Archive for the ‘Authors & Books’ Category

Just Finished Reading: The Immortals Series by Tamora Pierce

28 Feb

The Immortals is the second series by Tamora Pierce that I have completed. Just as with the Song of the Lioness books, these books are targeted at tweens and young teens. The protagonist, Daine, is an inspiring young woman who we get to watch from 12 to 16 years of age. She is intelligent, capable, kind, brave and loyal- pretty much everything we want girls of this age to aspire to be. It doesn’t mean she does not make mistakes or have her flaws. It means she learns from them.

This series is particularly good for kids who love animals.

Movie Review: The Lorax

13 Dec

What can you really expect when they make a 90 minute movie out of a children’s book, right? In most cases, I would give the movie a pass, except when it is based on a Dr. Suess book. Seuss packed a lot of punch in his books. I expect that if you are making a movie out of a Dr. Suess book, you will pack the same kind of child friendly punch.

This is not to say The Lorax was bad, just that I was hoping for something more meaningful than an extended 3D scene of woodland creatures eating marshmallows.

Book Review: The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss

03 Dec

The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss is the first book in a series. Based on it, I  intend to pick up the next book.

This is the story of Kvothe, as told by Kvothe. He is an exceptional man whose life has already reached legendary status, despite the fact that he is only 30 or so years old.

The book is exceptionally well written, and reads as if it were a much shorter book. The story is fast paced and keeps the reader “listening” to the tale with as much anticipation as those hearing it in the book.

Movie Review: The Island

07 Aug

I expected The Island to be a sci-fi version of The Lottery. It was, but more like a version of The Lottery mixed with Never Let Me Go. And if you know the short story and the novel, well, there are no twists left in the movie for you, so I’m sorry if I spoiled it for you.

It was a mostly enjoyable movie. I adore Ewan McGregor and Scarlet Johansson wasn’t bad. Sean Bean was the villain. I love him, and I know he plays a great bad guy, but I do wish he’d get more good guy roles.

Book Review: Tiassa by Steven Brust

30 May

Tiassa is very different from most of the Vlad novels in that very little of it is told from Vlad’s point of view. This does not make it bad, just different. The story is still Vlad centric, but it details what would normally be behind the scenes actions that Vlad never sees and isn’t really aware of. It’s good, but I love Vlad’s voice so I was kind of disappointed.

It also reminds us of the fact that we’re hearing these stories because Vlad is telling them to someone, recording them. We learn this is as a favor to Sethra.

Book Review: Lost Books of the Odyssey by Zachary Mason

17 May

I want to start by saying I really enjoyed Lost Books of the Odyssey, I’ve been wanting to read it since it came out, and I finally bought myself a copy. However, it bills itself as a novel. It’s not. There is a certain feel to the different episodes presented as supposed lost or alternate stories from the Odyssey, that make the book feel like there’s a progression from beginning to end, but there’s no plot, no cohesive story.

If you loved the Odyssey (and I did), you’ll like this book. But I wouldn’t recommend it for those who didn’t.

Book Review: The Miseducation of Cameron Post by Emily Danforth (2)

08 Apr

The beauty of this book is its characters. That Cameron is gay and that she, her family, and the community struggle with that is the “point” of the book, but it’s not the only aspect of Cameron’s character. She is fully formed, and given that she would have been one year behind me in school, feels like someone I would have known. All the characters do, even those rarely seen. None felt like stereotypes of the small town teen. They all felt real to the setting and the story.
Even if you’re not from small town Montana, read this book.

Book Review: The Miseducation of Cameron Post by Emily Danforth (1)

08 Apr

When I first read about this book on Slate, I was instantly intrigued because it was set in the same small town in Montana that I had grown up in. The author’s name seemed familiar, but she wasn’t someone I ever went to school with. (It turns out I’ve known her brother-in-law since kindergarten.)
I have to say, Miles City is represented beautifully, and I even learned a few things, like the actual name of the swim lake. I had some location bumps when her description didn’t match my memories, but that’s probably because I left Miles City in 1989.

Movie Review: The Three Musketeers (2011)

22 Mar

I wrote here how excited I was about the latest version of Three Musketeers before it even came out. Sadly, I never did get to see it in the theater, but this last weekend, I was was able to see it on blue-ray.

The first half (maybe two-thirds) of the movie was boring. Starting with the raid on theTower of London, it turned into a pretty fun action movie. Since I like action movies and airships, that made me happy.

I thought the three Musketeers were well cast, but just was not feeling it for either D’Artagnan or Louis.

Movie Review: John Carter

21 Mar

I first read Burrough’s Martian series back in middle school. I read the complete series at least once more in high school. I love the books and was quite excited to see John Carter.

The plot is not the plot from the first book. It kind of combines some elements from the second, but it is still not really recognizable, except for the characters and the basic premise. It was immensely enjoyable.

My biggest issue was that, according to this plot, John Carter was on Mars for two weeks at most. Did everything really need to happen in that quickly?

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