<i>Marked Fur Murder</i>: New Excerpt Marked Fur Murder: New Excerpt Dixie Lyle This cozy isn't just puzzling, it's electrifying! <i>A Ghostly Grave</i>: New Excerpt A Ghostly Grave: New Excerpt Tonya Kappes Chicken Teater's ghost wants justice. Comment for your chance to win! <i>The Stranger She Loved</i>: New Excerpt The Stranger She Loved: New Excerpt Shanna Hogan Don't move your mistress in right after you kill your wife... <i>The Patriot Threat</i>: New Audio Excerpt The Patriot Threat: New Audio Excerpt Steve Berry Comment on the Writer's Cut of the new Cotton Malone thriller for a chance to win!
From The Blog
March 30, 2015
Bushwhackers, Desperadoes, and a Damsel in Distress: "Lone Star Fury" by James Reasoner
Edward A. Grainger
March 30, 2015
Arsenic in Your Wine Glass? Naturally!
Crime HQ
March 27, 2015
Like Jurassic Park, with Foreskins
Crime HQ
March 25, 2015
Woman Assaults Neighbor with Poop
Teddy Pierson
March 23, 2015
Lost Classics of Noir: The Big Heat by William P. McGivern
Brian Greene
Mon
Mar 30 2015 2:30pm

Bushwhackers, Desperadoes, and a Damsel in Distress: “Lone Star Fury” by James Reasoner

I have been reading James Reasoner Westerns since long before I knew I was reading James Reasoner Westerns. A prolific and in-demand author since the 1970s, he has written under a number of pseudonyms and house-names for series titles including the Trailsman (as Jon Sharpe) and Longarm (as Tabor Evans). He’s also adept at crime fiction and adventure—he penned Hard Case Crime’s debut Gabriel Hunt novel, Hunt at the Well of Eternity—but this Spur Award nominee, with 200 or more books to his name, is widely revered for his Western tales like “Lone Star Fury,” where he is writing as Jackson Cole. This story actually heralds from earlier in the author’s career—going back near twenty years when it was originally published in Classic Pulp Fiction Stories (No. 2, July, 1995)—and is fortunately available again as an ebook.

Two men waited in the stygian shadows of the alley, cocked revolvers in their hands. Across the broad, dusty, tumbleweed-littered street, two more men stood in similar concealment, guns in hand, murder in their hearts.

Into this cauldron of death in the ghost town of Palminter rides Texas Ranger Jim Hatfield, sometimes referred to as the Lone Wolf. What brought him to this desolate, and deadly, locale in the western part of Texas? A message seemingly from the great beyond: a former flame named Sally Conway, whom Hatfield believed had died five years before in a horse accident, sends for his help.

[Who can deny a summons from the grave?]

Mon
Mar 30 2015 12:30pm
Excerpt

Marked Fur Murder: New Excerpt

Dixie Lyle

Marked Fur Murder by Dixie LyleMarked Fur Murder by Dixie Lyle is the 3rd paranormal cozy in the Whiskey, Tango & Foxtrot mystery about Deidre “Foxtrot” Lancaster, the amateur sleuth with who solves crime with her animal companaions Whiskey and Tango (available March 31, 2015).

When zillionairess Zelda Zoransky decides to throw one of her famous parties—with a guest list as colorful and diverse as her private zoo—it's up to Deirdre “Foxtrot” Lancaster, assistant extraordinaire, to pull the whole thing off. But even with the help of her telepathic cat Tango and ectoplasmic pooch Whiskey, it's one killer assignment. Especially when she finds a corpse in the pool…

The victim is the sister of Deirdre's boyfriend, Ben. The cause of death appears to be a plugged-in hair dryer that fell in the water. Ben, however, insists that a few volts couldn't have killed Ann. Like him, she's a descendent of the Cowichan tribe who, according to legend, has a way with lightning. One of the guests must have marked her for murder! But when the suspects include a Russian pet psychic, a schizophrenic writer, and a random rock star, it's more than puzzling to Whiskey, Tango, and Foxtrot. It's electrifying…

Chapter One

You can’t kill a Thunderbird with lightning.

