Stephen King – The Stand

Stephen King has 7 book adaptations coming to TV or film in 2017. He’s bigger than ever.

This may be the second Stephen King book I’ve read after 11/22/63: A Novel. Millions love The Stand, many considering it to be his best.

Obviously King’s a great story teller with mass appeal.

There are some terrific characters in this book. King understands people. He understands Trump voters, I’m sure.

Stephen King hates Trump. That might be one reason I read this book.

The Stand is a post-apocalyptichorror/fantasy novel by American author Stephen King. …

… the total breakdown of society after the accidental release of a strain of influenza that had been modified for biological warfare causes an apocalyptic pandemic which kills off the majority of the world’s human population. …

The novel was originally published in 1978 in hardcover, with a setting date of 1980. … The book was later re-released in 1990 as The Stand: The Complete & Uncut Edition (the longest book published by King at 1152 pages); King restored some text originally cut for brevity, added and revised sections, changed the setting of the story to 1990 …

The miniseries was broadcast in 1994 … In February 2016, The Stand movie had been put on hold …

Some criticize the book for being racist. I didn’t feel that way. It’s an epic of Good v Evil. The evil guys are racist.

I didn’t love the book. But liked it enough to download Stephen King – It: A Novel (2016).

related – Zack HandlenWhat I Learned From Re-Reading Stephen King’s The Stand

Ubik by Philip K. Dick (1979)

Ubik is one of Dick’s most acclaimed novels. It was chosen by Time magazine as one of the 100 greatest novels since 1923. …

The novel is set in the year 1992, by when humanity has colonized the Moon and psychic powers are common. …

Each chapter is introduced by a commercial advertising Ubik as a different product serving a specific use. The last chapter is introduced by Ubik claiming that it has created and directed the universe …

It might be brilliant. But — for me — I found it too confusing. Difficult to follow.

I never finished it.

House of Spies (Gabriel Allon #17)

We expected in this book that Gabriel Allon would stay home, now the Chief of Israeli security and father of twins.

Not so much.

… Daniel Silva’s runaway bestseller The Black Widow was one of 2016’s biggest novels. Now, in House of Spies, Gabriel Allon is back and out for revenge—determined to hunt down the world’s most dangerous terrorist, a shadowy ISIS mastermind known only as Saladin.

Four months after the deadliest attack on the American homeland since 9/11, terrorists leave a trail of carnage through London’s glittering West End. The attack is a brilliant feat of planning and secrecy, but with one loose thread: the French-Moroccan street criminal and ISIS operative who supplied the combat assault rifles. …

Amazon

Click PLAY or watch a TV interview with the author on YouTube.

A TV series in in the works produced by MGM.

100,000 Banned Books To Build A Full-Size Parthenon

Heinrich Heine:

“Where they burn books, at the end they also burn people,”

Argentinian artist Marta Minujín, 74, has created a monumental replica of the Greek Parthenon from 100,000 copies of banned books. According to the artist, it symbolizes the resistance to political repression.

The Parthenon of Books in Kassel, Germany is part of the Documenta 14 art festival. With the help of students from Kassel University, Minujín identified over 170 titles that were or are banned in different countries around the world, and constructed the full-size replica of the iconic temple from those books, plastic sheeting, and steel. …

Bored Panda

Gabriel Allon – Israeli assassin

Gabriel Allon is the main protagonist in Daniel Silva‘s thriller and espionage series that focuses on Israeli intelligence. …

I’ve just finished the final two books in the series to date.

Black Widow is the 16th book. I’m sorry to have to wait for #17 later this year.

In general the books have gotten better and better. Black Widow revolves around ISIS terrorist attacks on western targets.

On the other hand the blatant Pro-Israel bias has become more annoying.

The Allon story has gone on so long that Silva plagiarizes from himself. (Is that a thing?)

He cuts and pastes phrases, sentences and possibly paragraphs from earlier books.

I’ve read all 16 books since Oct 2016.

Addicted.

 

 

 

 

The Handmaid’s Tale

Excellent.

A good example of how the great story telling in 2017 is on TV not on film.

If you want to muse on gender equality watch Handmaid’s Tale not Wonder Woman.

This show’s success is mostly Elisabeth Moss. She carries a high percentage of the scenes.

All the casting is superb.

Personally I feel the detailed cinematography and careful sound track are too precious. I wish filmmakers would concentrate on the story and stop showing off so much.

The pacing is too slow for me, as well.

Still … it’s must watch TV in 2017.

Click PLAY or watch a trailer on YouTube.

Gilead is a theocracy run by extremists from the American Religious right.

1. The parallels to Trump’s America are glaring and deliberate. …

2. It’s a parable about male privilege.

3. There will be changes from Atwood’s book.

4. The cinematography is both stunning and specific.

5. The Republic of Gilead parallels Puritanism. …

Why The Handmaid’s Tale Is Destined to Be 2017’s Dystopian Hit

related – 8 Questions We Really Want Answered in The Handmaid’s Tale’s Second Season

Old Man’s War (2005) by John Scalzi

Old Man’s War is a military science fiction and debut novel by John Scalzi …

It was nominated for the Hugo Award for Best Novel in 2006. …

… the first novel in Scalzi’s Old Man’s War series. …

I was reminded of of Ender’s Game.

Scalzi freely admits he was influenced by Robert A. Heinlein’s Starship Troopers.

The writing is juvenile to appeal to teenage boys.

Still, I enjoyed this book. Particularly the plot twist that soldiers must be age-75 to enlist.

Soldier John Perry tells the tale. His consciousness is transferred to a super-powered 20-year-old body.

There are plenty of interesting technologies in this imagined future.

BrainPal is a neural implant that allows members of the Colonial Defense Forces (CDF) to send and receive data, including speech, battle plans and much more. CDF soldiers use their BrainPals to translate alien languages, watch classic cartoons, and read old books.

It was initially optioned for film in 2011, and for the last few years Syfy has been trying to develop it as a TV series. Don’t hold your breath.

I don’t think I’ll continue to the sequel — The Ghost Brigades.