Saturday, August 2, 2014
Been a long time my Wormies. How you been? Really good I hope.
I am just popping in to make sure you go to see GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY now that it's finally, here (feels like I've been waiting forever to see it!)
You really want to see this film. It's just a whole heck of a lot of fun. It's filled with lots of action, adventure, humour and Rocket Raccoon goodness.
I love the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Most of their movies kick so much butt I have no butt left when I leave the theatre. That being said it's nice to see something a little different with GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY. It's a bit of STAR WARS. Bit of STAR TREK. Bit of THE FIFTH ELEMENT.
It also makes me really eager to see JUPITER ASCENDING.
Anyway, check it out. Lots of fun.
Posted by Andrew Leonard at 7:54 PM
Thursday, May 15, 2014
Friday, April 11, 2014
Go to your local library or bookstore or comic shop and grab the SEED OF DESTRUCTION trade paperback. I guaran-fucking-tee you will love it.
Mike Mignola is a really cool artist and has a genius ability to tell a grand and sweeping tale steeped in history, folklore and mythology. Between the covers of a Hellboy book you will find such enigmatic characters as Abe Sapien, a humanoid amphibious man, Liz Sherman, a pyrokinetic woman. Those are just a couple of the good guys. Then there are the evil bastards!
With a hero like Hellboy you can't have just have your run of the mill bad guys. No sir. They have to be special. Sinister beyond sinister. Wicked beyond wicked. Nazi wicked!
For starters there is Grigori Rasputin, the Master, the evil wizard that is plotting to destroy the world as we know it with the help of other worldly beings called Ogdru Jahad (think H.P. Lovecraft's The Great Old Ones and you get the picture). Another baddy is the goddess Hecate, who wants Hellboy in more ways than one, if you catch my drift. Another female antagonist, and probably my fav of the bunch is the Baba Yaga, a wicked old witch with supernatural powers and a serious grudge on for Hellboy after he takes her eye.
But I digress. There are lots more really cool good guys and bad guys within the grand and epic story that is Mignola's Hellboy. And listen, I haven't even mentioned the spinoffs! There's the B.P.R.D. and ABE SAPIEN. And did I mention LOBSTER JOHNSON? Who's that guy, you say? Read some Hellboy and find out.
Anyway, HELLBOY: THE FIRST 20 YEARS is a collection of some of Mignol's best art from the series so far. It's great stuff. I could look at the beautiful artwork in this book for hours and never get enough. There is something so beautiful and dark about Mignola's Hellboy universe that grabs hold of your imagination like you wouldn't believe.
Honestly, check out SEEDS OF DESTRUCTION. Then grab all the rest of the series and just enjoy what is Hellboy.
Posted by Andrew Leonard at 2:13 PM
Thursday, April 10, 2014
Wednesday, March 26, 2014
Friday, March 21, 2014
Friday, March 14, 2014
Just ordered this one…
HALF BAD has been getting a ton, a ton, of good word. Now I'm well aware that means shit. The book might be shit. Beyond shit. But I have hope. I will let you know sometime in the future my opinion.
Check out the trailer below:
Posted by Andrew Leonard at 7:41 PM
Thursday, March 13, 2014
Cutter (the name is pseudonym) is a talented writer. My problem was with the story. I just didn't find it thrilling or suspenseful.
THE TROOP is about a group of boys spending a wilderness weekend, along with their scoutmaster, on a secluded island off the coast of Prince Edward Island. In the middle of the night a strange man shows up in a boat and it isn't long before shit hits the fan.
I would definitely pick up his next novel but THE TROOP just didn't do it for me. I couldn't stand the boys in the group. Not one of them appealed to me and therefore I just did not care what happened to them. The scoutmaster very quickly went from a strong male role model to a simpering wuss.
The creature or monster was a little on the nasty side but very far from being terrifying or filling me with fear. Once it arrives the book slows way down and I just got bored very quickly.
I got about three quarters of the way through THE TROOP and had to stop. I just felt nothing. I'll give Cutter another shot, but THE TROOP wasted my time.
I should have known better. I remember reading the first page in the bookstore when it first came out. I thought, "What a boring beginning for a book mashing superheroes and zombies."
That said, the series really took off over the last year or two. There are four books in the series and they have quite a following. They also get great reviews on Amazon.
