The Fans and the Furious

Fangirl

Sorry I missed last week, I had a lot of stuff happening plus my post celebrating Back to the Future’s 30th anniversary and the 4th of July. But here we are with another installment of all things I fangirl over.

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Fast & the Furious Franchise

I remember when this film first came out. I didn’t see it in theaters as I was too young, but once they started playing it on TV I couldn’t stop watching it. I loved it!

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I would watch it mostly for Paul Walker (still sad about his death) and the awesome looking cars. I may not know that much about them, but I could still appreciate them.

So the first film stars Paul Walker as an FBI agent going undercover to bust racers who have been robbing trucks. I have to admit that I was (and still am) a huge Paul Walker fan and that was the first reason I watched it. Not ashamed.

It's Paul!

It’s Paul!

I like Vin Diesel too, but just as an actor. He reminds me a lot of my brother, lookswise.

Anyways, FBI Agent Brian O’Conner (Paul Walker) has a hard time trying to infiltrate the group as it is very tight-knit and hardly ever allows stranger. Him racing against Dominic “Dom” Toretto (Vin Diesel), and completely smoking his car doesn’t help his case.

Reality Sucks

He does catch a break when he helps Dom escape the police. Being the only one who doesn’t run away but helps him out, brings him into the group.

Double double yay

As he spends more time with these guys, he really gets to know them and like them. In fact he can’t believe there is anyway they could be involved with the robberies, as his objectiveness is thrown out the window for friendship.

He even starts dating Dom’s sister.

Spoke too soon

Eventually he realizes the truth when he hears about them going into the action, and follows them to help keep them safe. When one of the racers is shot during the robbery, Brian blows his cover by calling a helicopter in.

In the aftermath the rest of the group scatter, with Brian heading out to Dom’s house to get him. Instead of taking him in right away, as Brian still considers him a friend, they have one last race.

It was a fantastic movie!

Then came the sequel, 2 Fast 2 Furious.

In this Brian has been kicked out of the FBI for having let Dom go. He has been making a living as a racer, when the FBI ask him to come back and help them take down a drug-smuggler. The have an agent on the inside, Eva Mendes, but need someone to take the job as racer, and with Brian they won’t have to build a false character or worry that their guy will think the whole thing suspect. Brian agrees, but things get complicated fast. He and the FBI agent fall for each other, which is a horrible idea when the  guy you are trying to arrest is a psychopath, and another FBI agent hates his guts and is doing everything possilbe to make this hard for Brian.

It wasn’t as good as the original, but I still liked it. Paul was good as ever.

Then the third one came out, Tokyo Drift.

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I don’t know what they were thinking! You can’t have a franchise be built on an actor and then suddeny new storyline, new character, new location. This was dumb, and doesn’t exist.

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Moving on to number four, Fast & Furious, dumb name but good movie.

In this Dom and the crew are back together and once again robbing trucks. When the heat is on, they disband. However, Dom finds out that Letty was murdered. When he starts tracking down who killed her, he runs into Brian O’Conner. Brian is back to being a FBI agent again, and is trying to take down a drug trafficker. The two team up, and it’s just like old times!

Finally something GOOD!

At the end, Brian is suspended from duty and Dom is sentenced to 25 years. He never serves one as Brian, Mia, and the rest of the gang break him out.

In Fast Five, not only do we have the group heading down the Rio, (the year’s theme as tons of things took place here), but the addition of the Rock, Dwayne Johnson.

The group is supposed to do an easy job of stealing three cars from a train, but discover there is a lot more involved. Computer chips, betrayal by a friend, DEA agents, and of course fast cars. The twist end in this is a final scene that shows Letty is alive!

In Fast & Furious 6, the group is scattered, but as always can be brought back together for a mission. In this the Rock asks for Dom’s help in taking down former British Intelligence Special Agent Owen Shaw. He only agrees after seeing the photo of Letty alive. So once again the group is back together for fast cars and butt kicking.

Which brings us to Furious 7. I haven’t watched it yet as I am still disheartened by Paul Walker’s death. But I’ll see it eventually and am sure to love it too.

