I don’t understand what any of this has to do with my mom.
Your mother was a shadowhunter, like him; like you.
So about a year ago, I read the book City of Bones (Shadowhunters: The Mortal Instruments #1) by Cassandra Clare. I decided to read it as it is SUPER popular at the library. The book is returned and gets checked out as soon as it is shelved.
After I finished it…I was not pleased at all and I could not get the appeal.
It kind of felt like a mashup between Supernatural and Harry Potter. And it MOST definitely was not better than The Hunger Games.
Seriously, they thought that?!
It was an okay story, but it went overload on the cultural references. Like these kids are into fantasy and Scifi, I get it-but when you just reference or quote things constantly to fill in your story instead of developing the characters-that’s where I have issues.
Not for me.
Plus I found the character Simon, Clary’s best friend, to be super annoying, and I wanted her to end up with Jace the shadowhunter she meets-as the author is constantly putting them together, but it turns out that they are brother and sister?
I mean why would you construct a story that way to want two characters to get together and then be all, psych they are brother and sister.
Why, why would you do that. Ugh, it made me feel disgusting after reading it.
Or are they? Could Valentine be lying?
Hmm…is it her?
Yeah, not interested in reading more…
So I was scrolling through my streaming sites, and the film popped up and I thought, why not? There was nothing else on. Let’s see how they did the film.
So Clary Fray (Lily Collins) is a normal 16-year old. She lives with her mother as her father passed away years ago. Her family is rounded out by her best friend Simon, who has a huge crush on her that she can’t see, and her mother’s best friend Luke Garroway (Aiden Turner).
AIDEN TURNER is in this?
For those of you who don’t know-Aiden Turner is an Irish actor who is immensely talented and has the best looking curly hair I have ever seen. I became a fan of him and his hair after watching Poldark, so I was excited. As I said, it’s been over a year since I read the book, but I do remember Luke playing a crucial role in the end of the book and I couldn’t wait to see Aiden Turner.
Clary and Simon go out to a coffee poetry night. Clary sees this “hot” blonde guy and decides to be spontaneous and go to the club he is going to. To be fair it wasn’t just because of the guy-her mother has sheltered her, her whole life and tht coupled with her mom calling her again about when she will be home and her turning 16-she decides to have fun. The hot gut was the final push.
At the club she sees him with a girl and a guy and watches the group as they approach a man and kill it.
She hurries away but its too late. Life has changed forever.
She has realized the “reality” of her world and its not going away. Clary gets in a fight with her mom, and later Jocelyn Fray (Lena Headey) calls Clary and warns her not to come back. Jocelyn is kidnapped and the apartment torn apart. Clary returns home, but is attacked by some wolflike creature. Jace, the boy from the club, comes and saves her.
Where is everyone?
He saves Clary and tells her the creature was a demon, as was the man the night before. Jace is a shadowhunter, shadowhunters are a race of mortals who have angelic blood. They reside in the shadow world but cross over to the mortal realm to hunt demons, vampires, werewolves, etc. Shadowhunters can only be created by being born of a shadowhunter or turned into one by The Mortal Cup.
As you have guessed it, Jocelyn is a shadowhunter, meaning that Clary is too. That is why she could see Jace and his friends and no else could. They question the neighbor, a witch, and discover that people are after the mortal cup and believe she has it.
That’s not good.
They need a ride and Simon drives her and Jace over to Luke’s to get more information. Simon is less annoying in this, but is still annoying. And surprise, surprise he hates Jace as Jace is clearly into Clary.
The actors weren’t bad but Lily Collins and the guy who plays Jace have like zero chemistry. In the book they actually connected better.
They reach the antique shop to look for Luke, and find him being beat up. He tells the two guys (the ones who kidnapped Jocelyn) that he cares nothing for the Frays and only wants the cup too. If they let him go he will be able to find it.
The crew leave him-RUDE, like geez Clary this guy was a surrogate dad and you watched him get beat up and did nothing.
So Jace knows they won’t be safe in the city and takes them to the Shadowhunter Institute. On the outside the muggles mundanes see a dilapidated broken down church, but on the inside it is a beautiful building with weapons.
There she meets Alex (Kevin Zeggers) and Isabella Lightwood, and Hodge who runs the institute. The three of the Shadowhunters are on earth because of what their parent’s did. Years ago, Valentine Morgensten’s father was killed by a werewolf and that set him on dark path. He wanted to destroy all downworlders (demons, werewolves, vampires, etc) even ones that were not breaking the law or the Accords. He was aided by the Lightwoods and intended on starting the killing when the next Accord signing was set up. They were stopped and punishment ended up with them being sent from Idris, their home in the Shaddoworld to New York City. Later Jace was sent to live with them. Hodge on the other hand is banished to never be able to return to Idris.
Valentine was experimenting with The Mortal Cup to become more powerful, but he was believed to be dead. With them searching for the cup and coming after Jocelyn, he must have returned.
That’s not good.
