My Week in Books, TV and Movies 11/16/18

Another slow week for me. I’m almost positive I will not make my goal of 100 books read this year.There was a lull in movies from the library and nothing exciting on TV. I’m sure all of this makes you very excited to read the rest of the post.

Books – I finally finished one of my book club books, Walden on Wheels by Ken Ilgunas. Ilgunas writes about his quest to pay off his student loans and lead a debt free life. Part of this involves living in a van while going to grad school at Duke. It was an interesting story and it made me want to go on adventures, but I hated the author. I hated him more when I got the audio and listened to him read it. I would have cared more about his quest if he wasn’t such a dick about it. I also read Brave by  Svetlana Chmakova. I really like her books

TV – I didn’t watch anything new this week, so I will talk about the new series All American and a storyline I hope the resolve soon. The basic premise of the show is that a football player from Crenshaw is recruited to play at Beverly Hills High. He ends up having to live with the coach and his family in order to play. From the very beginning there are hints that the coach might actually be his dad. The coach’s daughter is attracted to him as well. So, now we have the story of possible accidental incest. A CW high school show really doesn’t need an accidental incest storyline. This show doesn’t need the intrigue. It’s fine as it is with the high school drama and conflict between his two worlds.

Movies – I did not watch any new movies this week. I did watch Lean on Me with Morgan Freeman while I was off for a snow day yesterday.

On Deck – I’m reading The Reckoning by John Grisham and continuing to read The Sparrow. I’m hoping to have Eighth Grade and The Spy Who Dumped Me over Thanksgiving.

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My Week in Books, TV and Movies 11/9/18

I considered skipping this one this week because there’s not much to report. I’m not really sure what I’ve done with my week.

Books – I’m working my way through The Sparrow by Mary Doria Rusell for my work book club and Walden on Wheels by Ken Ilgunas for my personal book club. I really like The Sparrow so far and I don’t hate Walden on Wheels. It’s been slow going, though, for a few reasons. Reading two books at the same time always slows me down. Reading because I have to, even if I like the book, slows me down. After work my mind is usually in a place where I need passive TV watching, not reading. I don’t think I will make my goal of 100 books read this year.

TV – We spent a good portion of our TV time watching CB Strike. It is a really good adaptation of the books. I was surprised my wife liked it as she tends to not like the slower, character based mysteries. The other big TV event of the week was Andrew Lincoln’s last episode of the Walking Dead. Rick Grimes has been the main character of the show since the beginning.  The news that the episode was also the last for now for Lauren Cohan means there are now only two original cast members left on the show. I still like it and I think the loss of Rick and the time jump could reinvigorate the story telling.

Movies – We watched Oceans 8. It should come as no surprise to anyone that I slept through part of it. That’s just what we do. I fall asleep during movies and my wife falls asleep during basketball games. It will never change. The difference is I try to wake her up so she won’t miss the game and if she falls asleep during a TV show or movie I pause it and ask if she wants to watch it later and she just keeps watching and lets me sleep. I’m not sure which one is better.

On Deck – I have a feeling I will still be reading these two books next week. I do have Brave by Svetlana Chmakova as a possible graphic novel break to make me feel better about my reading accomplishments. I have no movies right now, so that spot might be empty next week. I will watch TV. I’m not sure I will watch anything worth writing about.

My Week in Books, TV and Movies 11/2/18

The book portion of my week is down again. It’s just easier these days to passively watch TV than read. Here we go

Books – I finally gave up on Space Opera. I just couldn’t do it. It was fed to the dustbunnies. I read Lu by Jason Reynolds. It is the last in the track series It was as good as you would expect from a Reynolds book. I would recommend reading the entire series. I started reading The Marrow Thieves by Cherie Dimaline. It is very good. I just need to force myself to read more.