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Hans Christian Anderson

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I’ve talked about him before, but I’ll say it again. Just like the Brothers Grimm, Hans Christian Anderson is one of the best fairy tale writers of all time.

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Also being Danish, I feel a lot of pride in my countryman.

So I’ve probably mentioned this before, but I love fairy tales. I read them over and over as a child and continue today.

Or 10th, 50th, 100th....

Or 10th, 50th, 100th….

In fact I am currently rereading Han Christian Anderson’s work.

Anyways, his fairy tales are amazing, and because he is a Christian, they all have a deeper moral or parallel that he is trying to share with children and adults.

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He didn’t write as many stories as the Brother’s Grimm, but the few he did are really powerful. Now I’m just going to list off my favorites with a brief note about them. You really should check him out for yourself.

There is the Emperor’s New Clothes, which teaches you that you shouldn’t focus solely on material objects, but need your sight somewhere else. It also shows you that people can be afraid to go against the grain and would rather stick with what’s stupid, than admit the truth.

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The Little Match Girl is a tale of a good girl living in poverty and abuse. She is wearing hardly anything, as they don’t have anything for her, trying to sell matches. To keep herself warm in the snow, she starts lighting matches, every time seeing a wonderful vision, until she sees her grandmother and is taken into heaven. It’s about dreams, hopes, and the eternal reward.

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The Little Mermaid is one of his most famous works, but I’m not going into it as I have already posted on it in The Little Moreland. The book is much better than the Disney film as it is about true love and being willing to sacrifice yourself for others.

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The Nightingale is about a Chinese emperor soon to be dying. A nightingale comes and sings him back to health. At first he wants to imprison him so that he can only sing for him and no others, but the nightingale tells him he can’t sing without freedom. He is let go and comes back to visit him. Someone makes a toy nightingale for the emperor, and soon everyone prefers this electronic and perverted one rather than the original. The real bird is banished, but unfortunately the new one breaks down from overuse. The emperor is once again sick, and the nightingale returns, causing the emperor to realize the true art was best. Not only commentary on art and artists, but original vs. new technology, the way people are willing to trade “old” for “new”, etc. There is a lot to be said about this piece.

Or story in this case

Or story in this case

The Snow Queen is probably Anderson’s longest story as it is actually divided into seven parts. Disney based Frozen on it, but it is nowhere near as amazing as the actual tale. This is the story of not only demons releasing shards of hate and evil onto the world, but of the equally evil Snow Queen. When she takes a young boy, Kay, who’s heart has been turned to ice by her and the shards; his best friend Gerda does all she can to find and save him. A powerful story of love, friendship, sacrifice, and bravery.

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The Steadfast Tin Soldier is so romantic. A tin soldier is created, but they ran out of tin so he is actually missing his leg. He falls in love with the beautiful paper ballerina, thinking she too is missing a leg like him. A toy goblin warns him to stay away, but the soldier refuses, and is thrown out the window. He does all he can to return to his love.

How romantic

How romantic

The Swineherd is one of those they get it in the end tales. In this a poor prince wishes to marry the emperor’s daughter. He sends her his finest rose and the best nightingale, but she refuses wanting the status of someone who has money to buy manmade ones, rather than something beautiful and real. She determines the prince unworthy of anything of her. He disguises himself as a poor swineherd and is able to con over a hundred kisses from her as she desires two inventions of his (a musical rattle and pot). When the king discovers this he throws her out, having been disgusted by her behavior. The prince reveals himself and also heads on his way, happy to be gone from someone who would prefer a swineherd with objects than a prince with true love. The princess is left alone to think on her bad decisions and lost status.

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Thumbelina is another cute tale about the beautiful girl only the size of a thumb and how she goes from crazy adventure to the next as she has to overcome many obstacles and creatures who want her.

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The Tinderbox is an adventure tale. In this a poor soldier is returning from war when he comes upon a witch. She asks him to go into a tree and get her a tinderbox, taking anything else he desires. When he retrieves the tinderbox and asks why she wants it, she tries to fight him and he kills her. Later he discovers that as owner of the tinderbox he can control three monstrous dogs. Now he uses his power to live well, rescue a princess, and battle a mean king.