[Continue reading Marked Fur Murder!]

Mon
Mar 30 2015 8:45am

Arsenic in Your Wine Glass? Naturally!

A recent California lawsuit claims a score of brands of wines produced there, contain high levels of arsenic. According to San Francisco's CBS affilate

So far there is no theory on why this might be happening but Hicks’ [Kevin Hicks, founder of Denver lab BeverageGrades] tests showed an interesting pattern. “The lower the price of wine on a per-liter basis, the higher the amount of arsenic,” he said.

Hicks’ list of low-priced, high-arsenic wines includes Trader Joe’s famous Two-Buck Chuck White Zinfandel which tested at three times the limit. A bottle of Menage a Trois Moscato was four times the limit and a Franzia Blush had five time the EPA limit for drinking water.

We cheapskates and lushes at HQ were near-frothing, until we read this from Alder Yarrow of Vinography:

Arsenic is a naturally occurring compound that is found in the cellular structures of many foods we eat (fruits, vegetables, shellfish and meats) and in all the water we consume in trace amounts. Newsflash: most wines will ALL likely have very small traces of arsenic in them.

Arsenic also happens to be one of the essential minerals our bodies require for health, not unlike selenium, which is another metal that is quite toxic in high doses, but which is found in most multi-vitamins...

Apple juice and pear juice contain up to two or three times as much arsenic as drinking water as a matter of course. The Food and Drug Administration has known this for years. In fact the acceptable threshold for traces of arsenic in juice is much higher than it is for water, a fact that the FDA explains by simply saying that people don't drink as much juice as they do water.

So, the arsenic levels look pretty high until you compare them to, say, your kid's juice box. Snopes has a nice round-up of coverage, including the note that the lab's press release about their arsenic testing services was concurrent with the media splash of the lawsuit. Why, that's the kind of thing that could make a suspicious-minded person doubt the purity of their public-spiritedness.

What's the world come to when an unexpected amount of arsenic in your wine doesn't mean someone's out to kill you?!
Sun
Mar 29 2015 4:00pm
Excerpt

A Ghostly Grave: New Excerpt

Tonya Kappes

A Ghostly Grave by Tonya Kappes is the second in the Ghostly Southern Mystery series about a young undertaker, Emma Lee Raines, who can see the ghosts of murdered people (available March 31, 2015).

This excerpt is reprinted by arrangement with Witness. All rights reserved.

There's a ghost on the loose—and a fox in the henhouse

Four years ago, the Eternal Slumber Funeral Home put Chicken Teater in the ground. Now undertaker Emma Lee Raines is digging him back up. The whole scene is bad for business, especially with her granny running for mayor and a big festival setting up in town. But ever since Emma Lee started seeing ghosts, Chicken's been pestering her to figure out who killed him.

With her handsome boyfriend, Sheriff Jack Henry Ross, busy getting new forensics on the old corpse, Emma Lee has time to look into her first suspect. Chicken's widow may be a former Miss Kentucky, but the love of his life was another beauty queen: Lady Cluckington, his prize-winning hen. Was Mrs. Teater the jealous type? Chicken seems to think so. Something's definitely rotten in Sleepy Hollow—and Emma Lee just prays it's not her luck.

 

Chapter 1

Just think, this all started because of Santa Claus. I took a drink of my large Diet Coke Big Gulp that I had picked up from the Buy and Fly gas station on the way over to Sleepy Hollow Cemetery to watch Chicken Teater’s body being
exhumed from his eternal resting place—only he was far from restful.

Damn Santa. I sucked up a mouthful of Diet Coke and swallowed. Damn Santa.

