Two Shows to Recommend and Two Books I Didn’t Like…

I’m not going into full reviews, but I wanted to bring some recent hits and misses to your attention:

Stranger Things. In case you haven’t heard of this Netflix phenomenon, let me be the first to tell you that you are most definitely missing out.  A nearly perfect eight episodes explore (in pure, unapologetic terms) supernatural events in a Michigan town.  It’s as if Stephen King and Steven Speilberg came together and did their best work.  Congrats to the Duffer brothers!  (And to my friend Nick, you can see his name in the credits).

strangerthingsposter

Catastrophe.  I heard about this one through a blog and it was so good we watched the first episode, then proceeded to finish the season (5 additional episodes) last night.  It’s been a long time since I have actively laughed out loud at a show.  Repeatedly.  Watch for the brutal honesty and smart humor.  Stay for the supporting cast.  I’ve got to figure out where to stream the second season from…

catastrophe

And two books I just can’t recommend.  Having been in something of a reading slump recently, these books haven’t helped in the least.

Court of Fives  This is the *last* time I will take the recommendation of an author I like.  Seriously, author-who-shall-not-be-named, I am deeply concerned for what you consider a ‘good’ novel, because I have struck out with EVERY SINGLE BOOK you have recommended.  With terribly clunky pacing, a romance (out of nowhere) and a protagonist I just couldn’t support, this was a skimmed read at best.  Props for diversity and some amount of world-building, but that’s about it.  I won’t be reading the sequel.

Court of Fives

Into Aether  From NetGalley, I was stoked for a good steampunk book, but at 28% in, this book is already difficult for me to enjoy.  As with above, just because a dude is put in the book does not = love interest.  Additionally, why should any modern protagonist just ‘go along’ with things?  Without any reason to, Theo (yes, that is the sound of my eyes rolling, it is of course short of Theodora) goes along with a series of bizarre events.  I guess we’re meant to feel sorry for her, and therefore interested in her story?  I won’t even get started on the supporting cast…

With both YA stories, I’m very excited that Queen Juliette has suitors who have some depth and the reason she has any interest at all in them is less about their physical attributes and more because of how they act.  Never mind she really doesn’t have time for any of them…y’know, trying to rule a country and all.  Oh, and there is that whole potential interest in the Black Queen…

Into Aether
I will not be picking up Books #2 and #3.

Onto the next!

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