Friday, April 29, 2016

Pretty Girls by Karin Slaughter

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I love Karin Slaughter. Her books are full of intense suspense, great characters, and a plot that will grab you from the very beginning and never let go. Her books can also have so pretty disturbing and gruesome subject matter. I'm not as strong as I used to be. Before I had kids I could read anything and it would disturb me or make me uncomfortable but never bother me like it does after having kids. This book was so horrific that I had to take a day off reading this book because it was to much. I'd have to stop every now and then to take a breather and step back. I wanted to stop this book and not subject myself to any more of the disturbing content, but here is where Karin Slaughter is a genius. She wrote a mystery around this that made me want to keep going. I had to find out the details of what was going on and how this book ended. 

The book opens with a father reading a letter he wrote to his daughter who has gone missing. This right here is what began the terror to my very core. The thought of loosing a child and not knowing what happened scared the holy Hell out of me. We have two main characters Claire and Lydia who have survived the disappearance of their older Sister and the destruction of their family. Claire and her husband are out one night and decide to get a little frisky in an alley when they are mugged and her husband is killed. Picking up the pieces after the funeral Claire stumbles upon some snuff videos on her husband's computer. This terrible discovery opens the door to so many questions and plot twists that I felt bad liking this book. 

Be fore warned that this book is not for the faint of heart. This was a good book and a true testament to how fantastic a writer Karin Slaughter is. The violence to women in her books is really tough to get through but if you can look past it the rest of the book is really worth the read. I would love to get more into detail about this book but I don't want to ruin all the twists. I am excited for her to get back to her Will Trent and Sara Linton books but this was a good book. I give this 4 out of 5 stars. 

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Green Lantern Corps: Lost Army Vol 1 by Cullen Bunn

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I'm going to admit right off the bat, I have missed something. It dawned on me after I read this book and before I read Green Lantern Vol 7 that I missed Green Lantern Vol 6. I also haven't read The Green Lantern Corps books since Vol 3. I have only read the anthology books that includes issues from there. So when this book started I wanted to know how these Lanterns ended up in what seems like a different universe. 

The one interesting thing about this book is it looks like our band of heroes have some how ended up in the universe that holds the key players in the beginning of all universes and the creation of the emotional spectrum. With all of this going on and our heroes not only trying to find their way home but help out along the way I expected this story to be more interesting. 

There were a lot of flash backs to John Stewart's time in the military which I know is supposed to parallel what is happening and show John's thought process but they felt out of place. I really don't have much else to say about this book other than it was just ok. Maybe when I get caught up on the Corps books I might give this a re-read and see if I like it better but for now, on to the next book on my to-read pile.

UPDATE: Wow, I'm so sorry to those of you have have read this on the day it posted. I really didn't seem to care much for this book and I didn't even give it a rating. I give this book 2 out of 5 stars. I kind of phoned in the review and I'm so sorry for that. I will do better in the future.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Supergirl Season 1


I really didn't have any intention of reviewing this show, but now that the season has ended and I have had time to think about this show I can't get it out of my mind. I really liked this show and I am so happy to see a show out there that proves girls can kick ass just as much as men can. At this point I can only hope for a second season. This last episode left things hanging with a decent cliffhanger so not only do I want to know what is going to happen next, but I want more of the show, the characters, and the action. 

Supergirl has a a level of cheese factor but it is in the best way. Supergirl is supposed to be cheery and optimistic. She is new to the whole Superhero thing so it makes sense that she still has the bubbly optimism instead of the jaded cynic most older super heroes seem to become. So when it comes to casting the bubbly superhero I have to say that Melissa Benoist is perfect for this role. I have to be honest that I have never seen her in anything before Supergirl but I really liked the way she portrayed the character. I was impressed from the very first image I saw from the show when it first started to get going.

There are some great casting choices in this series that for me really made this fun to watch. This show brought characters to the "real world" that had only been done in the cartoons or comics. This season has had characters like Livewire, Silver Banshee, Maxwell Lord, and my favorite, Martian Manhunter. Martian Manhunter was really cool and the first time he transformed from Hank Henshaw into the Martian Manhunter I had goosebumps all over. We also get a take on Bizzaro and Supergirl affected by Red Kryptonite. Everyone cast for this show was perfect in their role. I will admit that in the beginning I didn't like the guy they chose for Jimmy Olsen. Jimmy Olsen is a nerdy lanky freckle faced kid who you expect to still have his voice crack and not this tall strong confident man of the world. Over time Mechad Brooks grew on me.