No, I didn’t mean the real jolly guy with the belly shaking like a bowlful of jelly who leaves baby dolls and toy trucks; I meant the plastic light-up ornamental kind that people stick in their front yards during Christmas. The particular plastic Santa I was talking about was the one that had fallen off the roof of Artie’s Deli and Meat just as I happened to walk under it, knocking me flat
out cold.

Santa didn’t give me anything but a bump on the head and the gift of seeing ghosts—let me be more specific—ghosts of people who have been murdered.

[Continue reading A Ghostly Grave by Tonya Kappes]

Sat
Mar 28 2015 12:00pm

Noir’s Goon Squad: Brad Dexter

Brad Dexter has evil eyes. There are a lot of guys who have that whole hollow-on-the-inside steely-eyed-gaze thing going on in classic noir, but no one does it better than Brad Dexter. To catch up with him in some of his classic roles is to stare down the barrel at a man who simply does not care about anything but himself.

He’s probably best known today as one of the gang in The Magnificent Seven —though he once remarked, and not incorrectly, “I’m the one from The Magnificent Seven that no one remembers.” One of the reasons he got lost in the shuffle of the big stars of that film is because he had never been a big star, nor did he go on become a star. He was simply dependable Brad Dexter.

He was born Boris Velijko Milanovich in Goldfield, Nevada, the child of Serbian immigrants. Tall and brawny, in his youth he worked as a meat packer and an amateur boxer. Soon enough, though, he made his way into acting and was pretty much immediately put to work playing a series of heavies. After serving in the Army in World War II, he started making movies billed as “Barry Mitchell” in the Roy Rogers western Heldorado (1946).

[He'd catch on right away...]

Fri
Mar 27 2015 3:00pm
Excerpt

The Stranger She Loved: New Excerpt

The Stranger She Loved by Shanna Hogan is a true crime account of a Mormon doctor's murder of his wife, and the six year struggle to prove it (available March 31, 2015).

In 2007, Dr. Martin MacNeill – a doctor, lawyer, and Mormon bishop – discovered his wife of 30 years dead in the bathtub of their Pleasant Grove, Utah home, her face bearing the scars of a facelift he persuaded her to undergo just a week prior.

At first the death of 50-year-old Michele MacNeill, a former beauty queen and mother of eight, appeared natural. But days after the funeral when Dr. MacNeill moved his much younger mistress into the family home, his children grew suspicious. Conducting their own investigation into their mother's death, the MacNeill's daughters uncovered their father's multiple marital affairs, past criminal record, and falsified college transcripts he used to con his way into medical school.

It would take six long years to solve the mystery of Michele's murder and secure a first-degree murder conviction against the once prominent doctor.

Chapter 1

A stray drop of water fell from the faucet and trickled across her cold, pallid skin.

[Continue reading The Stranger She Loved...]

Fri
Mar 27 2015 12:15pm

Game of Thrones Season 5: A Recap of the Realm – Part One

Game of Thrones returns worldwide for its fifth season on April 12th, and with it comes the dozens of familiar (and sometimes not so familiar) faces, as well as a few newcomers, and it can be pretty damn tough keeping track of who everyone is, what they were last up to, and where they currently reside. In an effort to please R’hollor and to help re-light the wildfire in our brains, I’m here with a Season 5 primer to get you locked, loaded, and ready to go for the premiere. Unless of course you’re Daenerys, in which case you’ll be sitting still for the foreseeable future, ogling at Daario’s firm behind.

This week, we’ll begin in the south with the half-misunderstood and half-crazy (and zero-parts Baratheon) Lannisters, the patient and devious Tyrells, and the venomous and vengeful Martells. Warning: this post is dark and full of spoilers from Seasons 1 through 4 of Game of Thrones, as well as some light speculation and news from Season 5.

Tyrion Lannister

[We begin with the Imp!]

