Book Review: Wings of Arian … fantasy … lots of dragons, ordinary and shapeshifting

Just finished the young adult phantasy series ‘Wings of Arian’.

WARNING: This series contains occasional kissing and a love triangle … but there are 50 shades of nothing other than dragons, magic, magical critters, battles AND the need for a proofreader.

This is the second trilogy series that I’ve read where there are some serious grammatical lapses, such as the rare misuse of ‘their’ for ‘there’, and the one or two missing words in a sentence. Example: He then handed her with great expectation the… (A fictional example as I did not take notes while reading. All outrage was solved with the reach for a glass of Merlot.)

WTH? Some word should always come after the word ‘the’. Good news: such things only happened perhaps once every 50 or so pages. I got over it because this is a really good read.

Rumor has it that I almost shed a tear about 10 pages before the end of the third book. The truth is that I’ve had a head cold lately and things happen. =^)

Book #1 of the trilogy is almost always FREE on both Google and Kindle. Books #2 and #3 are usually $2.99-3.99. Time well spent.

Find this book now on Amazon.com

Wings of Arian

Silly Chinese-Korean Pop Song takes Chinese and World Music Market by storm … and it is indeed silly

This song ‘Little Apple’ in English was constantly in the Chinese Top 10 since June of 2014.

Video is by the Chopsticks Brothers, who wrote the song as part of a soundtrack for a Chinese movie. This little ditty is a very catchy tune but the bizarreness of the music video has created a fanbase worldwide. MANY versions of this song with their own tribute videos and interpretations can now be found on Youtube.

Yes, I admit it. I like offtrack things which often verge on ‘OMG crazy!’ Life is too short to go with only what you know.

How popular is the song? ‘Little Apple’ even won at the American Music Awards … and the Chinese Army created its own version in July 2014 to use for recruiting; its video showed soldiers dancing and … view the video for yourself below.

You can find MANY other interesting versions of ‘Little Apple’ online.

REVIEW of ‘The Interview’ – Fun Raunch! … and free speech run rampant

Never in my 58 years have I wandered out on Christmas day to go to a movie.

Bill Golden - The Interview

This year I decided to put on my Red, White and Blue suspenders and go out to support independent theater owners that took the risk of showing the movie called ‘The Interview‘, which has earned the ire of North Korea, a hacking group called the Guardians of Freedom, and from which corporate America ran away from as quickly as possible.

I chose to view this movie based simply upon the principle of embracing free speech … and poking back at those who would dictate to us what we should/should not see, read, think or be exposed to.

Our local independent theater, the Manassas Four which is owned and operated by Bunny Khorana, fancied itself up for the film’s Christmas debut.

Manassas Four Theater

And yes, people showed up. So many people showed up to see the movie that they moved its showing to the largest of the four theaters in the complex.

Manassas Four - The Interview Crowd

America came out to see this movie. The young, the old, and those of every hue … plus there seemed to be a healthy number of Koreans in the audience.

The Review 

Quick Review: Oy vey! Rude, crude, lewd and embarrassingly very funny.

The audience laughed … they/we laughed a lot. I noticed that women’s voices were often the loudest and most often to be heard laughing. Two of the film’s main characters were women and both used their bodies as weapons … on the soft minds of men and male weaknesses (which are legion!). Sexual innuendo on the level of young males overdosed on testosterone trying to gross each out was woven into every major scene of the movie … and there was a strong gay humor streak as well.

No one escaped insult or stereotyping. Yet I cannot help but believe that the audience walked away having laughed at itself.

We laughed not only at the fun poked at Kim — but NEVER was there a moment when the laughs were at the expense of Koreans or Asians — we also laughed at America. American media and corporate values were just as much poked and embraced for every laugh and gagline imaginable.

‘F’ Bombs: this movie was a continuous carpetbombing of that effing word.

At moments I felt embarrassed to have laughed so loud and so often because … this film is so rude, crude and lewd in a mischievous foul-mouthed American juvenile kind of way. I admit it: the laughing felt good … and I should have taken a rosary with me to keep count and to ask forgiveness for each smile that crossed my mind.

Supposedly this movie was ‘low budget’ but the videography and the acting and the scenes were all very well done. There was no cheese anywhere … except in the low brow humor.

God bless America and fresh popcorn. Go see the movie! Do it because we’re Americans and no one tells us what to do … except our moms … and that doesn’t always work out so well either.

So was the movie worth it? Was it worth the money that I spent?