When this show started I really wanted this to do well, but mainly because DC has been dominating television with some great shows "Arrow, Flash, Legends of Tomorrow, iZombie, Lucifer and of course Gotham". The more episodes I watched of this show the more I couldn't wait for Mondays. I have bought several episodes of this season on iTunes and when I get the price down low enough I am just going to buy the whole season. I just checked tvline.com's Renewal Scorecard and it says Supergirl Season 2 is a sure thing but it hasn't been renewed yet. Here is hoping that they not only get a second season but many more in the future. 

Friday, April 22, 2016

Ghost Story by Jim Butcher

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If you haven't read up tot his book and you intend to then stop reading this review now. I'm going to spoil that last book in 3...2...1..

So the last book ends with Harry's death. Talk about a WTF moment and one hell of a cliffhanger. I couldn't wait to find out what was going to happen yet. Harry can't be dead. He is the hero of these books and I know there are more than just 13 books. Still, to end a book with Harry being shot and falling into the lake to drown slash bleed out was gut wrenching because I had to know what was coming next. 

I'm going to just say this right now so it is out of the way. I wish the pacing of this book was a little faster. I wanted Harry to get the the meat of the story a little bit faster and I felt like I was being held back if that makes any sense. I felt as if the story wanted to run but there were rocks tied to it holding it back. This is the common feel all the way through until the very end. Once again the ending of the book was really good and I couldn't put this book down.

Was the read worth the ending you might ask? Well, if you are fan of the series then it is worth it. The ending of any book is the whole reason we read. The book isn't a bad one it was just a little less than thrilling. Every time the story got going and would come close to answering a question I had the focus would shift and that little bit of momentum would have to get going again. I liked the ending but the book for me was just ok. Dresden will always be one of my favorite characters and I am still anxious for the next book. I give this book 3 out of 5 stars.  

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Secret Hero Society: Study Hall of Justice by Derek Fridolfs

Study Hall of Justice (DC Comics: Secret Hero Society #1)

So the hype behind Batman v Superman is so huge that so many things have spun off from this movie. My kids loved the cereal that hit grocery store shelves. Not only have food companies and car companies found a way to make money off this movie but a lot of kids books have come out. I love the fact that this movie created more books because I love to read and anytime my kids are excited to read I will make myself broke buying books for them. 

My son is 6 and in Kindergarten and he loves to read, especially now that he has learned how. I was looking through his Book Fair catalog and was really excited to see a  a paperback version of this that was affordable. I made sure we went to his school on open house night so we could get this and it was really cute.

Bruce has been transferred to Ducard Academy. His classmates and teachers are more on the evil side of things. Mad Hatter is the science teacher, Hugo Strange is the guidance counselor, and Brainiac is the librarian. Bruce feels something isn't right about this school so he decides to get some help from the only other normal students at the school. Clark Kent, and Diana Prince. For the most part they are just kids but we do get a brief Halloween party where our child heroes dawn their costumes for the first time.

I've already said it once but this book is really cute. There is a lot of light humor throughout the book for the grown ups who are fans. Tiny references for the fans that make this worth the read. There are comic strips, journal entries, text chats, and school reports and notes which help tell this story. My son and I had a lot of fun reading this book and I am so glad I was able to get this paperback version. I hope he wants to read it again soon. There were some parts that were just ok which is why I give this 4 out of 5 stars. If you have some time and just want a fun book to read with your kids then I recommend this one. 

Monday, April 18, 2016

The Grownup by Gillian Flynn

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I have really liked all the books I have read by Gillian Flynn. When I saw this was out I couldn't get my name on the list fast enough. Finally I got a chance to read this and I loved it. This is a really short story so there isn't much to talk about so I will do my best to not spoil anything. 