Fri
Mar 27 2015 9:00am

Like Jurassic Park, with Foreskins

Last year, we covered the strange and controversial artistic history of the Holy Foreskin, supposedly given to a pope by Charlemagne, which became a relic of veneration, being the only part of Jesus's corpus he left behind on earth.

Well, according to David Farley, who wrote a book about it in addition to an article for Slate, there's a small town in Italy that's claimed to have it since 1557, with attached miracles as proof. And even as the Church was cracking down on its more vocal members, threatening excommunication for even mentioning it, Calcata quietly hosted an annual procession allowing pilgrims to adore the relic. But in 1983, crime reared its ugly head as the item was reported stolen from a shoebox in the priest's house.

There is now a U.S. company called Foregen, reports Arikia Millikan in Motherboard last month, which aims to use an extra-cellular matrix along with stem cells to allow unhappy circumcised men to regrow working tissue “much like a salamander is able to re-grow a limb.” That article also delves into cultural, social, and health issues behind the practice of circumcision, blah, blah, blah. But if the real relic could be found, and its cells scientifically used to regrow it on a grand, functional scale, it's obvious what we're looking at, right? Holy Jurassic Foreskin Park!

Leading axolotl image via i09.

Thu
Mar 26 2015 10:00pm

Schmucks with Underwoods: Why Writers Make the Best Book Characters

Writers have always been the most interesting people I meet, and they almost all tend to be passionate readers as well. They're also impulsive and vibrant and twisty and unpredictable and curious and generally enjoyable to talk to and to get into adventures with.

Reading and writing have always gone hand-in-hand with me. I was such an avid reader that eventually I had to start writing my own stories to fill in the gaps of what was out there for me. The first writer I ever knew was my Uncle John Merkel. He was the coolest person I had ever known in my life. While my main circle of adults was made up of boring, responsible, church-going normal folks, my uncle was wild. He read comic books and played video games and watched Star Trek and had a great office with a home computer(!) where he wrote stories. I so desperately wanted to be like him. He's also the one who got me hooked on reading popular fiction, first with science fiction and fantasy, and then crime fiction. So writers as characters have fascinated me even more.

While I think writers make great characters and provide readers with some behind-the-scenes access to the creative process and sometimes even the inspiration for the book their reading, I think writing is a pretty boring thing to write about. Writers must have adventures and get in trouble and express their personalities. So here are my five favorite books with writers as characters and why I love them so much.

Misery by Stephen King – This is one of the first books about a writer I really remember making an impact on me. Part of that is because this is also the first adult book I really remember being challenged on by my local librarian. As a little kid, it didn't take me long to move from the Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew/Bobsey Twins stuff to the dreamy magical land of the adult shelves. I was given virtually free reign in that section, but when I brought up this paperback with that lurid cover of a man in a wheelchair and a shadow of an ax-wielding woman, the librarian asked me if I was really sure I wanted to read it. I was, and it was the fastest I've ever read a book. And it scared me. Still scares me. This should also serve as a place holder for praise for all of Stephen King's books about writers. More than anyone, he has built a career about exploring the life and struggles of a writer through fiction.

[More schmucks to come!]

Thu
Mar 26 2015 10:15am

The Americans 3.09: “Do Mail Robots Dream of Electric Sheep?”

Lois Smith as Betty, Keri Russell as Elizabeth Jennings

Almost every episode in the third season of The Americans has featured at least one scene that is excruciatingly painful for the viewer to watch. These cringe-inducing scenes, from the disposing of Analise’s body, to Philip’s dental work, to Nina’s betrayal of Evi, to last week’s necklacing, have become hallmarks of the series. But even given the high bar they’ve set for themselves in this regard, last night’s meeting between Elizabeth (Keri Russell) and Betty (Lois Smith), an elderly bookkeeper who “picked a bad time” to pay the bills, was stunning. When a series can cause a grizzled curmudgeon like myself to yell, “That’s it, I hate you, Americans!” during an episode, you know they’ve hit close to the bone.