TV – I watched the first two hours of the TV reboot of Heathers. I loved the movie. It is one of my favorites. I was hoping the TV show would be good. There were some very good performances in the show, specifically Brendan Scannell as Heather Duke and Jasmine Mathews as Heather McNamara, but the show as a whole just doesn’t work. I think there is a good idea in there somewhere, but they just didn’t find it. It also doesn’t help that the actors playing Veronica and JD are bland and boring. We watched the first part of CB Strike(based on the Cormoran Strike book series) and liked it. I was sure my wife would be bored, but we ended up staying up later than this old guy wanted to finish the first part.

Movies – We watched Ant-Man and the Wasp and Solo. We liked them both. I know people had issues with Solo. I guess it helps being someone who likes the Star Wars movies, but has not read the books and would have no idea if the story is off. I enjoyed the movie and that’s all that matters to me. Ant-Man was as fun and goofy as you would expect from Paul Rudd and Ant-Man. I do enjoy a lot of humor with my superheroes.

On Deck – If I manage to finish my book I’m reading, I need to read The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell for book club at work and a book with Walden in the title(I’m too lazy to look up the actual title) for my personal book club. We have Ocean’s 8 to watch this weekend and TV will be UK basketball tonight and UK football playing for the SEC East title tomorrow.

My Week in Books, TV and Movies 10/5/18

Back to my normal posting schedule now that most of the TV premieres are over. One note before I start the review – ABC comedies Fresh Off the Boat and Speechless come back tonight. Both are very good.

Books: I finally read a book that made me want to keep reading. One of Us by Craig DiLouie. It takes place in the 80’s in a world where kids have been born with mutations and pushed in to homes where they become wards of the state and treated poorly. The kids start developing powers the government wants to use. Eventually, something happens at one home and town that pushes the tension between the “normals” and the “creepers” toward violence. It is very good. I also read Essex County by Jeff Lemire and Orange:Future by Ichigo Takano. Both graphic novels(one manga) and both also very good.

TV: I’ve posted a lot about TV lately. You can go back and look at those posts to get more detail on what I’ve watched. I did finish Mr Mercedes season 1 on DVD. It was one of the better Stephen King adaptations I’ve seen.  As far as the new shows go – Single Parents is the only new comedy I will definitely continue watching. New dramas – hard to judge based on one episode. The only ones I’ve watched twice are Magnum and New Amsterdam. I still like both.

Movies: We watched two movies this week. American Animals is the story of the theft from the special collections area of the Transylvania University library by four students. I was interested in this one because I once lived in Lexington. It was an interesting story with clips of the real guys talking about it. I liked it. We also watched the gender flipped remake of Overboard. I liked it a lot more than I expected. Eugenio Derbez was really good in the lead role. I was also pleasantly surprised that they had the Spanish speaking characters actually speak Spanish and used subtitles instead of pretending they would always speak English.

On Deck: We are watching Deadpool 2 tomorrow. I’ve started Rabbit & Robot by Andrew Smith.

My Week in Books, Movies and TV(9/21)

It’s been an odd week for me. My work schedule was different. I’m at the end of my seven-day stretch with no day off. I’ve only had one day off in the last two weeks. I usually work one evening shift a week, but this week I worked two. I’m tired and sometimes I don’t know what day it is.  I’m going to use all of that as an excuse for not finishing a book this week. I did spend a lot of time in front of the TV.

Books – I’m still working my way through A Land More Kind Than This by Wiley Cash. I’m also re-reading Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman for my new book club at work. I guess I shouldn’t be shocked by how much I had forgotten about Neverwhere since it’s been 20 years since I last read it. It has taken more time than it should to finish these two books.

TV –  In addition to watching episodes of the shows I’ve already talked about here, I started watching two shows on Netflix. I watched all of season two of American Vandal. I wasn’t sure if season two would be as good as the first, especially since most of the cast was new, but I really liked it. I might have liked it more than season one. I would recommend not eating during the first fw minutes of the first episode. Also, if you have issues with poop, maybe don’t watch at all. We also started watching Shooter after my wife rewatched the movie version. It is much better than I expected. I am wondering, though, how the story can span three seasons. I also watched the first three episodes of Mr Mercedes. So far, so good.

