fullcontactmuse: (You Rock!!)
I just finished reading One Salt Sea by [livejournal.com profile] seanan_mcguire.

You might be asking how I got a copy of the unreleased book? It was a prize for a treasure hunt where I called every Toys R' Us in the greater Seattle area. And then it took some hefty bargaining with [livejournal.com profile] lunargypsie to get her stamp of approval.

Oh well, the things you do for love and good books. And I am glad I did!

Where do I begin? First, it's a fast and engaging read and I was hooked pretty much near the beginning of the story. As the story progressed, there were lots of "Oh crap" moments where things just went from bad to worse for Toby. I'd even say that there was an "oh fuck" moment in the third act. There were moments, especially in the third act where I cried, turning the pages one after another.

Here's what the product page on Amazon says...
October "Toby" Daye is settling into her new role as Countess of Goldengreen. She's actually dating again, and she's taken on Quentin as her squire. So, of course, it's time for things to take a turn for the worse.

Someone has kidnapped the sons of the regent of the Undersea Duchy of Saltmist. To prevent a war between land and sea, Toby must find the missing boys and prove the Queen of the Mists was not behind their abduction. Toby's search will take her from the streets of San Francisco to the lands beneath the waves, and her deadline is firm: she must find the boys in three days' time, or all of the Mists will pay the price. But someone is determined to stop her-and whoever it is isn't playing by Oberon's Laws...
And really, this doesn't even cover half of what's going on. Which is good in my opinion.

I was very happy to see more of my favorite character in the series, the Luidaeg, and learn more about her and her line. Color me very, very happy.

Hands down, this is my favorite October Daye novel to date, knocking An Artificial Night out of that position. Further more, Deadline and One Salt Sea are currently brawling for which is my favorite book by Seanan.

I'd write more, but I need to get ready for a concert tonight so I'll leave you with this: If you've read any of the Toby books pre-order this book now. Do not pass go. Do not collect $200. Seriously, I'm not kidding.
fullcontactmuse: (Default)
End of Days by Abney Park

Where to begin? I know I'll start with a single word: disappointed. Let me be clear, it's not a bad album. There is no track that makes want to toss the disc in a fire or anything, but there are only three songs that grab me.

The first six songs were just there. "Victorian Vigilante" was the first track to hook me and drag me in, tapping my toes and humming along. "Chronofax" is probably the coolest bit of exposition I've heard on an album in a long time. "Letters Between A Little Boy & His Older Self" tugged at my heart with all the determination of the family dog who won't stop trying to convince you that you're wrong and the steak was his from the beginning. "Beautiful Decline", a song that creeps its way into my head far too often than is probably healthy; not that I'm complaining, the song is amazing. The song also marks the last sign post of the good songs.

My initial thoughts on the album were to call it Abney Park's "The Wall". As a dyed in the wool fan of Pink Floyd, I should probably clarify the statement a bit. "The Wall", in my mind, is not Pink Floyd's best album like many people say. Sure, it is probably their best executed concept album. The iconography and the story arc of the album are crystal clear. But musically, "The Wall" is not the best. It sits behind "Dark Side of the Moon" and "Wish You Were Here". Mind you, there are some gems on the two disc set, but most of the album's tracks don't stand out.

My hope is that the songs themselves will improve as the band plays them at live shows, tweak them, and infuse that energy which can only be found on the stage. We've seen great songs made even better, let's see if the same magic can be applied to the nine other tracks on the disc.
fullcontactmuse: (Default)
Rosemary and Rue by Seanan McGuire

I admit it, I've been on a bit of a reading binge lately. Yesterday, I finished up Rosemary and Rue and I liked it. I liked it a lot and I'm not a big fan of fantasy, preferring horror and science-fiction for my reading time. To be fair, the story of October Daye is urban fantasy, rather than pure fantasy and the book is very urban in tone.

Here's the basic premise of the book: October "Toby" Daye is a changeling, half human and half fairy, who works as a private investigator. The story opens with Toby doing a job that goes wrong and she spends the next 14 years as a fish. In that time, the world has moved on without her, including her husband and daughter.

For the next 6 months following her escape from the pond, Toby turns her back on the fairy and its politics. That is until the Countess Evening Winterrose curses Toby to solve her own impending murder. Now Toby must solve the crime and bring the murderer to justice or die from Winterrose's binding.

I had the hardest time putting the book down. I was reading while walking to the deli to get lunch, reading while code was compiling, where ever I could get. The action was well paced. Toby was brutalized like Bruce Campbell in a Sam Raimi film. The world is rich and vibrant with so many nooks and crannies that have yet to be explored. Plots relevant to main story arc were tied up nicely, but there are plenty of loose threads hanging in the winds for future books.

