The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy, 2016 by John Joseph Adams

The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy, 2016The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy, 2016 by John Joseph Adams

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is a short story collection that encompasses many different types of science fiction and fantasy. There is a good amount of space stories to be sure, but they are all different too. I would not say that there are many traditional fantasy stories (nothing like Lord of the Rings), but there are good stories in their own rights.

I would have liked more traditional fantasy stories, as it did seem that most of them were sci-fi. There weren’t any elves, wizards, magic, or other fantastic creatures (though I did like the cats that were based on actual prehistoric cats so that could be a fantasy, but that was only one story).

Apart from that, all the stories made me think, inspired me, and were entertaining. It did take me a while to read this book, as it’s not a cohesive book. It’s 20 different stories, so I needed a break after awhile to clear my mind. Which says a lot about how interesting the stories are.

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7th Heaven by James Patterson

7th Heaven (Women's Murder Club, #7)7th Heaven by James Patterson

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I’ve been reading my way through this series (in order!) and have been enjoying it. This book is good too, but I’m picking up some themes…

One: there are two crimes that are solved every book, one for the cops, one for the lawyers. Two: one of the women is assaulted to some degree (Lindsay got shot in a previous book, another one died a couple books ago… you get the idea).

I don’t seem to mind this, even though it makes certain things a bit predictable. What’s not predictable is which woman will be assaulted, and how the crimes will eventually be resolved.

Case in point, this book’s court case wasn’t fully resolved. The characters will never know the true ending, the reader is let in on the plot though. And the assault on the woman? It wasn’t really connected to either case. The crime was resolved by a victim!

So yes, even though some plot points are getting predictable, the books are still enjoyable because there is still enough unpredictability to keep my interest.

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[Netflix] Movie Review: A Dark Song

Wikipedia:

A Dark Song is a 2016 Irish-British independent horror film, written and directed by Liam Gavin and starring Steve Oram and Catherine Walker. It was released to select theatres and digital streaming platforms on 28 April 2017. It is Gavin’s directorial debut.

This film is British, but I’m not sure I’d call it a horror film, it’s a supernatural film, since the entire plot is a woman convincing a witch to perform a ritual to summon a guardian angel. I would also call it a bit of drama as well given the reasons the woman wants to do the ritual in the first place.

It’s a slow moving movie, the ritual takes quite a few months to perform, and gets awkward, intimate, and exhausting. Eventually the woman has had it, and takes matters into her own hands…and then the movie gets a bit more interesting.

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[Netflix] Movie Review: Darkness Rising

Wikipedia:

Darkness Rising is a 2017 supernatural horror film directed by Austin Reading starring Tara Holt as Madison, Christian Ganiere as Seth, Bryce Johnson as Jake, Katrina Law as Izzy, Heather Mazur as Kate, Myk Watford as Daniel, and Ted Raimi.

This is a stereo-typical haunted house feature film. There’s not much of a plot: return to childhood home at night before it’s demolished, get trapped in house, almost die in house, escape in the morning.

There is some explanation throughout the movie. The main character suffered trauma in the house as a result of the house possessing her mother. So as we go along she remembers more things and of course the horror escalates. Honestly, this movie is pretty forgettable, and doesn’t stand out from the genre.

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The Tolkien Tag

This tag was created by booktuber Andrea Heckler, but I found it on The Book Nut.

How Did Your Middle Earth Journey Begin?

With the movie trilogy, which then was followed by the trading card game, and then I read The Lord of the Rings, then I read the Hobbit, and then watched the Hobbit. I’ve also read The Simarillion at some point.

What is Your Favorite Middle Earth Book?

The Hobbit

What is Your Favorite Middle Earth Movie?

The Return of the King

Movies or Books?

I like the Fellowship movies best, but The Hobbit book is better than the movies.

Who Are Your Favorite Characters?

I’m a fan of Aragorn, his character progression is so completely interesting. But I love the camaraderie between Legolas and Gimli too.

What Middle Earth Race Would You Be?

I’d probably be a Hobbit, since I come from a farming background and cook for a living.

Best Actor/Character Casting Match?

Ian McKellen as Gandolf and Christopher Lee as Saruman, loved their performances.

What is Your Favorite Place in Middle Earth?

Lothlorien, it’s just so beautiful.

What is Your Favorite Quote from the Books or Movies?

“All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.

From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king.”

Eventually I’ll have this tattooed on the back of my leg.

Keep reading little book worms!

[Netflix] Movie Review: The Ring (2002)

Wikipedia:

The Ring is a 2002 American supernatural horror film directed by Gore Verbinski and starring Naomi Watts, Martin Henderson, David Dorfman, Brian Cox, and Daveigh Chase. It is a remake of the 1998 Japanese horror film Ring, based on the novel of the same name by Koji Suzuki. Watts portrays a journalist who investigates a cursed videotape that seemingly kills the viewer seven days after watching it.

Wikipedia bills this as a supernatural horror. I disagree with this somewhat. It is supernatural, and maybe it does start out as a horror flick. But it quickly turns into a sad family drama.

Don’t get me wrong, I love a good horror movie, and I see why this one fits the genre, but it is so much more than that. So much more. It also features a classic ending that horror movies love, bringing it back to horror movie status.

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D is for Deadbeat by Sue Grafton

D Is For Deadbeat (Kinsey Millhone, #4)D Is For Deadbeat by Sue Grafton

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I’m beginning to see what my mom likes about this series. I’m sad that the author has passed and she never got to finish the series (I believe it stops with X).

Anyway, this is about “D” not “X”, lets not get ahead of ourselves. I’m not terribly happy with the ending of this one, but at least Kinsey didn’t have to shoot anyone this time. It was less violent than previous books, but still very dangerous.

I liked all the twists and turns this one had, all the interesting characters involved made for nice read. The characters definitely made the book this time.

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