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The Wild Swans is the last story I will write on. In this book we have a widowed king with a daughter and eleven sons who unknowingly marries an evil witch. She turns the boys into swans (by night they become boys again) and banishes the princess. After struggling, Princess Elisa ends up in the land of the fairies were she discovers that she can help her brothers if she takes a vow of silence and makes them shirts out of nettles. A prince finds her and brings her to his castle, the two eventually falling in love. They are to be married, but the archbishop is against it as he believes her to be a witch, a belief that is in his eyes confirmed when she goes to a graveyard to get nettles. They plan to burn her at the stake with her works, but as the are heading that way her brothers in swan form arrive, and she throws the shirts at them, transforming all but the youngest who is left with two wings. The truth is spoken and all live happily ever after.

The rest of his work is just as amazing and definitely worth a reading!

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For more on Hans Christian Anderson, go to The Little Moreland

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Hawk Nelson

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This was a Christian band that I got into when I was a teenager, and I have stayed a fan ever since. They gave great singers, musicians, and I loved that they still rocked out when it seemed that all music was destined to be pop and  rap.

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The only reason why I wanted to see the remake of Yours, Mine, and Ours, was because there are the band in the party scene.

Some of my absolute favorite songs of theirs are: Bring ‘Em Out, Crazy Love, Every Little Thing, Friend Like That, Live Life Loud, Love Like That, Skeleton, Take Me, Things We Go Through, and Turn It On. 

I definitely will be posting on them soon, but you should check them out for yourself.

For more Hawk Nelson, go to Fulfilling the List: A Walk to Remember (2002)

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Potterhead

Harry Potter Slytherin

Now I know Potterhead isn’t the official name for those who are Harry Potter fans, but I have been calling my friends that for years. Now this was a fandom I long tried to resist. When the books came out my parents didn’t want me to read them as they were unsure with how they presented magic and the patronus and such. Later they decided that I was old enough to make my own decisions, but by then I didn’t care. They didn’t really interest me.

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And then it was everywhere and in everything. And when things get too blown up, then I’m not really interested. And no I am not a hipster.

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I just don’t like doing things because everyone else is doing them. I’m not a hipster, I’m just old-fashioned.

So with all my friends being huge fans, and everyone I came into contact with loving it, it became almost like a game, my resisting peer pressure.

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It was funny two how they were always discussing whether I was a Ravenclaw or Gryffindor, and I had no idea what they were saying.

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I did follow the memes though, and found them hilarious. Even though I didn’t understand all of them.

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But then I met this guy and we started dating, striking a deal that for every Harry Potter film I watched, we would watch an equal amount of Jane Austen. (You can read more in What’s the Dealio)

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We broke up before finishing the series and there I was stuck at film five not really understanding what was happening. I could have just watched the films with my friends and asked them a gazillion questions, but I decided that wasn’t for me and instead read the whole series.

Get it right

I enjoyed it, and will post my whole thoughts on it later. I have a super long post in the works as a summary of all my thoughts on the subject. I’m will end with two more things, my favorite characters. One of which is Draco.

Sorry had to do it

Boy does he make me laugh.

My other favorite character is Snape.

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Not only is he totally awesome, and played by Alan Rickman, but he’s just…i don’t know perfect. He has a sad past, brooding nature, is a romantic, and all around doesn’t care what others think of him he does what he wants.

Get it right

Snape I love you. I know I’m probanly the only one, but I really wish you and Lily had ended up together and I think James Potter is a jerk.  Snape 4-EVA!!!!!

Oh, by the way I did finally find out what house I belonged to (on pottermore). I’m a Slytherin. And proud of it.

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I guess my love for Draco and Snape makes a lot of sense now. Nah, I’d probably love them no matter who I was.

For more Harry Potter, go to Heaven on Earthhearts banner

The Princess Bride

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I am a HUGE Princess Bride fan. But I actually wasn’t for a long time.

