Red Queen – Victoria Aveyard

red_queen_book_cover

4.5/5 Stars

Summary: “This is a world divided by blood – red or silver.

The Reds are commoners, ruled by a Silver elite in possession of god-like superpowers. And to Mare Barrow, a seventeen-year-old Red girl from the poverty-stricken Stilts, it seems like nothing will ever change.

That is, until she finds herself working in the Silver Palace. Here, surrounded by the people she hates the most, Mare discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy the balance of power.”

A friend of mine suggested this book and it was on sale for really cheap so I quick picked it up and read through it.  If you loved dystopian YA novels like Hunger Games and Divergent, but kind of want to be reading something a little more adult, you are going to love this book!

It kind of has a Game of Thrones feel to it where there are different families, and you don’t know who you are able to trust.  The characters are great and come together to tell an exciting story.  There is a bit of romance to it, which I’m kind of thinking might play a bigger role in the following novels, but it isn’t done in a cheesy YA kind of way.  I think it is easy to forget that the characters are only in their late teens, which to me is a good thing.

You’re going to get hooked early on, but the just you wait until you get towards the end and see what happens because you are going to get that much more into it.  I’m so excited to get my hands on the second book in the series because I need to know where it is going to go next.

Logan

logan-trailer-700x300

4.5/5 Stars

Summary: “In the near future, a weary Logan cares for an ailing Professor X in a hide out on the Mexican border. But Logan’s attempts to hide from the world and his legacy are up-ended when a young mutant arrives, being pursued by dark forces.”

Everyone, take note.  This is how you make a superhero movie.

Logan is a great example of why I enjoy the X-Men movies more than anything with the Avengers in it.  It focuses on telling you a story and not just “hey look over here at some epic action shots.”  That is not what I want to pay to see.

Having the movie rated R was also a great choice, by allowing the movie to feel more real and gritty.  Logan is aging and hurting and the world is apparently not that great a place, the cursing and the blood add to the atmosphere of that.

I loved seeing the relationship between Logan and Charles and watching Laura’s character grow.  She’s bound to have a spin off, right?!

Logan is an amazing addition to the X-Men franchise and if you’re a fan, it’s going to blow you away.  And the ending, ughhhhh!!!

Also, there’s no after credits scene so you don’t have to wait around like I did :/

Moonlight

Moonlight

4.5/5 Stars

Summary: “A timeless story of human self-discovery and connection, Moonlight chronicles the life of a young black man from childhood to adulthood as he struggles to find his place in the world while growing up in a rough neighborhood of Miami.”

Out of all the Oscar nominated movies of 2017 that I have seen so far, I think Moonlight is actually my favorite.  It’s one of the few that feels bigger than just your average movie, which is what I want from something getting awards attention.

The movie is split into three parts, each telling the story of Chiron in different parts of his life.  I would have watched entire movies on each part because they were so good and interesting.  You get to see how a kid’s environment can really change how they grow and who they become.

If you’re into character driven stories, this is one you’re going to want to see.

My only problem with the movie is how each segment ended.  It was almost as if you get the first act of the story and just as everything is about to change, it ends.  Then in the next part you get a very brief mention of what happened during the gap, but not enough.  What they did with Juan’s whole situation really bothered me!  (You’ll know what I’m talking about if you saw it).

The ending of the entire movie wasn’t any different, unfortunately.  It ended JUST AS THINGS WERE GETTING GOOD!  Why?!

Despite that, Moonlight is a great movie that is well worth the 2 hours!

Jackie

natalie-portman-jackie-kennedy

4.5/5 Stars

Summary: “Following the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy fights through grief and trauma to regain her faith, console her children, and define her husband’s historic legacy.”

Yay, finally one of the Oscar nominated movies that I really liked!  There have been too many meh ones that I watched lately.

I thought this movie was incredibly well made from the acting to the overall look of the scenes and the writing.  Seriously, it deserves more attention than it has gotten.  I knew very little about Jackie Kennedy before watching this movie, but I felt like Natalie Portman fully lost herself in the character and became Jackie.

The movie shows Jackie as she tries to hold it all together after the murder of her husband in front of the entire country.  With looks and small moments you can see everything going through this woman’s mind at the time, knowing that her entire life is changed, but she still has to go on for the sake of her husband’s memory and her kids.

If you like history, watch it.  If you like great female characters, watch it.

A Series of Unfortunate Events

a-series-of-unfortunate-events-review-netflix-02_1484209999522

4.5/5 Stars

Summary: “After the loss of their parents in a mysterious fire, the three Baudelaire children face trials and tribulations attempting to uncover dark family secrets.”

From the weird intro song, which quickly grows on you, to the odd dialogue that wouldn’t fit in any other show, Netflix’s A Series of Unfortunate Events is everything I wanted it to be.

This was the first series of books that I got into after Harry Potter and I read every one except for the last (which kills me).  This series has the perfect blend of humor and tragedy that will leave you wanting more.  I just love the style of it…which is weird, so if you’re not okay with weird, you’re better off not watching.

Lemony Snicket’s interruptions do get to be a little bit much sometimes, but I hope his role in it will come together in the end.  I don’t remember what his deal was in the books and if there is any sort of explanation.

Each book, at least in this season, is split up into two episodes, so make sure you watch them in pairs.  I love this idea.  Instead of drawing out one book into an entire season or blending it all together like they had in the movie, this seems to make the most sense.

The acting is amazing, and not really being a fan of Neil Patrick Harris, I was worried with him playing Count Olaf, but he’s great and whether you were a fan of the books or just like interesting shows, you won’t be disappointed.

Available on Netflix.

Chewing Gum

michaela_coel

4.5/5 Stars

Summary: “The life of Tracey and the mishaps of her neighbourhood, friends and family. Oh, and obvs her boyfriend!”

This show!

I sat down and watched the entire first season in one sitting, which isn’t something I’d usually do.  Yes, there are only 8 half hour episodes, but still.  Chewing Gum (I don’t really get the name) is so funny and perfect I’m mad I didn’t watch it earlier.

Tracey is 24 years old and still has A LOT to learn about the world.  She’s trying to figure out the whole relationship thing while dealing with her very religious mother and sister.  It’s about life in your twenties if your life isn’t the kind that is typically shown on TV (ahem, me).

The jokes are great and will make you laugh out loud more than a few times.  I know season 2 just started to premiere over in the UK on E4.  I’m guessing it will appear on Netflix after the entire season airs.

Available on Netflix.

The OA

9cefe0df91c808c0dbbda346a42332097a4b66d9

4.5/5 Stars

Summary: “Having gone missing seven years ago, the previously blind Prairie returns home, now in her 20s with her sight restored. While many believe she is a miracle, others worry that she could be dangerous.”

Here is your next show to binge, but it’s only 8 episodes so far so prepare yourself for the disappointment of it being over way too soon.

I feel like there have been a lot of shows about kidnapping lately, so you might be like, why bother?  The OA is definitely one of the best and you need to give it a try!

The story goes back and forth between present day and back when Prairie was missing.  A lot of times when shows do this, there is one part that is more interesting than the other, but both of these are so good.  You want to know what is going to happen next but also what already happened so you can put all the pieces together.

The actors are all fantastic including Lucius Malfoy, Phyllis from The Office, and Hershel (head in tact) from The Walking Dead…also the mom from Dinotopia if any of you have watched that.

The ending leaves some things up for interpretation and it is driving me crazy!  So go watch all the episodes and get back to me on what you think it all means.

Available on Netflix.