Film Reviews

Film Review: Missing Link

Missing Link
Courtesy of Annapurna Pictures

Laika Studios has crafted a beautiful epic in Missing Link, a film about self-discovery and friendship that is enjoyable for all ages.

The stop-motion animation studio, Laika, has carved out a niche for themselves in the film world as producers of some of the most elaborate and fantastical animated movies in modern cinema. They were the masterminds behind films like Coraline and Kubo and the Two Strings. Their latest film, Missing Link, is perhaps, one of their best.

Continue reading my full review at Hidden Remote.

Book Reviews

Book Review: Paper Ghosts by Julia Heaberlin

Book Review: Paper Ghosts by Julia HeaberlinPaper Ghosts by Julia Heaberlin
Published on May 15, 2018
Genres: Fiction, Mystery, Thriller, Suspense
Links: Buy on Amazon | Goodreads
Pages: 351
Format: eBook

Carl Louis Feldman is an old man who was once a celebrated photographer. That was before he was tried for the murder of a young woman and acquitted. before his admission to a care home for dementia. Now his daughter has come to see him, to take him on a trip. Only she's not his daughter and, if she has her way, he's not coming back.

When I first started reading Paper Ghosts I was quickly absorbed in Grace’s story and her journey to discover the truth about her sister’s killer. Unfortunately, I lost interest just as fast as the book slogged onwards into a meandering road trip story without much thrill or suspense.

The idea of a young girl traveling with a serial killer was interesting at first, but I really didn’t find Carl to be a compelling character. Not to mention the fact we read pages upon pages of endless internal monologue from Grace about how she trained for most of her life leading up to the moment she would spring Carl from Mrs. T’s. But we almost never see this “training” come into play. More often than not, Carl outsmarts her by some small mistake she makes.

Nor did I find the somewhat random love story between her and the detective, Andy, to make much sense. It serves as a background plot more than anything and Andy really serves no greater purpose to the story.

By the end of the novel, when we learn the truth about Carl and his supposed kills, it makes nearly everything that occurred before it ultimately pointless. I didn’t feel like the ending had suited the long, winding journey preceding it.

However, I will say that the book is very well-written. Even though I didn’t love the story, I kept reading because Heaberlin’s writing style more than kept me engaged, it made me hope for a stronger pay-off than I got. While I didn’t find this novel to be my cup of tea, I would certainly consider checking out her other books in the future.

Weekly Round-Up

WEEKLY MEDIA REPORT

I’d like to start a new media report each week to keep up with everything I’m reading and various other projects I’m obsessed with at the moment!


BOOKS

A Simple Favor by Darcey Bell – I absolutely adored A Simple Favor when I saw it last year, it’s actually one of my favorite movies of all time now and I’m excited to finally be reading the book!

Paper Ghosts by Julia Heaberlin ; Page Count: 60% – Entering the latter half of the book, I’m a little disappointed in how slow it can be at times but overall, still interested enough to see how all of this is going to pan out in the end.

Little Darlings by Melanie Golding ; Page Count: 7% – I’m not very far into this one yet but it is very well written and I’m certainly fascinated by the plot and the folklore elements.


VIDEO GAME OF THE WEEK

Dragon Age: Inquisition: My character is a badass elf lady! I’ve only played through the prologue so far but given my obsession with PG games I’m already in love and can’t wait to play more!

Side note: I love Morrigan I’m obsessed with her titties out LOOKS. She serves all the swamp witch goth vibes I aspire to be like.


CINEMA JAUNTS

Missing Link ( Advance Screening ) – Tired of living a solitary life in the Pacific Northwest, Mr Link, who is 8 feet tall and covered in fur, recruits fearless explorer Sir Lionel Frost to guide him on a journey to find his long-lost relatives in the fabled valley of Shangri-La. Along with adventurer Adelina Fortnight, the trio encounters their fair share of peril as they travel to the far reaches of the world. Through it all, they learn that sometimes one can find a family in the places one least expects.

Pet Sematary – Dr. Louis Creed and his wife, Rachel, relocate from Boston to rural Maine with their two young children. The couple soon discover a mysterious burial ground hidden deep in the woods near their new home. When tragedy strikes, Louis turns to his neighbour Jud Crandall, setting off a perilous chain reaction that unleashes an unspeakable evil with horrific consequences.