Hodge tells Jace to take Clary to the Silent Brothers so they can reveal her memories. When she gets there she discovers that there is a lock on her memories only one person could do that-Magnus Bane.
Magnus Bane is the high Warlock in the area and is just happening to be throwing a killer party. Of course poor Clary knows nothing about fashion and wears boring clothes so we have a makeover by Isabella.
After the makeover all the boys are upset- Jace has been struck by cupid, Simon is mad that Jace is into Clary, and Alec has a thing for Jace and doesn’t like that he is into Clary.
They head to the party and Clary goes off with Magnus. Magnus tells her that her mother wanted to keep her safe and used to take her to appointments regularly. It was getting harder for the block to stay as she growing older and they missed the latest appointment which was to be on her birthday. Magnus tells her he can’t do anything but that without the last session in time everything and all her powers will develop.
Well, thanks for that I guess.
Well that was a useless detour-except Simon gets kidnapped as he is turned into mouse and stolen by vampires. The gang has to go after him and fight, only surviving when they are saved by werwolves.
So about here I was checked out of the film. I like that they had pared down the pop culture references but to be honest this movie is really boring. It was just too much like things you’d seen before you know. I wouldn’t be able to give specifics but it was like a large order of deja vu.
Back at the institute Simon recuperates while Jace and Clary grow closer. Clary is a prolific artists and it turns out that her Shadowhunter powers are very interesting. She can draw something and pull it off the page, or put an ordinary object on into paper. That gets her thinking…
Jace, Clary, and Simon all have a spat as they are in a triangle-Simon likes Clary, and Clary likes the attention but she likes Jace who likes Clary, but Jace doesn’t like how close Clary and Simon are, etc.
Clary thinks about her abilities inherited from her mom and realizes she has seen a painting by her mom of The Mortal Cup. It was on set of tarot cards her mom made or their neighbor, the witch.
Jace, Alec, Isabella, and Clary head to her neighbors to get the cup-but she is possessed by a demon. They fight and get the cup, but Alec is wounded. At the institute Isabella blames Clary as Alec is wounded badly, so badly they have to call Magnus as he is the only one who could do anything.
That’s not good.
Clary gives the cup to Hodge, who betrays them by bringing Valentine into their word-he’s been biding his time working for him, the Death Eaters, as long believed dead leader is back.
Valentine is back and played by Jonathan Rhys Meyers, oh I had a huge crush on him in the ’90s.
From Bend It Like Beckham
So Valentine reveals that he is Clary’s father. Clary has special abilities she isn’t aware of as he experimented on her when she was a fetus with angel blood and his son (her brother) with demon blood. I am really disappointed that he isn’t in the film that long and second his character is top comical. He’s chewing the scenery in every shot-and he’s not usually like this, so I blame the director.
So Clary is asked by her father to join the dark side him but she refuses, She puts the cup back in the card and travels through a portal to Luke’s. Meanwhile, Valentine bring Jocelyn to the institute and tries to figure out how to turn his daughter. Hodge comes up with the plan to lie to Jocelyn and Clary that Jace is the dead son Jonathan. I’m glad they made it clear in this that the incest is a lie-although it is still a weird plot.
Apparently, in a later book it is revealed that Valentine faked his and his older son Jonathan’s death and took the identify of Michael Wayland becoming a recluse. Michael and his wife had died, Valentine has been experimenting on Jace’s mother without her knowledge and when she died he saved the child and raised it. Jonathan had extra demon blood and Jace extra angel blood.
So they get to Luke’s shop and he reveals that he is a werewolf (Valentine was trying to get rid of him and took him on a hunt to get him turned into one and killed). Luke has always loved her mother and traveled with her to this world to protect her. He reveals information about Valentine and tells her that he lied to the the men torturing him to protect them. After he escaped he fought with another werewolf and gained a pack, them being the ones that saved them with the vampires.
The werewolves and few shadowhunters team up to take Valentine down.
Back at the institute, Valentine has brought demons in to help him and the Shadowhunters and werewolves do their best to fight him off. Simon discovers Jocelyn in a comalike state in the crypt of the church and tries to revive her. Valentine and Jace fight, but Jace stops when he is told that Valentine is his father.
He stops fighting, as that’s his “dad”, but Clary defeats Valentine and tricks him by giving him a fake cup ands him through the portal. Later Jace goes to see Clary and invites her back in to the Shadowhunter world-telling her he doesn’t think they are really siblings.
That doesn’t change it, still…
This wasn’t that good of a story. I think it was better in some ways than the book, but it was boring. It felt like a Star Wars, Harry Potter, Chronicles of Narnia, Supernatural, Buffy the Vampire Slayer smoothie-and not in a good way. I liked Aiden Turner-although I wish he was in it more. Otherwise, meh.
So we are bringing Catching Fire back to the Valentine’s posts as well. This movie is more special for me than the first film as when it came out I had read the whole series, I saw this in theaters, and the cinematography was better as it wasn’t so shaky and all over the place. I also love how we got to see more of Peeta, and in a better light as Katniss trusts him. When the books and movies came out everyone was on the Gale train (Liam Hemsworth is pretty fantastic looking), but not me-Peeta is way better. Peeta is so adorable and sweet and loves Katniss soooo much.