Gillian Flynn is notorious for writing characters that are just the lowest form of person that you just don't like. At the same time they are the kind of character you love to hate. Right at the beginning of the story our un-named narrator starts talking about how great she is at Hand jobs. Her job is working for a Psychic/palm reader. The front of the shop is all for the lady clients who are looking for love advice or some sort of self-esteem boost with the aura readers and psychics.  The back of the business is for the male clients looking for a helping hand. Our narrator is suffering from carpel tunnel  syndrome. Shocker. Her boss doesn't want to loose her so she promotes her to the front to read auras. Her boss calls her "Nerdy" so for the purpose of this review I will refer to her as Nerdy. 

One day at work a woman walks in looking frazzled and upset. She claims her house is haunted and it may be affecting her step son. Nerdy agrees to go with her home and stop by every week to cleanse the house and remove the spirits. The step son is super creepy just FYI but there is more going on than just a weird teenager. On one visit the step son tells Nerdy that if she comes back to the house she will die. Nerdy decides that she cannot continue this sham and she does a little research. There is a really weird jump to a story about the house. This is a stupid thing to be bothered about in a short story but I was really irritated that there wasn't some type of explanation as to what she was searching or what lead her to this story. 

I am going to leave the review here because I'm getting close to the big twists that are coming. The ending was such a surprise I have to give this little story 5 out of 5 stars. I really loved this story and couldn't wait to write my review. Check this out. It is work your time. 

Friday, April 15, 2016

Changes by Jim Butcher

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Changes doesn't do this book justice. So much happens in this book I am still realing from the massive ending. Let me just say right up from that the ending is worth everything that leads up to it. I couldn't put this book down and I was almost shaking at the end of the book. Make sure you have the next one because the way this ends you are not going to want to wait to see what happens next. One of the biggest cliffhangers ever.

Ok enough about the end of the book. I hate spoilers so I will try my hardest not to ruin anything in this book. If you haven't read up to this point and are planning to read these books I might warn you to stop here. I wont spoil anything about this book but I might give away some things in the series by accident. Here goes this book drops a huge bomb in less than a few pages. Susan comes back to ask Harry to help her retrieve their daughter who has been kidnapped by the Red Court of Vampires. My mind was officially blown right from the beginning. 

Every thing comes out in this book and there is nothing held back. Everything in Harry's life is changing and not all for the better. The war between the Wizards of the White court and the Vampires of the Red court is coming to a peak and the wizards are loosing ground. The rumored Black court of Wizards might have someone on the inside of the White court with ulterior motives. There is so much I want to talk about this book but I'm afraid of ruining each amazing surprise that gave me goosebumps through most of the book.

It is easy for me to give this a 5 out of 5 rating. this is my favorite book of the series so far. I can't wait to start the next book and believe that by the time this posts I will have already started the next book. Keep checking my blog for the next review. With how this one ended there is a lot for the next book to live up to. I'm going to be really upset when I get caught up on this series and have to wait for each new book to come out. 

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Red Hood/Arsenal Vol 1: Open for Business.

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I didn't know what to think. I have been a Batman fan since I was old enough to watch re-runs of Adam West on television. I have also been a long time fan of the Green Arrow since right before he married Black Canary so I know the Red Hood and Arsenal very well. When I saw this on Edelweiss I took a shot and threw my name in the hat. Thanks to DC Comics I was able to give this a read and write this review. I haven't read any of the Red Hood and the outlaws books since New 52 so I will admit I am a bit out of the loop when it comes to the references in this book but I wanted to see what this is all about. 

The story is a little odd but I have to admit that I liked seeing a different side to Jason Todd. Jason Todd is one of those pissed at the world feels like it owes him something for all the crap that it dumped on him. He is always angry and ready for a fight. However, in this book we see a smarter more calculating side to him. He is very much like a young Bruce Wayne in the way he thinks. Speaking of Bruce there is a great scene at the end of the book with Jason and Bruce and I was really moved and loved that whole exchange so if you read this look forward to that at the end. 

So the story, here is where I had a little issue. So Arsenal decides that he and Red Hood are going to sell their services. Cat stuck up a tree or need someone taken car of call rent-a-Bat. This was really lame and I was just disappointed in this little excursion. I know it make Jason wonder if Roy is drinking again but this didn't need to be part of the story. Also the villain in this book is mostly a tub of fat which is emotion given form. Long story to try to explain this and I don't think I will do it justice so if you are really curious just read the book. It was a fast read and decent. 

