makes me want to go revisit Shadow again.

In all I loved this collection. It was exactly what I needed. I absolutely loved the introduction where Gaiman is talking to all of his readers. I like the title, the warning label on the very cover of the book. "Many of these stories end badly for at least one of the people in them. Consider yourself warned."

Buy or Borrow: Buy.

Part of: Standalone

Also Recommended: For more Neil Gaiman short stories please try Fragile Things or Smoke and Mirrors. For more great Anthologies try Strange Brew edited by PN Elrod, Mean Streets edited by Jim Butcher, and Powers of Detection edited by Dana Stabenow

4 out of 4 happy bibliosnark bookmarks 

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

TUESDAY TRAILERS: GHOSTBUSTERS

I grew up with Venkman, Ray, Egon, and Winston. While I don’t think a sequel is needed, I am all for the ladies busting some ghosts. And yet I am not sure how I feel about the ghosts themselves. I know this will essentially be family friendly and inspire a whole new generation of ghostbusters, but the ghosts look like something out of Disney’s Haunted Mansion. I’m not saying that there shouldn’t be the slimer types, or that things have to be something out of Poltergeist. I am just not sure how I feel about the blue lighting effects. However, despite this, I still want to see it this summer. What do you think? Plans to see it?


Summary: With paranormal activity on the rise, a Columbia University academic, her ghost-chasing friend, the friend's business partner, and an MTA employee join forces to bust ghosts and save New York.…Opens July 15, 2016.

Saturday, March 12, 2016

ME AND EARL AND THE DYING GIRL: A REVIEW

Me and Earl and the Dying Girl
Written by: Jesse Andrews
Paperback: 295 pages
Publisher: Amulet Books
Language: English
March 2012
Genre: Young Adult/Fiction

Greg Gaines is the last master of high school espionage, able to disappear at will into any social environment. He has only one friend, Earl, and together they spend their time making movies, their own incomprehensible versions of Coppola and Herzog cult classics.

Until Greg’s mother forces him to rekindle his childhood friendship with Rachel.

Rachel has been diagnosed with leukemia—-cue extreme adolescent awkwardness—-but a parental mandate has been issued and must be obeyed. When Rachel stops treatment, Greg and Earl decide the thing to do is to make a film for her, which turns into the Worst Film Ever Made and becomes a turning point in each of their lives.

And all at once Greg must abandon invisibility and stand in the spotlight.


+++++++++++++

Yes the book is usually better, but not always. However, I love seeing books come to life on the big screen. Of course they aren’t always how you imagined or sometimes they leave your favorite bits out, but overall I like them. It might even get somebody to pick up the book after watching the film.

I have had Me and Earl and the Dying girl for a while, but I knew that E and I were going to see the film so I didn’t want to read it too soon before seeing it. Then I wanted to put some distance after seeing the film because I wanted to enjoy the book not nitpick the whole thing. Hence I’m late to the party (as per usual).

Of course I had heard good things about the book. A funny Fault in Our Stars with a very flawed protagonist. Hmm, as if a dying teen can be humorous. Can death be funny especially when you are a kid?

Greg Gaines is forced to spend time with Rachel who has cancer. They used to be friends, but then they weren’t. Greg spends most of his time with Earl Jackson, whom he considers a coworker more than a best friend. Together they spend their time making parodies of films they’ve watched. And then Rachel comes into the picture. What are you supposed to do when an old friend gets leukemia and your mom guilts you into hanging with her? What do you say? What do you do? What if it’s just weird and awkward? This is Greg’s story on the whole thing.

Things I liked: Its non-traditional in both its writing format and in its character’s voice. Greg is a flawed character. He tries to survive high school cruising through every social group, never really part of any. He tries to form no attachments and, above all, does his best not to stand out and become the focus of attention. He is honest and tells you right off the bat that Rachel didn’t suddenly make him understand that life is precious. He knows he is not perfect and is completely comfortable letting us know that. He even calls himself a terrible friend. He isn’t incredibly empathetic. Hell he didn’t even want to spend time with the ‘dying girl’. And yet despite all of this, he’s a normal teenage boy. It is by far one of the most realistic teenage voices I have read in a really long time. Sure he is flawed, but so damn realistic that I can’t help but like him.