If you haven't read Rosemary and Rue yet, you should drop everything, go get it, and enjoy. If you ask me, March 2nd, 2010 cannot get here soon enough.
fullcontactmuse: (Poke your icon out)
Grants Pass
A week and a half ago, I finished up Grants Pass, created by Jennifer Brozek ([livejournal.com profile] jennifer_brozek), edited by Jennifer Brozek and Amanda Pillar ([livejournal.com profile] amandapillar), published by Morrigan Books. I suppose I should offer a quick disclaimer. I have been a cheerleader of this project since the beginning when Jenn and I would take our lunch time walks when we used to work together. So I've been anxious to get my hands on this book for a long time.
Personally, I am a slow reader, so if a book doesn't hold my interest, I'm not about to invest any more of my time with it. With that said, you might be wondering how Grants Pass faired? Swimmingly! There was only one store that I didn't really care for in terms of style and storytelling, "Black Heart, White Mourning" by Jay Lake, but the story did make me think and that's a good thing. Three of the stories actually made me cry.
The first of those was "Animal Husbrandy" by Seanan McGuire ([livejournal.com profile] seanan_mcguire) , which hit  me really hard, both when Seannan read it aloud at Soul Food Books and when I read it again on my own. As a parent, I connected with one of the character and the choices he has to make for the betterment of his child.
"Newfound Gap", by Lee Clark Zumpe, had me with hope, that desperate kind which pushes people forward. Sometimes that drive pays off and sometimes it doesn't. My need for Kleenex was based out of one of those two ends. I'll let you read the story and find out which.
Lastly, "Remembrance", by James M. Sullivan ([livejournal.com profile] sylvan), sets us up with hope again, like several of the other stories. Like "Newfound Gap", the hope pivots around reconnecting with a separated loved one and doing whatever one can to survive.
If you like apocalyptic fiction with good character development and well told stories, I can't recommend this book enough.
fullcontactmuse: (Hot Lights)
So here are my thoughts on the movie "Moon".

Review below the cut )

Overall, it is a very good film. Hard science fiction in the local cinema again? Color me happy.
fullcontactmuse: (Hot Lights)
“Grants Pass” will be released in August, but until then Morrigan Books teases us with a catchy trailer for their new anthology. - Dark Wolf's Fantasy Reviews
Yes, very happy indeed.
fullcontactmuse: (Watchmen - Silk Specter II)
Review Watchmen (Mostly spoiler free)

I went with a group of people, including [livejournal.com profile] dreamer685, [livejournal.com profile] digitaleopard, [livejournal.com profile] lilithvf1998, [livejournal.com profile] elryion, [livejournal.com profile] bysmael, and the Boy. Part of the plan was to also hook up with the IBT folks—they were holding a spot for us in line, but we didn't get there early enough—and it was good to see them outside of the context of a convention.

As predicted, getting out of my seat at the Cinerama required a crow bar when the film was over. For being such a nice theater, the Cinerama has really crappy seats.

So how was the movie? I would rate it as a full price ticket and I would pay that multiple times. I liked it. Yes, things changed from the comic books, but the theme and intent of the comic book was still there. Yes, the ending is different in execution from the comic book, but I think it works in the context of limitations around the medium. The movie clocks in at two hours and forty minutes with over 15 minutes of removed footage to make the studios happy.

Possible spoiler regarding a scene that may be triggering to some. )
fullcontactmuse: (Flying Monkeys Stole My Icon)
The review is done.

That is all.
fullcontactmuse: (Hot Lights)
Yes, I would pay full price to see it again on the big screen. Is it perfect? No. The dialog and acting is wooden in places and it's a story that's been told before. Why the shooting style is reminescient of "the Blair Witch Project", this has far, far superior production values.

The Mist

Dec. 21st, 2007 07:35 am
fullcontactmuse: (Hot Lights)
I saw the Mist with [livejournal.com profile] digitaleopard, [livejournal.com profile] sylvan, and [livejournal.com profile] bluewingedcat.

My rating: I would pay full price to see it again on the big screen.

Minor spoilers. )

Over all, a good adaptation of a much beloved story.

I am tired.

Sep. 8th, 2007 12:31 am
fullcontactmuse: (Tired Kitten)
After shooting the dress rehearsal tonight, the Boy and I joined [livejournal.com profile] digitaleopard for Shoot'em Up. This is the kind of movie that is a fun, popcorn movie. Frankly, I put it in the same category as Snakes on a Plane.
  1. Truth in Advertising: Where in Snakes on a Plane, there were snakes and they were set loose on a plane. In Shoot'em Up, the bulk of the gags dealt with people shooting at each other. And death assisted by the occassion carrot. Disappointed? No.
  2. Thin Plots: This is not a movie you go to see an Oscar calliber screenplay. You go to see the gimmick and the plot, if you can call it that, only serves to move use from one improbable situation to another. Dissapointed? Nope, kind of figured this was the case going into it.
  3. Was the movie enjoyabled? Yes, yes it was. As I enjoyed Snakes on a Plane, I certainly enjoyed this one. While I enjoy Samuel L. Jackson in just about everything he is, Clive Owen's Smith was cooler than Neville Flynn.
My rating: I would pay full price to see the movie again.
How I Rate Movies:
Full Price
I enjoyed the film enough that I am not bothered with paying full price for admission.
Weekends Before Noon
AMC Theaters has $5.00 movies before noon on weekends and holidays and that seems to be a reasonable amount to pay to go see this movie.
The $1.50 Movie House
The movie isn't all that good, but would likely lose something more on the small screen. So wait until it hits the bargain houses.
Wait until the DVD is out and add it to your Netflix queue.
Borrow It
The movie is beginning to get ripe and should really only be watched if you can borrow the DVD when it comes out from someone else.
Not only was the movie bad enough that I want my money back, but I also want that lost time from my life back. So far, only one movie that I can remember has made me feel this way and I walked of in favor of a lunch time meeting.

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