Catching Fire takes place a year after Katniss and Peeta won the Hunger Games with their pretend love. Now they both have houses, money, food, etc; for them and their family. And the best thing of all, they never have to compete in the Hunger Games again.
Katniss and Gale are having issues as Katniss is trying to deal with the trauma of the Games and her confusion for what she feels for Gale and Peeta, along with trying to care for her family. She and Peeta (who wants their relationship to be real); are doing tours at each district proclaiming how happy they are to have survived, honoring the those that died, saying how grateful they are to the capital, etc; that whole spiel. President Snow is unhappy with this, as they have been sparking rebellions all over. The President Snow would like nothing better than to get rid of Katniss, but can’t outright kill her as it will cause a full on revolution. He decides that for the big anniversary of the Hunger Games they will pick from those who have won in the past, killing her in the process.
Katniss and Peeta aren’t the only ones scared and angry to have to go back, as none of the others thought they would ever have to repeat the process. They have to make alliances and try to trust each other, but which of the teams?
Most Romantic Moment #4: I’ll Do Everything I Can to Get You Out of the Games
So last time I wrote about Catching Fire, I talked about how romantic that Peeta is so in love with Katniss but decides that being her friend is enough.
This time I want to focus on how Peeta works so hard to keep Katniss out of the games. While Katniss has the survival skills, drive, and focus-Peeta has the charisma, people skills, and is a natural leader.
Katniss is not a people person, she does not do well with in that arena. She can’t charm, she can’t flatter, she can’t work a room. But Peeta can. He used this to help in the first game, and now with this one he exercises everything he has to help win the capital over to her.
I love how Peeta is so earnest in his love for her and how he thinks of everything. It is expanded more in the book, but that was top-notch planning, saying she is pregnant and giving the details on their “wedding”. Yep, he uses all his interview time to try and save Katniss, every ounce of charm, every thing he has in his arsenal to do all he can to keep her out of the games.
AWWWW, he is so sweet-but then everything Peeta does is sweet…he is a baker after all.
So I promised back in January that I would review this film as it takes place in 2019 and inspired this year’s Dystopian theme. Plus I love this movie.
I know lots of people don’t care for Arnold Schwarzenegger, but I love his films. I just can’t enough of the puns and the comebacks and of course action.
So when Rob Cohen purchased the rights to the Richard Bachman novella “The Running Man”, he had no idea that Bachman was actually a pseudonym for Stephen King. I didn’t know it was a Stephen King film either, until a few years back I was trying to pick a Stephen King film and it came up when I googled him.
I know I was in shock too, it didn’t seem like the other stuff he made. So without further ado, it’s time to start… RUNNING!
So it is the film starts off in 2018-the economy of the world has collapsed due to a lack of resources and they are all ruled by a totalitarian government that controls everyone through TV.
The people are kept in line with anyone who steps out gets sent to prison, or worse to be on the TV show, The Running Man. “Runners”, the prisoners, have to compete in gladiator-type battles against “Stalkers” who all have a theme character and weapons-kind of like wrestlers.
Does this remind you of anything? Like:
Yes, it is very similar but lots of Dystopian films/books share similar things. The nice thing is that while all of these are similar-there are enough differences that you aren’t feeling like you are watching/reading something that was regurgitated.
So our story begins with Ben Richards (Arnold Schwarzenegger) is a captain of the militarized police force and is sent into Bakersfield to stop a revolt. When he does get there, he finds no dangerous revolutionaries, but just hungry people-women and children.
Dispatcher: Proceed with plan alpha. Eliminate anything moving.
Ben Richards: I said the crowd is unarmed. There are a lot of women and children down there. All they want is food for God’s sake!
Dispatcher: As you were, Richards. Proceed with plan alpha. All rioters must be eliminated.
Ben Richards: The hell with you. I will not fire on helpless people. Abort mission. We return back to base.
But the others open fire and kill all, and who do they blame? Ben of course-naming him “The Butcher of Bakersfield”. This scene always made me think of Fahrenheit 451 when they have to find a scapegoat.
He is dubbed “The Butcher of Bakersfield” and sent to prison where he serves 18 months.
He and few other prisoners work on a plan and manage to break out and get free from the electric collars. Ben heads to L.A. to find his brother. Instead he finds Amber Mendez (Maria Conchita Alonso), TV show jingle writer, residing in his brother’s apartment as he has been taken away for “reeducation”.
This is so 1984, they have to “reeducate” the troublemakers-really torture ad brainwash them.
Ben ties Amber up and investigates her apartment, taking money, her flight pass, and booking a flight to Hawaii. He wants Amber to come with as they will be looking for a single man, but she refuses. He won’t take no for an answer and convinces her by picking up the machine he strapped her to and threatening her.