As teenagers we were awkward and blunt. We certainly were not enlightened beings. We were selfish. We were dumb. We could be insensitive as hell. We had no idea what the frak we were doing. And then you dump in death. How do you handle that? How do you wrap your head around it? What do you do? Leukemia sucks. Death sucks even harder. It is not glamorized. There are no heroes. It just blows and there’s nothing you can really do about it. . Especially when you are young and just figuring out all of the life crap.

The great thing about Greg is yeah he may have been a bit of a jerk to Rachel. He also may be completely oblivious to how much Rachel has changed him as a human being. But he tries. He really does and I love him to pieces for that. Even if he thinks he didn’t learn anything. Even if he thinks that he’s still the same person.

Earl is just as strong of a character. He is a great balance to Greg. He is just as flawed. Crass, loud, swears too much and can be a bit sexist at times. He’s angry and why not. His family life sucks hardcore and he knows it. But he also knows that has to figure out his own shit before he can help them. Like I said he is flawed, but that is fine. He is a teenage boy. Earl really cares about Rachel enough that he shows her their films that no one was ever supposed to see. He knows that she’ll appreciate them and she deserves to see them.

The pacing is quick and I love that the story is told via scripts, bullet points, and lists that help with the rest of the narration. Greg also breaks the fourth wall a lot. All of this helps the reader get a better insight of who Greg is and who he wants to be. Loved it.

Things I didn’t like so much: Sometimes the pacing was bit off and you really do want to punch Greg in the face sometimes. Really hard punch to the face. But overall I didn’t have too many things I did not enjoy. This one is staying on the bookshelf and in our library.

Buy or Borrow: Buy.

Part of: Standalone

Also Recommended: If I Stay by Gayle Forman, Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher, The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky, The Fault in our Stars by John Green and Just Listen by Sarah Dessen..

4 out of 4 happy bibliosnark bookmarks 

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

DISCOUNT ARMAGEDDON: A REVIEW

Discount Armageddon (InCryptid #1)
Written by: Seanan McGuire
Paperback: 352 pages
Publisher: DAW
Language: English
March 2012
Genre: Urban Fantasy/Series

Ghoulies. Ghosties. Long-legged beasties. Things that go bump in the night....

The Price family has spent generations studying the monsters of the world, working to protect them from humanity - and humanity from them. Enter Verity Price. Despite being trained from birth as a cryptozoologist, she'd rather dance a tango than tangle with a demon, and is spending a year in Manhattan while she pursues her career in professional ballroom dance. Sounds pretty simple, right? It would be, if it weren't for the talking mice, the telepathic mathematicians, the asbestos supermodels, and the trained monster-hunter sent by the Price family's old enemies, the Covenant of St. George.

When a Price girl meets a Covenant boy, high stakes, high heels, and a lot of collateral damage are almost guaranteed. To complicate matters further, local cryptids are disappearing, strange lizard-men are appearing in the sewers, and someone's spreading rumors about a dragon sleeping underneath the city....


+++++++++++++

I used to be obsessive about my book calendar, always making sure that I knew about my favorite authors latest releases. And then my To Be Read pile became out of control. I couldn’t keep up. I didn’t have the space. Or the time really. So sometimes when I head to the bookstore its like Christmas when I discover another book by my fave authors. I felt this way about this book.

Now I love Seanan McGuire. She is nerdy and hilarious and I heart her to pieces as a human being. She’s also a damn good writer and I love her Toby series. A lot. I also love some of her other books. But for some reason I did not know about this series until last year and it finally came into rotation. I also wanted something fluffy as it has been busy and stressful the last couple of weeks around here for E and I.

Now this book and the series as a whole has the potential of being utterly ridiculous. The cover doesn’t help. You have Verity price, a parkour practicing ballroom dancer who works at a strip club full of cryptids. She is snarky. She has lots of one liners. There are talking mice. Yeah, I rolled my eyes too. But I have faith in Seanan and I gave it a try. It actually sounds kind of perfect for my mood of late. It was. Fortunately it doesn’t get ridiculous. It’s just fluffy Aeslin mice sort of fun.

Verity price grew up as a cryptozoologist, but she also wanted to have a somewhat normal life. This meant heading to the opposite side of the country and continuing to follow her other passion: ballroom dancing. Except that life doesn’t want her to have ‘normal’. Enter Dominic DeLuca, member of the Covenant of St George. While Verity tries to help and police, when necessary, the cryptids of New York City, the Covenant wants to wipe them all out. And someone is doing just that. Is it Dominic or someone else? Either way, verity is about to make his life very, very difficult.

