Learning to Drive by Isabel Coixet

Learning to Drive is a leisurely, character-driven movie billed as a "comedy drama" but its overall tone is more hopeful and reflective than hilarious.

Posted by on August 18, 2018

The Great Wall by Yimou Zhang

Viewers who want period accuracy and believable tales can skip this one.  For the rest, the story is entertaining, but not particularly surprising. 

Posted by on July 11, 2018

Bossypants by Tina Fey

Tina Fey is a powerhouse of the writer/actor/comedian/producer variety, and now her deadpan snark finds itself on the page in her memoir, Bossypants.

Posted by on June 30, 2018

The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet by David Mitchell

The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet is a sweeping, carefully plotted novel of politics and trade in Japan when the island nation closed its borders to all others. There Read more...

Posted by on May 1, 2018

Between Us and the Moon by Rebecca Maizel

“You watch the world. I’m not sure you even live in it.” Fifteen-year-old Sarah’s boyfriend has just dumped her with these words, and she’s determined to prove him wrong.

Posted by on April 23, 2018

Insurgent by Robert Schwentke

The “simulations” that were so important to the first movie retain their relevance here, offering opportunities for approximately three additional and extra-trippy action scenes.  If action is what you want, Read more...

Posted by on March 2, 2018

Fool by Christopher Moore

Fool is a funny, gossipy, irreverent, silly, irreverent, offbeat, high-drama – and did I mention, irreverent? – retelling of Shakespeare’s King Lear, from the perspective of the court jester.

Posted by on February 21, 2018

Better Than Perfect by Melissa Kantor

Juliet’s life is wonderful.  She’s got the family, the grades, and the boyfriend, and they’re all perfect.  That is, until her dad moves out and her mom overdoses on her Read more...

Posted by on January 11, 2018

Fat Vampire by Adam Rex

Doug – uncool, unattractive, and often unpleasant – is a refreshing change from all the “sexy” vampires that have lately saturated the paranormal genre.

Posted by on November 17, 2017

In Want of a Wife by Jo Goodman

Goodman hits upon many of the genre’s clichés, including the spunky female, brooding male, dangerous past, and romantic impediment(s), but executes them well enough that readers will find it difficult Read more...

Posted by on October 20, 2017

Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson

Anderson writes about Melinda’s experiences with authenticity and sincerity, creating a well-developed protagonist who is awkward, brooding, sarcastic – and damaged – and with whom readers will sympathize.

Posted by on October 5, 2017

Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy by Gary D. Schmidt

Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy is a plot-driven story about friendship in the face of racism, inspired by the true history of Malaga Island. The often dramatic and intense tale has Read more...

Posted by on October 5, 2017

La-La Land by Damien Chazelle

Stone and Gosling give excellent performances of characters torn between doing what they want and what logic tells them they should do.  Mia and Seb come across as sympathetic people Read more...

Posted by on August 23, 2017

The Brides of Rollrock Island by Margo Lanagan

Misskaella gets her revenge for years of rejection by giving the men what they ask her for, sea-wives so beautiful that none wants a land-wife.  The results transform Rollrock Island Read more...

Posted by on August 1, 2017

Four Nights With the Duke by Eloisa James

Four Nights With the Duke is a Regency-era romance that tries for sensuous, but doesn’t quite make it.  Mia and Evander spend so much of the book fighting their physical Read more...

Posted by on August 1, 2017

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