Maybe it was just the opening scene that was dull and boring? Maybe this was a case of judging a book by the first page? Maybe I was wrong? Maybe the series is actually kick-ass?
I've been on a zombie kick lately and so I decided to give it another shot.
I should have stuck with my intuition.
EX HEROES was one of the most disappointing reads. It was incredibly boring. How could that be with superheroes and zombies is anyone's guess but Clines pulls it off. Very frustrating.
BTW, I'm looking for some really kick-ass zombie books that have come out in the last couple years to read. If you have any suggestions leave them in the comments section below.
Posted by Andrew Leonard at 9:30 PM
Wednesday, March 12, 2014
Really looking forward to this one from action, suspense, horror, author JONATHAN MABERRY. It's the sequel to DEAD OF NIGHT, a zombie novel I particularly liked.
Dig the cover. Comes out next September.
Posted by Andrew Leonard at 8:16 PM
Saturday, March 8, 2014
It's a guys movie 100%.
That's why I couldn't wait to see RISE OF AN EMPIRE. Though it wasn't directed by Snyder (but Noam Murro) it was shot with the same flare and over zealous need for slow motion gore and violence.
Sullivan Stapleton is no Gerard Butler (BTW if you haven' t seen OLYMPUS HAS FALLEN it's not too bad!) but he still rocks. My only real complaint is his character's need to give speeches every five minutes (usually before or after a gloriously gory, grotesque, battle scene).
There is only one reason to see RISE OF AN EMPIRE. One. Single. Reason. To see sword slashing, blood spraying, decapitating, stabbing, slicing, carnage!
If you are looking for anything more, buy yourself a ticket to something else. This is pure animalistic, bloody, violent cinematic battle porn.
Two thumbs up!
Posted by Andrew Leonard at 7:17 PM
Wednesday, March 5, 2014
Thursday, February 27, 2014
I started a couple of books from my rather large TBR pile but nothing grabbed me. What I needed was another "it" book. Another book with hype.
I had seen and heard about GONE GIRL for some time. I knew it was one of those super popular books that was not being released in paperback because it was still going gangbusters in hardback.
A little research told me GONE GIRL was being made into a film by David Fincher starring one of my favourite actors, Ben Affleck.
Well, I thought, here is a book to get me out of my funk.
And it was.
GONE GIRL is a terrific thriller, about Amy and Nick, a couple about to celebrate their fifth wedding anniversary when Amy disappears. What follows is a dark look behind the curtain of a seemingly perfect marriage.
I wouldn't say I loved GONE GIRL, but I would say I liked it quite a bit. It's pretty good. It hooked me and kept me turning the pages till its rather (unfortunately) anti-climatic final pages. I really wanted the book to end differently. I would love to elaborate but I don't want to give anything away.
If you aren't in a book reading funk, and you haven't read GONE GIRL by this point, I would say wait for the paperback. If you are in a funk, this could be the book to get you out of it. Worked for me.
Can't wait to see the GONE GIRL movie, but not necessarily because its such an awesome, mind blowing story. But because it's a pretty good story and the film is going to have Ben Affleck!
Posted by Andrew Leonard at 5:55 PM
Friday, February 14, 2014
Why can't my generation sit in a movie theatre for a minuscule hour and a half without checking their fucking cell phones? Really?
I'm right into the movie only to be ripped kicking and screaming back to reality by your fucking goddamn bright iFucking-stupid-fucking-phone!
(And by "You" here I mean "Them". You dear reader I know would not only know better but also, like me, be too into the movie to give a shit about your iDevice).
Why don't you care in the slightest that I paid nearly seventy dollars (before concessions!) to take my family to see a movie they have anticipated seeing for months? Why is it so important you show your complete and utter disregard for those around you?
Because you are nothing but selfish, self-centred, pieces of fucking shit. And your kids are ill mannered brats.
I pretty much do not exist to you. I am a figment. A simple illusion to you. A thing that doesn't count and therefore you need not care to show the slightest bit of decorum.
You do not bother saying anything to your brats when they kick seats. You do not say anything when your stupid shits speak out loud during the film. You do not parent at all!
