Book Review: Space Odyssey


Title: Space Odyssey
Author: Michael Benson
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Book Description:


Celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of the film’s release, this is the definitive story of the making of 2001: A Space Odyssey, acclaimed today as one of the greatest films ever made, including the inside account of how director Stanley Kubrick and writer Arthur C. Clarke created this cinematic masterpiece.

Regarded as a masterpiece today, 2001: A Space Odyssey received mixed reviews on its 1968 release. Despite the success of Dr. Strangelove, director Stanley Kubrick wasn’t yet recognized as a great filmmaker, and 2001 was radically innovative, with little dialogue and no strong central character. Although some leading critics slammed the film as incomprehensible and self-indulgent, the public lined up to see it. 2001’s resounding commercial success launched the genre of big-budget science fiction spectaculars. Such directors as George Lucas, Steven Spielberg, Ridley Scott, and James Cameron have acknowledged its profound influence.

Author Michael Benson explains how 2001 was made, telling the story primarily through the two people most responsible for the film, Kubrick and science fiction legend Arthur C. Clarke. Benson interviewed Clarke many times, and has also spoken at length with Kubrick’s widow, Christiane; with visual effects supervisor Doug Trumbull; with Dan Richter, who played 2001’s leading man-ape; and many others.

A colorful nonfiction narrative packed with memorable characters and remarkable incidents, Space Odyssey provides a 360-degree view of this extraordinary work, tracking the film from Kubrick and Clarke’s first meeting in New York in 1964 through its UK production from 1965-1968, during which some of the most complex sets ever made were merged with visual effects so innovative that they scarcely seem dated today. A concluding chapter examines the film’s legacy as it grew into it current justifiably exalted status.

My Review

You wanna know about 2001 Space Odyssey? All the background that went into the movie? All the thoughts & ideas? Then read this book. I was amazed at all the info that you got from this book. The movie was amazing but after reading this book it makes you appreciate the movie so much more.

This is a non-fiction book, so I am quite honestly not a reader of non-fiction so my review is not as in depth as it would be for a fiction book. I rarely read non-fiction so I apologize for the lack of depth to my review.

 

I received this book from Net Galley for this review.

Book Review: The Queen’s Embroiderer


Title: The Queen’s Embroiderer
Author: Joan DeJean
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Book Description:

From the author of How Paris Became Paris, a sweeping history of high finance, the origins of high fashion, and a pair of star-crossed lovers in 18th-century France.

Paris, 1719. The stock market is surging and the world’s first millionaires are buying everything in sight. Against this backdrop, two families, the Magoulets and the Chevrots, rose to prominence only to plummet in the first stock market crash. One family built its name on the burgeoning financial industry, the other as master embroiderers for Queen Marie-Thérèse and her husband, King Louis XIV. Both patriarchs were ruthless money-mongers, determined to strike it rich by arranging marriages for their children.

But in a Shakespearean twist, two of their children fell in love. To remain together, Louise Magoulet and Louis Chevrot fought their fathers’ rage and abuse. A real-life heroine, Louise took on Magoulet, Chevrot, the police, an army regiment, and the French Indies Company to stay with the man she loved.

Following these families from 1600 until the Revolution of 1789, Joan DeJean recreates the larger-than-life personalities of Versailles, where displaying wealth was a power game; the sordid cells of the Bastille; the Louisiana territory, where Frenchwomen were forcibly sent to marry colonists; and the legendary “Wall Street of Paris,” Rue Quincampoix, a world of high finance uncannily similar to what we know now. The Queen’s Embroiderer is both a story of star-crossed love in the most beautiful city in the world and a cautionary tale of greed and the dangerous lure of windfall profits. And every bit of it is true.

My Review

Oh my, if you want a book on the beginning of Paris fashion then you need to read this book! It is an amazing in depth of information and details of the Paris fashion era. It makes you realize that the “fancy” looks we see today does not hold a candle to how they looked in the beginning.

This is a non-fiction book, so I am quite honestly not a reader of non-fiction so my review is not as in depth as it would be for a fiction book. I rarely read non-fiction so I apologize for the lack of depth to my review.

 

I received this book from Net Galley for this review.

Book Review: Last Night


Title: Last Night
Author: Kerry Wilkinson
Rating:
Book Description:


It’s the early hours of the morning and Rose Denton wakes up behind the steering wheel of her car. She’s off the road, through a hedge and in a field.

There’s blood on the windscreen and bonnet – but it’s not hers and there’s no sign of anything or anyone she might have hit. The last thing she remembers is being in a hotel on a business trip but now she’s miles away.