On the way home I stopped off to get some milk for my coffee. Prominently displayed were some suggested unique Christmas gifts for those in search of something … anything … for those desperate … to spend some money on anything just so they could show that they remembered you … or whatever. If you would buy a Chia Willie then you need to get your willie to the theater and show that you really believe in America and free speech.

Chia Willie

Book Review: Legon Awakening … Elves, Dragons and an epileptic Sister

Good Book / Free Book / I want to see this as a movie.

Whining: this ‘first in the series’ about a human/elfen named Legon would appear to be a self-published book. There are a few obvious errors that would drive an editor nuts … BUT this is a very good book all the same, and the prose plus character development flows very nicely.

Legon Awakening

FREE Book!! Just download and read. Basic storyline: Set in a time when people ride horses, and have no electricity or indoor plumbing, there are people, elven (tall, slender elves … unrelated to Keebler elves), and iumenta (evil, grumpy elves that serve an evil queen) that inhabit the lands. Other than ‘the queen is a bitch’ there is not much character development for her character. There is plenty of character development for the townfolks of Salmont. The book really shines in describing the inhabitants of this small town … in a land with really high taxes. Meanwhile the bitchy queen is busy bothering everyone as she races against time to find a messiah-like person that supposedly is an elf that will rally the humans.

The book revolves around the lives of four young people about to turn 18 years of age … and they have a very rough year of it. No spoilers! Read the book.

By the book’s end there are battles using magic, dragons … to include a pink dragon and a blue dragon … some of the humans appear to be interbred with the elves and some humans are capable of becoming elves … plus, some humans have magical powers (Muggles with magic!). It also appears that some dragons can transform into gorgeous babes that are imminently kissable … although they still have dragon breath.

400+ pages of a book that is worth reading despite a few things need editing … but only a few.

Someone out there please make this a movie. It would be a hit! The core theme is both very familiar and yet different enough that it could even become a classic.

GET THE BOOK — Free on Google Books … or free on Amazon.com

Book – Orphanage (Jason Wander) / Fiction Scifi – Starship Troopers Revisited

The book Orphanage (Jason Wander) was first published in 2008 by Robert Buettner, a former Army Military Intelligence officer.

Bill Golden sez: If you liked or loved Robert Heinlein’s classic Starship Troopers then you will quickly come to like Orphanage by Buettner. The books are alike in so many ways, even with political undertones that many readers would overlook. Heinlein’s classic allowed voting rights only to those that served honorably in federal service, i.e. the military (a long running argument on this examined in great detail – PDF). Buettner’s take is similar but with a strong post 9/11 update as to how the world works.

Robert Buettner Orphanage
View this book on Amazon.com

Lots of military humor soaked into this book as the main character, Jason Wander, goes from being a reluctant screw-up of a military recruit to a breveted general officer (eventually).

If you want some light reading with a familiar theme that keeps you constantly meeting new characters and full of plot twists then this is the book, and the book series for you to read.

Some really good news is this is a book series and each book just gets better. Wars are not over quickly and neither is this series.

Other books in this series that I have read and like; no, I have not read them all yet.

If you like these books then there are others available … but I have not read those … so let me know how that they work for you. I unintentionally read the last book in the series (Triumph); since I know how it all turns out I just did not have interest in going back and reading some of the other books.

++++++++++

From the official description of this book:

Mankind’s first alien contact tears into Earth: projectiles launched from Jupiter’s moon, Ganymede, vaporize whole cities. Under siege, humanity gambles on one desperate counterstrike. In a spacecraft scavenged from scraps and armed with Vietnam-era weapons, foot soldiers like eighteen-year-old Jason Wander-orphans that no one will miss-must dare man’s first interplanetary voyage and invade Ganymede.

They have one chance to attack, one ship to attack with. Their failure is our extinction.

Spicy Chicken and Strange Dreams

Last night I dreamed that I was a defense contractor working as a new member of an analytic team.

I needed to find a way to learn more quickly about my target. The contract was for the Marines. So I put on an old military uniform and went to the Marines and volunteered to work half days for free.

The only uniform that I could find was Army BDUs and had PFC (E3) stripes sewn on … things were going well until they started doing all kinds of exercises and running. They said that if I wanted to hang with them then I had to participate. That’s when I woke up from the dream. I’m 58 and a retired Warrant … I’m not running even in my dreams.

I blame it all on the spicy chicken sandwich that I had for dinner … and the Robert Heinlein Starship Trooper book that I am reading … and my past life as an analyst … and present life as a recruiter thereof … or something like that.

Spicy Chicken Sandwich