This reminds me of Alfred Hitchcock’s The 39 Steps when Richard Hannay gets framed for murder and team’s up with Pamela (Madeleine Carroll), an unwilling accomplice. She hates him and fights with him, but discovers he is telling the truth and falls in love with him.
They get caught in the airport, and Ben is sent back to prison. There he is offered to be on the show The Running Man by the owner, Damon Killian, instead of rotting in prison. He is amazed by Ben’s survival skills and knows he will be a GIANT HIT.
Unfortunately, Killian doesn’t know what we do-it’s a bad idea to go after Ben. Ben refuses until they threaten to send his compatriots from the prison escape to the show. He agrees, but then finds out that Killian lied and they are all going on the show.
Gosh, I love how cooly he delivers that.
Meanwhile, Amber is like Pamela (from The 39 Steps), and starting to wonder if maybe Ben told her the truth. She goes into the files of ICS(The Running Man station and government) to see what the original recordings were. She discovers Ben is telling the truth but is caught.
So how the game works is that they are in a abandoned area of Los Angeles and have to go through multiple levels and fight different “stalkers”. If they defeat a stalker, they progress to the next level-although many don’t ever do that. Only a few even make it to the very end and win.
The first one Ben has to fight is Sub-Zero:
I love Arnold’s quips and his delivery of them. LOL.
Now that I have sen Logan’s Run, like Ben and Amber are just a more hardcore version of Logan and Jessica.
They move to the next level and are joined by Amber, who has been found and thrown into the ring. One of Ben’s friends, the hacker, knows he can get into the system if he just gets a chance. He gives the uplink code to Amber to memorize.
Then then have to face Buzzsaw:
They then fight Dynamo:
But Richards doesn’t kill him. It is interesting why he chooses to spare his life and not the others? Maybe because he isn’t defending himself, but it would be “murder” in his eyes. Maybe because he realizes they are all stuck in this life, all prisoners running in the hamster wheel of life created by the government?
They then head to the final level, Fireball. There they discover that the winning Runners didn’t win after all. They were killed! Just like in Logan’s Run!
They defeat Fireball and then Ben threatens Killian-I love this:
Killian is at a loss, Ben cannot win. He is inciting people to rebellion. There is only one thing left to do-bring Captain Freedom out of retirement.
Captain Freedom doesn’t want to fight and lose and Killian needs him to win so they decide to lie. They bring in stunt doubles of Ben and Amber to fight and lose-just like on Fahrenheit 451
” They know they can hold their audience only so long. The show’s got to have a snap ending, quick!” –Fahrenheit 451
Meanwhile the resistance has made it to the games and busted Ben and Amber out. Ben’s friends have been killed in the game, but luckily the hacker shared the uplink code with Amber. They come up with a plan to hack the system, reveal the truth, and destroy Killian and the others.
I don’t do requests, LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL.
In the end Killian is killed, the truth is revealed, Ben is a hero, and all ends well.
I really enjoy this film, but I think they could have focused more on deeper themes, but the director they had was let go a week before production and new one brought in. Knowing that, I’m surprised it was good as it was.
Or a true reader! Yep, here we go! Another post full of my fandoms and all for your enjoyment.
The Cat Who Series
The Cat Who…Series is one of my favorite book series. It all started in sixth grade when I was looking in the library and trying to figure out what books to get. I was roaming the stacks when my friend Paul pointed out The Cat Who…Series. He knew I liked cats and mysteries and told me he thought I would enjoy this series. I agreed to think about it, as at first his description sounded kind of weird.
A year later I was at a different school and hadn’t really thought of Paul or the books, until I spotted them at the library. I decided to check them out and read The Cat Who Saw Red, which is actually the fourth book in the series. All it took was that one, and I was hooked. Lillian Jackson Braun is one amazing writer.
So we have Jim “Qwill” Qwilleran, an amazing reporter who had become an alcoholic and lost it all.
In the first book The Cat Who Read Backwards, he has overcome this addiction and trying to get back into work. He gets a job on The Daily Fluxion doing the last thing he’d expect, covering the art beat. You see The Daily Fluxion‘s art critic has caused a lot of problems, so by adding an art feature writer, they hope to remedy feelings. Qwill actually ends up renting an apartment from the art critic and befriending his highly intelligent cat, Kao K’o Kung or Koko. In which he discovers:
When his landlord is murdered, Qwill finds himself investigating as to who killed him. And getting some unlikely help from Koko. Koko does some catly things that point out important clues, which makes Qwill wonder is Koko solving crime? Or just being a cat?
The Cat Who Ate Danish Modern, propels Qwill into the interior design world in which he not only finds himself writing about it, but investigating the death of a designer. He also gets a friend for Koko, Freya also known as Yum Yum. In The Cat Who Turned On and Off, Qwill moves to Junktown to write about “junkers” or antiques; along with investigating the death of a dealer. Nobody knows why, but after this book Braun decided to stop writing for 18 years. She came back in 1986 with The Cat Who Saw Red. In this Qwill is a food critic and investigating the disappearance of an old friend. With her next book, The Cat Who Played Brahms, we see the series take a complete turn. In this Qwill is invited up north to visit Mooseville by an old family friend, and ends up investigating two murders. He also recieves a huge inheritance that includes billions and most of the town, but only can be there if he maintains that residence for five years. He decides to live there and the rest of the series covers the colorful characters of small town Moose County, along with Qwill solving many more murders.
