Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Some Quick Stuff

Currently Reading
I have discovered Good Reads and you can see my "currently reading" books there.

Specifically, I always am delighted when I pick up a Kenneth Roberts book. I consistently kick myself for not remembering how thoroughly enjoyable his historical fiction is, while being scrupulously accurate. I'm reading The Lively Lady which is about a privateer captain during the War of 1812. Roberts' books tended to be about young men from New England who always got caught up in some historical events of our country's early days. Highly recommended.

Finished Reading
To Whom Shall We Go? by Archbishop Timothy Dolan. I have said it before and will say it again ... really valuable in terms of examining our lives as Christians. I'll do a more proper review later but wanted to get that out there. This is one worth reading and rereading. As I mentioned a few days ago:
Something grabbed me about To Whom Shall We Go, which is about examining our lives in Christ by using St. Peter as our guide. I kept dipping in different places and being riveted. To Whom is a short book and an easy read ... but I couldn't put it down last night. I love the reminders that focus us on St. Peter's strengths and weaknesses and showing the many ancient and current examples that reflect our own tendencies (or shall I just come clean and say MY own tendencies). Like any extrovert (when did that happen?) there is a lot to see in the brash, quick speaking St. Peter. So I am happy to see the other points there as well.
Space Vulture by Gary K. Wolf and Archbishop John J. Meyers. Wolf is the creator of Roger Rabbit and the childhood friend who he used to read science fiction with is now the Archbishop of Newark. Lamenting the lack of old-style sci-fi, they got together and wrote a completely enjoyable book. Featuring a villain worthy of Ming the Merciless from the old Flash Gordon series, this book takes the reader on a classic space opera journey. We follow heroic Marshal Victor Corsaire, rascally con man Gil Terry, courageous widow Sheriff Cali Russell, and her two young sons as they battle Space Vulture. One plot device was very obvious after two different characters mentioned if from their points of view but other than that, this was a rollicking good time!

Thumbs Up
Lagaan ... an Indian movie about a small village that battles a sadistic British officer during the time of the Raj. You might want to treat this one like a mini-series as it has a length that would make Martin Scorsese envious. However, it is a delightful triumph of the human spirit kind of story, complete with Bollywood dancing and singing that moves the story along in the best musical style. Although, noticing hair as I do, it was rather painful whenever the young villager who pushes everyone on to fight for their rights had his head uncovered. Possibly the worst haircut ever. As Tom said, "He looks like a young Vulcan." Other than that though ... enjoy!

Thumbs Down
Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist ... ugh. We both had heard ecstatic reviews from a lot of sources on this. All baseless as far as we could tell. An average teen style movie and not worth the time or money spent to watch it. Someday someone is going to cast Michael Cera in something where he doesn't have to play the awkward kid and I am going to enjoy seeing whether he has been unfairly typecast or if that is all he can do. He is absolutely superb in that type, I must say. However, he can't save the movie.

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