Posts Tagged With: entertainment

What’s on Your Summer Reading List?

book stack
Aaaahhh summer. Sun, sun, sun, lots of sun, sun and more sun.

Sadly, I’m likely to burst into flame if I spend too much time in direct sunlight.

Thank goodness for shade, AC*, hard apple cider and looooong summer reading lists.

 

Here’s what I recently crossed off my list:

  • Stephen King’s The Shining (reread after more than twenty years)
  • Barry Eisler’s Rain Storm (book three of his John Rain series…also known as Winner Take All)
  • Tessa Gratton’s The Blood Keeper (book two of her Blood Journals series)
  • Jim Butcher’s Storm Front (book one of his Dresden Files series)
  • Stephen King’s Mr. Mercedes (book one of his Bill Hodges Trilogy)
  • Michael Connelly’s 9 Dragons (book fourteen of his Harry Bosch series)

 

Here’s what’s still on the list:

  • Barry Eisler’s A Clean Kill in Tokyo (book one of the John Rain series)
  • James Rollins’ The 6th Extinction (book ten of his Sigma Force series) and The Bone Labyrinth (book eleven…out later this summer or fall)
  • Tessa Gratton’s Blood Magic (book one of the Blood Journals series)
  • George RR Martin’s Winds of Winter (really, really, really hoping it comes out this year)
  • Jim Butcher’s Fool Moon and Grave Peril (books two and three of the Dresden Files…and every other Dresden Files book…I’m a latecomer to the series but I’d heard much fanfare and book one impressed me much)
  • Stephen King’s Finders Keepers (book two of the Bill Hodges Trilogy)
  • Jeff Lindsay’s Dexter’s Final Cut and Dexter is Dead (books seven and eight of the Dexter Morgan series)
  • Emma Donoghue’s Room

*Prayers going out to all of those around the world suffering through intense heat waves.

What’s on your summer reading list and what are you most looking forward to reading? Have you caught any of the books on my list? What did you think?

Photo Credit
book stack, mine

Categories: Tuesday Toss-Up | Tags: , , , | 8 Comments

Would You Hit the Reset Button?

Decades from now, the human race is on the brink of total collapse, the fallout of an apocalyptic plague. You have an opportunity to go back in time and stop the plague before it happens–hit the reset button, if you will. If you succeed, you’ll cease to exist but humanity will live. The hard part is not going to be sacrificing yourself but actually finding the source of the plague because your intel is sketchy at best and anything you do in the past alters the future.

Would you do it? Would you hit the reset button?

Reset Button

This is the set up of Syfy’s new series, 12 Monkeys. In 2017, a plague kills more than 90% of the world’s population. In 4043, a man name James Cole travels to the past with the mission of stopping the plague before he begins. The only information Cole has to go on comes from a corrupt voice message from Dr. Cassandra Railly, a virologist. Cole must find Dr. Railly and follow the clues to stop the plague but nothing is what it seems.

The series is based on the 1995 movie, 12 Monkeys with Bruce Willis and Brad Pitt (Pitt playing crazy is always good fun). Already, the show’s diverged from the movie enough to keep things interesting. I’m hoping we’re in for lots of surprises and few, if any, Lost moments.

We’re coming up on Episode 4 this week and I can’t begin to tell you how excited I am. Most series pilots leave me feeling a little cold even if I later get into the show. The 12 Monkey pilot knocked it out of the park for me. I haven’t been this excited about a pilot since the The Walking Dead. Every episode since has pulled me in further.

I love the twists and the characters. I love that I can’t quite figure out where the plot is heading and that I’m not sure Cole is entirely trustworthy. I can’t wait for the next episode. Where’s my time machine?

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What about you? Have you checked out 12 Monkeys? What’s your first impression? Any theories as to where the show’s going?

Categories: Parallel Tuesdays | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Why You’ll Never Have to Worry About a Zombie Apocalypse

…or Will You?

Have you been super duper stressed about the possibility of  a zombie apocalypse? Or maybe you don’t really believe but you watched one too many episodes of The Walking Dead and now you can’t sleep until you can shoot a squirrel off the shoulder of an undead pizza delivery guy. Well, rest assured that a zombie apocalypse is totally nothing to worry about.  Cracked.com offers 7 Scientific Reasons a Zombie Outbreak Would Fail (Quickly).