Now for me, the series ends at The Cat Who Talked Turkey. There are three books that follow that: The Cat Who Went Bananas, The Cat Who Dropped a Bombshell, and The Cat Who Had 60 Whiskers; but they are not written as well as the others and left with a lot of loose ends.
In fact I loved this series so much I shared it with my family. My mother and I loved the characters and the food described in them that we created another blog, The Cat Who Wrote A Blog, that recreates the food from each book. Check out my sister blog on all the great recipes and try them for yourself.
I was first introduced into this series when I was in a thrift store and looking through the books. I spotted one called Deadly Valentine. I started looking at the back and the inside to see what it was about and how it read when I noticed the author’s name on the front page.
I thought no way, it has to be a carbon copy. But it wasn’t!!! It was an actual autograph by the author!
For 50¢. Heck ya! So I bought it and read it immediately.
It’s been a life-long affliction
Annie Darling is from Texas, but moved to New York to become an actress. When that didn’t work out as well as she hoped, she moved to Broward’s Rock, an island off South Carolina; where her uncle has a store that sells mysteries, Death on Demand. Her uncle is murdered and Annie inherits everything. Soon her placid life gets a tumble when her ex-boyfriend, the rich and adorable Max Darling comes to town to be with her and she finds herself the number one suspect in the murder of author Elliot Morgan. The rest of the series has the adorable couple becoming a crime solving duo.
Death on Demand: Author Elliot Morgan is killed and the police’s number one suspect? Annie Laurence. With help from her boyfriend Max Darling, Annie solves Morgan’s murder along with what really happened to her uncle.
Design for Death: Annie is asked to stage a murder for the Historical Society of Chastain, South Carolina. It turns out that she doesn’t have to stage it after all, as someone has commited a real murder.
Something Wicked: Annie and Max are delighted to be in the town play of Arsenic and Old Lace. But when one of the cast is killed, and Max is declared the main suspect, the two forget the play and hatch a plot to catch a killer.
Honeymoon with Murder: Annie and Max have finally tied the knot! However, their happiness is short lived as a dead body is found and Annie’s best friend and coworker, Ingrid Jones, is not only the prime suspect, but missing!
A Little Class on Murder: Annie is asked to give a class on female mystery writers at Chastain Community College. While there she finds out that the college isn’t as pristine as she thought: as a school newspaper scandal, two violent deaths, a suicide, and many more secrets coming to light. Annie and Max are on the case again.
Deadly Valentine: My entry into Death on Demand. In this book it is Valentine’s Day and all should be well…except for a voluptuous, promiscuous, neighbor. As the Darlings attend the neighbor’s masquerade, a night that should end in love but ends in death. Annie and Max are set on finding the killer and proving Max’s mother, Laurel, innocent.
The Christie Caper: If you are an Agatha Christie fan you will LOVE this book. To celebrate Christie’s 100th birthday, Annie plans a week long celebration with treasure hunts, trivia, etc. But when Neil Bledsoe, most hated book critic, shows up; things go far from what Annie planned.
Southern Ghost: Annie and Max get involved in a missing person’s case and find much more then they expected. Could the Southern gentry Tarrant family be trying to cover up a forty-year old murder?
Mint Julep Murder: Annie and Max are attending the annual Dixie Book Festival. A publisher with a tell-all-book is murdered, leaving Annie and Max as the prime suspects!
Yankee Doodle Dead: It’s the Fourth of July, and instead of celebrating America’s birthday they find themselves investigating the death of Brigadier General Charlton “Bud” Hatch.
White Elephant Dead: The Women of Broward’s Rock are planning their annual White Elephant sale. To make this year truly the best, one of the members blackmails five prominent people of the town to donate extremely valuable items. When she turns up dead, the main suspect is Annie’s best friend and customer, Henny Brawley. Will Annie be able to prove her innocence?
Sugarplum Dead: When millionare Rita Dumaney Ladson gathers her family together to discuss her will, she shocks them all with her plans to lead everything to the new age Evermore Foundation. All her relatives are furious, but which one is angry enough to kill? Unfortunately for Annie, the prime suspect is her father. The may have had their issues in the past, but can those be put aside?
April Fool Dead: Annie is planning a wonderful signing party with author Emma Clyde, but someone is taking April Fool’s Day a little too far and playing some not so funny pranks. Soon after s teacher and student are murdered; with Annie being the main suspect.
Engaged to Die: Everything seems to be going well in Broward’s Rock. Annie and Max are still very happily married, Annie’s new assistant Chloe is in love, and wealthy widow Virginia Neville is about to get married again. This blissful still is broken as Virginia’s family is furious at her being “conned” by a charlatan; Chloe’s boyfriend turns out to be the same man engaged to Virginia, and the lothario is found murdered. All the evidence points to Chloe as the murderer, and pits the Darlings against each other with Max working for the police and Annie for Chloe.