Movies – It took me a second to remember that I did actually watch a movie this week. We finally got around to watching The Greatest Showman. I knew that I would probably like it I tend to like musicals. I was surprised that my wife liked it. Besides Grease, I’m not sure she’s every really liked a movie musical.

On Deck – I hope to actually finish the two books I’m reading. I’m not sure what I will read next. There will be a lot of TV as the new fall season starts. My most anticipated shows are Magnum PI and Single Parents. I will report on those during my week of TV posts next week. With all the TV, I don’t know if I will watch a movie. I guess that depends on what DVDs I might get from the library.

My Week in Books, Movies and TV(9/14)

It’s been another one of those weeks where I can’t remember what I did and when I did it. Was Labor Day just last week? I should probably start taking notes or something so I remember what I watched and read and don’t have to rebuild my week while I am still sleepy on a Friday morning. I probably won’t, but I should.

Books: I finished Sunrise Highway by Peter Blauner and There There by Tommy Orange. Sunrise Highway is a thriller dealing with an NYPD detective trying to prove that a police chief in a nearby county is a serial killer. It’s a good story and Blauner is a good writer, but I’m disappointed that he’s joined the “write a series” trend. There is nothing wrong with writing stand alone novels. There There was very good. I listened to it and the audio is great. It has a voice cast with a different person voicing each characters chapters. I love that. It takes a while for all of the characters to come together at the final event, but it’s worth the time it takes to get there.

Television: I watched episodes of the usual shows I’ve mentioned before. I watched the season premieres of Last Ship and The Deuce. The Last Ship is still a decent action show, but I’m not sad that this is the last season.  I think the last season would have been a good stopping point. The Deuce’s time jump could be interesting. We’ll see. We also watched the premiere of You on Lifetime. So far, it looks like a good adaptation of the book. Peen Badgley is good as the stalker who can be charming.  I think I will stick with it.

Movies: We watched Rampage. It will be no surprise to anyone that I slept through portions of it. It wasn’t as bad as I expected. I like The Rock, so that helped. I think that might actually be the only movie we watched this week. I don’t think we even watched an old movie in the background while doing other stuff. I have no movies from the library right now, so this coming week could also be a movie-less week unless we watch one that is sitting on our DVR.

On Deck: I’m reading a land more kind than home by Wiley Cash for my personal book club. I need to re-read/skim Neverwhere for my new book club at work. American Vandal season 2 is not available on Netflix and I have Mr Mercedes season 1 on DVD, so I know what shows I will be watching when my wife isn’t home. As I said above, I have no movies on deck. We do have Greatest Showman and Murder on the Orient Express on the DVR, but I’m not sure my wife wants to watch them.

When Do You Give Up?

I have a few shows on my DVR that I never feel like watching. I’ve watched a few episodes of one of them and find myself looking at my phone more than the screen. One I haven’t had the urge to watch once. I watched the first seasons of the shows and liked them enough to record season two, but apparently not enough to watch season two. Yet, they are still there, taking up space on my DVR. I have no idea how long they will sit there until I give up and delete them. Probably when the new TV season starts and I start having a disk space crisis and something has to go to make room for the shows I actually care about.

I will occasionally give up on a book if I read 50 pages and it’s not grabbing me. I have problems giving up if I’ve made it past 50 pages and then get bored after 100 or so. I feel like I’ve committed too much time to give up at that point so my reading slows down while I spend days finishing a book I no longer care about. Why do I do that? There are too many good books out there to waste time reading one I obviously don’t like. It’s the same with movies.  We recently watched an entire 90 minute movie that none of us as enjoying because no one wanted to be the one to suggest turning it off.

How long do you leave a show on your DVR before you admit you will never watch it and delete?

Do you have a page number for how long you read before you stop? Do you have a point of no return where you will finish no matter how bad it gets?

Do you turn movies off halfway through if you aren’t enjoying it?

Why do we waste precious time on things we aren’t enjoying?