Yet me and my darling little angels who learned to behave by the wrath (and "Time Out"'s) of their loving and parenting father, have to listen to their inane fucking gob shit spewing out of their fucking stupid little faces!
My generation do not know how to parent. They do not know how to focus on one thing for a set amount of time (say a hour and a half movie). They can not read, unless it's in a three word text using broken English on their iPhone, iPad or whatever fucking iDevice you can think of.
Fuck, I could go on and on and on about how much I hate my generation and people in general. I can not stand you. I can not stand being in a theatre with you. You make me sick to my stomach.
The only redeeming thing about my generation is that they make movies like THE LEGO MOVIE.
If it were not for my kids, my books and movies like THE LEGO MOVIE, I think I would jump off a tall building.
Posted by Andrew Leonard at 10:40 PM
Thursday, February 13, 2014
No I didn't start reading elusive Russian tomes or ancient Greek poems. What I did was stop snubbing my nose at "popular" fiction. I picked up some Dan Brown and read me some Michael Crichton. You get the idea. I stopped being a horror snob.
Since then I read most popular things, and by popular I mean books that are "hot". The kind of books you usually see people reading in abundance on the subway or bus. J.K. Rowling. Stephenie Meyer and their ilk. You get the picture.
Anyways, to make a long story short (too late!), since that time of broadening my reading horizons, my absolute favourite book was READY PLAYER ONE by Ernest Cline. And it still is, but just.
Right beside that amazing book is a new kid on the block and his name is RED RISING by Pierce Brown.
I didn't didn't just love RED RISING. I loved RED RISING. I gorydamn loved it! I bloodydamn loved it!
I should just end my opinion piece right here but I want to gush about this novel a little more.
RED RISING takes about seventy or eighty pages to get into, a much needed build up. You might be tempted to set it aside but don't. Because very quickly RED RISING transforms into something unexpected. Something scary but really, really slagging cool! Like, HO. LEE. SHIT. cool!
The rest of the way RED RISING kicks all kinds of ass. I don't want to give anything away, so if you want to know what it's about check out Amazon.com. You will see it compared to THE HUNGER GAMES. Don't pay any attention to that garbage. Yes, I liked THE HUNGER GAMES but it's no RED RISING.
After you get into RED RISING you won't be able to put it down. You will want to keep reading to see what happens next and be completely disappointed that you finished it so gorydamn fast!
I picked up RED RISING because of the eye catching cover. Interestingly, it's my only beef with the book. The cover sucks, in my opinion. Yes it's eye catching but it's got nothing to do with the story. Maybe on a metaphorical level but come on! Part of me thinks it was an attempt to catch the eyes of HUNGER GAMES fans with the whole mocking jay angle. But whatever.
The book rules.
I can't wait to re-read RED RISING in the near future.
Check out a cool interview with Brown at last years comic convention in San Diego.
Posted by Andrew Leonard at 9:39 AM
Thursday, January 30, 2014
I was depriving myself of one of the most special reading experiences I would ever have.
MISS PEREGRINE'S HOME FOR PECULIAR CHILDREN by RANSOM RIGGS is truly one very amazing read. It's everything you want in a book. It's the complete package, from cover to cover.
Riggs has produced a book that is full of magical adventure, thrilling action and frightening antagonists, as well as a heart warming romance that spans centuries.
MISS PEREGRINE'S HOME FOR PECULIAR CHILDREN was so much more than what I was expecting by multitudes. Quite frankly I wasn't sure what I was expecting. Perhaps a quiet mystery surrounding some strange photographs. I'm not sure. But what I got was so much more.
Jacob goes on the hunt for the story behind his grandfather's strange photographs after he is murdered at the hands of a tentacle-mouthed creature out of any child's worst nightmare. What follows is unexpected and wondrous. To tell more would be ruining your own experience.
There will come a day I will re-read MISS PEREGRINE'S HOME FOR PECULIAR CHILDREN. It is a modern day classic I recommend very, very, highly. If you have not read it, I implore you to drop what it is you are doing and run immediately to your nearest bookstore and pick up a copy.
The book is atmospheric, mysterious, and quite simply amazing. Two thumbs up. Ten out of ten. Get. It. Now.
Posted by Andrew Leonard at 11:41 AM
Later today I will review this most amazing, wonderful, and incredibly brilliant book. For now, the trailer:
Posted by Andrew Leonard at 8:37 AM
Thursday, January 23, 2014
But I digress.
