Showing posts from January, 2013

Goodreads Book Review - The Angel's Game

The Angel's Game by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I was really looking forward to this follow-up prequel to The Shadow of the Wind, a book I really enjoyed that I rated four stars. That said, this book left me feeling really disappointed. The characters are just as strong but the plot, which starts out as a strong, compelling mystery just like in the first book, completely falls apart under the weight of its twists and turns and countless plot holes and completely falls apart before it gets to the ridiculous twist at the end that makes no sense whatsoever. The author leaves so many questions left unanswered... or perhaps they were answered but just made no sense whatsoever... that there is nothing fulfilling about the book at all except how the end makes clear just how much this ties into Shadow of the Wind. That reveal might have saved the book a little, except it was telegraphed halfway through. The first half of the book rates two stars. The rest... well, I'd say …

Kneejerking to the 2013 Oscar Nominees

In case you missed it because you live under a rock, the nominees for this year's Academy Awards were announced today, and I, of course, have some reactions. Not predictions, mind you; I haven't actually seen all the movies involved yet so I'm not about to make any predictions... but that doesn't mean I don't have any thoughts! Not many, mind you, because I'm tired and verging on sick, but here we go...

Starting at the top, what the hell is Amour? Seriously, how is there a Best Picture nominee that I haven't even heard of? Also, I'm shocked as hell that Django Unchained got nominated. I've yet to watch it, but it doesn't seem like the kind of movie the Academy would recognize. It must be really, really good. When it comes to Best picture, though, I'm really pulling for Silver Linings Playbook, which would surprise no one at this point.

Best Actor is a hell of a field this year, past winners abound and all, and I'd be really, really surpr…

Goodreads Book Review - Snuff

Snuff by Chuck Palahniuk

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

As I said in my review of the last Palahniuk book I read, Haunted, I really hope this guy spends the bulk of his money on therapy, because my man is clearly out of his gourd. That being said, his kind of insanity produces some really, really good books. Like anything you'd expect from him, this book is twisted and compelling (in the way watching trainwrecks are compelling; I was so drawn in by the insanity displayed here that I read the whole book in a day) and, of course, there are twists that keep you guessing everywhere. I thought I had the main twist figured out ahead of time... and I was right, by the way... but then the twists kept coming as the narrative raced to one of the most messed-up conclusions I have ever seen. Seriously, just read the book and see for yourself. I know I've said that about all of Palahniuk's books I've read thus far, but, yeah, do it.

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The friend who gave me this twenty-seve…

The 10 Best Geek TV Shows of 2012

Yesterday, my friend Gio (you can find his blog, Words from the Master, here; you should check it out, it's pretty great) posted a link to Topless Robot's Ten Best Geek Shows of 2012. I read the list, and while some of it is okay, I disagreed with most of the shows and pretty much all of the rankings. SO, I decided the only thing to do was post my own version of the list!

10. The Big Bang Theory

Topless Robot not only saw fit to leave this off the list, but they even took a shot at it while talking about Community. I'm sorry, but no show on television embraces geek culture the way this show does while simultaneously giving us enjoyable characters, fun stories, and a whole bunch of laughs every week. Most of the shows on either list are talked about on this show, and when they talk about Doctor Who, they talk about Doctor Who... Inspector Spacetime, my ass.

9. Merlin

Here's a show that gets very little love in the States as it comes from across the pond and isn't its …

Goodreads Book Review - The Fuck-Up

The Fuck Up by Arthur Nersesian

My rating: 1 of 5 stars

Have you ever spent an entire book wishing with each turn of the page that the next page would bring about a surprise plot twist in which the protagonist you've been reading about the whole time suddenly dies and the book is now about someone else entirely? No? Then you have no idea of the misery in which I sat while reading this book. I will never understand why someone would choose to write about such a reprehensible character like the nameless star of this book, or why they would think an audience would want to read about the odyssey of horrible things that happen to him through every fault of his own until, in one of the most laughing bad and abrupt endings I've ever read, he's rewarded with a better life than he ever had before. I will admit to laughing out loud once or twice, but not in joy; no, it was just masochistic schadenfreude.

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The twenty-sixth book in the RRC was easily the worst book of …

Goodreads Book Review - I Know This Much Is True

I Know This Much Is True by Wally Lamb

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I have to admit, for the most of the time I spent reading this book, I hated it. I wasn't thrilled with the writing style or the way the plot jumps from time frame to time frame to time frame. I felt like I couldn't connect with any of the characters and because of that, I couldn't care about them, and if I couldn't care about the characters, why bother reading the thing at all? And while I still stand by some of that, a funny thing happened in the last 250 pages or so. Lamb pulled everything together and wrapped it up in a way that made me say, "Okay, this actually wasn't that bad now that I see it all in front of me." I was actually rooting for the main character, Dominick, and was happy to see the way he changed and the way his life wound up, even if I do think one or two aspects were a little too neat of a wrap-up. I also saw a few things that mirrored some of the trends in my life (nothing …