Say What

I know crazy right? Well whenever I would flip channels on TV I would always tune in right at the end. For years I would only see the end of the film, and I didn’t quite understand it.

Every time!

This was back before everything was online so I could either buy it or rent it. Unfortunately, we didn’t have a card to Hollywood Video or Blockbuster.

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And my library didn’t have it.

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Then one year as I was talking to someone about how I had never seen the whole movie, my mom overheard and was in shock. So that birthday, guess what my present was? The Princess Bride. I watched it and loved it! From Westley,

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To Inigo,

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Even Vizzini

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And who can forget Miracle Max

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And let’s talk about the comedy of it all. From Westley never being killed but always threatened

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To the fire swamp

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There is so much to say, I just can’t get it all out.

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This is just one truly amazing film that I could watch over and over and over again.

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I loved it and had become a major fan.

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I even read the book (which is nowhere as fantastic as the movie, trust me).

In fact whenever I meet another person who loves The Princess Bride, I fangirl crazily with them.

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Just kidding. Although I do love that movie something fierce.

For more Princess Bride, go to Are You the Dread Pirate Roberts?

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That’s the truth!

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For the previous post, go to Fun & Full of Fancy

Stay tuned for part 16

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For more on fairy tales, go to If the Show Fits: Why Cinderella is Actually Awesome

For more of my music, go to Counting Stars 

Please Excuse My Dear Fan Lady

LifeofaFangirl

Yep another Fangirl post, chock full of all the things I love. Be sure to check out a few of these as they are awesome and you are sure to enjoy them almost as much as me.

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Eureka

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Eureka is a show that is The Twilight Zone merged with Twin Peaks. Now I know most of you are probably scratching your heads at those references, but I will be talking about them later in a future post.

I remember when SciFi, or SyFy as it is now called, first brought this show on TV. I thought it was an interesting idea and happy that they set it in Northern California as people always forget that there is a lot more in California than just San Francisco, Los Angeles, and San Diego. I wasn’t into it, but my sister would watch it. It wasn’t until Amazon put it up on Prime that I started watching it and getting into the series.

So U.S. Marshal, Jack Carter, is bringing his daughter home to Los Angeles from who knows where she had run away to. It is late and raining and the two get lost, crashing the car. They walk into the nearby town of Eureka, Oregon (I don’t know why they didn’t just use Eureka, California). With their car messed up, they have to stay in the town a few days and discover that it isn’t any regular area. It is a town full of scientists, giving them a place where they can work and create in privacy. Nearby is the company Global Dynamics that employees most of the scientists, contracting to the military. While they are there, one of the townspeople are creating a time machine that causes a huge rift in time and almost destroys the town. Jack Carter is able to come up with a plan to help over come it, and due to his efforts is promoted from U.S. Marshal to Sheriff of Eureka.

What I like about Eureka is that the Sheriff is very smart but also very much a regular guy. This makes him extremely relatable and also allows him to solve the hard cases, with help, in that he has a different way of viewing things than anyone else. Each episode revolves around a crisis involving an invention, along with giving us clues to a mystery that runs the whole season. It is a very fun and good show and I highly recommend it to anyone into science and mysteries.

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Make It or Break It

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I started watching this show because I loved the film Stick It and had wished, too late, to be a gymnast. If I could go back in time I think I would try it, whether or not I would compete and try for the Olympics. Anyways, this show is about four girls trying to achieve the dream of Olympic gold, while at the same time dealing with family, friends, and regular teenage girl stuff.