Murder Walks the Plank: Annie is excited for her murder-mystery cruise that includes dressing up as your favorite sleuth and loads of mysterious fun! However, the fun is quickly tainted as real bodies begin piling up. It’s up to Annie, Max, Henny, Emma, and Laurel to once again save the day!
Death of the Party: In the vibe of 10 Little Indians, the Darlings find themselves hired to solve a cold case crime. A year ago, Britt Barlow’s brother-in-law, Jeremiah Addison, was in her opinion murdered. She invites all who were there at the time and the Darlings to figure out who the killer is. Soon the butler is missing, the only way off the island has disappeared, and the whole group is trapped with a killer.
Dead Days of Summer: Annie is worried sick. Her husband Max went to meet a client and has disappeared. Things start looking grim when they find his abandoned car…with the body of a women nearby and the murder weapon in the trunk. Thing look very bad for Max, but Annie is on the case and prepared to prove his innocence.
Death Walked In: Max receives a call from a woman telling him she’s hidden something valuable in the old antebellum house the Darlings are restoring. When Annie hears of it she rushes over to ask the woman more, only to discover her shot and dying. This propels the two in to a treasure hunt and quest for a murderer.
Dare to Die: Annie meets a girl named Iris Tilford and invites her to a party the Darlings are throwing.Unbeknownst to her, Iris is from Broward’s Rock and someone is not happy at her return.
Laughed ‘Til He Died: When a teacher of the youth recreation center is thought to be guilty of murder, the Darling set out to prove she didn’t do it.
Dead by Midnight: A suicide has everyone in Broward’s Rock sad, but for Annie Darling she thinks there is more to it…MURDER!
Death Comes Silently: It’s winter time, which means without tourists Annie has a lot more downtime. She starts working at the local charity shop. When Emma Clyde comes out with a new novel, Annie plans a signing party and has fellow volunteer Gretchen Burkholt fill in for her. Gretchen harasses Annie the whole time of the signing saying she has “important news”. Annie finally goes to check on her and hear her news, when she finds her body.
Dead, White, and Blue: The Darlings are looking forward to a calmer Fourth of July, but no luck. This year the most hated woman, Shell Hurst, is found dead and the Darlings get on the case.
8 Simple Rules
8 Simple Rules was based on a book in which a father detailed his rules for dating his teenage daughters.
The rules are:
Use your hands on my daughter and you’ll lose them after.
You make her cry, I make you cry.
Safe sex is a myth. Anything you try will be hazardous to your health.
Bring her home late, there’s no next date.
If you pull into my driveway and honk, you better be dropping off a package because you’re sure not picking anything up (Alternative rule #5: Only delivery men honk. Dates ring the doorbell. Once.)
No complaining while you’re waiting for her. If you’re bored, change my oil.
If your pants hang off your hips, I’ll gladly secure them with my staple gun.
Dates must be in crowded public places. You want romance? Read a book.
They then turned it into a hilarious TV show. Paul Hennessy (John Ritter) is a sports writer, protective father, and loving family man. His wife is Cate and she is a nurse. The two have three kids: Bridget the eldest is beautiful and only cares about fashion, looks, and boys; Kerry, suffers from insecurities about her looks and is the smart, studious one; and Rory is adorable and a sports nut. With each episode we balance comedy and drama as they deal with real life issues. During season 3, John Ritter went to the hospital as he was feeling sick, and ended up dying. It was extremely sad to lose him as an actor and person. To honor him they wrote his death in as the death of the father and had to bring in two actors who were still unable to fill his shoes. We then get David Spade as the mom’s child-in-man’s-body cousin, and James Garner as Cate’s father and a crotchety old man.
I love the whole series but I have to say one of my all-time favorite episodes were the ones with Jonathan Taylor Thomas, who I had a major crush on growing up. Loved him, and loved everything he’s in.
So The Highlander is a TV show based off a film of the same name. Unlike the film, the show follows the immortal Duncan MacLeod, of the clan MacLeod, from the 16th century and living in the ’90s. Immortals are people who can not be killed in regular ways. No one knows why or how, but they just seem to be born, yet cannot have children. People discover they are immortal when they are involved in something that should kill them, but doesn’t. Immortals can only be killed by fellow immortals, and this done by cutting off the head. When one immortal kills the other, they obtain all their skills in something called “the Quickening”, which makes them even stronger. In the end, there can only be one.
Now Duncan is unlike most immortals, as he doesn’t go around killing others for their powers but just tries to live a normal life. He is Scottish and orginally from the 16th century, but as he is immortal has moved around all over the globe, with each episode giving us a flashback. He also befriends Richie Ryan, a recently discovered immortal, and teaches him how to fight and protect his neck. The series is awesome, the characters great, and the theme song is done by Queen. How can this show not be a winner?
