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Friday, February 26, 2016

Book Review : Anansi Boys (American Gods #2) by Neil Gaiman

First off I want to say I really enjoyed American Gods.  I  know that some people found it's pacing to be too slow and drawn out, but I really think the author did a good job of world building and introducing the reader to this world.  So I have to admit that I assumed that this book would pick right up where the last one left off.  I was so excited to get back into this world where gods, legends and stuff of folklore became reality.

Anansi Boys is not a direct sequel as it is more of a re-visiting of the American Gods world. The story is about the folklore character from Africa, named Anansi. Which I have to add had a very minor role in American Gods.  In this seemingly sequel(but could be read as a stand alone) we are introduced to Mr. Nancy's son, "Fat Charlie" who is not really fat(more chubby) but whose nickname kinda stuck. Anansi has died, and "Fat Charlie" is just now discovering the truth about his father, and some other forgotten memories are revisited. He discovers that his father was a god, and that he has a brother. These discoveries set him on a journey that will turn his life upside down and turn him onto another path of life.

I really felt that this story could have been summed up in a novella or even a short story. I really felt that this story seemed to be drawn out, and honestly not as enjoyable as the prior book.  While the character building of this book was enjoyable, and helped to keep me reading I found it to be filled with fluff, such as the little side stories about Anansi and the other spirit animals.  Also the fact that this wasn't a direct sequel to the previous book was also a let down for me. Don't get me wrong I enjoyed this book, but in all honesty I didn't find it to be as good or even of equal value to American Gods. I do hope that Gaiman will once again revisit this world and finish the story or tell us other stories similar to this one.  I rated this book only 3 out of 5 stars on Goodreads. I just found this to be an average read and not one of this authors better works.

This Week in Review: 2/26/16

So I read a few more books this week than last week. I read some interesting ones for sure.

1. 2. 3. 4.

5. 6. 7. 8.

9. 10.

Friday, February 19, 2016

This Week in Review: 2/19/16

Short list this week, as I haven't had much time to read since school has started back up and I'm now working full-time on top of that.

1. 2. 3. 4.

5. 6.

Friday, February 12, 2016

This Week in Review : 2/12/16

Of course, as always these are the books I read for the week. A much shorter than average video and list. I hope you find something you like.

1. 2. 3. 4.

5. 6. 7.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Film Review : The Visit by M. Night Shyamalan

It's been awhile since I had seen a good Shyamalan movie, and I remembered seeing the trailer for this film. I thought that looks weird, and knowing how his movies usually play out I had a feeling that this would be a good one.  I will admit that this movie is slow to build, but well worth it if you can make it through the whole thing. Which is pretty typical of his previous films.

So the whole premise is a little bit strange, but it kinda helps to set up the main story. So this single mom who has been estranged from her parents since before having her kids decides to send them to visit them for a week.  The situation with the kids is strange too, as their father recently left the family home and it's effects are shown in the children. We have a young teen girl who dreams of being a filmmaker but cannot look at herself in the mirror. Her brother is a self-proclaimed rapper who is extremely germaphobic and helps his sister in making films. All of these little quirks help to make this movie get creepy along the way. So these children are basically meeting their maternal grandparents for the first time and know very little but what their mother has told them. If that were not enough throw in such notions as how young people think of elders as being senile, incontinence and losing their marbles etc.

All of this is filmed as if it is a documentary in the style of Blair Witch.  Of course the kids see their "Nana", and "Pop Pop" acting very strange, and acting like they are in need of some much needed mental health care. They try to tell their mother who is trying to vacation with a new boyfriend, and of course, she casually blows it off as "kids being kids". I will not go any further into detail of just what happens, but the payoff for this movie does not happen until there is around 20-30 minutes towards the end. This is the true climax of the movie and all of it then makes sense as to why all of the events played out the way they had. I'll admit it was a hard hours worth of time trying to get into the slow build of this movie.  I was so afraid it was going to turn into a very lame and disappointing film. I very much enjoyed the ending and it made up for the boring and mediocre start.  I rated this 4 out of 5 stars on Netflix, and think that if you are a fan of thrillers or of this director's previous films.

Here is the link to purchase or rent this film from Amazon.