Halloween Reading and Watching 2017 Edition

Hello friends. Do you go out of your way to find scary stories to read or watch  during Halloween? I usually do. Books, well, I’ll read almost anything if it’s good but movies, I draw the line at demonic possession and stuff. But here’s what’s on my list:


PAN’S LABYRINTH (2006) a film by Guillermo del Toro


I love this movie!  Saw the start of it on Sling TV (they still struggle with buffering) and decided to buy it (after cancelling the 7 day trial of Sling TV). I forgot how violent it is but it’s such a great looking movie. Gorgeous photography (the Oscar-winning cinematography) and a gripping storyline all done in subtitles earned it’s place on my keeper shelf. It’s set five years after the Spanish Civil War. Is it scary? It can be.  Continue reading

Review of All Systems Red by Martha Wells (The Murderbot Diaries #1)

I’m not the biggest fan of science fiction and fantasy (open for recommendations) but I do have my favorites in this genre: Catherine Asaro’s Skolia series and Sarah Monette’s Doctrine of the Labyrinths series. That’s it. So, I picked up Martha Well’s novella All System’s Red (2017) after reading a review (like we always do). I wasn’t disappointed. In fact the author just throws you right into the action without explaining everything in the beginning. I admit to being confused in those brief seconds of decision to stop or continue going, I decided to keep going and I’m glad I did. I’m reminded that Sarah Monette did the same thing in her series so in good hands, this works. I’m not all that familiar with the style and construct of science fiction novels so if this a normal thing, to get thrown into the action without explaining much then this story isn’t any different. The storytelling is wonderful. The story’s length isn’t more than 144 pages and a  one sitting read  because the author builds up momentum throughout each chapter and I couldn’t put it down. Continue reading

Review of Dolores Claiborne by Stephen King

I bought the ebook version of Dolores Claiborne(1992)by Stephen King in Feb 2017. I probably bought it when I finished reading and enjoying Misery(1987). Today, I just finished reading Dolores Claiborne and it’s his best book and if anyone tells me any different they are wrong. I don’t understand why this book isn’t listed at the top of the lists for his major work. It’s always The Stand or some of his other horror stories but this book, Dolores Claiborne was good from start to finish. It only took me a few days to finish it because of life’s usual interruptions but this book gets my highest rating of a 5/5 and I’ll explain why below. This was just such a good book (sorry to gush) and I remember some parts of the movie (with the same name) with Kathy Bates in the starring role and Christopher Plummer doggedly investigating her. King outdid himself here and gets a standing ovation for me because not once was I pulled out of the story. His narrative voice for Dolores was consistent, engaging and at times gripping. She’s a tough one who likes to say “my mama didn’t raise any fools.” I can’t recall a slow section or a dreaded middle. The subject matter is domestic violence and emotional abuse. Nothing supernatural added to the story unless you count hallucinations. Continue reading