The art work for the most part was really well done. It did look like some issues changed main artisits because it wasn't consistent through that whole volume. It was kind of in the middle for me as to whether I liked the art work or not. Over all there was plenty of things I liked and plenty of things but when it comes down to it I am in the middle. I give this book 3 out of 5 stars. I am interested to read Vol 2 when ever it comes out. 

Monday, April 11, 2016

The Walking Dead: Rise of the Govenor by Robert Kirkman

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Rise of the Governor

I'm a huge fan of the Walking Dead and one of my favorite characters is the Governor. He is one of those characters you love to hate. This is one of the most despicable characters ever written and I place him in the hate hall of fame along side the Jim Rennie from Under the Dome. Still, the Governor is one of those characters you never forget and when a friend of mine started reading these books I got real excited that I could get more to the story. 

This begins after the Zombie apocalypse has already set in and we follow Phillip, Brian, Nick and , Penny. Penny is Phillips daughter, Brian is the Bohemian brother and Nick is just a friend of Phillip. In this dystopian time it is very important to have a group. I really liked seeing how all of this started. The story wasn't all that suspenseful but it held my attention and I couldn't stop reading this.

This book is a little on the slower side to be honest but it is very character driven which helped keep me interested throughout. There aren't a lot of zombie attacks in the book but that's ok. I mentioned this is character driven and I loved seeing all the different depths of each character. Phillip is this hard edged guy who has a big soft spot for his daughter but at the same time feels like there is this psychotic side just itching to be let out. Brian is very similar to his brother Phillip, but he is on the other end of the spectrum. He cares for his niece Penny but he is very weak and can't stomach the world let alone what the world has become.

I really liked this book and had the pacing been a little faster I would have rated this very high. I give this book 4 out of 5 stars. I can't wait to read the next book in the series. 

Friday, April 8, 2016

Batman Vol 8: Superheavy by Scott Snyder

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If you haven't read the previous volumes and would like to find out what happens on your own, this is your SPOILER WARNING. 

What the F@#$ is going on?!?!?! I knew there was going to be fall out from Bruce and the Joker being crushed under the cave in at the end of Vol 7 but this was not at all what I expected. Bruce is safe but has lost everything that makes him Batman. He has this beard that just looks odd on him. The city needs a Batman so a secret military like group constructs a mechanical batman suit that looked more like the 80's robot that delivered drinks. Who is in this suit being the new Batman

I'm so lost at this point. I'm not sure how Bruce survived the cave in and then what happened to Joker? That wasn't addressed in this book at all. Scott Snyder is an amazing writer and I hope he has a way to bring this all back to normal before his run on the series ends. Now the new Batman. There is a man in the suit and he wears a costume that reminds me of Batgirl's when it was Cassandra in it when Barbra was Oracle. Gotham's very own Jim Gordon is in the mechanical bat suit. Still not a fan of killing this Batman does carry a gun and that bugs me. From what elese I am reading the Bat Family isn't to fond of the new Batman either but they don't know it is Gordon in the suit.

The story was good enough that I can't wait to get to the next book but at the same time I am really disappointed in Scott Snyder. I just hope that the rest of this story line explains all the holes and really blows this book out of the water. I really don;t have much else to say about this book other than I give it 2 out of 5 stars.  

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Batman and Robin: Eternal Vol 1 by Scott Snyder

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I have been a huge fan of Scott Snyder and his run on the Batman series. I was honestly crushed when I read he will be leaving the series but I am going to enjoy everything until that point. A lot has happened to Batman and I'm a little behind. I have really enjoyed Batman Eternal and when I saw this I had to read it. Thanks to Edelweiss and DC Comics I was able to read this for a review. 

Batman has been replaced with a mechanical suit being driven by someone, I have no idea who. Like I said I am behind and may have missed this little bit of information. I didn't know there was a book I should have read first. Anyway, Dick Greyson is back in Gotham and he is teamed up with Red Robin, The Red Hood and all kinds of kids trying to live up to the Robin name. Someone known as Mother may know everything about the Bat-Family and will use it to destroy them. Batman may have a secret that will tear the boys apart and crush Dick when he finds out what happened.

