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Nov 18, 2018

Sunday Post: November 18, 2018

Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimberly @  Caffeinated Book Reviewer!

Good Evening, Everyone!

My Current Reads!

Between rearranging furniture, cleaning the house excessively, and running dozens of errands, I had very little free time to read last week. Hopefully, I will find the time to begin reading Girls of Paper And Fire tomorrow. It's the only book I have on my agenda this week. I should have more time to read once I get past Thanksgiving. 

Reading Update

I did read a few more pages in the biography American Mirror: The Life and Art of Norman Rockwell. I'm now on page 78.


Last Week's Reviews





In The Mail

Fall Reads: Lizzie Borden, Zombie Hunter 2: The Axe Will Fall

Lizzie Borden took an axe
And gave her mother forty whacks.
When she saw what she had done,
She gave her father forty-one. 

Why do I have a fascination about Lizzie Borden?

Ever since I read a kid-friendly Lizzie Borden biography when I was in elementary school, I've been intrigued with what actually happened inside the Borden household on August 4, 1892. While you can easily conclude that Lizzie was the #1 suspect in the murders of her father and stepmother, there was no concrete proof that she was the murderer.

Over the years, there have been many fictionalized versions of Lizzie Borden, such as the LIFETIME movie Lizzie Borden Takes An Axe and the sequel miniseries The Lizzie Borden Chronicles, and this year's feature film, Lizzie. There have also been several fictionalized novels, such as "Lizzie Borden, Zombie Hunter" by C.A. Verstraete, who gave the Lizzie Borden tale a supernatural twist involving a zombie epidemic in Fall River, Massachusetts. You can read my review for the book here!

A sequel, titled Lizzie Borden, Zombie Hunter 2: The Axe Will Fall, was released earlier this year. It picks up shortly after the ending events of the the first book. After being acquitted of her parent's murders, Lizzie doesn't get a chance to move on with her life, as she must team-up with her self-defense instructor, Pierre, to stop a zombie outbreak from destroying Fall River. In order to permanently put an end to the threat, Lizzie and Pierre must first find the original source to the outbreak, which does have a connection to her later father's business.

However, finding out what started the outbreak might be Lizzie's undoing!

Final Thoughts

Blu-ray Review: Psycho Biddy Double Feature

Mill Creek Entertainment * AMAZON
Just because Halloween is over doesn't mean you have to stop watching slasher flicks!

Does it?

Of course not!!! If you're like me, then you're probably watching horror movies all thru the year.

Last night, I watched a double feature of Strait-Jacket and Berserk!, both starring the late Joan Crawford (What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?). The films were recently released on the Psycho Biddy Double Feature Blu-ray (NOT RATED; 189 minutes; $14.98) from Mill Creek Entertainment.

Directed by the legendary director William Castle and written for the screen by Robert Bloch (the author of Psycho), Strait-Jacket (1964; B&W; 93 minutes) tells the tale of Lucy Harbin (played by Crawford), a woman who has been locked up in a psychiatric hospital for the last twenty years for decapitating her husband and his mistress with an axe. After being released, her brother Bill and sister-in-law Emily (played by Leif Erickson and Rochelle Hudson) lets her live with them on the family farm.

Bill and Emily had adopted Lucy's young daughter Carol (played by Diane Baker) after she was institutionalized. Now an adult, Carol is an artist and sculptor. She's an engaged to Michael Fields (played by John Anthony Hayes). Her life is going great, until her mother is released back into her life. Despite their estrangement, Carol attempts to heal her relationship with her mother.

After a series of new axe-murder occurs in the area, everyone points their fingers at Lucy!

Directed by Jim O'Connolly, Berserk! centers around a traveling English circus owned by Monica Rivers (played by Joan Crawford) and her business partner Dorando (played by Michael Gough). At first glance, it seems like just another normal circus, well, until the tightrope walker Gaspar the Great dies during an act. No, it wasn't an accident. It seems someone had weakened the tightrope that lead to his death. Shortly after hiring a new tightrope artist, Frank Hawkins (played by Ty Hardin), Dorando is murdered.

Monica tries her best to calm the nervous of the other circus performers and protect her daughter, Angela (played by Judy Geeson), who just rejoined the circus after being expelled from school. Protecting your loved ones isn't an easy thing to do with a killer on the loose.

Final Thoughts

Nov 16, 2018

Book Blogger Hop: November 16th - 22nd

Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML

Welcome to the Book Blogger Hop! 

If you want to schedule next week's post, click here to find the next prompt question. To submit a question, fill out this form.

The Book Blogger Hop now has its own Facebook Group! Please join the group to get all the newest Book Blogger Hop updates. Also, you can communicate with your fellow book bloggers in the group.

What To Do

1. Post on your blog answering this question:

This week's question is submitted by Elizabeth @ Silver's Reviews.

2. Enter the link to your post in the linky list below. Please enter your Name/Nickname @ Blog Name and the direct link to your post answering this week’s question. Here's an example: Billy @ Coffee Addicted Writer

3. Visit other blogs in the list and comment on their posts. Try to spend some time on the blogs reading a few posts and possible become a new follower. The purpose of the hop is to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers to your own blog.