Things I liked: This is Seanan lite. I am okay with that though. I am okay with fun. I am okay with funny and fluffy just like the Aeslin mice. And oh my gosh I love the Aeslin mice to little bitty pieces. The Aeslin mice are the best. I love their celebrations and their names for every little small occurrence. I cannot help but smile whenever they were around. Who knew sentient mice liked to party so much or could be so damn adorable. I kind of want my own little colony of adorable mice to sing me praises, make small things momentous, and look adorable in a Barbie Dream House.

I loved the cryptids and I look forward to meeting more of them as the series continues. I want to visit the Madhura bakery. I want to go Lolita wardrobe shopping with Istas, the Waheela. I smile at the gold filled sorority like nest of Candy and the other dragon princesses. It’s a nice change from your usual werewolves, vampires, and fae characters you usually get in today’s urban fantasy.

I like Verity. Snarkfest yay. I like her struggles. It would help if she didn’t like cryptozoology, but she does. She cares about the cryptids. Some of them are family after all. But dancing is her passion as well (Yay for being on a SYTYCD/Dancing with the Stars sort of show). And she is great at both of them. I also like Verity because she isn’t a monster hunter especially when sometimes she needs to save cryptids from horrible human beings. This is why the Price family left the Covenant of St George. Speaking of Verity’s family, I love them. They are supportive and accepting. How refreshing.

Things I didn’t like so much: Verity’s parkour is hard to believe. I don’t know why. And it bugs me that I cannot suspend my disbelief for that. Because it should work. Training in dance, gymnastics, and acting like you are trying to escape District B13 your entire life should be legit. But it doesn’t work. At least not all the time. Maybe it is the way it is written. Maybe it doesn’t feel right with the rest of Verity. It’s a small nitpick really, but it’s still there.

Dominic isn’t necessarily great on the personality front, but he does eventually grow on you. I just wish it was before the end of the book. The info dumping asides can be a little tedious at times, but she is world building. And sure the romance is predictable, but who cares. The overall basic plot is one you have probably read before. But in the end it has its own uniqueness so all of these end up being fairly minor.

Buy or Borrow: Buy. Or at least pick it up from the library and give it a go. Cute. Fluffy. Fun. Just what I needed right about now. And you might too. Kind of a perfect Spring break beach read.

Part of: A series
Discount Armageddon
Midnight Blue Special
half-Off Ragnarok
Pocket Apocalypse
Chaos Choreography

Also Recommended: For more Seanan please read the Toby Day series beginning with Rosemary and Rue. For more urban fantasy goodness please try The Kate Daniels series by Ilona Andrews, The Mercy Thompson series by Patricia Briggs, The Matthew Swift series by Kate Griffin, and for more fey loveliness Holly Black’s modern faerie tale series.

3 out of 4 happy bibliosnark bookmarks 

Monday, March 7, 2016

LED ASTRAY: A BOOK REVIEW

Led Astray Anthology
Written by: Kelley Armstrong
Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: Tachyon Publications
Language: English
September 2015
Genre: Anthology/Urban Fantasy/Horror

Two brand new tales anchor this wide-ranging collection from one of urban fantasy's most successful authors. Here is the first time that best-selling fantasy, YA, and crime author Kelley Armstrong has had her stories collected from Otherworld and beyond. With her signature twists and turns, Armstrong gives a fresh spin on city-dwelling vampires, werewolves, and zombies, while also traveling further afield, to a post-apocalyptic fortress, a superstitious village, a supernatural brothel, and even to feudal Japan.

With tales that range from humorous to heart-stopping, these are the stories that showcase Kelley Armstrong at her versatile best.

