User Reviews

Reviews by Uncle Will
Born to be Creative
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Noah Trevor was born in South Africa to a black mother and a white father. This was at the time that a union such as that was a crime. Noah's mother had to hide and shelter him for much of his childhood. In a place where Browns were only allowed to live with other Browns; Black only with Blacks; Whites with Whites; etc., a light-skinned African was a beacon of hatred and persecution. Young Noah did not make things easy for his mother, but she taught him to be proud and devout. Most times, she would have to chase him down and beat some sense into him, but his love for her never wavered. This book is humorous and sometimes sad. It's one of the titles that we have selected for an upcoming AHML book discussion in August. I had no idea who Noah was before reading this book. I wasn't aware that he was a stand-up comic and that he had his own late night TV show in America. Add successful author to his resume. This book has a nice flow to it. I picked it up in our Marketplace just to review it and ended-up not being able to put it down. I'm hoping that many check it out because I think that our discussion in August is gonna be something special.
Lock In to this book
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One of my friends in our Monday Mystery Discussion Group suggested I read Lock In. She said that it was both a mystery and a sci-fi novel; which in itself is novel. John Scalzi is the award winning author of the Old Man's War Novel Series:
Old Man’s War (2005)
The Ghost Brigades (2006)
The Last Colony (2007)
Zoe’s Tale (2008)
The Human Division (2013)
The End of All Things (2015)
Scalzi won the Hugo Award for his stand-novel Redshirts in 2013.
Lock in is a fast-read. It has a lot of dialogue that is both witty and thoughtful. The main character, Chris Shane, is as unique a character that I have ever run across in literature. This mystery is a metaphor for future politics, race relations, science, economy, religion, and artificial life. I hope that Scalzi decides to write more books in this series since he only gets to describe the tip of the chunk of ice.
One Classy Dame/Doll
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On Sunday, March 26, 2017 from 2-3:30 in the Cardinal Room I will be fortunate to lead the discussion of "What's Better: Book or Movie."

That day's discussion will be Otto Preminger's film classic Laura starring: Gene Tierney, Dana Andrews, Vincent Price, and Clifton Webb. The 1944 film was adapted from the sensational mystery, Laura, written by Vera Caspary in 1942. The film was nominated for 4 Oscars and won one for "Best Cinematography, Black-and-White."

Besides being clever, witty, engrossing, endearing, and inspiring, Caspary's novel was unique for the fact that her narrative was written in 3 different points-of-view. This proved challenging for Preminger's film adaptation. He hired 2 women and 1 man to write the screenplay, which also was nominated for an Oscar. The novel is only 197 pages and the film only runs 87 minutes;
however, the end product in both is forever memorable.

The film's theme was written by David Raksin & Johnny Mercer. It's been recorded over 400 times. Johnny Mathis' version on his CD "A Personal Collection : The Music Of Johnny Mathis" is sweet. Hope to see you on March 26th.
Hunt No Further
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I used to work with emotionally disturbed boys many, many years ago. That is what they were labeled back in the '70's. What these 8-18 year olds were was basically unloved. I met many boys that were like, Ricky Baker, the main character in Hunt for the Wilderpeople. Ricky becomes the key figure in a New Zealand national manhunt when he disappears into the "bush" with his new foster parent, Sam Neill. This film already has won 13 international awards and is arguably the feel good movie of the year.

The cast is perfect. The humor is dry. The sets are lush. The writer/director is Taika Waititi, who was nominated for an Academy Award for his 12-minute short film in 2005, Two Cars, One Night; which can be viewed in the "special features" that's included in the DVD of another one of his films - Boy. Waititi also co-wrote and co-starred in last year's hilarious vampire mockumentary What We Do In The Shadows.
This type of film is usually referred to as "art-house cinema." It's warm and humorous and is a great film for the holiday season - when sometimes things can a little heavy.
The Inside Story
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Watching the first season of Outsiders was sheer escapism. At the top of a mountain dwells a clan that has lived and survive there for over 200 years - no TV, no book learning, no internet, no Republican and Democratic parties. What they do have is family, blood, tradition, and the will to live.

The Ferrell family is led by the Bren’in. The current one, Lady Ray, is old and near-ready to pass the customary oak (symbol of power) staff on to her eldest son, Big Foster (actor David Morse). Big Foster would be a very poor choice for the next Bren’in – for more reasons than worth the time to list.

Time is the one thing running out for the clan. A powerful energy company wants to make billions mining the coal that lies under the top of the Farrell’s mountain. They will stop at nothing to evict the residents.

What I like most about this new series is the fact that up high on the Ferrell mountaintop, the males still garnish the illusion that they have the most power. Gillian Alexy stars as G'Winveer Farrell, the clan's healer. She is a quiet force that bears close watching.
Ryan Hurst who formally held the popular role of "Opie" on Sons of Anarchy, plays Li'l Foster Farrell, the troubled son of Big Foster. He's the shows' gentle giant. Perfect casting and the producers saved on his costume budget because he appearance mirrors his SOA wardrobe – complete down to the long beard and hair.

Don’t let the title mislead. There is an outsider amongst the insiders on Farrell Mountain. Asa Farrell, played by Joe Anderson, fled his family 10 years ago to see the world. He joined the Army and finally, after seeing the error of his ways, returns home, tail tucked, hat in hand, and is immediately tossed in a cage for 6 months to ponder his past and future plight. The tension builds when he learns that the love of his life, G'Winveer, is betrothed to Li'l Foster.

WGN has picked up the options for a 2nd season so sit back and see if big business or true love rules out.

 
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6.012 Patron-Generated Content

04/27/2011
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