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Showing posts from August, 2010

A True Blood Post: Because I am Possibly the Biggest Dork Alive

Unfortunately, neither The Boyfriend nor Starbucks Queen are even the slightest bit interested in True Blood, and most of the people I know who are have either only read the books or only seen the show or are behind on the show because they're watching it on DVD or whatever. Therefore, I am spewing out all my opinions here because I can't keep them to myself any longer.

Reasons the Books are Better than the Show:

1. Sookie is a lot less annoying when you can't hear her. I like Anna Paquin, and think she mostly does an okay job with the character (though this season the writing for her has been weak at best) but sometimes she has a voice like a dental drill. Particularly when she is shrieking "BEEEEEEEEEELL!" every 38 seconds.

2. In the books, Alcide is a hottie and he and Sookie have crazy chemistry. On the show he has all the personality of a garden hose, and he and Sookie seem to barely like one another. He's been underused this season, but I'm not exactly…

Cannonball Read 2 #52: Flags of Our Fathers by James Bradley

Whoohoo! I managed to complete the Cannonball Read goal this year with two whole months to spare! (I actually probably would have finished sooner, but I haven't been as good about blogging as I could have been. I'll get around to writing those blogs eventually.) Even though I wasn't chosen to actually compete in CR2, I'm proud of myself that I managed to do 52 books in one year. Since I started my first Cannonball Read way back in December 2008, I feel like I've done an incredible amount of reading for pleasure -- something I had let fall by the wayside in college. Anyway, I want to take this moment to thank all the little people (ha ha) who helped me get where I am...my faithful readers, including fellow Cannonballers Jen, Mike, Figgy, and Doc Spender. It's not easy to keep up something like this without the encouragement of being part of a group. And thanks to my other readers, who read my (often bizarre) ramblings purely out of friendship.

Anyway, on to book …

Cannonball Read 2 #51: Plague of the Dead by Z. A. Recht

This was great as far as zombie books go. Unlike World War Z (which is an incredible book) this is more personal -- we are introduced to a set of characters whom we follow as the world collapses.

In this book, zombies are caused by a disease. It's spread through blood contamination, and it first kills, then reanimates its victims. The American government tries to keep the public in the dark, but an Army scientist and a daring reporter (two of the main characters) break the story, and have to suffer the consequences. The other group of survivors are a military group, and include a wild private, a beautiful young Red Cross volunteer, a worldly photographer, a hardened military leader, and several other terrified refugees. This group escapes from Africa on a ship and lands in the Pacific Northwest, trying to make their way east while avoiding the hoards of the undead. The scientist and the reporter also have to try and make their way to a safe place to meet up with the other group.

It&…

Cannonball Read 2 #50: Citizen Soldiers by Stephen Ambrose

The full title of this book is Citizen Soldiers: The U. S. Army from the Normandy Beaches to the Bulge to the Surrender of Germany. It's a well-written, well-researched book detailing the experiences of the men on the ground in the European Theater of Operations (ETO) during WW2.

Stephen Ambrose has once again created a book crammed full of facts and first-person experiences, much like his Band of Brothers. This book is less specific, in that Band of Brothers followed just one unit, while Citizen Soldiers is more of an overview of the entire ETO. He explains the troop movements and what was going on at the top, but most of the story comes directly from the enlisted men who were there, explaining what their day-to-day lives were like, and what kind of conditions they were surviving in.

There are chapters dedicated to many different types of soldiers and types of units. There are chapters about the Air Force, detailing what it was like to be a pilot or a gunner, as well as about the …

Cannonball Read 2 #49: Bringing Out the Dead by Joe Connolly

I saw the movie based on this book a few weeks ago and immediately purchased the book to see if it was equally interesting. To be honest, I was surprised how closely the movie resembled the book -- it's a good adaptation, and for the most part, the things that were left out or changed were an improvement.

The plot is the same as the film -- Frank Pierce, a NYC ambulance driver/EMT is in the middle of a breakdown. His past is haunting him constantly, and the madness that surrounds him is starting to be more than he can handle. The book spans about five days in Frank's life, starting with the night he and his partner save an elderly man named Mr. Burke from cardiac arrest. This brings the patient's daughter, Mary, into Frank's life. Mary is the one thing that seems to make sense to Frank, and they continue to run into each other for the next few days as Mr. Burke lingers in the hospital. Frank careens through the night with various partners, answering a variety of calls. …

Cannonball Read 2 #48: Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets by David Simon

I have not seen The Wire. Yes, I know--every time I turn around, someone is insisting that I MUST see it, that I would LOVE it and how can I possibly have NOT SEEN THE WIRE BECAUSE IT IS SO AWESOME. Unfortunately, the more people push me, the more I balk. It's just the way I am. However, I am reconsidering my position because David Simon's book Homicide (on which The Wire, as well as the old show Homicide are partially based) was so good I may not be able to resist him.

Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets is a non-fiction account of David Simon's time shadowing a shift of Baltimore homicide detectives for the calendar year of 1988. He follows them as they work on cases, process evidence, testify in court rooms, and interact with one another. It's a fascinating study of the way the job of a homicide detective works, and Simon's writing style is totally engrossing. The personalities of the detectives come alive, and as a reader I really cared about each of them. T…