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review 2020-07-05 08:02
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz - L. Frank Baum

I got this book quite early, but it was a book I chose myself, so maybe somewhere between 7-10 years old? Anyway, I enjoyed it even though it was old. It was a Swedish translation. Then we went to England on vacation a couple of times and my sister found four hardcover books with illustrations that belonged in the same series as that first book (that was hardcover too). It wasn’t that expensive back then, or maybe I didn’t notice because my parents paid for it. :)

Most people have read the book at some point so I won’t say much about the plot - a girl from Kansas is ripped from her family, inside the family home, by a hurricane/twister and comes to a magical fairytale country, called Oz. Because she misses her family she tries to get home. That’s basically the story.

I understand. I’d never survive without my family, even though Dorothy was lucky to get her house with her with, presumably, what little stuff she had.

Whenever people ask what fantasy world you’d like to live in most people mention Tolkien’s Middle Earth, Narnia and Harry Potter’s world, but I usually answer Dinotopia. I’m obsessed with that island with cute dinosaurs.

However, since I managed to download a free copy of the e-book, I now also think that the land of Oz might be an attractive option. :) Especially now. (Doctor Who isn’t primarily a book but to live inside the TARDIS would also be cool).
For instance, in Oz you have trees that grow breakfast- and lunch boxes and bushes with macaroons. :)

At the moment, my sister and I are also watching the first season of animated tv series called Lost in Oz and seems to be a modern retelling of the original story. It’s actually quite good, even though it’s aimed at children. Older kids, I think, because mine don’t find it that interesting. It’s fun, cute and quite thrilling too.

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review 2020-06-17 18:36
Joan of Arc
Joan of Arc: Personal Recollections -

She was an unschooled country peasant that lifted the fortunes of her uncrowned King and nation on her shoulders, but when she needed them was abandoned.  Joan of Arc stands alone among Mark Twain’s bibliography as a historical novel about the one person in history he admires above all others.

 

Twain’s account of Joan of Arc’s life is written from the perspective of a fictional version of Joan’s former secretary and page Sieur Louis de Conte written at the end of his life to his great-nephews and nieces.  The first part of the book focuses on her life in the village of Domremy, essentially where all but the last two years of her life occurred, and the beginning of her visions then quest to fulfill the commission she received.  The second part is her successful meeting with the King, formal acknowledgement of the Church that she wasn’t a witch, then her year-long military campaign—with numerous breaks due to political interference and foot dragging by Charles VII—that saw her mission completed, and finally her capture by the Burgundians.  The final part of the book was of her year in captivity and the long grueling “legal” process that the English-paid French clergy put her through to murder her as a heretic.  The final chapter is of Conte giving a brief account of the feckless Charles VII waiting over two decades to Rehabilitate his benefactor after allowing her to be murdered by not paying her ransom all those years before.

 

This was a labor of love for Twain to write and it was easy to tell given how professionally researched it was in every detail.  While many 20th-Century critics and other Twain admirers don’t like this book because it’s not “classic” Twain because of his praise of Joan given that she’s French, Catholic, and a martyr when he disliked or hated all three; they didn’t seem to understand his hero worship of this teenage girl who put a nation on her shoulders to resurrect its existence.  Yet, while this was a straight historical novel there are touches of Twain especially in Conte’s “relating” the adventures of the Domremy boys when they were not in Joan’s presence, especially Paladin.

 

Joan of Arc is not the typical Mark Twain work, but that doesn’t mean one can not appreciate it for well, if not professionally, researched historical novel that it is.

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2020-06-17 02:51
Video Game Review - Star Wars: Jedi Fallen Order

 

 

[Star Wars The Jedi's Fallen Order]

 

[Console: PS4 Pro]

 

[Review by: Bluninja29]

 

 

***Spoilers Inside***

 

 

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PLOT:

 

The game starts off 5 years after Order 66. You play as Cal Krestis, A padawan who survived order 66 and is in hiding. He's a scrapper working with Prauf. Until they get into trouble and Cal has to use the force to save his friend. The Empire found out that Cal is a Jedi. Cal eventually escaped with help of two people Cere Junda and Greez Dritus. Cere tells Cal that he has to access an ancient vault that was built by the Zeffo. While Cal goes to The Ancient Vault, He is accompanied by a droid named BD-1. The Ancient Vault has a Jedi Holocron that has every youngling that has the force. They want to use it so they can rebuild The Jedi Order. So Cal has to go to planet to planet to unlock The Ancient Vault.