So when this book series first came out, I wasn’t that into it. You see I’m on pre-release program from several publishers, which send me notices about books that are going to be released. I read the little summary and wasn’t that interested in the books as it sounded like something that had been done before.
All my friends were really into it though, but you all know that just because everyone else is into something, doesn’t mean I’ll jump on board. When the first movie came out I had four people offer to take me to see it, my friend Jodie (a hardcore fan that went opening night), Alan, Harry, and John. But still I said no and wouldn’t go.
I didn’t watch the first one until my ex-boyfriend Michael and friend Elaine finally convinced me. I thought it was pretty good, but had yet to become a real fan. I went and saw Catching Fire which I loved because of Peeta, he’s my fav.
This summer that all changed. You see I have a kindle and Amazon was doing a free trial of their Kindle Fire program, which sucks, but they had all three books that could be borrowed for free. I decided to read them and was HOOKED. I started reading one and couldn’t stop.
It’s a good thing I had them all or else I would have gone crazy. That’s one of the nice things about going into a series after the hype. You don’t have wait forever for the printing of the pieces.
I thought she was pretty cool and tough. It would have been nice to see more character growth, but I understand how she tried her best to stay focused on helping her family and form as few detachments as possible. I loved how in books one and two we get a lot of background info as to how her life was like in District 12.
I LOVE Peeta! I think he is the best guy ever!!!!
In book one we never really know whether Peeta is good or bad. We hear all these stories he shares and his feelings for Katniss, but as Katniss doesn’t really know him, so we don’t. The second book is the one in which we all fell in love with him. When I read that book I wanted Peeta to be real.
He is just so kind, caring, sweet, and utter perfection!!!! When Katniss saw how he would gladly die for her and really saw how much he cared, she fell in love with him. She might not have realized it immediately, but she did. The third book was so hard, as I missed the old Peeta. Watching the movie was utter heartbreak as well.
Now contrary to other fans, I actually really liked how she ended the series (which I won’t give away) and I think they should keep it exactly how it is.
So I loved the books and the movies, and you should definitely give them all a view.
This all started with a library book sale. You see a picked up an old Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine collection for super cheap. In each magazine they list out all kinds of great mystery books they recommend you read. I noticed a few titles like Grievous Sin (Peter Decker and Rina Lazarus) by Faye Kellerman, and J is for Judgement by Sue Grafton. The next time I went to a book sale, what did I happen to find there? Grievous Sin and J is for Judgement. I bought them and a bunch of others, and took them home happily.
I read Grievous Sin but didn’t really enjoy it, mostly I think because it was book six in the series and I hadn’t read the first five. When I moved on to reading J is for Judgement, I decided I should start at the beginning, which I did, and was completely hooked!
So Kinsey Millhone is a female private detective living in the ’80s, in Santa Theresa (Santa Barbara), CA. She used to be a cop, but found that her problems with authority made it not the best fit for her. She’s been married twice; first husband was a cop supposedly gone dirty; the second a musician that cheated on her and got into drugs. Her parents died when she was little, leaving her to be raised by her hard-nosed, tough, single, Aunt Gin. This lead her to live a life of quiet solitude (minus the exes) and to be just like Gin. She lives in a garage-turned apartment, her best friends being Henry Pitts, her landlord and nonagenarian; and Rosie, a brash, loud, bossy Hungarian restaurant owner.
It is a truly great series. Another interesting tidbit, Sue Grafton started writing these books in the ’80s, but of course times in books move slower than in our time (like Narnia) so the newer books are technically historical fiction. Anyways…
A is for Alibi: We are introduced to Kinsey Millhone and her life as a PI. In this book Nikki Fife has just been released after serving 8 years for murdering her husband. She hires Kinsey to find the real murderer, and Kinsey sets on the cold trail, finding it red hot.
B is for Burglar: In this Kinsey is hired to find Beverly Danziger’s sister Elaine Boldt, who has gone missing and is needed to sign some important documents. What Kinsey finds is a much darker reason she can’t be found.
C is for Corpse: In this Kinsey Millhone meets sweet, innocent, Bobby Callahan. At least that is how he is now. He was almost killed in a car accident and now has a clouded memory. Bobby hires her to find out who is blackmailing him and why. And she better find out before whoever tried to kill Bobby strikes again.
D is for Deadbeat: This one I didn’t enjoy as much, but it wasn’t horrible. A man hires Kinsey to track down a person and deliver a check to someone. Kinsey agrees for a fee, but quickly finds that check bouncing. She starts her search for the “deadbeat: only to find him in the morgue.
E is for Evidence: Kinsey is prepared to spend the holidays alone as usual, but this year sees a huge stray from that plan. Instead she gets a $5000 deposit in her bank account from unknown sources, an accusation of insurance fraud, bombs, and the return of an ex-husband.
F is for Fugitive: Seventeen years ago Jean Timberlake was found strangled on the beach. Everyone believed it was her boyfriend Bailey Fowler who did it. He was convicted and imprisoned, but ended up fleeing. Now he has been found and Fowler’s father wants Kinsey to prove his son’s innocence.
