Monday, June 26, 2017

Missouri Homegrown -- Jesse James Kennedy

The two opening chapters of Missouri Homegrown are as brutal as anything I've read, and Jesse James Kennedy is just getting warmed up.  So if you don't like a lot of violence in your reading, don't even think about this one.  If you do like violence, this is the one for you.

There aren't any heroes here.  The people we're supposed to root for are the McCrays, a family of druggie dope-dealing killers, who are up against a Mexican cartel, made up of killers who are even worse.  Okay, maybe not worse, but just as bad.  And then there are the FBI agents who are after both groups.  They're not quite as bad, but it's a close call.  Lots of drugs of various kinds are consumed.  Many people are killed and maimed or both.  Not that there's anything wrong with that, since Kennedy has strong storytelling chops, and he's a good hand with character.  Booklist compared this to the work of Don Winslow, and I suppose the reviewer was thinking of a book like The Power of the Dog.  Probably not an unfair comparison, so that should give you an idea.  Check it out.

Six Awesome Scenes involving Alligators in Movies

Six Awesome Scenes involving Alligators in Movies

Song of the Day

Ron Holden - Love You So - YouTube:

The Technicolor Life of L. Frank Baum

The Technicolor Life of L. Frank Baum, the Man Who Created Oz

Today's Vintage Ad


I'm Sure You'll All Agree

The Best Movies of 2017 (So Far)

PaperBack



Peggy Gaddis, Farmer's Wife, Venus Books, 1953

The ATU Fable Index

The ATU Fable Index: Like the Dewey Decimal System, But With More Ogres: PICK A NUMBER, ANY NUMBER, and I’ll tell you a story. Fifty-nine? Hunker down for “Fox and the Sour Grapes.” Eleven hundred fifty-one? Good choice—that’s “The Ogre Overawed by Displaying Objects.” Five hundred? That’s “Guessing the Helper’s Name,” or, as you might know it better, “Rumpelstiltskin.”

I Miss the Old Days

America’s Wartime Sweethearts: 25 Fascinating Vintage Photographs of the Andrews Sisters, the Most Popular Female Vocal Group of the 1940s

Forgotten Hits: June 26th

Forgotten Hits: June 26th: "Windy" by The Association takes over the top spot this week in its sixth week on the chart.  But man, what a Top Ten this is … proof again of just how INCREDIBLY strong a year 1967 was musically.  

Includes a SuperChart and links to the Top Ten hits.

13 Wild Facts About ‘Wild Things’

13 Wild Facts About ‘Wild Things’

Sunday, June 25, 2017

2017 Locus Award Winners Announced

2017 Locus Award Winners Announced

Jimi After Dark -- Stephen Mertz

Jimi After Dark is quite a bit different from the last Stephen Mertz book I commented on.  The setting is swinging London in 1970, and Jimi Hendrix is coming apart because he's being cheated by music biz people, other people are out to kill him, he has real woman trouble, and all that's not even the worst of it.  So Jimi calls on Soldier, an old friend whose life he once saved, for help.  Soldier gets a two-week leave from his service in Vietnam and comes to help.

London's a lot different from Vietnam, but Soldier is tough enough and smart enough to adapt to the situation.  Jimi's having a tougher time of it than Soldier is, or at least isn't able to deal with it without plenty of drugs.

Stephen Mertz is himself a musician, and he spent time in London during the period covered in the novel, so all the descriptions in the book of the locations, the music, the people, ring true.  So do the action scenes, as you'd expect from Mertz.  This is also a novel of character, however, and Soldier has his own demons to deal with.  There's good stuff on several levels here, so grab a copy and don't miss out.

Misprint the legends

Misprint the legends: famous typos from James Joyce to JK Rowling

Song of the Day

DROP KICK ME JESUS by BOBBY BARE - YouTube:

Beauty Pageant Winners Who Found Success in Hollywood

Beauty Pageant Winners Who Found Success in Hollywood

Today's Vintage Ad


The Sequel-Sinking Silliness of ‘Batman & Robin’

Bad Movie Night: The Sequel-Sinking Silliness of ‘Batman & Robin’: This week, on the 20th anniversary of its release – and in the wake of DC colleague Wonder Woman‘s massive success – we look at the notorious 1997 comic book bomb Batman & Robin.

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Amos Hatter, Lady with a Past, Venus Books, 1951

Accidentally Excellent

Accidentally Excellent: Are you accident-prone? Don’t worry, it could end up making the world a better place.

I Miss the Old Days

20th century snapshots capture people proudly showing off their vinyl records

I Found a Penny in the Walmart Parking Lot Last Week

124-Year-Old Never-Worn Levi's Found in Arizona Cedar Chest   

Warning: Annoying auto-start video.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

I Found a Penny in the Walmart Parking Lot Last Week

Ancient Egypt: 3,000-Year-Old Wooden Toe Discovered Near Luxor is World’s Oldest Prosthetic  

Hat tip to John Duke.

Real-World Fairy Tale Landscapes

Get Lost in These Real-World Fairy Tale Landscapes 

Song of the Day

"Sweet Dreams".... PATSY CLINE - 1963 - YouTube:

I Found a Penny in the Walmart Parking Lot Last Week

A lost George Harrison song written for Ringo Starr has been found in a piano bench

Today's Vintage Ad


I'm Sure You'll All Agree

The 50 Best Good Bad Movies: The bad special effects, the awful acting, the nonsensical plots — there’s something enchanting about a movie that’s hopelessly bad. After rewatching all the films your favorite actors wish you’d forget, we determined which are the best (well, best worst) ones ever.

PaperBack



Peggy Gaddis, Painted Lips, Venus Books, 1951

I Miss the Old Days

Wide Seats and Plenty of Legroom: These Old Pan Am Photos Show How Much Airline Travel Has Changed

It's a Scientific Fact!

Study: Cowboys top Patriots as team with the NFL's best fans, Chiefs rank dead last

Forgotten Hits: June 24th

Forgotten Hits: June 24th  

Super Summer Survey included.

Emma Straub: By the Book

Emma Straub: By the Book: The author of “Modern Lovers” keeps her youth on a shelf: “There are books I loved in my teens and 20s that I would not love now, but it’s still nice to see them there, as a reminder of a person I used to be.”