A lot of other important developments went down in “Do Mail Robots Dream of Electric Sheep?,” a playful title with deeper resonance, but I’ll save those comments for later. There’s just too much to get into regarding the conversation between Elizabeth and Betty. Elizabeth encounters the aging widower when the Jennings attempt to bug the mail robot (the clear breakout star of Season 3) after it is sent for repairs following Agent Gaad’s (Richard Thomas) senseless act violence. Betty is working late at the factory because that’s when she feels “most in tune” with her deceased husband, Gil, the company’s founder.

[Awww. An oh no!]

Thu
Mar 26 2015 8:45am

True Crime Thursday: Revisiting Richard Lloyd Parry’s People Who Eat Darkness

Lucie Blackman left home with her sights set on Tokyo and her mind set on money, but what awaited her was worse than she ever imagined. Working as a hostess in a seedy Roppongi night club, it wouldn't be long before Lucie went missing, with only a strange message left by a mysterious stranger serving as the lone clue, until months later when her severed limbs were found outside the house of a wealthy real estate magnate (No, not Robert Durst.) . But Lucie was far from a reckless girl, as author Richard Lloyd Parry expresses through a great deal of research in People Who Eat Darkness.

Lloyd Parry, the Asia editor and Tokyo bureau chief of The Times (London), spent 10 years researching Lucie's case, interviewing and gaining access to a wide array of people connected to Lucie, including family, friends, lawyers, and police. The result is a compelling and immersive look into not just Lucie, but her family, friends, and killer.

For more information, check out our Fresh Meat review or read an excerpt over at FSG Originals!

Wed
Mar 25 2015 10:45am

Justified 6.10: “Trust”

Walton Goggins as Boyd Crowder Joelle Carter as Ava Crowder, Jere Burns as Wynn Duffy, Justin Welborn as Carl

Raise your hand if you were expecting that ending? Anyone? Anyone? But before we get there, a lot of other things happened in “Trust,”Episode 6.10 of Justified.

First of all, we open with Katherine Hale (Mary Steenburgen) very angry and yelling at Wynn Duffy (Jere Burns) about the fact that Boyd (Walton Goggins) nearly blew her up at the pizza parlor. Wynn tells Katherine up front that he’s the one who gave Boyd the idea that Avery (Sam Elliott) was planning to move his money — and he speaks loudly and clearly for the benefit of Raylan (Timothy Olyphant) and Tim (Jacob Pitts) who are listening in on this conversation. After he finishes with Katherine, Wynn makes a plea to stop being a CI, but he’s not getting out of this hole so easily: Raylan says they’re giving Wynn a chance to make up for Boyd’s screw-up in not getting arrested while stealing Avery’s money.

[That's pretty fair when you think about it...]

Wed
Mar 25 2015 8:45am

Woman Assaults Neighbor with Poop

A Boca Raton, Florida woman landed herself in a stinky situation after being arrested for smearing dog poop on her neighbor’s face, according to The Huffington Post.

Amy Goldberg, 57, confronted her neighbor about her dog pooping on her lawn all the time. Allegedly Goldberg asked for the dog to stop using her lawn as a restroom, and when it didn’t, that is when the poop hit the fan — I mean, the face.

Goldberg now stands accused of smearing dog poop in her neighbors face, on her arms, and her clothes. She has been charged with battery on a person 65-years or older.

Tue
Mar 24 2015 3:00pm
Excerpt

The Patriot Threat: New Audio Excerpt

Steve Berry

The Patriot Threat by Steve Berry is the 11th Cotton Malone political thriller where a North Korean operative obtains files that could ruin the United States (available March 31, 2015).

The 16th Amendment to the Constitution is why Americans pay income taxes. But what if there were problems associated with that amendment? Secrets that call into question decades of tax collecting? In fact, there is a surprising truth to this hidden possibility.