First we have Kaylie Cruz (Josie Loren), who is rich as both her parents used to be famous and are rich. She is secretly dating fellow gymnast Carter, which has to be a secret as dating is not allowed in the gym or by her parents. Carter ends up sleeping with Kaylie’s best friend Lauren, as Kaylie wouldn’t sleep with him. Most of the first season is Carter trying to keep it a secret, Lauren trying to win him, and Kaylie being oblivious. When she finds out she is pissed, but eventually forgives Lauren. Kaylie goes on to win the National Chap and has a better chance at getting the gold. Afterwards, Kaylie feels a lot of pressure as everyone had expected Payson to win, and feel as if Kaylie didn’t deserve her title as Payson was out with a back injury. She constantly feels as if she has to defend herself and her talents. The gym brings on Austin Tucker (Zane Holtz), who I really liked, but Kaylie dislikes. Kaylie also becomes anorexic as the pressures from the gym, her father and mother, her parent’s divorce, and a need to be in control. Now a lot of people made fun of this as abcfamily was trying too hard or something, but I thought this was done very realistically and well in regarding what it is like to be anorexic and how other issues can compound into it. Austin sees what is going on and helps her come to terms with it and seek help. While Kaylie is recuperating, she starts singing and hanging out with Damon. She eventually is ready for worlds, bringing in the gold. The third season sees Kaylie on the team in London, getting ready for the gold and Austin’s girlfriend.

Payson Keeler (Ayla Kell) is from a middle class family that is always struggling to get the money to support their daughter’s dream. Payson is extremely focused on her goals, being the best of all the girls on the team. In the first season Lauren‘s father blackmails their coach, getting rid of him. Sasha Belov is brought in, and Payson is ecstatic as he is one of her idols. When they hear of a party in the area, Payson does not want to go, but ends up coming too as she wants to make sure the other girls stay out of trouble. She has some back problems, but conceals it from everyone. She ends up damaging herself and loses her chance at worlds and messes up her back completely. In the second season she starts a relationship with Nicky Russo, played by Cody Longo. This didn’t go far as he ended up leaving the series. I was sad about this as I LOVED him. I was also sad as every guy Payson started to get with, ended up disappearing shortly after they proclaimed their feelings. Payson was the best as she worked through her trauma and disappointment to try other things, and was brave enough to try an experimental project, restoring her. When she comes back, her body isn’t exactly the same and she finds herself not being able to do the same things, changing to be one on grace. She gets involved with Max, Austin’s friend, and they start dating, but then he left to be the lead guy on Revenge. She goes on making it to London, and meeting a guy there.

Lauren Tanner (Cassie Scerbo) is the rich, spoiled, princess as she is the apple of her dad’s eye and used to getting anything she wants. She wants Carter, and his constant denying her for Kaylie makes her incredibly angry and want him more. Kaylie finds out and is angry, but the two work through their issues and become friends again. A new guy, Max, comes into the gym and is into Payson, but Lauren wants him and bad. She constantly tries to seduce him, not always getting the responses she desires. On one of their dates she gets in a car accident, she’s okay but Max is out of the competition. She eventually focuses on her gymnastics and sees herself setting off for London.

Emily Kmetko (Chelsea Hobbes) is a girl from the wrong side of the tracks. She has a single mother who does nails, and later works as a waitress at a strip club to make ends meet. She also has a younger brother in a wheelchair. She has been trying for years to get into a gym, and eventually scores a scholarship. She faces the most issues out of the girls as she has money she is trying to earn to stay afloat, trying to take care of her brother, and trying to befriend girls who have been friends for years and hate her. Eventually, they all become friends, but it takes quite a while. She meets this guy, Razor at work and kind of likes him; but when he goes out of town, his best friend Damon fills in for him. Damon was the best character, and when the series got weird and too silly, he was the anchor I loved, the reason I watched.

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Yep, he was awesome. He was always there for her, he helped her practice, he got her family to Nationals, he brought Radiohead, when she wanted to wait to have sex he was all for it, when she decided she wanted to be with him and ended up pregnant (the actress was pregnant in real life) he went after to her to help raise the baby. He was awesome and hot…and I love him. 🙂

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Michael Crichton

History

For me the love of this author began with one book Jurassic Park. You see I have always loved the series, it is one of my all-time favorites, (and you can read a review here). After one of my constant viewings, my mother mentioned it was based on the novel. I decided to start reading his book, buying every one I would find in a book sale. I still have one to go, The Andromeda Strain, but besides that I have read everything he has ever written. I love all his writings as the characters are great, the plot always suspenseful, and I love the melding of science-fiction and technology with horror, history, etc. Almost every book has been turned into a film, but sadly I have yet to view how they all were done. Each one is amazing and I recommend them all.