Shazam! – We all have a superhero inside of us — it just takes a bit of magic to bring it out. In 14-year-old Billy Batson’s case, all he needs to do is shout out one word to transform into the adult superhero Shazam. Still a kid at heart, Shazam revels in the new version of himself by doing what any other teen would do — have fun while testing out his newfound powers. But he’ll need to master them quickly before the evil Dr. Thaddeus Sivana can get his hands on Shazam’s magical abilities.


CURRENT TV OBSESSION

Joey King and Patricia Arquette in The Act – Hulu

The Act on Hulu: I can’t get over how good this show is honestly! I can’t wait for Joey and Patricia to both get nominated for Emmys. It’s so well-done and there is something profoundly chilling about the story, even outside the obvious horrifying story.

I recently wrote an article about the gothic horror of the show and how it redefines what it means to be a true crime drama in 2019. You can read it for yourself right here.


ARTICLES OF THE WEEK

Since I write for several media outlets, HiddenRemote, 1428elm, and SpoilerTV, each week I’ll pick thee articles from each to highlight right here for anyone who is interested in checking them out!

HiddenRemote

1428 Elm

SpoilerTV


25 Book ReviewsProfessional Reader

Find me on Twitter and Goodreads!

Uncategorized

#SpringHorror Readathon!

Excited to announce I’ll be participating in my first readathon! My book of choice for the month will be Little Darlings by Melanie Golding, though, as an avid horror fan, I’ll likely be reading more than just that!

Title: Little Darlings
Author: Melanie Golding
Genre: Thriller, Mystery, Fiction

Synopsis: Everyone says Lauren Tranter is exhausted, that she needs rest. And they’re right; with newborn twins, Morgan and Riley, she’s never been more tired in her life. But she knows what she saw: that night, in her hospital room, a woman tried to take her babies and replace them with her own…creatures. Yet when the police arrived, they saw no one. Everyone, from her doctor to her husband, thinks she’s imagining things.

A month passes. And one bright summer morning, the babies disappear from Lauren’s side in a park. But when they’re found, something is different about them. The infants look like Morgan and Riley—to everyone else. But to Lauren, something is off. As everyone around her celebrates their return, Lauren begins to scream, These are not my babies.

Determined to bring her true infant sons home, Lauren will risk the unthinkable. But if she’s wrong about what she saw…she’ll be making the biggest mistake of her life.

Compulsive, creepy, and inspired by some our darkest fairy tales, Little Darlings will have you checking—and rechecking—your own little ones. Just to be sure. Just to be safe.

If you want to sign up to participate in the horror readathon you can find all the details on Seasons of Reading.

ARCs

UPCOMING ARCS

We’re jumping back in! These are all the ARCs I’ve been approved for thus far and I doubt I’ll get through all of them this month but I’ll be rotating between these and all my other activities (plus other books I have stacked up from TBR pile!) Reviews coming soon!

  • 29 Seconds by T.M. Logan
  • Forget Me Not by Claire Allan
  • Raven Lane by Amber Cowe
  • Just Like You by Alison Percival
  • Cold Woods by Karen Katchur
  • The Two Lila Bennetts by Liz Fenton ; Lisa Steinke
  • The Escape Room by Megan Goldin
  • A Stranger On the Beach by Michelle Campbell
  • The Fragments by Toni Jordan
  • The White City by Grace Hitchcock
  • Ricochet by Kathryn Berla
  • Girls Like Us Cristina Alger
  • Frozen: The Author’s Cut by Jay Bonansinga
  • Lock Every Door by Riley Sager
  • The Night Janitor by T. F. Allen
  • Little Darlings by Melanie Golding
  • The Night Before by Wendy Walker
  • The Vanishing Season by Dot Hutchinson
  • The Life of Death by Lucy Booth
  • A Means to an End by Lissa Marie Redmond
  • Bethlehem by Karen Kelly
  • What She Never Said by Catharine Riggs
  • The East End by Jason Allen
  • The Last Thing She Remembers by J.S. Monroe
  • Beautiful Bad by Annie Ward
my writing

Flash Fiction: The Paintbrush Woman

A/N: Another quick flash fiction piece I wrote a long time ago and recently edited. I didn’t have an idea of where to put it since it’s not good enough to be published so figured my blog would be a good fit!

Even the sunset above could not challenge the brilliant plumes of orange streaked across the pavement, trailing behind a strange woman dressed in a simple white gossamer dress. Her hair was as white as her dress and pulled into a tight chignon atop her head. Staring, unfocused, at a point on the horizon, her rheumy eyes never wavered on her stroll.

