The Three Body Problem (2008) – Liu Cixin

Wang Miao and Ye Wenjie are the central characters in a vast cast in this epic Chinese novel that is the first in a trilogy, also known as The Three Body Problem. Treating its subject matter with intelligence, and pouring on the science, the story takes us through the first steps of contact with an…

TIFF 2021: Dear Evan Hansen dir. Stephen Chbosky

Mental health. Suicide. Depression. Loss. Grief. Loneliness. These issues are usually trapped in the individual, and though a number of us share in these things, it’s never a shared experience. We are held in the prison of our issues, in a society where social media presentation, the illusion of life being better than it is…

The Midnight Library (2020) – Matt Haig

Matt Haig has been very outspoken about mental health and depression throughout his career in both his fiction and non-fiction writing. Suffering from these issues myself, I really didn’t want to read any of his works, because I just didn’t need the reminders, and yay for him for finding something that works for him, but…

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…

The Sniper (2021) – Chang Kuo-Li

Taiwanese author Chang Kou-Li delivers an action thriller this week. With its North American debut, The Sniper, is available now from House of Anansi Press, features a translation by Roddy Flagg and reads like the best of Hong Kong cinema. There are action beats, police investigations, involving characters and a weaving story that takes you…

Pump Up the Volume (1990) – Allan Moyle

There are moments, movies, books, and shows that stay with you, and some undeniably influence you. I remember where I was, and who I was (or at least on my way to becoming) when I was first introduced to Mark Hunter (Christian Slater) better known to his listening audience as Happy Harry Hard-on. With a…

Mission: Impossible (1966) – Elena, and The Short Tail Spy

IMF agent, Rollin Hand (Martin Landau) gets to fly solo in this mission, that sees him investigating the titular Elana, played by BarBara Luna in this episode that was written by Ellis Marcus and first aired on 10 December, 1966. Dan (Steven Hill) selects Rollin and a psychiatrist, Carlos Enero (Barry Atwater) to travel to…

Millennium (1997) – Force Majeure, and The Thin White Line

The first episode that really deals with the idea of the approaching millennium, and the prophecies created around it, Force Majeure, first aired on 7 February, 1997, and was written by Chip Johannessen. Frank Black (Lance Henriksen), Peter Watts (Terry O’Quinn) and Cheryl Andrews (Cch Pounder) get drawn in to a case featuring identical twin…

Event Horizon (1997) – Paul W.S. Anderson

I have always dug this movie, since I saw it on the big screen in 1997. I love the cast, I love the score (Micheal Kamen), and I love the ideas at work in this science fiction horror film, and like all fans of the film I lament the fact that we will never get…

Poirot Investigates (1924) – Agatha Christie

Agatha Christie’s first collection of short stories, first published in 1924, sets forth a number of mysteries before her Belgian creation, Hercule Poirot, his little grey cells and his good friend Captain Hastings. While still capturing some of the humour of her novels, the short form of the stories doesn’t allow for a lot of…