Sticks:A tool in Time

sticks

I’m dedicating this post to a good friend of mine, Billy, who coincidentally wrote the book which is the topic of today’s blog. Sticks: A tool in time is exactly what the cover and title suggest: a book about sticks. Yes, sticks. No metaphors, no mysticism just ordinary sticks you break off a tree every day. Now, I know what many of you are thinking: “Torsten, why in the fuck do I want to read a book about sticks when I can read about distant fantasy landscapes, millionaires with kinky fetishes, or secret agents?” Well my friend, I have 2 reasons why you should. The first being a response to your thoughts, yes those are fun subjects to dive into but there are so many books about the same thing, but how many are about sticks? Also, its absurdly hilarious. Savior laughed himself silly and honestly I had a good many laughs too; the book is written to be self aware and laughs are intended. I’m well aware the humor won’t catch on everyone but it’s a fun, small read you can find cheap on Amazon ( link listed below) and I wish my friend the best and can’t wait for the next installment. May the gaming gods bring you glory.

 

Check Amazon to buy a copy.

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The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

girl dragon tattoo

I remember hearing about these series of books just as I got into reading in my late teens, mainly because of the disturbing nature of there subject matters. Going into them, I was excited as hell to read them, especially considering the David Fincher movie was right around the corner then. The question is, did it live up to the hype?

Mikael Blomkvist was a well off journalist, publisher, and co owner of a popular magazine until a lawsuit turned his life to shit and nearly destroyed his career overnight. With his career in jeopardy, he figures he has nothing left to lose when he’s summoned to a private meeting with Henrik Vanger, a millionaire with a task for Blomkvist: discover what happened to Harriet Vanger and in return he’ll get the evidence to win his suit and save his career. In this he isn’t alone, crossing paths with anti-social, strange hacker and researcher Lisabeth Salander, who’s dealing with her dark past and present. Can these two solve the dark mystery of what happened to Harriet Vanger?

Before I begin, I only read the first book and haven’t seen any of the movies so my familiarity with the series ends here. The book was pretty fascinating with two interesting lead characters and a lot of twisting back stories in the Vanger family. Salander keeps you’re attention because the first few chapters are slow. On the whole, the mystery is good and there is some really dark shit in it; the ending I feel was disappointing. Also I have to note something that was a bit disorienting. Like Let the Right One In it was translated into English from native Swedish and the sentence structures and wording feels odd and takes getting used to. In the end, I found it to be a solid book worth checking out if you like mysteries or dark thrillers. May the gaming gods bring you glory.

 

Pet Sematary 2019

p sem ellie

Pet Sematary is what made me a Stephen King fan as a little kid, making me feel uneasy in the fact cemeteries are always a two minute walk away from everywhere I’ve ever lived. The story means a great deal to me so I was a bit irritable when the remake was announced and hinted in the The Dark Tower . But if It (2017) was any indication, I was willing to give it a shot knowing that it sure as hell wasn’t going to be the story I knew. Was I right to be worried?

The Creeds are a normal family who move into a picturesque farm house in the middle of the country. Lewis is a Dr who wants to slow down and spend time with wife Rachael and kids spirited Ellie and baby Gage and Church the cat. While exploring the back woods, Ellie stumbles upon a creepy procession of kids in animal masks going to bury a dead dog in the Pet Sematary, where kids have buried there pets for generations says Judd Crandall, the Creed’s neighbor. Much the like original Lewis is being warned by the ghost of Pascow who he tried to save to avoid the Sematary, or rather what’s behind the dead fall. Some barriers were not meant to be crossed…

I give this remake credit, it does play with your expectations of either the original or the novel and that’s where it’s strongest. It was a huge mistake I believe to ruin the big twist that sets it apart in the trailers; I’m not going to spoil it but I actually really like how it turns out. The performances are really good but the girl that played Ellie I thought was fantastic and I hope to see more of her. The new imagery is cool but somehow feels close to the original. I warn people, do not go in expecting a A to B adaptation but more of a what if type of scenario. A few times the pacing was off throughout all three acts, sometimes dragging but other times feeling a little too fast,  and there is a WTF moment involving a cow I’m sure Savior is going to bring up in his review that made us laugh. while I’ve heard others say there was too much exposition, I feel too much of Judd’s backstory was cut out and the Wendi-go stuff  was mostly irrelevant. Overall, Pet Sematary is a good remake and a good, solid horror movie I recommend to all needing a good scare this spring. May the gaming gods bring you glory and remember…sometimes dead is indeed better.