Back home and her daughter’s boyfriend is missing. The last thing he did was argue with Rose over money. He left no note, no text, no clue as to his whereabouts.

The police have questions – and so does Rose’s family. But those are little compared to the ones she has for herself.

What happened last night? And, perhaps more importantly, does she really want to know the answer?

A totally addictive psychological thriller which will keep you turning the pages until the final dramatic twist.

My Review

What to say about this book. The twists and turns, the author was wonderful about keeping you guessing as to who was the “bad person” in the book. I didn’t even pick up who it was until the author told me in the story. It is a gripping read that you may have issues putting down.

If you like thrillers that tend to make you think one person to be the bad guy only to find out that it isn’t him then this is the book for you! I recommend you read it if you like thrillers. It is a very good book.

 

I received this book from Net Galley for this review.

Book Review: The Babysitter


Title: The Babysitter
Author: Sheryl Browne
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Book Description:


You trust her with your family. Would you trust her with your life?

Mark and Melissa Cain are thrilled to have found Jade, a babysitter who is brilliant with their young children. Having seen her own house burn to the ground, Jade needs them as much as they need her. Moving Jade into the family home can only be a good thing, can’t it?

As Mark works long hours as a police officer and Melissa struggles with running a business, the family become ever more reliant on their babysitter, who is only too happy to help. And as Melissa begins to slip into depression, it’s Jade who is left picking up the pieces.

But Mark soon notices things aren’t quite as they seem. Things at home feel wrong, and as Mark begins to investigate their seemingly perfect sitter, what he discovers shocks him to his core. He’s met Jade before. And now he suspects he might know what she wants …

Mark is in a race against time to protect his family. But what will he find as he goes back to his family home?

If you loved reading The Girl on the Train, Behind Closed Doors and The Sister, you’ll love the suspense of The Babysitter. This unputdownable read will have you turning the pages until way after dark.

My Review

Oh my gosh, the story line in this book. It is amazing. Even though you know right off the bat who the villain is & why she is doing it, the book grabs you and will not let go. I would love to give an in-depth review of this book, but I am afraid I would give away all the secrets & the plot away. That would be a horrible thing. So I will try to gloss over the book.

It is amazing what one mentally ill woman can effect another mentally ill woman and how close they both can come to tearing a loving family apart. Mark (the husband) is such a character that you completely feel all of his emotions along with Jade & Melissa.

Sheryl Browne writes her characters so that no matter whether they are the “good” or “bad” character you completely feel what they are feeling. There is not a lot of authors that can do that to me. This one can, you will even find yourself hoping that Jade gets the mental help she needs.

This book can not be recommended enough by me if you like thrillers. Even if you do not like thrillers I think you will enjoy the complex story lines in this book. I enjoyed this book so much and I plan on reading more from Sheryl Browne.

 

I received this book from Net Galley for this review.

Book Review: Manacle


Title: Manacle
Author: Chris Aslan
Rating:
Book Description:


“I hear the clatter of swords and torches outside the cave as the soldiers come for me. In a moment their faces will relax when they see a skinny, outnumbered boy.

They don’t realise how dangerous I am. That I have monsters inside me.

I want to shout out and warn them to run, but I can’t. And then the violence begins…”

What if your body was not your own? What if you had vast strength, but were used as a weapon? A gripping story about the power of possession, and the power of freedom.

My Review

This book was not what I was expecting. I expected a book that would be a mild horror but I got a novel with Christian religiousness tones in the story line. Though Chris Aslan never mentions them by the names most people know them by you have no problems figuring out who they are. By what happens to “the master” tells you exactly who and what they are.

The characters are all well written and well designed. Though to be honest, I wasn’t sure if Phin was a boy or a girl at first. The distinction between the two religions is well defined so that you knew who followed “the master” and the others. Chris Aslan made it very clear the division and dislike that each group had for the other.

Chris Aslan made it very clear what would happen in the end for Phin, which is a bit surprising for an author in my opinion. While at the same time not surprising due to the differences between the two religious groups. Phin did what “the master” wanted him to do so in that wan it worked out.

The book is very good and I do recommend reading it. If I had realized the “religious” aspect of it then I do not know if I would have read it. I was expecting a bit more of a book with a man possessed with spirits and eventually fights them out of him and having people try to use him for bad or good. In a way this is what the book is about, but I just was not expecting it to go the way it did. The book just did not go the way the description leads you to think it would. Though the book is well written and engaging I just was not happy with it.

 

I received this book from Net Galley for this review.