November 5 Word Movie Reviews – Please help me get to $100 for charity

Wow!  What a movie month I’ve had!  You may notice that every movie but one has a one word title.  Weird, right?

Now I am asking you to help me reach my goal.  I really want to gove the $100 to charity this month!  To do that I need you to add your five words to as many reviews as you can and take a look at past titles (maybe you’ve seen a movie since I originally posted) here.

Currently, you’ve contributed $93 to the charity of the top reviewer’s choice.  Right now, Beth is in the lead with 13, BermudaOnion and Kay with 11. Gofita with 10.   Teddyree has 9, Wrighty has 8 and there are others who have contributed here.

Every time you add 5 words of your own to one of my reviews then you donate $1 to charity. The charity is chosen by the person who has the most reviews once we reach 100. (Last charity herePLEASE leave a clear 5 word comment so I can give credit for it.

Flight, 21012 (Cast-Denzel Washington, Don Cheadle, Kelly Reilly, John Goodman, Bruce Greenwood)  Grade B+

Cocaine’s like aspirin.  Who knew?

Hope it’s not in-flight movie.  (Softdrink)

Watch for James Badge Dale.  (Tony)

Lincoln, 2012 (Cast-Daniel Day-Lewis, Sally Field, Tommy Lee Jones)    Grade B

Too long.  Day-Lewis superb.

Slow moving plot; restless audience. (Kathy)

Bad hearing – spoke too softly. (Lloyd)

Unknown, 2011 (Cast-Liam Neeson, Diane Kruger, Janurary Jones, Aidan Quinn    Grade B

Convenient amnesia can be beneficial.

A bit silly, lotsa action.  (Heather)

Liam Neeson is a problem.  (Tony)

Limitless, 2011 (Cast-Bradley Cooper, Robert DeNiro, Abby Cornish)  Grade B-

Smart never looked so hot!

Be wary of little pills. (Kay)

Revenge is sweet and hot!  (Heather)

Arbitrage, 2012 (Cast-Richard Gere, Susan Sarandon, Tim Roth) Grade B-

Rich beats fair most days.

Greenberg, 2010 (cast-Ben Stiller, Greta Gerwig, Jennifer Jason Leigh)   Grade C

Stiller fans only.  Not comedy.

Beyond Poster.jpgBeyond, 2012 (Cast-Jon Voigt, Teri Polo, Dermot, Mulroney)   Grade C-

Could’ve been good but wasn’t.

This Means War, 2012 (cast-Reese Witherspoon, Chris Spine, Tom Hardy, Chelsea Handler)  Grade  C-

Creepy Spies Sharing Love Partner.

 Cute idea but no spark. (Kathy)

Should have picked other guy. (Jenners)

Love Reese, didn’t like movie.  (Kay)

Pine and Hardy are excellent.  (Tony)

Don’t Say a Word by Barbara Freethy

Don't Say a WordFinished 11-21-12, rating 3.75/5, romantic suspense, pub. 2011

Julie DeMarco loved her big Italian-American family and they loved her, even though her blonde hair and blue eyes made her an obvious outsider.  Her mother married into the family and then had another daughter.  Julie never knew anything else.  Then one day at a photography exhibit she sees a photo of a little girl standing at the gate of a Russian orphanage.  She is scared when she feels a connection and wonders if the girl could be her.

Julie has had a rough year.  Her mother died, taking answers about her birth with her, her ‘father’ is drinking himself to death and her fiance is pushing for a wedding date.  Julie tells her fiance she’s not putting him off, but it’s not hard to see that she is and he is not supportive of her wild goose chase.  Neither is her sister, which I never did understand.  But Julie plunges ahead in her search with the help of sexy, bad boy photographer, Alex.

I found this book to be highly enjoyable and hard to put down.  There were a few twists I didn’t see coming and some danger that kept the suspense alive.  Oh, and the sex helped move the story along too.  While I found some of the storylines somewhat simplistic and the end just a bit too neat, I also found the book highly addictive.  A fast read that will keep you guessing.

I bought this for my Nook.

You don’t need to know anything about the Nutcracker, Nutcracker Quiz AND GIVEAWAY

Every have one of those 24 hour bugs that could either be food poisoning or the flu?  Me too!  That’s why this is getting up a little late.  I have a game that I like to play called Picture Picture (no idea if they still make it) and I thought we’d adapt it a little and use the beautiful illustrations from The Nutcracker.

Here’s the deal.  Look at each of the pictures and tell me 5 things you see in each one.  You’ll earn points if you are the only one to guess a particular thing.  10 points if you are the only one and 1 point less for every other person who guesses it.  So there are a potential 200 points on the line!  Get to looking 🙂

Oh, and I’m giving away this copy and by joining in the quiz you’ll be entered (if you don’t want to be just let me know).

You have until next Monday to submit your answers as a comment.  Comments will be hidden until I post the answers.  

The person with the most points this round will win a B&N gift card (total $ based on # of total participants, so please play) and a randomly selected participant will win a fun prize from me.