- Rakshashi (standalone)
- Kat (Darkest Powers universe, non-series narrator)
- A Haunted House of Her Own (standalone)
- Learning Curve (Otherworld universe, Zoe)
- The Screams of Dragons (Cainsville universe, non-series narrator)
- The Kitsune’s Nine Tales (Age of Legends universe, non-series narrator)
- Last Stand (standalone)
- Bamboozled (Otherworld universe, non-series narrator)
- Branded (Otherworld universe, non-series narrator)
- The List (Otherworld universe, Zoe)
- Young Bloods (Otherworld universe, non-series narrator)
- The Door (standalone, original to this collection)
- Dead Flowers by a Roadside (standalone)
- Suffer the Children (standalone)
- The Collector (standalone)
- Gabriel’s Gargoyles (Cainsville universe, Gabriel)
- Harbinger (standalone)
- V Plates (Otherworld universe, Nick)
- Life Sentence (Otherworld universe, non-series narrator)
- Plan B (standalone)
- The Hunt (Cainsville universe, non-series narrator)
- Dead to Me (standalone)
- Devil May Care (Cainsville universe, Patrick, original to this collection)


+++++++++++++

My mind has been a bit scattered of late. It’s been busy over here in our little adventurous Wonderland. When I get busy I tend to reach for Anthologies. One: They are episodic. Instead of binging on the entire season (which I haven’t been able to do as much), I catch up on a couple of episodes when I have the time. They are also great for when you are waiting for appointments (of which we have also had a lot of lately). Two: Anthologies and the short stories within are no less entertaining than a full length novel. In fact, sometimes I like them even better. Sometimes they help accentuate an existing character or universe you love. More often they just let you escape and that is why I love books.

I like Kelley Armstrong ever since I read Bitten when it first came out many moons ago. While I haven’t read Cainsville or the Darkest power books I knew this anthology would be the perfect place for me to get a quick taste. I will say this an eclectic collection, but it also gave me a bit more appreciation for Armstrong because of it. Like all anthologies there are some great stories and some less than great stories, but I didn’t skip a single one. Sometimes I do, so that says something. I do want to read more stories involving a lot of the characters I just met. However this now means my To Be Read pile is about to get a little larger.

The Stories: I will try not to give too many spoilers. These are short stories and I feel like you should discover them for yourself.

RAKSHASHI: Amrita has been doing penance for her crimes for over two hundred years. In that time she has grown to understand that the balance between good and evil is not so simple. She also has come to understand that what she wants, she must take. A great way to kick off the Anthology. I loved the last line as well. “Live,” I said. “I intend to.”

KAT: As I said I have not read any of the Darkest Powers series, but this made me curious. In this story Kat and her protector Mags are trying to keep one step ahead of those that are pursuing them. If only that were so easy. Kat is different than most girls her age, then again so is Marguerite who is a vampire. An origin story of sorts. I liked it. It left me wanting more and I would like to read the Darkest Powers series.

A HAUNTED HOUSE OF HER OWN: Tanya and Nathan just bought their dream home. It may be haunted, but that is the point or at least the illusion of being haunted. Tanya has always wanted to run a haunted Bed and Breakfast. But what happens when the haunting gets a little too real? I actually really liked this standalone and it’s one of the more memorable stories. I think it would also make a great Tales from the Darkside episode.

LEARNING CURVE: Zoe Takano has been stalked by her very own vampire hunter. Except they are not very good at their job and Zoe has a few lessons she wants to teach. I like Zoe. This was fun and light, but not the most amazing. That’s fine though. It was nice to have something a little lighter after ‘Haunted House..’

THE SCREAMS OF DRAGONS: Set in Cainsville and a prequel of sorts. Bobby is an interesting young man. He hears the screams of dragons and hearing the screams have consequences. Dark, brooding, and unsettling. It was a great creepy little story though I wish I knew more about the world of Cainsville before going in.

KITSUNE’S NINE TAILS: Part of the Age of Legends universe. Kitsune follows Alvar Kitsune, the former marshal of the imperial army. Sentenced to death by the emperor, Senri is bringing the traitorous Kitsune to the Forest of the Dead to answer for his crimes. But Senri and the other soldiers should know that their prisoner will try nine things before their destination. I hope they are prepared. I haven’t read the Age of Legends series, but I was intrigued. I think because I know nothing about the universe this too was a little dense for me to enjoy. Again I wish I knew more about the universe and the characters, but I imagine this is a wonderful companion piece.

LAST STAND: Monica is making her last stand with the other survivors on an old farm. They know they need to fight to survive, no matter the cost. This might be a zombie tale, but there is more to the story than that. Another stand out in the Anthology I loved the twist, the dystopian setting, and I loved the characters despite spending such a brief time with them. Really great story.