Cotton Malone, once a member of an elite intelligence division within the Justice Department known as the Magellan Billet, is now retired and owns an old bookshop in Denmark. But when his former-boss, Stephanie Nelle, asks him to track a rogue North Korean who may have acquired some top secret Treasury Department files—the kind that could bring the United States to its knees—Malone is vaulted into a harrowing twenty-four hour chase that begins on the canals in Venice and ends in the remote highlands of Croatia.

With appearances by Franklin Roosevelt, Andrew Mellon, a curious painting that still hangs in the National Gallery of Art, and some eye-opening revelations from the $1 bill, this riveting, non-stop adventure is trademark Steve Berry—90% historical fact, 10% exciting speculation—a provocative thriller posing a dangerous question: What if the Federal income tax is illegal?

[Listen to the prologue of Steve Berry's The Patriot Threat...]

Tue
Mar 24 2015 11:30am

Fresh Meat: Knuckleball by Tom Pitts

Knuckleball is a noir novella by Tom Pitts set in San Francisco during a busy baseball weekend when a well-liked police officer is gunned down (available March 24, 2015).

With its ever-sprouting skyscrapers, Google buses, and $12 juices, contemporary San Francisco is an unlikely setting for Noir. Not that San Francisco can’t work as the backdrop for other types of crime stories. After all, felonies are committed by all socioeconomic classes (I’m looking at you, Robert Durst). But as a location for the doomed, dark stories spun in traditional Noir, modern-day San Francisco, where the sky (and rent) is literally the limit, is an incongruous choice, to say the least.

Yet somehow, Tom Pitts continues to successfully mine San Francisco for exactly these types of sordid tragedies. In his first full-length novel, Hustle, Pitts wrote about the neglected corners of the skid row Tenderloin neighborhood like only an insider could. In place of hedge fund managers, venture capitalists, and software engineers were male street hustlers, drug addicts, and blackmailers. For Knuckleball, a shotgun blast of a novella from short fiction specialist One Eye Press, Pitts takes us into San Francisco’s Mission district. Not surprisingly, this is not the Mission of trendy restaurants and expensive boutiques, but the original, working class Mission, the barrio, populated with families, corner tiendas, and of course, hustlers of all stripes.

[You're in for a memorable trip...]

Tue
Mar 24 2015 10:00am

American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson: Looking at the Cast

If American Horror Story and Fargo werent' enough proof already, with the announcement of American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson it's become clear that FX loves anthology series.

American Crime Story is written and created by Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski (the writing team behind Ed Wood, The People v. Larry Flint, and Big Eyes) and will be produced and partially directed by Ryan Murphy, the creator and producer of Glee and American Horror Story.

Yesterday, Ryan Murphy announced via Twitter that he would be reteaming with Connie Britton for American Crime Story. Britton last worked with Murphy during the first season of American Horror Story.

Britton will play Faye Resnick, a close friend to the recently-deceased Nicole Brown Simpson. She joins an already star-studded cast that includes: Cuba Gooding Jr. as O.J. Simpson, Sarah Paulson (who's also reuiniting with Murphy after AHS) as Marcia Clark, David Schwimmer as Robert Kardashian Sr., John Travolta (also serving as producer) as Robert Shapiro, and Courtney B. Vance as Johnnie Cochran. 

Just like AHS, the idea behind American Crime Story is that each season will focus on a new true crime. American Crime Story is set to debut in early 2016.

Mon
Mar 23 2015 4:15pm

Lost Classics of Noir: The Big Heat by William P. McGivern

I first saw Fritz Lang’s 1953 film noir The Big Heat decades ago, and I just viewed it again this week. This time I watched it immediately after reading William P. McGivern’s novel of the same title. This is the latest in my series of posts where I rave about an underappreciated noir novel while commenting on a better-known film that was made from it. Lang’s big screen feature is, of course, a gem, and one that any fan of film noir should get to know if they don’t already. McGivern’s work of fiction, which originally appeared in the pages of The Saturday Evening Post, then was published as a novel in the same year as the movie’s release, deserves lofty status among those who appreciate hard-edged crime tales as they appear on the printed page.