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Jurassic Park

Jurassic Park- In this book, a genetic company has decided to try to bring back dinosaurs. By using frog DNA to fill in the gaps, they have created new versions of the creatures. John Hammond, the head of the company, has asked a group of people to visit and review his island. Ready to review is paleontologist Dr. Alan Grant; paleobotanist, Dr. Ellie Slatter; Ian Malcolm; and Hammond’s two grandchildren. Of course, “life can find a way”, and these creatures do what they want to; causing havoc on the island. This has quite a few differences then the film, with the dinosaurs escaping the island; a pterodactyl fight, more deaths of the group, and no relationship between Dr. Grant and Dr. Slatter. However, I think both are done very well and could watch the movie or read the book again and again.

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The Lost World- Now when I first watched the movie, I thought it was okay and denoted it as my least fav in the series. However, after I read the book,  I had to agree that the movie was better. This book was okay, it moves much slower than the original and doesn’t have as many lovable characters. In this book, Hammond reveals that there is a second island of creatures that survived from the previous book. He sends in Malcolm with a crew of people, and two stowaway kids. This isn’t a horrible book, but just pales in comparison to the original.

Timeline- This is one of my mother’s absolute favorite books, and she would constantly talk about how great it was. I decided that this would be the next book that I would read of Crichton, and it was AMAZING! I love this book so much. We have group of graduate students and archeologists, all working in Medieval history. One is focused on architecture, one on technology, one on fighting, etc. They find an amazing discovery, and are immediately swept off to a secret organization that has produced a technology allowing traveling through time, right back to medieval times. The group goes to find a friend sent before, and find that living history is fun, but also incredibly dangerous. The film was also really good, starring Paul Walker and Gerard Butler, the only thing I disliked about it was that in the book each person encountered what they were studying, helping them further their research. In the movie they cut that out, sadly.

Airframe- Just an ordinary day and an ordinary flight from Hong Kong to Denver. That all changes when it crashes with a hundred injured and three killed. What happened to the flight? It’s up to investigators to discover who was at fault; the plane, the airport, or the pilot?

A Case of Need- This was Crichton’s first novel and utilizes his medical training. The book is set in a Boston Medical Center, where a patient receiving surgery is killed. Is it just an accident or murder?

Congo- Deep in the Congo, near the ancient city of Zinj, eight American geologists are brutally and mysteriously murdered. Karen Ross, the project supervisor back in America, watches video feed of the massacre. In San Francisco, primatologist Peter Elliot has been able to teach a gorilla named Amy over 600 signs, finger painting, etc. Lately, Amy has been acting strangely and painting horrible things, that Peter thinks maybe it is time to take her home. A map from the 17th century supposedly leading to Zinj matches up with Amy’s finger paintings exactly. When all three parties intersect, a strange expedition sets out to discover what holds Zinj. This was made into a less than stellar film, of which I will review in Horrorfest IV.

Disclosure- This is an interesting book, although it doesn’t seem like it in the beginning. Thomas Sander has had a bad day. He is passed over for a promotion by an old flame, and his new tech is having some glitches. When his boss asks him over for drinks, she immediately comes on to him. He refuses, and leaves. The next day she is charging him with sexual harassment and Sanders is fired. Luckily for Sanders, he accidentally recorded what happened and tries to turn the case around and sue his boss. But Sanders start wondering, why would his boss do that? Was she so upset that he turned her down? Or is there more to this case then meets the eye?

Eaters of the Dead- This is a retelling of Beowulf told from the point of an Arab courtier, who finds himself unwilling dragged along a quest to destroy the monster, Grendal. This too was turned into a film I have yet to watch, but starring Antonio Banderas.

Five Patients- This is a non-fiction volume that tells of Crichton’s experiences as an intern at the Massachusetts General Hospital.