Answers to last week’s Road Trip Quiz here. Leaderboard here.

Number 1

Number 2

Number 3

Number 4

Sundays with Gage- Reveling in the The Game

I grew up about 45 minutes from Columbus and have a dad who is a Scarlet & Gray fanatic it is no surprise that I ended up spending 4+ years on campus becoming an OSU alum.  Football is king (although we go through eras of basketball excellence) and The Game, the one against that team up North, is important, like really, really important.  Lots of trash talk and alcohol consumed (at least I’ve heard ;)) for the rivalry.

Our esteemed coach, Jim Tressel, messed up and let the team and university down a few years ago, so he was fired and our Buckeyes can’t play in any bowl games this year.  That made this game their national championship, a win would cap an undefeated season.  The excitement was high and the pressure was on.

Gage had a hard time containing his energy.  Took a nap for the ages and woke up with a minute to go 🙂  We’ll have to work on his game watching abilities next year.  We won 26-21.  Go Bucks!

Giving Thanks

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday.  The idea of just appreciating what you have and being with people you love, is one we should always strive for not just one November day a year.  I do think the pigging out on fattening foods should be kept to one (or a dozen) special day, but I think gorging on books should be encouraged year round.

I’ve been blogging since the beginning of 2008 and I’ve seen blogger friends come and go, but after all these years I feel a special love for those who are still around and part of my online family.  Comments, emails, cards, and gifts all make this blogger happy and I thank you all for being a part of my life.  Happy Thanksgiving to all!

I stayed up an extra hour tonight and for the first time in 2 years my Google Reader has no new posts!  Another thing to be thankful for 🙂

Gage showing off some of his fall artwork.  Isn’t he talented?

Road Trip Quiz – guessing closed

It’s Thanksgiving week and many of us will be heading somewhere else to celebrate and since it’s been a while since I’ve done a movie quiz, here it is.  See if you can figure out these road trip movies.

You have until noon Sunday to submit your answers as a comment.  Comment will be hidden until I post the answers.  No Googling! The person with the most points this round will win a B&N gift card (total $ based on # of total participants, so please play) and a randomly selected participant will win a fun prize from me.

Answers to last week’s Bite Me quiz here. Leaderboard here.

1. One of my all-time favorite movies starring Steve Martin and John Candy takes place as they try to get home for Thanksgiving.  Planes, Trains & Automobiles

2.”The first relevant film about rock and roll and the music industry, the first film that lets you in on the secret.”  –Robert Wilonsky, Dallas Observer  Almost Famous

3. Charlie: Listen… Ray, I don’t know if I’m gonna have a chance to talk to you again. Because you see, these… Dr. Bruner really likes you a lot, and he’s probably gonna take you back. You know?
Raymond: Yeah.
Charlie: What I said about being on the road with you I meant. Connecting. I like having you for my brother.
Raymond: I’m an excellent driver.
Charlie: [smiling] Yes, you are. I like having you for my big brother.
Raymond: C-H-A-R-L-I-E. C-H-A-R-L-I-E. Main man.

Rain Man

4.  Vacation

5. “Sarandon and Davis give superb, wonderfully interactive performances: funky, fierce, funny and poignant.” –Newsweek  Thelma & Louise

6. This 1934 classic starring Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert won 5 Academy Awards and is a must see for lovers of screwball comedies.  It Happened One Night

7. Traveling across the country to lose your virginity seemed desparate to me, but it worked out in the end for John Cusack in this 1985 romantic comedy.  The Sure Thing

8.  (sigh)  Lord of the Rings trilogy

9. “A family determined to get their young daughter into the finals of a beauty pageant take a cross-country trip in their VW bus.” –  Little Miss Sunshine

10. “Someday it was inevitable that a great film would come along, utilizing the motorcycle genre, the same way the great Westerns suddenly made everyone realize they were a legitimate American art form.”  –Roger Ebert   Easy Rider

Laws of Love by Lisa White

The Laws of LoveFinished 10-18-12, romance, pub. 2012

I like to read debut novels.  It’s like you’re getting the scoop on a really great sale or gossip about who’s going to win Project Runway.  I stopped accepting debut books a few years ago because there were just so many seasoned writers I wanted to read but when Trish offered a romance for the TLC tour (other tour stops here) I said yes.  I don’t read enough romances.

Because having it all does not necessarily mean having it all at once…

In a small, Virginia town where fly-fishing is the favorite pastime and Hampton Steel is essentially the only employer, Associate General Counsel Livi Miller believes she has reached the top rung of Hampton Steel’s corporate ladder. With her alcoholic boss retiring soon, Livi is the presumptive heir to Hampton Steel’s general counsel position. However, in the midst of proving herself promotion-worthy, Livi’s high school sweetheart, Jake Cooper, returns from Iraq and causes long-lost butterflies to alight in Livi’s emotionally charged stomach. The resulting loss of her promotion to slimy newcomer Edward Winston combines with her rekindled feelings for Jake to place Livi on track to choose between her career and her heart.