Not to spoil anything but don't expect a resolution in this book. This is just the beginning of what could be earth shattering secrets in the world of the Bat-Family. I wont ruin any of the details but I will say the secret that Bruce has hidden all these years paints him in quite a horrible light. I just couldn't shake the feeling that there is more to this than what we are given in this volume. I hope I'm right about this because I can't imagine Bruce being this kind of character.

I really did enjoy this book and I can't wait for Vol 2. I have to know what happens next. I will admit that there were sections of this book that were a little on the slow side and I struggled a bit to keep going to get to the good parts. Due to these feelings I give this book 4 out of 5 stars and I hope to read the next volume as soon as it is available. 

Monday, April 4, 2016

Turn Coat by Jim Butcher

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It is so nice to be back in Chicago with Harry Dresden. This is one of those series that even though I know it is fictional, every time I pick one of these up I feel like I am hanging out with old friends telling story over a beer. Dresden has his work cut out for him in this book. For those of you who have read this series you will know who Morgan is. For those that don't he is a senior wizard of the council that has hated Dresden since the very beginning. So it was a shock when Morgan shows up on Dresden's door step bleeding and wounded and asking for help.

Chasing Morgan and now Dresden is a creature known as a Skin Walker. I have always been interested in the lore behind Skin Walkers. This is a Navajo legend and even mentioned in this book the Navajo don't like talking about it for fear that they will be heard and attacked by the Skin Walker. A lot of stories take after the werewolf type of character but Jim Butcher does a great job holding to the lore of Skin Walkers. I really enjoyed this part of the story.

Let's get back to the whole Morgan part of the story. Morgan is being charged by the white council for the death of a senior warden. Dresden is of course the last place anyone would think to look for him so it really makes sense he shows up on Harry's door. Dresden now has to figure out who framed Morgan before the White Council finds them both and executes them. Pushing against time and supernatural forces this was a really fun ride. Secrets are revealed and there are some pretty funny moments between Morgan and Molly.

I really enjoyed this book and it was great getting back to this series. I will admit I didn't care for the ending. Dresdend's world is about to come crashing down and I hated seeing one of my favorite fictional characters suffer. I give this book 4 out of 5 stars.

Friday, April 1, 2016

Ruled by Machines


Have you ever felt that your DVR is running your life? My wife and I have a bunch of shows we have sort of collected over the years that we record so we never miss an episode. There are so many of these shows all airing right now that some nights we can't watch Television unless we pick a recording. 

Every night becomes a decision as to which show do we watch and which ones do we wait for another night to try and catch up. Then out of no where we have 5 episodes of this show and 4 episodes of that show stacked up and it is tough to catch up. I'm always worried about storage space so I don't end up loosing a show I wanted to watch. I can't believe I have let myself get so caught up in something so stupid.

The other thing that seems to have a hold on me is my iPhone. Thank you Apple for making something that can hold my entire life in it so I am organized. However, I have found that if I forget my phone at home even for the shortest of errands I am lost and feel alone. I use everything on that phone from the calendar to the thousands of songs I have on my iTunes catalog. I use my phone more than the watch that rests prominently on my wrist. Until the battery in that died and then I realized how much I actually use that but I digress.

I continue to ask myself when I became so reliant on electronics to help me get through my day. For those of you reading this who were alive before cell phones and internet. Do you remember when your were younger and could remember every phone number you ever needed in your head. I had at least 8 phone numbers I could call up from memory any time I needed it and now I barely remember my own number without looking in my contacts on my iPhone. I remembered birthdays and now I can't remember if my mother's birthday is the 7th or the 8th. Well I have it in my iPhone with a reminder so I don't forget.

I needed this little rant, I don't have any answers as to how to fix my DVR issues (other than throwing it out the window but then I can't watch The Walking Dead and Downton Abby since they ran at the same time). I find this whole thing ridiculous that I even have these frustrations. What are they called, First World Problems? Oh well, life goes on and the sun still rises and sets every day. Now I need a new book to read, or to get back to the two I'm currently reading.