BAMBOOZLED: Set in the Otherworld universe in the Old West, Bamboozled is about a band of thieves who aren’t what you think. Hijinks ensure. A nice little western with werewolves. Looks like Elena isn’t the only one of her kind. It was okay. A little uneven for me.

BRANDED: Another Otherwold story where humans have locked themselves away from the supernaturals that live outside their walls. When a young man is outed as a werewolf, two of the residents lives will never be the same. Another alternate universe and a bit post-apocalyptic, I liked this idea of what the Otherworld might look like if humans weren’t the majority and supernaturals didn’t hide. I also like the yearning to see what life is outside the walls, to see if your entire life has been based on fear and lives. What would you be willing to do in order to truly live?

THE LIST: We return to Zoe, Toronto vampire and teacher to Brittany (whom we met earlier). There is a list going around and there are some who are unhappy that they haven’t made the cut. Another lighter read, but great to see the characters again with a quick flash forward.

YOUNG BLOODS: You should always respect your elders. After all, you never know who the man sitting on public transit might be. I really liked this one. Short but well worth the read.

THE DOOR: When Mommy and Daddy leave there are two doors. One of them is real and that one leads to the unknown. Heartbreaking and beautiful, this was one of my favorites in the anthology. Love the post-apocalyptic vibe, love that I don’t know what is really beyond that real door, and love that childhood ends one way or another. Especially once you look behind the curtain. Sweet, sad, and like I said, really beautiful.

DEAD FLOWERS BY A ROADSIDE: A necromancer loses his wife and daughter in a car accident, a car he was driving. There are some things you cannot bring back and some voices you cannot hear. Just sad.

SUFFER THE CHILDREN: Addie and her adoptive father and mother are living as best they can in frontier Canada. It’s been a hard year as many children have been taken by disease that ran through the town. When two strangers come to town promising miracles, Addie and her dad know that there is always a price. But there are some who don’t understand how high that cost could be. One of the longer entries in the Anthology. Its creepy and disturbing with some great characters.

THE COLLECTOR: Puzzles can be interesting, but they can also be very very deadly. As someone who grew up with Hellraiser, I really enjoyed this one. In fact, I think I need to go and find some of the other stories that were inspired by Clive barker’s creations.

GABRIEL’S GARGOYLES: We return to Cainsville again and follow young Gabriel and his quest to find the last gargoyle. What I loved about this story was Gabriel and the different sides of him that came out through friends, or Rose, or his terrible, terrible mother. His character was intriguing enough that I really want to read more. I like him. I want to know more. Great story.

HARBINGER: Jenna can see the dead girls. They follow her everywhere. These drowned girls seem to be trying to tell her something, but she might find out too late. Not one of my favorites, but I can appreciate the idea behind it.

V-PLATES: Reese wants Nick to help Noah lose his V plates. What better place for a young man to lose his virginity than at a brothel in the city. Except the ladies at this establishment are not what they appear to be. Oh Nick, always getting into trouble. A great story. Horrific, but funny. I can see Elena shaking her head.

LIFE SENTENCE: This entry from the Otherworld universe focuses on the Cabals and just how evil they are. It follows one man’s search for immortality no matter what the cost. As the Cabals are kind of the Big Bads in this universe I knew this was going to be a little darker, but I am okay with that. What I really appreciated was that if you are a part of an organization that tries to buy, scheme, and do whatever don’t be surprised when things don’t turn out your way.

PLAN B: One of the must mindane of all of th stories Plan B focuses on Gregory and Deanna. They are having an affair and Gregory wants to get rid of his wife Abby. However you should be careful when there is a Plan B involved. More mystery/thriller than fantasy this was a nice addition just because of the change of pace. Full of surprises. Like the twists.

THE HUNT: William and Teddy want to go on a special kind of hunt, one with a very particular prey. Be careful what you wish for. A Wild Hunt meets Most Dangerous Game sort of story. Quick but fun.

DEAD TO ME: A woman lives with the ghost of her dead ex-husband, except he keeps saying that he isn’t dead. Who is telling the truth? A great story. Another one I could see as an episode from Tales from the Darkside or Tales from the Crypt.

DEVIL MAY CARE: This final story takes place in Cainsville. This is the story behind Gabriel and his parents. I so need to read the series.