Zombie Birdie

Braaaaaaaaaaainzzzzzzzzz aaaaaannnnnndddd wooooooooormmmmmms…

If you’re anything like me, you’ll find the article terribly comforting and hilarious but…

You’ll also start to wonder if maybe they’re wrong after all. Maybe the undead won’t just rot away. Maybe they’ll have no natural predators. Maybe it’s not the bite that spreads the disease. Maybe it’s airborne. Maybe it’s already in us all. Aaaaaaagh!

Okay. Maybe not.

But take note, the super scientific folk at Cracked also once pointed out 5 Scientific Reasons a Zombie Apocalypse Could Actually Happen. It’s up to you which is more convincing.

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So what do you think? How real is the possibility of a zombie apocalypse? And, scientifically speaking (or not, it’s up to you), how do you think it would happen?

Categories: Killer Thursdays, Tuesday Toss-Up | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Is Your Brain Haunted?

Do spectres haunt the halls of your mind? Rattling their ghostly chains. Footsteps echoing. The doors of your memory creaking. Moaning, wailing and generally being a pain in the posterior lobe?

Baby Bird

Lovin’ you is easy ’cause you’re beautiful. Dootin dootin doo doo…

I’m haunted by movie lines, commercials and sometimes even words (like “anesthesia”…isn’t that a weird word? Just say it a couple of times. Really draw it out. There you go. Now you know what I mean.) but mostly songs. Mostly old songs but some new. They rise, unbidden, from their graves to pester me at random moments. And believe me when I tell you that many of these spirits are malevolent, hounding me until I slip up and say whatever it is they’ve been wailing about out loud.

That’s when the real horror begins.

Sometimes it’s Ice Ice Baby. While I certainly admire the man, Robert Van Winkle has become, that song…that song really needs to be exorcised from my memory. If you were around in the days when the radio stations relentlessly played that song, you know what I mean.

And it can get so much worse. [Hit Me] Baby One More Time,  Loving You, We Are Never Ever Getting Back TogetherI’m Too Sexy, Warm it Up, Call Me Maybe and, one of the most persistent haunts, Hooked on a Feeling.

Just imagine blurting any one of these out in a crowded grocery store, walking down the street or during coffee and donuts after church. *shudder*

There are other, more benevolent, haunts of course: Beethoven’s 5th (Did I really need to link to that one? Surely that one happily haunts everyone.), Mozart’s Rondo alla Turca (yes, I’m totally dancing in my head to this one right now), Layla, The Sound of Silence,  Time After Time (What? I dig Cyndi *shrug*) and White and Nerdy.

And, if the halls of your mind are too quiet and you’ve been skull-shopping, hoping for a haunted brain pan of your own, here’s something my kiddos recently forced on shared with me:

You’re welcome.

What haunts your brain?

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Please note, no baby birds were harmed in the making of this post. The little guy (gal?) you see above fell out of his nest on a windy day. My daughter found him and our good friend, a spectacular animal whisperer, took him in and has been taking great care of him. He should be ready for release back into the wild soon.

Baby Bird 2

Categories: Tuesday Toss-Up | Tags: , , , , , , | 4 Comments

How Far Would You Go For Your Kids?

It’s every parent’s nightmare to lose a child and most would agree they’d do anything to protect or save their children. And when we say anything, we usually mean we’d be willing to throw ourselves in front of a speeding bus, inflict grievous bodily harm on someone trying to hurt a child or  trade places with a sick child…or just give up sleep, clean up bodily fluids and say no when your kids just can’t understand why.

But would you give up government secrets, compromise national security, put innocent lives in danger or torture someone to save your child?

That’s just what NBC’s Crisis asks.

The show pits wealthy, powerful parents against the FBI, CIA and US government when their children are taken during a high school field trips and the kidnappers begin making unusual demands. Instead of money (although money does come into play for at least one parent), the kidnappers want to use the parents’ power and access. The parents are each given a task. None know what their bit roles in kidnappers’ mater plan will add up to. It could be about money and power, righting a wrong or helping terrorist unleash something horrific. All they know is that,  if they do what they’re told, their children will be returned.