The Great Train Robbery- This is another novel that I love. Based on the historical event, Crichton once again is able to meld the account with amazing characters. In this, the charming and persuasive Edward Pierce easily moves through society in Victorian London, all the while plotting the crime of the century…The Great Train Robbery.

Prey- This one of my all-time favorite books. The way Crichton writes it, it is so haunting and amazing. I don’t want to give too much away as you REALLY should read it.

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Jack Forman lost his job and took on being the one taking care of his daughter and the home. His wife works at Xymos Corporation and has been acting weird. Other things start to seem strange, but Jack thinks it is nothing but his imagination. When his wife hires him on, he discovers that the mirco-bots that Xymos produces are not as benign as he was told. In fact, there is much more horrifying things happening than Forman could ever imagine.

Rising Sun-During the grand opening celebration of the new American headquarters of a Japanese company, the dead body of a beautiful woman is found. The investigation begins, and immediately becomes a headlong chase through a twisting maze of industrial intrigue and a violent business battle that takes no prisoners. This two was turned into a film I have yet to view.

Sphere- This book always makes me think of the film Forbidden Planet. In this a spaceship on the floor of the ocean is discovered. Scientists prepare an expedition and head down to the ship, discovering a ship over 300 years old and holding a power much stronger than any could imagine. This power gives them increased abilities and paranoia. One scientists starts using his power to attack the ship and people, but which one? I really, really loved the book and couldn’t stop reading it the first time I had it. They turned this also into a film, of which I have had problems getting my hands on it. When I do see it, you can bet it will be a part of a future Horrorfest.

State of Fear- In this book Crichton spins a tale of political conspiracy. As eco-terrorists and global warming are the biggest issues ands causing all kinds of destruction, one investigator starts wondering if whether this is just a smokescreen for something far more sinister.

The Terminal Man- Harry Benson suffers from horrible seizures that cause violent outbursts. He is experimented on and has electrodes placed deep in his brain’s pleasure centers, effectively short-circuiting Harry’s seizures with pulses of bliss. The surgery is successful, but while Benson is in recovery, he escapes and his violent impulses have grown; leaving a horror in his wake.

Travels- An account of Michael Crichton’s travels abroad and all over the world.

Next- This is his last complete novel and is an amazing story. In a world where we focus on our genes, what diseases we might carry, taking apart our genome; Crichton speaks on how such technology can get out of hand. A man going in for tests ends up having his blood and genes patented and in a sense sells his children into slavery of a company. A man who wins custody from his wife on the basis of her high possibility of becoming afflicted with deadly diseases; and an ape human born of gene splicing.

Pirate Latitudes- This was Crichton’s last book, but was unfinished. It was a “complete” manuscript, but was missing the special Crichton charm that each story has. Jamaica in 1665 is the home of people willing to go after gold and riches of the Spanish and Portuguese. If caught they are pirates, if they make it out with the wealth then England gets a cut and everyone is happy. Captain Edward Hunter is one such type and decides to go after the dangerous island of El Trinidad. A crazy scheme that will have enormous bounty if it succeeds, or incredible death if it fails; leads Captain Hunter and his team on a a swashbuckling adventure.

For more on Michael Crichton, go to Just Follow the Screams: The Lost World (1997)

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The Mentalist

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So I started watching this show on accident. The episode “Red Handed” came on after something else I was watching. In the episode “Red Handed” the CBI (California Bureau of Investigations) team discovers a right hand straddling the California and Nevada state lines. After measuring it, they discover that it is inside the California boundary, and therefore the CBI’s responsibility. After that I was hooked. I caught up on the previous episodes and became a big fan.

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So the series is about Patrick Jane, played by the incredibly handsome Simon Baker, who is a “psychic” consultant to the CBI.