DVD Review: Born Free: The Complete Collection

Mill Creek Entertainment * AMAZON

Now available on DVD from Mill Creek Entertainment is Born Free: The Complete Collection, featuring the films Born Free (1966; 95 minutes; PG), Living Free (1972; 91 minutes; G), Born Free: A New Adventure (1996; 91 minutes; NOT RATED), and Born Free: The Complete Television Series (1974; 826 minutes). There are no special features on the 4-disc set.

Born Free is based on the nonfiction book of the same name by the late Joy Adamson, it told the true story of George and Joy Adamson (played in the film by Bill Travers and Virginia McKenna), who are living in the Northern Frontier District of Kenya when George is forced to kill a lioness. He brings home three female cubs, which they named Big One, Lustica, and Elsa. The two older lioness were eventually sent to the Rotterdam Zoo, but the couple kept Elsa, who they raised as a pet.

After Elsa caused a herd of elephants to stampede through a local village, George and Joy knew they had either two options - send Elsa to a zoo or set her free into wild. Joy is determined that the best choice is to let Elsa be free, but doing so will be a major challenge, as the couple must train Elsa to hunt in the wild.

Living Free takes the title name from Joy Adamson's second book but the plot is actually based on the author's third book, Forever Free. For the sequel, Nigel Davenport and Susan Hampshire take over the roles of George and Joy. After Elsa dies of a sudden illness, the couple make it their mission to teach Elsa's three cubs (Jespah, Gopa and Little Elsa) to hunt in the wild.

Born Free: A New Adventure is a made-for-television movie that aired on ABC in 1996 starring Chris Noth, Jonathan Brandis, and Ariana Richards. The low-budget film has very little to do with the original films. It's more of a modern reboot with a new "Elsa" lioness.

Born Free: The Complete Television Series ignores Living Free and is more of a direct sequel to Born Free. While Elsa the lioness is featured in the episodes, the plots focuses more on George and Joy Adamson's daily struggles to (played by Gary Collins and Muldaur) run a natural reserve in Kenya. The series lasted for only 13 episodes.

 Final Thoughts

The Friday 56: Elevation by Stephen King


Grab a book, any book.
Turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader.
Find any sentence, (or few, just don't spoil it).
Post it.
 Add your (url) post below in the Linky at:
Add the post url, not your blog url.

"That subject is closed. What needs to be closed is your behavior. We don't need you standing up for us in the local grease-pit, and restarting a lot of talk that had just begun to die down."

page 56, Elevation by Stephen King

  My Thoughts

Nov 14, 2018

DVD Review: Buffalo Girls

Mill Creek Entertainment * Amazon

Do remember when CBS cranked out one Larry McMurtry miniseries after another?

While I do recall the Lonesome Dove miniseries and its sequels/prequels, I have never seen any of them. And I have never read any of the books they are adapted from. The only Larry McMurtry novels I have ever read are the four books in The Berrybender Narratives.

Mill Creek Entertainment recently released Buffalo Girls (NR; 182 minutes; $14.98) to DVD + Digital, which is a 1995 two-part miniseries based on the 1990 novel of the same name by Larry McMurtry. Directed by Rod Hardy, the miniseries starred Anjelica Houston, Melanie Griffith, Sam Elliott, Gabriel Byrne, and Reba McEntire.

Buffalo Girls is the fictionalized story based on the real-life Calamity Jane (played by Anjelica Houston), a woman who dressed, talked, and acted liked a cowboy. She's most famous for being "linked" to Wild Bill Hickok (played by Sam Elliott in the miniseries). In McMurtry's version, Calamity gave birth to a daughter after Hickok was murdered and later gave the child to a British couple.

Part One of the miniseries centers around Calamity, who regrets giving up her daughter, and Dora DuFran (played by Melanie Griffith), a madam of a brothel/hotel in Deadwood, who has an on-again off-again relationship with Ted Blue (played by Gabriel Byrne). Part Two mostly centers around Calamity joining  Buffalo Bill's Wild West show, which takes her, along with her friends Bartle Bone (played by Jack Palance) and Jim Ragg (played by Tracey Walter), to England, where she gets to visit her young daughter.

Final Thoughts

Book Tour & Giveaway: A Pirate's Calling

The Dangerous Legacy
A Pirate's Calling Book 1
by Darren Simon
Genre: YA Historical Fantasy

Thin, pale, awkward, bullied, Sam Every is a thirteen-year-old who finds comfort among his friends and his days at the beach. The ocean beckons to him. It is where he feels safest. Fitting in no longer matters when he is near the Pacific’s rolling waves. Gazing toward the endless blue where it touches the horizon, he imagines the ports he might someday reach and ponders his future.

Little does he know an apparition—a hauntingly beautiful girl from the sea—will lead him farther from his home than he could ever dream, for destiny has given him a dangerous legacy.