If she chooses Hampton Steel, she saves her hometown. If she chooses Jake, she saves her butterflies as well as herself.

I liked Livi.  She was a driven career woman, but one who also lamented not having it all.  She wanted a relationship and a family of her own but was was married to her job.  And when things got funky at work she wasn’t afraid to get right into the middle of it, even though there was real danger.  I was happy to see that Jake came back and offered her a chance at personal happiness.  I would have liked a little more about Jake. He came back from serving in Iraq with his best friend dead and I wanted to know more about his transition.

This is a short read, which is always a plus for me, but maybe in this case it was a bit too short.  There were a few storylines that were brought up and then just dropped (like when Jake attends church) and the whole reunited with your first and only love was a good story that happened so quick.  I wanted more.  I actually felt like I spent more time with Livi at work and all the craziness there, which I liked, but it felt like less of a romance because of it.  That could be good or bad depending on if you like romances 🙂

This was a solid debut.

Thanks to Trish at TLC for putting the tour together.

Going to college with Gage

My cousin’s daughter, Claire, started her first year of college at Baldwin Wallace University, only 30 minutes away from us.  This is exciting since it’s been a long time since we’ve lived that close to any family.  We finally made the drive over on Friday to visit.  It’s a great campus with lots of beautiful buildings and homes and in true toddler fashion Gage’s favorite part was riding the elevator.  He wasn’t interested in the steps or much else when he caught sight of the elevator. After more than a few rides we headed home.

A fun trip was had by all.

A health update- Last Sunday we took Gage back to the hospital and he received more steroids for his croup.  On Monday, I was ready to throw in the mother towel and check myself into mommy rehab.  Come to find out that ‘roid rage can happen to toddlers too.  Who knew?  Thankfully, by Tuesday he was more himself and life got back to normal until early Friday when I started to feel sick.  I did what any tired and worn out woman does when she can, I called my mom.  She’s here helping out while I get some extra sleep and down time.  I really do have the best mom 🙂











Where’d You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple

Where'd You Go, BernadetteWhere’d You Go, Bernadette, rating 2.75/5, fiction, 336 pages, pub, 2012

I accepted this for review because I enjoyed Semple’s first book and she was gracious enough to let me ask her a few questions a few years ago here on the blog.  I read nothing but positive things about it from other bloggers and it’s even up for a best book award at Goodreads.  So, it was bound to be a disappointment, right? Unfortunately, it was.

Bernadette, a reknowned architect, has been stuck in suburban Seattle hell for almost 20 years and her husband mentally checked out of her wacky ways way back as he focused on his very important job at Microsoft.  Bee, their daughter, never felt neglected or unloved so the parents were successful in raising a daughter with a bright future.  The story focuses on where Bernadette had disappeared to, but this doesn’t really happen until the last third of the book.

It was an epistolary novel, mostly.  There were chunks thrown in from Bee, especially at the end, that broke up that narrative in a less than positive way.  I liked the emails, police reports, newspaper articles, FBI reports, text messages that made up the story of Bernadette’s disappearance, but until the very last few pages I never cared about Bernadette or her husband Elgin. At the very end I appreciated Bernadette’s journey, but getting there was a journey I wouldn’t take again. Bee, was a sympathetic character but not one I connected with.

There were exotic locales, Antarctica playing a big role in most of the book, and plenty of laughable/hateful characters depicting the wealthy suburbanites I am all too familiar with so I think this could be a great movie.  The characters often felt like caricatures that could definitely work on the big screen, but for me I found them a bit too whiny on the page.

I was hoping to be entertained, but I grew bored early on and didn’t care at all until the crazy end.  What happened to Bernadette?  It’s a doozy.  I know I’m in the minority for not really liking this one and I’m okay with that.

I want to thank Anna at Little Brown for sending me a copy of the book 🙂

Bite Me Quiz – guessing closed

With the final installment of the Twilight due in theaters this weekend I thought we’d do a vampire check.  See how many you can match up. I’ve only read two of these myself, but was surprised at how many I knew.  Happy Guessing!

You have until noon Sunday to submit your answers as a comment.  Comment will be hidden until I post the answers.  No Googling! The person with the most points this round will win a B&N gift card (total $ based on # of total participants, so please play) and a randomly selected participant will win a fun prize from me.

Answers to last week’s Odd Jobs quiz here. Leaderboard here.

1. Edward Cullen  H. Twilight by Stephenie Meyer

2. Wrath  A. Dark Lover by JR Ward

3. Lestat  G. Interview with the Vampire by Anne Rice

4. Bill Compton  F. Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris

5. Jody Stroud  I. Bloodsucking Fiends by Christopher Moore

6. Count Dracula  C. The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova

7. Matthew Clairmont   J. A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness

8. Lucien Antonescu  D. Insatiable by Meg Cabot

9. Martin Kowalski  E. Vamped by David Sosnowski

10. Kurt Barlow  B.Salem’s Lot by Stephen King