topaz119: (shamrock love)
topaz119 ([personal profile] topaz119) wrote2017-03-15 01:47 pm

(no subject)

Catching up with my media consumption over the last few months, cutting because it got loooong...


books
done
A Study In Scarlet Women, Sherry Thomas==This was getting buzz from all over my book internets, and while a gender-swapped Sherlock (Charlotte) Holmes always *sounds* fun, but you all know how easy it is to go off the rails with something like this. Happily enough, it mostly lived up to the buzz. The mystery was a little weak but Charlotte almost reached Cumberbatch levels of sociopathy and Mrs. Watson (b/c, yes! Watson is swapped, too) and her history are awesome. I'm in for the next one.

Ghost Story, Jim Butcher==It is nice to see that I still want to thump some sense into Harry Dresden even after he's dead (hence the ghost story part of things.) I really kinda liked how this let all the supporting characters have their own line-crossing moments, to go along with all the lines Harry crossed in the previous book, Changes. Also, I really really liked how Butcher had been setting this up for at least five or six books, putting all the smoking guns in place, so to speak. I have 2 more to go, I think (maybe 3?) but I stopped and took a break for a bit, because there's only so much death and destruction I can deal with in the winter.

The Uncommon Reader, Alan Bennett==Just a quick novella about what might happen if the Queen stumbled across a bookmobile in her back garden and felt compelled by politeness to borrow a book from the nice young librarian running it. Really, just actual, published RPF.

Crowned and Dangerous, Rhys Bowen==Book #10 of Her Royal Spyness, and… not my favorite. I am *over* Georgie being insecure about Darcy's love and attention, and I can't quite work out how his father still didn't have any money after selling off the castle and racing stables, and if so, how certain things managed to happen by the end. On the other hand, I am dying for someone to write me the femslash buddyf*ck epic that is HRH, Princess Alexandra Zamanska (aka, Zou Zou) and the Honorable Phryne Fisher meeting up on assorted airfields across the continent as they fly their personal planes hither and yon and look for suitable boy toys with whom to amuse themselves.

All the Money in the World, Laura Vanderkam==This one… oy. I read one of her other books (the one about how many hours there are in a week) and found it tedious and rather stupendously blind to her privilege, but then I kept reading and liking her articles in Fast Company, so when I saw this one on a library display, I grabbed it on the way out. And… yep, still stupendously blind to her privilege and how that might affect her thesis statement. I'm not even getting into it; I have no desire to spend more time on this than I already have.

The Unleashing / The Undoing, Shelly Laurenston==Call of Crows #1 & #2 (and just so you know upfront, even though it says 2/2 on The Undoing, there is a #3 coming soon and these are the kind of books that wrap up a specific couple's story, but not the overarching plot, sigh.) Overall, I liked these, but holy cow are there a lot of characters to keep track of, and a lot of world-building that happens on the fly (we're dropped into the world in media res, so to speak, as the heroine from the first book is murdered and brought back to life by Skuld, the Nordic goddess, and no, that's not a spoiler, it all happens on the first page. So as she's figuring things out, so are we. There is a lot, "", to figure out.) So, there are lots of women, and lots of ways these women live their lives, which I really liked, and Thor is an idiot, and berserkers aren't exclusively male, and the Valkyrie work their asses off, and did I mention that there were a lot of characters?

now
Persuasion, Jane Austen==I'm listening to the audiobook, and while it hasn't quite reached the heights of Rosamund Pike narrating P&P, it's still very nice.

Deep Work, Cal Newport==For my work-related book club, all about how constant distractions are killing our brains. I would like to mail this to everyone who keeps spouting off about how wonderful open plan offices are. (And by mail, I really mean shoot it out of a cannon and through their if-we-lower-cubicle-walls-natural-light-will-flooooooood-in windows. Not that I'm aggravated or anything.)

Anna and the French Kiss==I just started this one last night and then the dogs were bonkers so I got no sleep and will have to reread everything, but it's for my YA book on my book challenge.

next
I have a whole spreadsheet for this book challenge and I have additionally challenged myself not to buy any more books this year, so I'll be digging through my books-i-own-but-haven't-read tag on goodreads. (This is your annual invitation to let me know if you'd like to link up with me on GR... I'm here if you'd like to friend me.)


tv
Parks & Rec==I'm up to S6, so I finally got the context for that .gif of Chris Pratt looking super-surprised that's always crossing my tumblr dash. (Seriously, aside from actually enjoying the show itself, it is v. v. nice to finally get the full import of all the P&R .gif sets and crossovers that I see so much of.) I can only take so much of the, er, jauntiness(?) of the show at any one time, but a couple of episodes a week make for a lovely mood-booster to return to reality.

The Clone Wars==I have tried off and on to watch this show for years, and have gotten a few here and here, but I think I'm finally in some sort of groove. This most recent attempt stemmed from a conversation with #2Son (the true Star Wars fan of my progeny) in which I totally forgot Amidala among the canon females. He is a fan b/c of her portrayal in the Clone Wars (and is also still firmly of the belief that she died not from a broken heart but from some complicated Force shenanigans perpetrated by the Emperor, which makes my heart so glad I can't even tell you), so I am powering through, and then will attempt Rebels.

The Great British Baking Show==BabyBoy has always been a baking show fan (we had Ace of Cakes on the DVR when he was little the way some people save Dora or Sesame Street) so there was much rejoicing when Netflix got the most recent season. We've been fitting in episodes around his rehearsal schedule since it arrived and finished off the season this past weekend. When I made the 'do you need anything?' round before my weekly grocery shopping, his only request was 'stuff to make cakes,' so, yeah, we might have overdone it a bit.

…and now it's March Madness time, so I have to uphold the obligations to my ACC undergraduate alma mater and scream at the TV for a few weekends. :D


movies
I haven't seen anything in the theaters lately, not since Rogue One, so all of these are ollld, like me…

Jaws==The original and I was actually surprised how well it's held up. Aside from a silly looking shot of the shark flopping all over the deck of the Orca and a severe lack of female characters (forget about the Bechdel Test; I'm not even sure Chief Brody's wife had a first name, much less someone to talk to) it could have been a movie made about the 70s rather than having been made in the 70s. And my word, but Robert Shaw's performance still crackles off the screen. (I still hate the end, how they Hollywooded it up from the end of the book, but at least Steven dropped the moronic affair from the book, so I guess we're even. Also, it's not like the book was high art, so I suppose I should let the movie climax go, yeah?)

The Big Short==I spent half the movie admiring how they were presenting complicated, esoteric information in an understandable way (and being sad that I can't use curse words when I do that for the real job) and the other half deeply depressed about how nothing's changed. I will say that I did not recognize Steve Carrell at all, so bonus points there?

Spotlight==Another movie that left me depressed about the state of the world, but a far better use of my Michael Keaton-watching time than that wretched Birdman movie. Plus, a bonus dedicated!Ruffalo (the best kind.) I wish I could believe that things had changed (there are still days when I miss the rituals and forms of even just an average Sunday Mass), but I don't see much acknowledgement from the Vatican. (Maybe we're waiting for Benedict to die so they can acknowledge his familial involvement?) I remember when this first started breaking in the 70s/80s and then again when the events in the film were playing out in the early 00s and it's all so stomach-turning.

Ghostbusters==Okay, wow, was that fun! I mean, narratively speaking, I don't think the story is as streamlined as the original, but character-wise, these 'busters are so much more fun and nicer and more cool than the originals (except for Ernie Hudson, who is The Best.) I know, I know, you all have been telling me that since the summer, but it was even better than I'd hoped (especially Kate McKinnon.)

Virtual cookies to anyone who made it through all that!