There’s little difference in the plotline between book and movie, but for present purposes I’ll focus on the story as it is told in the novel. The primary character is Dave Bannion: a sergeant of detectives in a homicide bureau in Philadelphia. Bannion is a big man; much is made of his hulky build in McGivern’s book, whereas he comes across as being of more normal male stature via Glenn Ford’s portrayal of him in the movie. He has a temper that he needs to keep a watch over, to make sure he doesn’t use his great bulk to do bodily harm to others when it’s not warranted. Bannion is a family man, happily married to his good-natured wife and a loving father to their young daughter. He’s also an honest law enforcement agent. In the beginning of the novel (this is not in the movie), some of the detectives on his team are holding a black man on suspicion of a crime, and are ready to work him over physically to sweat a confession out of him; but Bannion feels their grounds for suspecting the man are flimsy (and racially motivated, although that’s only implied in the book), and he tells his boys to let the guy go.

[What's not to like?]

Mon
Mar 23 2015 2:15pm
Excerpt

Poison Ivy: New Excerpt

Cynthia Riggs

Poison Ivy by Cynthia Riggs is the 11th cozy in the Martha's Vineyard Mystery Series starring Victoria Trumbull who discovers a pair of dead bodies during her first day as an adjunct professor (available March 31, 2015).

On her first day as adjunct professor at Ivy Green College, Victoria Trumbull recognizes the stench emanating from her classroom as more than just dead mice. Brownie, the groundskeeper's mangy mutt, soon discovers a second body hiding beneath a cluster of poison ivy.

The stakes have never been higher for Ivy Green, which is on the brink of losing already-lukewarm support from its accredited partner, Cape Cod University. Thackery Wilson, the founder of Ivy Green, worries that the bad publicity from the murders will obliterate the financial and academic support the tiny college and its dependent students desperately need. As the bodies continue to pile up, all tenure committee members, Victoria and Brownie find themselves hunting a serial killer and trying to save the college.

Chapter 1

The season was still too new to be considered fall, but the sky was that brilliant autumnal blue, the air was crisp and smelled of the salt sea, and this was a fine day for Victoria Trumbull. At ninety-two, she was about to launch a new career as adjunct professor. She had been invited to teach a course in poetry at Ivy Green College.

[Continue reading Poison Ivy by Cynthia Riggs...]

Mon
Mar 23 2015 10:15am

“Where is Hunt?”: Trailer for Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation

Tom Cruise has long been a polarizing star possessing the unique ability to sustain a decades-long place in the spotlight, and his Mission: Impossible series is a testament to that. The most impressive part of Cruise's career is his insistence on doing his own stunts, and Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation further cements the actors badassery.  As the photograph above proves, (Yep, that's Cruise strapped to the side of a plane as it takes off.) Cruise will do pretty much anything. The scene is teased in the trailer below, so take a look for yourself. We can almost feel the G-forces from here.

Sun
Mar 22 2015 12:00pm

Under the Radar: Movies You May Have Missed — Attack the Block

Why is it that aliens always invade New York? Or Los Angeles? How come it’s always the Americans taking on extraterrestrial threats, armed with big guns, ripped shirts, and catchy one-liners?

Gotta admit: those stories are old and tired. Been there, done that, seen the post-apocalyptic wasteland.

Which makes Attack the Block a refreshing change of pace. This time, we’re treated to space invaders in London—and not the tourist-filled, upper-class London with posh accents and Austen manners.

No, this is the council estate of South London. Where youth gangs run amok. Where Cockney slang can sometimes be indecipherable. Where you’re more likely to see knives and baseball bats than Aston Martins.

[The only Bond you'll find here is James's Bail Bonds...]