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Patrick Jane has such style. He only drinks tea, he has an Aston Martin, and always dresses amazingly sharp. Anyways, Patrick Jane isn’t really a psychic. He is extremely intelligent and observant, a sort of kind, sweet, and charming Sherlock Holmes. He never went to school, but was raised by his swindler father who touted him a psychic in his carnival show. He married a woman from a similar background and the tweo had a daughter, Charlotte. He went on to make millions off his “psychic ability”. It gained the attention of Red John, a serial killer, who murders his wife and child. This brings Jane to consulting with CBI as he does it from his guilt and in order to get a view of the official files. Red John becomes Jane’s Moriarity as in each season Jane continuously searches for him.

The team is lead by Teresa Lisbon (Robin Tunney), who is a no-nonsense cop. She is the perfect foil for Jane as Lisbon is tough and serious; while Jane is comedic and more fanciful. They have a platonic relationship, but like Bones and other cop shows there is something simmering under the surface.

Then we have Kimball Cho, who second to Jane is my favorite character. Cho is always reserved and speaks in a monotone.

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But he is very intense as well. He is honest, straightfoward, observant, and altogeether awesome. We later find out that there is a lot more to him than meets the eye. He used to be a baseball player, gang member, and Special Forces.

Then we have Wayne Rigsby who is absolutely adorable, sweet, and charming. He was raised by a dad in motorcycle gangs and coming in and out of prison. He’s more relaxed than Cho, but more serious than Jane. He is also in love with fellow team member Grace Van Pelt. Grace Van Pelt is tough, but sweeter than Lisbon. She has a famous father, and tries to live up to his name. She is always focused on the job, but Rigsby constant infatuation starts her thinking of maybe more with him.

I used to watch this every Thursday without fail, but school got in the way and I am way behind in desperate need of catching up. The show just ended this last February, which saddens me as it was an awesome piece of TV.

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Midsomer Murders

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So I love the library.

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When I was in college I would spend hours in the library; working, reading, watching movies or TV shows. The library had a great selection of movies and TV shows that I really utilized. But that library wasn’t enough for me. I also went to the city library for books and films. Every time I went there I would see the DVDs for the show Midsomer Murders and wanted to check them out, but never felt I had the time. This summer as I would write my blog posts on my computer, I would also watch movies and TV shows on my phone. Or at least try to as I had a little screen. One day Midsomer Murders popped up in related videos and I was estatic watching them. Now youtube doesn’t have every episode and I watched them out of order, but I really, really enjoyed the show. When I got another free month on Netflix I started rewatching the episodes and loved it all over again!

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This series is based off a book series and set in England. How their Department of Criminal Investigations (DCI) teams works is that they have a county in which they travel all over investigating, sort of like the Sheriff’s department. Tom Barnaby (John Nettles) is head of the Midsomer unit and is extremely intelligent and excellent at his job. Unfortunately for his wife, a murder tends to occur whenever she wants to do something, causing Barnaby to miss it. He also has a daughter,  Gillie, who is in college and studying to be an actress. He starts out with his assistant being Sgt. Gavin Troy, who I didn’t like as he wasn’t that bright, and same for his second assistant Sgt. Dan Scott. I really liked his third assistant Ben Jones, because he was very smart and actually helped solve the mysteries. The series is ongoing, but I don’t really like the newer episodes as Tom Barnaby retired and his nephew, John Barnaby, took over. He was good, but Tom was way better. Tom had a way of gathering information that made you not realize how intelligent he was until the end when he is the only one who has put the whole picture together. The mysteries were amazing, and often times really puzzling. The only thing that I kept questioning was, how do these small country towns survive with so many deaths? I highly recommend this for any mystery fan.

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Murder She WroteMurderSheWrote

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this show. I grew up watching it and wish they had still played it on TV as I got older as I truly love this show.

Angela Lansbury plays J.B. Fletcher, former high school teacher and now famous mystery author. Every episode Jessica (the J in J.B.) will be minding her own business working on something or visiting a friend and get caught up in a mystery. Usually she can either get someone to share info with her, or is able to have some kind of insight that solves the case. If you love mysteries, then this is a show for you!

For more Murder She Wrote, go to At the End of the Rainbow: 17 More Irish Heros

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w:outFandoms

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For the previous fangirl post, go to A FANtastic Voyage

Stay tuned for part 11

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