Now, I’m a mother bear when needed. I have no doubt I’d sacrifice myself for my children. If somebody was hurting them, I’d do what I had to stop the person. In a heartbeat and probably without remorse.

But is there a line I wouldn’t cross?

I lean towards “yes.” While I can see myself attacking a killer/kidnapper/predator, I can’t imagine deliberately harming an innocent (even if that person is innocent only of the crime against my child).

But maybe that’s exactly what the Crises parents would have said before their children were taken.

What do you think? How far would you go to save your children? Is there anything you wouldn’t do?

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NBC offers a fun quiz to find out what kind of person you’d be in a crisis. Take the Quiz. Although I don’t know how accurate it is as it says I’m a Fly on the Wall. But maybe that was because I couldn’t decide between Game of Thrones and The Hunger Games for my favorite book.

 

Categories: Tuesday Toss-Up, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , | 2 Comments

What’s on Your Fall Watch List?

Fall is (finally) here.

Around here, it felt like fall would never get here. In fact, it’s still in the low 80s. *grumble grumble*

But anyway.

The best thing fall is…the new tv shows.

Okay, maybe it’s a toss-up between the new shows and Thanksgiving dinner.  But, while Turkey Day only lasts until all the leftovers run out (or you get sick of them), there are at least a few shows to keep your mental belly full all season long.

Here’s what’s on my list:

The Blacklist

James Spader strikes a Hannibal Lecteresque pose with his own fascinating twist and everyone has a secret agenda. Good stuff so far.

_______

Sleepy Hollow

Apocalypse. American history. Mythology. A classic American scary story and an anachronistic hero. What isn’t there to love?

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The Walking Dead

This is one of those shows I hate to love. It just gets more and more intense every season and there’s no guarantee your most loved characters will survive (or stay sane).

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And one that’s premiering Friday:

Dracula

Jonathan Rhys Meyers. Oh my. It has to be good.

I see all the shows on my list are pretty dark. Apparently, I have to branch out a little. Guess I better go research some comedies.

Right after I watch the last episode of The Walking Dead again.

What’s on your watch list this fall?

Categories: Killer Thursdays, Tuesday Toss-Up | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Why is the Apocalypse so Fascinating?

What is it we love about the end of the world?

Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city

Did someone say apocalypse?

Seems like the apocalypse is everywhere these days. Books. Games. TV shows and movies. And it’s not really a new thing. From the dawn of humanity, folks have been fascinated with the end of the world as we know it (some times more than others). Why is that?

I have a few theories: Continue reading

Categories: Parallel Tuesdays | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Old Favorites: Best Classic Movies

Growing up, my family instilled in me a love of old movies, especially the black and white classics. They may not have had the tech and special effects we have now but the stories stuck with you, even the silly ones. Some of them are among my favorite movies ever.

I tried to pick a single favorite and failed miserably. Heck, I can’t pick a single favorite ice cream flavor. I tend to have a range of favorites. So, here are just a few of my all-time favorite old movies (for the purpose of this article, we’ll “old” or “classic” as pre-1975): Continue reading

Categories: Tuesday Toss-Up | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 25 Comments

Would You Walk with the Dead?

Are you jonesing for the Dead? Is October just not soon enough?

Well, you don’t have to wait.

No, AMC won’t be releasing The Walking Dead Season 4 early but you can step into the world…if you can survive it. Continue reading

Categories: Killer Thursdays, Tuesday Toss-Up | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Grab Your Tac Bac, Machete and…Cat?

The following post is in honor of Piper Bayard’s début novel, Firelands. If you’ve read Piper’s and Holmes’ blog, you know that any book she writes is gonna be thrilling, funny, a little scary and, well, awesome. If you haven’t read their blog, go read it. Right now. And then go get the book…or Felinius Maximus will hunt you down.

You’ve been warned.

Angry Cat

At my command, unleash hell!

Fast forward to tomorrow morning…

You wake up expecting the day to be like every other one. You’ll drag your butt out of bed, pry your eyelids open and stumble into the kitchen to throw some scalding coffee (or tea, matcha, whatever) down your gullet  along with leftovers  donuts a nourishing breakfast. Continue reading

Categories: Parallel Tuesdays | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

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