Buy or Borrow: Buy. Or at least pick it up from the library and give it a go. While some of the stories are a little too simplistic for me as I think they rely on the reader having met the characters or worlds described, I thought overall this was a great Anthology. If you are a Kelley Armstrong fan it is definitely worth having on your selves.

Part of: Standalone Anthology though many of Armstrong’s series are featured within.

Also Recommended: of course I recommend Kelley Armstrong’s other works, my favorite being Bitten. For more great Anthologies please check out Strange Brew edited by PN Elrod, Mean Streets edited by Jim Butcher, and Powers of Detection edited by Dana Stabenow

3 out of 4 happy bibliosnark bookmarks 

Sunday, March 6, 2016

SUNDAY SEVEN: FICTIONAL WARDROBES - FANTASY TV EDITION

I have reached the end of my series of fictional wardrobes I would love to add to my closet. I love clothes. And I love all sorts of types of clothes. Growing up I have never really had just one style. I like a bit of everything. We have tackled historic film and tv, this week we turn back to the small screen and the costumes from fantasy tv. I think this might be my favorite. Next week we will tackle my favorite Celtic legends/fairytales in honor of St Patrick’s Day. Here are my favorites. Whose closet would you raid? Feel like taking part let me know and I am happy to add your link and check your picks out.

The Ladies of Once Upon A Time
Once Upon A Time

I couldn’t choose just one of the fine ladies of Storybrooke’s wardrobe because they are all fantastic. Out of a fairytale really, but that is kind of the point. I love the different inspired by designs, the fabrics, and the various little added touches that really make these outfits one of a kind. Trying to find my favorites was kind of difficult.

Kenzie
Lost Girl

Kenzie makes my inner Goth girl squee in delight. I had many similar pieces when I was younger when I was exploring my style. I still cannot help but love these clothes. I love the colors, the layers, the icons plastered everywhere. And oh my the sleeves, and buckles…sigh, the shoes. Oh and the wigs. That counts as wardrobe pieces right?

Dutch
Killjoys

Killjoys was one of my favorite shows of last year and I love Dutch. I think her outfits just scream strength and femininity. This Sci-Fi fashion wardrobe has influences from a lot of cultures and I really love the cutouts, the jewelry, and the kick ass jackets. I would totally steal her wardrobe.

The Ladies of Shannara
The Chronicles of Shannara

I absolutely love the costumes from this show. I want to cosplay and own them all. Like Thor from last week I absolutely love the feminine mixed with the hard core strength. I also love the layered looks which was great in the show since even though they essentially wore the same outfit all season depending on which layers they wore and what was added or taken away gave you a different outfit. Seriously love all of these looks.

Xena
Xena: Warrior Princess

Speaking of Bad Ass Ladies, Xena is kind of their poster child. I loved watching Xena when I was younger and I always loved the costumes. The great thing about the show is that there were many looks. While Xena may have had her normal bad ass every day wear, sometimes she dressed up. Of course I would also love Xena’s body.

The Ladies of Game of Thrones
Game of Thrones

I couldn’t choose just one ladies outfit. I know this is probably cheating, but have you seen these costumes. I love them all. I was lucky enough to see of the costumes up close when I was in Seattle last year for Emerald City Comic Con and the amount of work that goes into these dresses is insane. I want them all.

Chuck
Pushing Daisies

Pushing Daisies was a great show about Ned and Chuck’s love story. Chuck was dead once, but Ned brought her back, happily ever after ensued. I love her dresses. I would wear these every day. They are so pretty and so colorful. Sigh.

Honorable Mentions: Doctor Who, Firefly, The Originals, The Expanse, Minority Report, Legend of the Seeker, Merlin, and Roar

UPCOMING SUNDAY SEVEN
March 13th: Favorite Celtic Legends (Happy St Patrick’s Day)
March 20th: Film and TV Scores
March 27th : Fairy Tales (3.25 Tolkien Reading Day)
April 3rd: Action Films (In Honor of Hardcore Henry)

Let me know if you have your own list and I would be happy to link you.

Thursday, March 3, 2016

WATCH, READ, PLAY: MARCH 2016

Wow, its March already. Crazy. This year is going by far quicker than I expected and has brought the Rogue and I some unexpected hiccups and excitement as well. This month I will probably spend a lot of time gaming and watching some good films. Are you excited about any of these things?