G is for Gumshoe: Kinsey finds herself on a hit list and in need of a bodyguard. Can any body sing “I Will Always Love You“?
H is for Homicide: When Kinsey’s good friend Parnell Perkins is killed, she starts to investigate one of his marked files on a Bibianna Diaz, and finds herself deep undercover in an insurance fraud ring.
I is for Innocent: When millionaire Isabelle was murdered, everyone assumed her soon to be ex-husband David Barney killed her. Unfortunately for them, he was acquitted. Now Isabelle’s first husband, Kenneth Voight, is suing Barney in a civil suit to take away his millions. When Kinsey’s PI friend and mentor is killed, Kinsey finds herself in the middle of a very sticky case.
J is for Judgement: The book that started it all, but ironically one of my least favorite books in the series. In this William Jaffe, presumed dead, may have been spotted alive and well in Mexico. The insurance company that just paid his widow wants their $500,000 in insurance benefits back and hire Kinsey to find Jaffe.
K is for Killer: Janice Kepler is a grieving mother who wants answers as to why her daughter Lorna was murdered. She hires Kinsey who investigates the life of Lorna, who finds there was much more than meets the eye to this beauty queen.
L is for Lawlessness: This is my least favorite of the series. In this book Kinsey is asked to find proof of a friend’s grandfather’s service in the military. What she finds are complications that send her all the way to Kentucky.
M is for Malice: The head of the Malek family and Malek construction passes away, and his will leaves a surprise. The brother that all thought was cut out of the will, actually wasn’t, and Kinsey is out to find him. She hears horror stories of the awful person he was, but when she meets him finds a completely changed one. She brings him home for a reunion…and unfortunately his death. Now she is set on avenging him by finding his killer.
N is for Noose: Tom Newquist was a great cop, but an older out of shape one. So it wasn’t that big of a surprise when he had a heart attack. The only one who doesn’t believe it is his widow, Selma, who hires Kinsey to discover who murdered him. What Kinsey finds is much more than she could ever have imagined.
O is for Outlaw: Kinsey gets a call about a person having bought a salvaged box from a storage center, that had her name on it. He sells it to her, and Kinsey finds much more than she dreamed about her Aunt Gin and more on her first husband. When her first husband is killed she starts investigating, and learning more than she could have dreamed.
P is for Peril: Dr. Dowan Purcell has disappered and no one knows where he is. His ex-wife Fiona believes him to be alive and hires Kinsey to find him. His current wife, Crystal, thinks he is dead. Kinsey starts searching and finds a much bigger case along the way.
Q is for Quarry: This book is a little different as it is based on a real case. In the 1970s there was a Jane Doe found, and Grafton was giving the ability to look at the police files. Her story is loosely based on the event, and of course with the murder solved in the book. The police have yet to solve that actual case, and for ever book purchased, a percentage is given to the fund that is still trying to reunite the body with her family. In this book, Kinsey teams up with retired police Chief Con Dolan; and Sheriff Stacey Oliphant. Their search into the cold case leads them on a long and winding trail as they try to figure out identity and motive.
R is for Ricochet: In this Kinsey Millhone is hired to babysit Reba Lafferty. Reba was a rich girl, apple of her father’s eye, who has just been released from prison for embezzlement, having taken the rap for her boyfriend/boss. Kinsey thinks it will be easy, but she is quickly proved wrong as Reba has much more in mind then “girl time.”
S is for Silence: This book is the beginning of a shift for Grafton. In this novel, Kinsey is hired to find the mother of friend. Problem? The mother, Violet, disappered thirty-five years ago. In between the accounts of Kinsey’s investigations, Grafton includes chapters from the past in the point of view of other characters. It is amazingly done and extremely well written.
T is for Trespass: This is one of the creepest books I have ever read. In this Kinsey hires a caretaker for a neighbor, Gus, who has suffered from a bad fall. She thinks that is all there is to it…except the woman she hired is a sociopath. Using a stolen identity, “Solana Rojas”, starts abusing Gus and taking everything of worth. This book switches from Kinsey’s point of view to Solana; telling the story in a new and frightening way.
U is for Undertow: This book takes this movement into switching point of views to an even higher level. In this Michael Sutton hires Kinsey to look into a startling, recently come back to him memory. He remembers two “pirates” burying “treasure”, of which he now believes may be the murdered body of a kidnapped girl who disappeared around that time. As Kinsey begins investigating, we not only have her point of view, but the past and present point of views of the other major players.
V is for Vengeance: Kinsey decides to treat herself to some new underwear and ends up stopping a shoplifter. This chance encounter gets her neck deep into the mafia, loan sharks, and a huge shoplifting adn merchandise moving ring.
W is for Wasted: A homeless John Doe is found dead on the beach with Kinsey’s business card. As she starts investigating into his death, she discovers that they are more connected than she could ever have guessed.
X, Y, & Z are yet to come, but you bet I can’t wait to read them!