Deadly Waters
A Pirate's Calling Book 2

Thirteen-year-old Sam Every has traveled back in time to the Golden Age of Piracy to face Captain Jem Slayer, master of the dark arts. Deceived into handing Slayer the ultimate weapon, the Sword of Zel-Kar, Sam has lost his hands, sliced off in his first clash with the evil pirate.

But all is not lost.
Sam’s friends have found their way back in time, and with the help of the pirate hunter, Benjamin Hornigold, have rescued him from the island where Slayer marooned him. Now, aided by a new band of rogues and a mystery friend, Sam must rise above his injuries and find the strength to again face Slayer before it is too late—before the future is forever shattered. ​

Book Spotlight: Stalk


Book One

by Victoria Danann

Genre: paranormal romance

Publisher: 7th House, Imprint of Andromeda LLC

Date of Publication:  October 19, 2018

Number of pages: 388
Word Count: 82,000

Cover Artist: Victoria Danann

Tagline: Every breath you take.

What's the book about?

The first coming of chaos. Twelve thousand years ago, members of a more advanced race crossed into our dimension when the barriers temporarily collapsed.

Trapped in our world, the aliens, who were also shifters, built structures that eventually caused the great flood and the sinking of Atlantis.

Some of the alien DNA survived in progeny that carried an untraceable shifter gene, dormant until awakened by mating with a full blooded werewolf.

 Here's a sneak peek!
Shortly after the incident, the event came to be known as May Day simply because it occurred on the first of May. The term would be forever after altered to represent the pandemonium that followed the dimension overlap that left so many stranded. It worked because it was a good choice because of disassociating the incident with high emotion.
Some from other places were left here. Some that belonged here had disappeared and, even though every city had a centralized location where loved ones could post photos and leave flowers or burning votives, everybody knew somebody who had lost someone. And the world had been turned on end in the blink of an eye.
The conventional wisdom about withholding news panic-inducing news from the public was bypassed. Cover up was impossible in this case and overnight, everyone knew that we experience reality alongside many others, invisible to us. Everyone also learned conclusively that other species exist in those realities.
One of the species that had been stranded in this dimension were canine shifters, werewolves as they were sometimes called in fantasy. Being disinclined to panic, the werewolves, each individually, used their cunning to quickly assess their circumstances and determine what was required to survive. Utilizing their innate talent for strategy, and seduction, they were able to identify missing humans who were a reasonably close match to anthropoid bodies, were without families and were, basically, antisocial. Being shrewd as well as cunning, they made matches with candidates with financial assets.
New lives could be built in a new world without money, but money could go a long way toward building walls of privacy and providing the one thing they needed most, after company, of course. That thing was territory. Freedom.
The government made it almost too easy by publishing an open database of the missing and requested that corrections be made if someone listed was present and accounted for. Each shifter made his choice then notified the government that they were not missing. They were sorry for the misunderstanding, but had been sailing in the Caribbean or fishing in the Gulf or on an archeological expedition in the Amazon.
By the time the dust of the catastrophe began to settle, seven shifters had found each other through a curious intersection of tech and primeval instinct. Each of the seven, while dealing with his own personal disorientation and sense of loss, quickly identified the Pacific Northwest as the most suitable habitat on the North American continent. Millions of acres of national parks and wildlife reserves was attractive. That, and the cooler temperatures, made the locale almost ideal as shifter temperatures run a full three degrees warmer than humans.
It took only a few weeks to come across each other. Shifters in wolf form can cover great distances. In so doing they came across the scent of others who were similar to themselves if not identical, but definitely distinctive from wild wolves. And each felt immeasurable relief to find others. For social animals, abject solitude would be a sentence to hell.
That was one of the reasons why Ken Sahabe was admitted to the pack without hesitation even though he was not a canine, but a spotted hyena. The pack decided Ken’s social and hunting needs were close enough and admitted him.

The hard wiring of pack behavior hadn’t changed for millennia. However, the language used to describe certain facts of pack life was altered for modern times so that it seemed more politic. For example, rather than saying the alpha decided, which was true, the thought would be expressed as ‘the pack decided’. In Ken’s case, though the actual wolves didn’t have a real vote, they accepted him like one of their own species.

Facts About DCC

At the heart of any DCC station is the command center. Many people who are new to this technology may not know the facts behind these devices so this article will be a basic breakdown. A throttle command sends signals which are relayed to the main device. The device then proceeds to process the signals and then after this, they create a standardized packet of DCC information that is then sent to the decoders on the main unit. The DCC command center does not do any of the actual work, they are more or less there to direct traffic.

When DCC was first created, the devices were of a standalone nature. There were two pieces that were essential to the technology and the success of the device. These were the command center and the booster. Connected to the command station was the throttle network. The booster connected itself to the command station output. The output that the booster put forth was connected to the DCC track. However, in the early 1990s, there was a new invention in that the two separate units were combined into one single device. By blending them into one single device, the cost of the technology was actually reduced by about 20%. The nickname of the command station was used in conjunction with this new integrated device and subsequently stuck.

The only drawback was that the nce DCC command station needed a booster to actually operate. This when a further integrated unit, one which combined the booster into the command center, was invented. This new technology went a long way toward maximizing power.