FILM & TV
Whiskey Tango Foxtrot
Genre: Comedy/War
Stars: Tina Fey, Margot Robbie, Alfred Molina, and Martin Freeman.
In short: A journalist recounts her wartime coverage in Afghanistan and Pakistan. (March 4th)

House of Cards Season 4
Channel: Netflix
In short: Set to focus on Frank’s (Kevin Spacey) reelection campaign (March 4th)

Once Upon A Time Spring Premiere
Channel: ABC
In short: I can’t help but love this show and all of the costumes. (March 6th)

Quantico Spring Premiere
Channel: ABC
In short: This was a surprise hit for me this year for the new fall shows. You can catch the previous part of the season on Hulu (March 6th)

Damien series premiere
Channel: A&E
In short: Starring Bradley James, after discovering his origins, Damien Thorn must cope with life as the Anti-Christ. (March 7th)

10 Cloverfield Lane
Genre: Mystery/Thriller
Stars: Mary Elizabeth Winstead, John Goodman, John Gallagher Jr, Mat Vairo
In short: A young woman (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) is forced to cope with her new life after waking up from a nearly fatal accident in this thriller from director Dan Trachtenberg. After narrowly avoiding serious injuries in a car wreck, Michelle (Winstead) awakens in the care of a man who claims to have found her at the scene, and who brought her to his home after a catastrophic chemical attack devastated the surrounding area. (March 11)

Allegiant
Genre:Sci-fi/ Action-Adventure
Stars: Shailene Woodley, Theo James, Zoe Kravitz, Miles Teller
In short: The third installment of the blockbuster Divergent series franchise, ALLEGIANT, takes Tris [Shailene Woodley] and Four [Theo James] into a new world, far more dangerous than ever before. (March 18)

Midnight Special
Genre: Drama/Sci-Fi
Stars: Adam Driver, Kirsten Dunst, Joel Edgerton, Michael Shannon
In short: A father and son go on the run after the dad learns his child possesses special powers. (March 18)

Daredevil Season 2
Channel: Netflix
In short: This season we get Elektra and the Punisher. Could be amazing. (March 18th)

The Bronze
Genre: Comedy
Stars: Melissa Rauch, Gary Cole, Haley Lu Richardson
In short: A foul-mouthed former gymnastics bronze medalist must fight for her local celebrity status when a new young athlete's star rises in town. (March 18)

The Little Prince
Genre: Animation/Fantasy
Stars: Jeff Bridges, Rachel McAdams, Paul Rudd, Marion Cotillard
In short: A little girl lives in a very grown-up world with her mother, who tries to prepare her for it. Her neighbor, the Aviator, introduces the girl to an extraordinary world where anything is possible, the world of the Little Prince. (March 18)

Batman vs Superman
Genre: Act-Adv/Comic
Stars: Ben Affleck, Henry Cavill, Amy Adams, Gal Gadot
In short: Fearing the actions of Superman are left unchecked, Batman takes on Superman, while the world wrestles with what kind of a hero it really needs. With Batman and Superman fighting each other, a new threat, Doomsday, is created by Lex Luthor. It's up to Superman and Batman to set aside their differences along with Wonder Woman to stop Lex Luthor and Doomsday from destroying Metropolis. (March 25)

BOOKS
Chaos Choreography (Incryptids #5) by Seanan McGuire (March 1st)
In short: Fifth book in Seanan McGuire’s funny and fast-paced urban fantasy InCryptid series featuring ballroom dancer and monster expert Verity Price. Verity Price is back on the West Coast and getting back into the swing of the family business: cryptozoology. She’s rescuing cryptids from bad situations, protecting them from monster-hunters, and generally risking life and limb for the greater good, with her ex-Covenant partner/husband, Dominic, by her side. Her ballroom dance career is behind her—or so she thinks. When Verity gets the call from the producers of Dance or Die, the reality show she almost won several years before, she finds the lure impossible to resist, and she and Dominic are off to L.A. for one last shot at the big time. Of course, nothing is that simple. When two contestants turn up dead, Verity will need every ally she can find with the investigation, without blowing her cover…

The Last Days of Magic by Mark Tompkins (March 1)
In short: Aisling, a goddess in human form, was born to rule both domains and --- with her twin, Anya --- unite the Celts with the powerful faeries of the Middle Kingdom. But within medieval Ireland interests are divided, and greater forces are mustering. Both England and Rome have a stake in driving magic from the Emerald Isle. Jordan, the Vatican commander is tasked with vanquishing the remnants of otherworldly creatures from a disenchanted Europe. However, he finds himself torn between duty and his desire to understand the magic that has been forbidden.

