Wednesday, September 04, 2013

so, now we have netflix...

at least I've gotten tons of knitting done.

Warehouse 13, seasons 1-3, with Eddie McClintock and Joanne Kelly.  That's a some good recommendation, Netflix.  There is some crossover between this show and Eureka, so I was marginally aware of it.  I didn't anticipate I would like it so much, since it's more magic and fairy-tale-y than science-y, but it draws quite a bit on literature and mythology.  [geek alert].

The characters are very likeable.  The season 1 Pete character is very like Booth on Bones, early and mid-seasons.  I mentioned this to a coworker who likes Booth and she reminded me that Eddie McClintock was a minor character in one season on Bones and they other characters called him "Booth light," which is a true description.

Terra Nova, with Jason O'Mara.  As Leela said, "we all know the best shows get cancelled; some even three or four times."  I'm sad that I watched the whole season before realizing Fox dropped it.  The story clearly isn't over.  Maybe if enough people stream it, Netflix will pick it up. The writing isn't perfect, but it's pretty good.  There are enough characters that they don't have to run out of material for quite a while.

Star Trek: The  Next Generation with Patrick Stewart.  That took nigh on forever.  It's hard to sum up an entire run, so I'll make these few disjointed comments:
Seasons six and seven contained some real weirdness. What happened to the writing?
Jonathan Frakes is a super-crappy actor, but I rather liked the episodes he directed.  He should just stick with that.

end media.

About Grace by Anthony Doerr.  I was reading this to become more familiar with the author we may host in 2014 for Everybody Reads.  However, I only got to page 111.  The book is interesting, but takes concentration to follow, since the character is a little different and the story jumps back and forth in time.  I didn't have the concentration to devote.

Tree Soldier: A Novel of Love, Forgiveness and the Great Depression by Janet L. Oakley.  This is our 2013 title for Everybody Reads.  Interesting, because I don't know of any other books that are set in Civilian Conservation Corps camps (it was a Great Depression thing).  Without double-checking my facts, I want to say this started out as a self-published title.  If there were to be a new edition, with things like proper commas, only one speaker per paragraph, and one font throughout, this could be quite stellar.

Once again, I helped create the discussion questions for this year's program.  I wasn't able to steal nearly as many as I did last year, since not many libraries have done the book.  Some of the questions included are kinda generic. In case they could be of use to you, here they are:

1.       The citizens of Frazier, as well as the local boys in the CCC, refer to Joisey Squad as “foreigners.”  Reflect.
2.       What do you think will likely be the focus of the forthcoming prequel, Timber Rose?
3.       Do you see a future for the book as part of a series?
4.       Is Kate’s behavior in her first scene indicative of her character?
5.       How realistic was the characterization? Would you want to meet any of the characters? Did you like them? Hate them?
6.       Did the book end the way you expected?
7.       Consider the similarities between the CCC and army life.  Especially considering the book’s title, do these similarities go deeper than the surface?
8.       There were many characters in town, in the other squads, and in Joisey Squad.  What other character(s) would you liked to have seen fleshed out more?
9.       What scene was most pivotal in the story of Park and Kate, and in the story of Park and his past?  How would the story have changed if these scenes had ended differently?
10.   The setting, both location and time period, are critical to the story.  How effectively did the author communicate the setting?
11.   What information about Callister would you liked to have had earlier in the story?  How did the timing of information shape how you viewed him?
12.   The self-education engaged in by many of Joisey Squad is an important part of the history of American and of public libraries.  Is this still an effective process of education?  Which method of education—schools or self-education—is better?
13.   After the boxing match, McGill ceases to be much of a character, except a small part to be used by Callister to achieve his own ends.  Was his role early in the book important enough that his character needed to be written?  Could he have been incorporated into the later part of the book in an effective way?
14.   Why does Park try to hide his involvement with Holly?  Why does he assign himself blame in the matter of Marie and his brother?  Are either of these things you would try to hide?
15.   Have you had any experiences that relate to places or experiences in the book?
16.   Did you find the characters believable? Which of the characters did you like the most?
17.   How credible did the author make the plot?  Did the plot take any turns you did not expect?
18.   Did the epilogue tie up the story in the way you expected?  Was it satisfying?

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