__________________

 

GAMEPLAY:

 

The game is a third person, Hack 'n" Slash type game. Cal has a lot of moves at his disposal. Though they have to be unlocked by either playing through the story, or unlocking skills. His Skills are limited but open at the same time. He has a skill tree with three ways he can put skillpoints into: Force, LightSaber, & Survival. Cal can unlock skillpoints by killing enemies or inspecting something BD-1 can find. BD-1 also gets upgrades that can help you along the journey.

__________________

 

PRESENTATION:

 

The game looks and sounds beautiful, but with some problems. There is frame drops and pop-ins. Though its only on the console version. Other than that I love all the planets, & the deep lore with each planet makes this experiance a pleasent one.

If you are a Star Wars geek or someone who wants to play a good hack 'n' slash game, then this game is for you.

 

Rating: 8/10

 

 

 

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review 2020-05-27 16:42
Wuthering Heights
Wuthering Heights - Emily Brontë

Hot Mess Hug GIF by OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network - Find & Share on GIPHY

 

The last time I recall someone telling me that a book was the greatest romance they ever read, they were speaking about "Fifty Shades of Grey." I was reluctant to even read this one because I knew that I probably wasn't going to like it. I started to read it and went, yep do not like. I gave this two stars honestly because it's engrossing to read even though I didn't like one character save the two servants (Nelly and Joseph). And I was pretty much luke-warm on Nelly for most of the book. I don't know, maybe this would have worked better if the story was told from Catherine or Heathcliff's point of view. Most of the story follows Nelly's POV and a man named Mr. Lockwood. 

 

"Wuthering Heights" begins in 1801 when a man named Lockwood begins the tale. Lockwood is a new tenant at Thrushcross Grange and he goes to pay a visit to his landlord a Mr. Heathcliff. Mr. Heathcliff lives in his home called Wuthering Heights. Lockwood is repelled by most of the household (same boy, same) and wonders at the young woman named Cathy that lives there and a young man that Cathy seems to despise named Hareton. When Lockwood stays overnight in Wuthering Heights, he finds the diary of a woman named Catherine Earnshaw and starts to wonder about the people who lived there. He eventually gets his housekeeper, Nelly to tell him about what went on at Wuthering Heights. Bronte then proceeds to take up the rest of the tale explaining about Catherine, her brother Hindley, Heathcliff and the Linton family. 

 

So, there's so much going on that the narrative told by Nelly doesn't help. Nelly is like the priest in Romeo and Juliet to me. Knows a lot about what is going on, but does nothing to help. 

 

I honestly don't get why women were swooning over Heathcliff. He's a bully and as much of a mess as Catherine. I do feel badly for how he was treated by Hindley, but he purposely went about trying to ruin people and play God with other characters.


Catherine seemed ridiculous to the extreme to me. I just imagine that the men fought over her because no one else was in the vicinity besides Isabella. 

 

Hindley I found to be terrible and I honestly pitied Edgar and Isabella. The last two are just used as chess pieces and don't seem to be viewed as people with real hope for love and a happy marriage. 


The writing was a bit tough to get through. It just didn't work for me at all as a Gothic romance. I really loved Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte so just figured this would work for me too. I think if the book had switched things up so that we stayed with one narrator this would have made things stronger. 

 

The flow was off. I think switching from narrator to another narrator and I think some other narrators (my brain shut off) it just made the story too unwieldy to follow after a while. 

 

The setting of Wuthering Heights sounds desolate and unforgiving though.


The ending just leaves you with a shake of your head. You are left thinking that maybe a cycle has been broken, but you wonder since once again, the families in this story are a hot mess.  

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text 2020-05-26 21:02
Reading progress update: I've read 16%.
Murder by Matchlight (British Library Crime Classics) - E.C.R. Lorac,Martin Edwards

“Pop in!” she adjured him.

“Landing blackout’s N.B.G. I do like a bit of light. This dark business is enough to give a girl the creeps. Come right in. That’s better, isn’t it?”

“Much better,” replied Macdonald cheerfully, blinking a little in the strong light. His first impression was of a prevailing pinkness: pink walls, pink curtains, pink cushions: artificial pink roses stood in ornate vases, artificial cherry blossoms trailed over mirrors and peeped coyly round elaborately framed photographs. Macdonald disliked pink as a colour, and this room seemed to him to resemble pink blanc-mange. He turned in some relief to study the owner of all this roseate effect—a neat little black-coated figure, she stood and returned his stare sedately.

This is my second attempt at E.C.R. Lorac's works. I didn't enjoy my first attempt - Bats in the Belfry - much, and it took me 4 attempts so far to get into this story without drifting off.

 

It's not looking good for E.C.R. Lorac's books to make any further appearances on my TBR. 

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