Fire Touched (Mercy Thompson #9) by Patricia Briggs (March 8th)
In short: Mercy Thompson has been hailed as “a heroine who continues to grow and yet always remains true to herself.”* Now she’s back, and she’ll soon discover that when the fae stalk the human world, it’s the children who suffer...Tensions between the fae and humans are coming to a head. And when coyote shapeshifter Mercy and her Alpha werewolf mate, Adam, are called upon to stop a rampaging troll, they find themselves with something that could be used to make the fae back down and forestall out-and-out war: a human child stolen long ago by the fae.Defying the most powerful werewolf in the country, the humans, and the fae, Mercy, Adam, and their pack choose to protect the boy no matter what the cost. But who will protect them from a boy who is fire touched?

The Great Hunt by Wendy Higgins (March 8th)
In short: Kill the beast. Win the girl. A strange beast stirs fear in the kingdom of Lochlanach, terrorizing towns with its brutality and hunger. In an act of desperation, a proclamation is sent to all of Eurona—kill the creature and win the ultimate prize: the daughter of King Lochson’s hand in marriage. Princess Aerity understands her duty to the kingdom though it pains her to imagine marrying a stranger. It would be foolish to set her sights on any particular man in the great hunt, but when a brooding local hunter, Paxton Seabolt, catches her attention, there’s no denying the unspoken lure between them…or his mysterious resentment. Paxton is not keen on marriage. Nor does he care much for spoiled royals and their arcane laws. He’s determined to keep his focus on the task at hand—ridding the kingdom of the beast and protecting his family—yet Princess Aerity continues to challenge his notions with her unpredictability and charm. But as past secrets collide with present desires, dire choices threaten everything Paxton holds dear. Inspired by the Grimm Brothers’ tale, “The Singing Bone,” New York Times bestselling author Wendy Higgins delivers a dark fantasy filled with rugged hunters, romantic tension, outlawed magic, and a princess willing to risk all to save her people.

GAMES
TOM CLANCY’S THE DIVISION
Platform: PC, Xbox One, PS4
In short: A virus has brought New York City to a standstill on Black Friday, carried by our porous, filthy, linen money. A sleeper government agency called The Division steps up to assist the infected and shoot down assailants and terrorists within the quarantined city. An involved leveling system and loot-based equipment drops encourages players to thoroughly explore of the city for the best gear, and the multiplayer aspect pushes players to cooperate to survive, or assail, one another. And there goes my week next week (March 8th)

Hitman
Platform: Xbox One, PC, PS4
In short: Hitman goes back to its roots in this installment, as a bald man in a suit, killing his target with his guns, or whatever weapon is in the area. The Hitman games feature highly detailed environments, filled with deadly hazards and traps that seem innocuous at first glance. A stylized glass chandelier over a fashion runway may not be dangerous at first, but some clever tampering and good timing can transform it into the perfect tool for the job. Hitman will be released episodically; the first episode hits shelves this month. (March 11)

Did I miss anything?

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

TUESDAY TRAILERS: JASON BOURNE

I love the Bourne films. I have from the very beginning and even enjoyed The Bourne Legacy which was not Jason centric. And I think Damon is great at playing Jason Bourne, so I am totally on board. I am expecting action and thrills and I will probably get it. Plus I get Vincent Cassel in this one. Yay! What do you think? Plans to see it?


Summary: Matt Damon returns to his most iconic role in Jason Bourne. Paul Greengrass, the director of The Bourne Supremacy and The Bourne Ultimatum, once again joins Damon for the next chapter of Universal Pictures’ Bournefranchise, which finds the CIA’s most lethal former operative drawn out of the shadows. For Jason Bourne, Damon is joined by Alicia Vikander, Vincent Cassel and Tommy Lee Jones, while Julia Stiles reprises her role in the series. Frank Marshall again produces alongside Jeffrey Weiner for Captivate Entertainment, and Greengrass, Damon, Gregory Goodman and Ben Smith also produce. Based on characters created by Robert Ludlum, the film is written by Greengrass and Christopher Rouse. www.jasonbournemovie.com …Opens July 29, 2016.