What captured my attention was the cover and the title of the book. Without even reading anything about the story on the back of the book I just knew this might be something I would like to read.
I was right.
ZOO is a kick-ass action, adventure, thriller about animals, on mass, attacking the human race. While not completely original, ZOO is certainly entertaining! It's a page turner that will keep the high octane book lovers out there reading through the night until its apocalyptic conclusion.
ZOO is the kind of book I like to read smack dab in the middle of summer (which is probably when it came out in hardback). I love my end-of-the-world-creature-feature during the hot season, not sure why. Just seems to suit my needs at that time of the year. It's usually when the big blockbuster movies are hitting the big screens and so I usually want something blockbuster-y to read.
ZOO is a blockbuster. It's a popcorn and Coke kind of book. I think you'll enjoy it.
If you have a COSTCO membership you can grab the paperback off one of their book tables for like six bucks.
The book also spawned a graphic novel. See the cover below:
Posted by Andrew Leonard at 9:34 AM
Saturday, January 4, 2014
Thursday, January 2, 2014
I was really excited for last years THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY. I couldn't wait to see it. Unfortunately when I did, I nearly fell asleep. I thought it was boring, long winded and draining. My mother fell asleep not long after the opening scenes.
Never the less I wanted to see THE DESOLATION OF SMAUG. Maybe it was my lowered expectations or maybe it was just a better film, but DESOLATION rocked my world.
For days afterward I was thinking about how awesome it was! It was full of action and humour and thrilling moments that will keep you on the edge of your seats.
Two thumbs up. Definitely check it out!
Posted by Andrew Leonard at 8:41 PM
I couldn't wait to read what trouble Locke and Jean would get up to in RED SEAS UNDER RED SKIES. The follow up, while no classic, was a worthy sequel.
THE GENTLEMAN BASTARD SEQUENCE appeared to be off and running, Lynch a growing name in the fantasy genre.
Then nothing. For five long years.
The wait for THE REPUBLIC OF THIEVES was made all the more torturous due to the monumental cliff hanger at the end of RED SEAS UNDER RED SKIES.
Five years is also a difficult amount of time, for me anyway, to remember all the details of a fantasy series. It's one of the reasons I was not able to continue reading George R.R. Martin's SONG OF FIRE AND ICE series. How can I possibly remember all those characters and situations? Sure, that's what wikipedia is for but none the less…
THE REPUBLIC OF THIEVES is a descent novel but no where near what I was hoping it might be or as good as I think it could have been.
Locke and Jean and their long ago friend Sabatha are corralled by the Bondsmagi of Karthain to rig/compete against one another in the Karthain elections. Locke and Jean against Sabatha…who can get the most seats for their respective party?
THE REPUBLIC OF THIEVES runs between two time lines. One delves into an earlier time of Locke, Jean and Sabatha's early years when their master, Chains, sends them away to Espara where they join a troubled theatre group with the aim to bring it back into good repute. This leg of the book is quite tedious and could have done with a heavy trim from an editor's eager pen!
The other side of THE REPUBLIC OF THIEVES deals with the elections of Karthain and where I was expecting the book to become quite juicy. Locke and Jean are thieves, con artists, trained hustlers, swindlers, cheaters, bamboozlers! I expected lots of clever plots by our antagonists to tip the election in their favour. I was expecting grand schemes and scams, tricks and treacherous cheats!
Unfortunately the author never comes even remotely close to such things. Most of the time we are given pages and pages of Locke mooning over Sabatha (the love of his life). This book at its heart turns out to be a soppy romance disguised as a fantasy novel, instead of a what it should have been, a fantasy novel disguised as a romance.
Lynch should have done better. With two kick ass characters like Locke and Jean and the amazing world they inhabit THE REPUBLIC OF THIEVES should have been an epic political ball buster, instead of the bore that it turned out to be.
Will I continue to read THE GENTLEMEN BASTARD SEQUENCE? Certainly. Lynch is a really good writer, and I know he can give us a good book. This just wasn't one.
Just a word on the cover. INCREDIBLE! One of the best covers I've ever seen. BRILLIANT!
Posted by Andrew Leonard at 8:19 PM