expr:class='"loading" + data:blog.mobileClass'>
Knowledge of our past is our inheritance. What we do with that knowledge will shape our destinies...

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Review Day: Dissension by Adrienne Monson + Olympus Has Fallen

Dissension by Adrienne Monson

I read this book because Adrienne is a fellow Jolly Fish Press Author and, as I've mentioned before, all us JFP-ers try to help read and promote one another's books. I received a digital ARC copy from JFP in exchange for an honest review.

Leisha is a thousand-year-old vampire with, as you can imagine, all kinds of past drama. A war is raging between the vampires and another race known only as the Immortals. While she's technically a vampire herself, the man she used to love and be married to thousands of years ago is an Immortal who hates her for becoming a vampire. To make things worse, the leader of her particular vampire household is a douche who wants Leisha for his lover. She despises him, of course, but he's powerful and she owes him her allegiance.

Enter Samantha, a head-strong teenager whose life has recently been turned upside down with the death of her mother. She goes to live with her dad, with whom she has absolutely no relationship and upon following him to his "work place" finds out that he's embroiled in underworld of paranormal creatures.

This was an interesting story and the characters were well-rounded. Unfortunately for me, it was difficult to enjoy the story. The ARCs we receive from JFP are unedited copies and this manuscript needed a LOT of work. There was a great deal of passive voice and line edits that needed attention. While I'm sure the final product will be much better-written, I really had to work to get through the ARC.

That said, I was intrigued by the story, which involves a prophecy child who isn't even born yet in the first book. What that means is that this is a promising, new vampire series and if you're into bi-polar immortals with plenty of family issues, sinister intentions, and a healthy dose of soap opera thrown in, this is the book for you! Happy blood-letting!

What vampire series is your favorite?

Olympus Has Fallen Movie Review

For a little-publicized film, I gotta say, this movie was AWESOME! One of the best I've seen this year. The first ten minutes of the movie are shocking and heart-rending. It only gets worse from there. 

*minor spoiler for the first ten minutes of the movie* Aaron Eckhart plays the President of the United States. While headed to a fundraiser on a blustery winter night with his wife and son, a terrible car crash results in loss and heartache. It's a shocking scene and so sad! Because of it, the President dismisses his personal bodyguard and good friend, played by Gerard Butler. The dismissal is not because Butler's character did anything wrong, but rather because the President can't stand to be reminded of the accident. *end of spoiler*

Eighteen months later, when radical North Korean terrorists attack Washington, taking the White House completely down in a ridiculously-well-planned coup, he dives back into the White House head-long to save his good friends, who just happen to be the First Family.

This is SUCH a great show! It does an excellent job of showing the tragedy that such attacks result in. So many killed so quickly. The flag, riddled with bullet holes. Cities and tourists taken out just as ruthlessly as the main targets. Even the Washington Monument being destroyed. And it all happens so fast that no one can catch their breath.

True to protocol, the President, VP, Secretary of Defense, and several other important members of the cabinet are taken into the bunker, but even that doesn't work out quite as planned. I won't go into why as those are some of the shocker twists of film, but suffice it to say this movie is action-packed, full of patriotism and heroic efforts to make sure that, no matter what the bad guys throw at us, the United States of America will never die.

Totally had me in tears several times! 

Best lines of the film were given to the female Secretary of Defense, somewhat reminiscent of Condoleezza Rice (not in ethnicity, but otherwise). While bleeding, injured, and imprisoned, she speaks to the President and says, in response to him saying that it's been a rough day at the office, "Could be worse. We may all be meeting our Maker today. If we do, the one thing I don't want my tombstone to read is, 'went down without a fight.' To which the President replies, "No chance of that." This same woman, when going to certain death--not saying how that turns out--shouts the Pledge of Allegiance at the top of her lungs. I mean, she was a cool lady!!!

The President faces down a North Korean terrorist
This was such a great film. I have nothing bad to say about it except that there were a few things that were perhaps a bit unrealistic. (Meh. It's Hollywood. Has to be expected.) Gerard Butler was his usual, save-the-day hero that we love to love. Aaron Eckhart is a talented actor. I don't always appreciate the films he chooses, but when he takes parts that are equal to his talents, he's phenomenal. This is one such role. Angela Bassett, Dylon McDermott, Cole Hauser (who got the title line, "Olympus has Fallen"), Rhada Mitchell, Melissa Leo, and the unconquerable Morgan Freeman all put out excellent performances.

I will hazard a warning that this film is extremely graphic. I was watching it, thinking how much gore went flying each and every time someone got shot (and hundreds did). I couldn't figure out why it was so graphic. Then I realized it carried an R-rating, not a PG-13. I was like, Oh. That's why. Also a significant amount of language because, let's face it, when you're dodging bullets and people around you are dropping like flies, your tongue probably isn't going to be very saint-like.

Overall, great film! Not sure why it wasn't advertised more, unless it's because it's a little too realistic and so many people in Hollywood prefer as few people as possible see it. Not sure.

Has anyone else seen Olympus Has Fallen? Why do you think the film's advertising sucked?

1 comment:

  1. Most definitely isn't my genre of choice. I've not read an ARC and didn't realize they were still in that rough form.