The edges of her dress slithered like water across the pavement as she strolled down the boulevard. The world was her canvas.

If you spot her, look quick. Nothing so lustrous can last long. Blink and you’ll miss her.

She is known as the Paintbrush Woman, and only a lucky few have ever been privy to her unconventional art show.

To speak her name in the town of Oarbray is to ignite a rapid-fire chain of whispers.

I don’t believe it.

How come I’ve never seen her?

I always imagined her prettier.

She’s astonishing.

It changed my life.

An urban legend borne, a splash of color amidst the dull repetition of small-town life.

Most believe she is nothing more than a fairytale, carefully spun like candy floss.

Others believe she only appears to certain people. A few have devised intricate theories of the supposed colors she creates.

Perhaps she appears only to those lost in the graphite noise of depression, the angry smeared in streaks of garnet, or happiest crowd, a spattering of fuchsia.

The Paintbrush Woman sees Oarbrary as a blank page, white as a bone, and all of its inhabitants merely pods of color on a palette.

One day, an ornery older male citizen had his fill of the incessant whispers and gossip. He sought to end the rumors and lay the legend of the Paintbrush Woman to rest.

He staked his claim in his favorite chair outside of a popular cafe in the center of town. He stayed put for three days, sheer determination and bullheadedness allowed him to ignore some of his most basic needs. He took all his meals there. Brought a blanket to sleep on and off – shuddering awake at even the slightest of sounds so as not to miss her should she actually appear.

It wasn’t until the break of dawn on the fourth day he saw anything. By then he was strung-out, twitchy, and irritable from lack of quality sleep and almost couldn’t be sure what he was seeing.

A pale woman gliding down the street without so much as a glance in his direction. A river of buttery yellow billowed out behind her.

“Ma’am.” He was hoarse. Eyes wide in disbelief, he stumbled out of his chair, nearly upending the table in the process. Never before had he put much stake in the legend and yet there she was.

The man called out to her again. Not even a glimpse was spared in his direction.

A third time he yelled for her to look at him, and nothing. He grew angry at her lack of care for the patrons of Oarbrary. Annoyed at her for besmirching their town with streaks of color no one asked for.

There was nothing human about magic paint spilling from her, now a brilliant gold but fading fast into soft canary.

She walked right past him, oblivious, or perhaps uncaring, and this enraged the man.

Losing all sense of reason, he poured water behind her as she walked, stamping and jumping with all his might on the pigmented trails.

Suddenly, the woman stopped. A wretched dry heaving sound emanated from her chest. She hunched over and fell to the ground, her face a mask of agony.

Upon seeing her mangled form, the man came to his senses. His coffee mug shattered against the pavement.  “I’m… I’m so sorry.” As fast as the haze of anger had overtaken him, it had dissipated just as quick.

He hurried forth in an attempt to comfort her but she was already standing again. Spine stiff and gaze forward, she marched onwards.

After that, nary a whisper of the Paintbrush Woman could be heard in Oarbray. She began to fade away only to emerge in the rare fireside chat or mid-morning tea like a wisp of smoke.

But every once in a while, either from a town tourist or a a wizened old man stumbling through the streets after dark, someone would spot her.

They say she’s different now. No longer does she leave behind pools of sapphire or magenta – only an endless sea of midnight black.

Uncategorized

Flash Fiction: The Crow

A/N: This is a piece that had been rolling around in my head for a while. I’m trying to get back into the swing of fiction writing so it’s rusty at best and I haven’t written much flash fiction before. I didn’t think it was good enough to be published but thought it might be fun to share anyways.

Nestled into the handsome mountainside sat a manor strangled by cords of ivy. The estate stretched out across twenty acres of land, some of which contained an apple orchard.

Of the many striking components that made up the Vicker family home, none were as eye-catching as the massive bay windows with rococo framing, so intricate and astonishing they looked like they should be containing stained glass and adorning the walls of a cathedral. They loomed out from behind the railing on the wrap-around porch.

Continue reading “Flash Fiction: The Crow”
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Update.

Okay I’m not sure if anyone even pays attention to this blog anymore at this point BUT. I’m going to post all my articles on a separate blog to become an online portfolio for myself and actually start using this one again as a legitimate blog… it’s a work in progress that I won’t be able to really dig into until the end of the month or so for various reasons but then I’m going to hopefully spruce things up and actually use this baby like I originally intended to again.