Fletch (1974) – Gregory McDonald

I first read Fletch back in the 80s when the Chevy Chase movie was coming along, and for some reason I had problems keeping the story threads straight, as most of the text in the novel is dialogue, not action, so I would lose who said what and would have to go back, and back…

Parable of the Sower (1993) – Octavia E. Butler

Octavia E. Butler’s science fiction tale, that follows a young woman of colour on her quest to understand herself, the ideas of god, and the destiny of humanity. Within pages of this novel, I was completely swept up in Butler’s storytelling style, her characters, and the world she created. And here’s the thing, the world…

The Diamond Queen of Singapore (2020) – Ian Hamilton

Somehow, with all the wackiness that was happening last year, I missed the House of Anansi Press’ release of the next Ava Lee novel by Ian Hamilton. Of course, that just meant I could catch up on it now, and I won’t have quite as long a wait (theoretically) for the next one. This time…

Fast & Furious (2009) – Justin Lin

The fourth film in The Fast and The Furious franchise brings back members of the core cast of the original film, tying it in with the larger world introduced in the third film (which happens some time after this) and puts Justin Lin in the driver’s seat again. His sense of energy and enthusiasm worked…

Mission: Impossible (1967) – Shock!, and A Cube of Sugar

This week’s first mission feels very much familiar in that it hits a number of Mission: Impossible tropes, the mask, the con, the danger and then the resolution. Not that it isn’t fun! Shock! was written by Laurence Heath and was first broadcast on 25 March, 1967. Dan Briggs (Steven Hill) and his usual team,…

Fletch (1985) – Micheal Ritchie

Chevy Chase brings Gregory MacDonald’s classic investigative journalist to life in this classic 80s film that is still damned funny, and a lot of fun to watch. When I first heard about this movie, they started re-releasing some of the novels, including the original, and I snapped a couple of them, but for me, they…

The Expendables (2010) – Sylvester Stallone

Sylvester Stallone stars, directs and writes (alongside Dave Callaham) in The Expendables, and he brings along a brilliant ensemble cast of classic action heroes, wrestlers and actors. Padding out a fairly simple story with some explosive set pieces this is just a mostly brainless action flick that serves as homage to the action films that…

Lethal Weapon 2 (1989) – Richard Donner

1989. I graduated high school and was living on my own for the first time, and my movie collecting addiction was swinging into full gear and this film, along with Last Crusade and Batman were some of my purchases that year, making me choose for the first time between proper meals or cinematic confection. It…

The Murder of Roger Ackroyd (1926) – Agatha Christie

This week’s Agatha Christie isn’t quite the romp of the previous entry, but like all her tales, is wonderfully engaging and entertaining as she weaves a tale of murder, secret marriages, servants, doctors, drugs, wayward sons, and hidden secrets and truths. And in the middle of it all, Hercule Poirot. This one is a bit…

For Special Services (1982) – John Gardner

John Gardner’s second 007 novel, updating Ian Fleming’s James Bond for the 1980s, is on the book shelf this week, and delivers the crisp, solid, sex and violence filled thrill ride we’ve come to expect from England’s top spy. This story, set largely in America, sees the return of Bond’s old nemesis, SPECTRE, with the…

Five Midnights (2019) – Ann Davila Cardinal

I’ve found myself craving something spooky to read again, and threw that into a google search, and it came back with this title, one I hadn’t heard of, and I promptly went off and found it. It ended up being a young adult novel, never a problem for me, as I love some of the…

The Departed (2006) – Martin Scorsese

I come to a rather interesting list in the Ten Bad Dates With De Niro book that has a couple of films that I haven’t previously covered for the blog. It’s a list of remakes that are arguably better than the original. And the critical reception, not to mention that of the audience, would seem…