 

Deadpool vs Carnage

dp v carnage

A while back I talked about this story in my list of 5 of my favorite Deadpool stories and randomly before heading off to my job that ain’t Saviorgaming, I plucked this bad boy off my comic bookcase and started reading it for old time sake. Both insane, murderous, red wearing smartasses that are nearly unkillable, this was bound to get messy…

The story begins with Cleatus Kassidy, the human part of Carnage, in prison for the murder sprees and mayhem he’s known for. This time he’s broken into near sanity without his other. Nearly hundreds of miles away the Carnage symbiote is being experimented on, yearning for it’s perfect host to bond with again. It breaks free of captivity, leching from one body to another until reuniting with Kassidy, becoming Carnage once again- vowing to serve true chaos once again, ditching plans of bigger things and devoting himself to pure bloody anarchy. And that he does in a horrendous killing spree, virtually unopposed, until Wade catches him on the TV one night. Wade, Deadpool, believes the ” TV people” are telling him he’s the only one crazy enough to be able to hunt down psycho and with that, the hunt is on. Blood spills on both sides until Carnage’s girl Shriek joins him and Deadpool seems screwed but he finds the mysterious Mercury team, trying to use the symbiotes for military use and suddenly Wade finds himself trying to fight fire with fire…

A majority of this comic feels like a R rated, bloody lost episode of Looney Tunes and it’s awesome. Both characters are evenly badass and have sweet moments throughout. I like how Deadpool of all people is the voice of reason and we get a good glimpse of him being disgusted by Carnage’s ruthless nature, making a more complex contrast than expected. The artwork is really solid and like typical Marvel fashion there is a nice prologue in the beginning, explaining both characters for the new comers so it’s very easy to pick up. I recommend as a good, funny, action packed quick read. May the gaming gods bring you glory.

Skulduggery Pleasant

skulduggery pleasant

This request has been a long time coming but this review goes out to my friend Danny, a awesome dude. Miss ya man.

Stephanie Edgley is both saddened and surprised when her uncle, a famous fantasy/ horror writer, passes away suddenly; saddened because he was one of the few people in her family she connected with and shocked that he left her with his estate. A strange man outside of her family shows up to the funeral and will reading, dressed from head to toe with a scarf around his face. This stranger is Skulduggery Pleasant, a living skeleton and magic detective who will change Stephanie’s life forever, showing her that there is more to the boring life she knew- magic, intrigue, ancient artifacts, monsters, and ancient enemy who basically wants to bring an end to the world. It’s up to an enthusiastic Stephanie/ Valkyrie Cain ( as she will be known later on), the wise-cracking detective, a sword wielding young woman, and some friends to take down Skulduggery’s old enemy and save the day in this opening chapter of a huge series…

I’m really honestly surprised the Skulduggery Pleasant series hasn’t reached Blockbuster status in the US the way so many other series have because it has some cool ideas behind it. I really like how well magic was broken down and the rules the system was given. The characters are likable and interesting; Tanith maybe my favorite because she did have a epic intro and some cool fights throughout. I also liked the White Cleaver at the end, who I kind of pictured as an anime version of Mr X from RE2. Serpine, the main villain was fine but I found him generic as a bad guy but seeing as it’s the first of a series I can’t say I’m too surprised. There’s a few times in the second act leading into the third kind of slow but nothing damming. Overall, it’s a really cool book I’d recommend to readers younger or older and a series worth checking out. May the gaming gods bring you glory…

Batman: The War of Jokes and Riddles( DC Rebirth)

batman jokes and riddles

As a kid, Riddler was one of my favorite Batman villains, likely because of Jim Carey in Batman Forever . As I got older, I realized there was certainly more dangerous villains, but I always thought he deserved a darker incarnation on screen. I’m glad to say I got my wish with this book…

Batman has been haunted by a memory for years, a time he almost crossed the line, so he recounts the tale for his beloved Selina ( Catwoman) of the War of Jokes and Riddles. Edward Nigma, known to Gotham as the Riddler, is one of it’s greatest criminal masterminds and has been aiding the police in solving crimes they didn’t want the Bat involved. One night, in a bloody display, he escapes Arkham Asylum in search of Batman’s greatest foe, the Joker. Joker, who has lost the will to laugh, is in the midst of a rampage to find laughter again. Riddler makes a truce with Joker, for them to team up to kill Batman, to solve the ultimate riddle and tell the ultimate joke. As you would imagine, this partnership doesn’t last long and suddenly the criminal underworld of Gotham is divided, a gang war killing hundreds on the streets. the police can’t handle the madness and Batman finds himself unable to take both forces on himself. In the end, he’ll have to choose a side, but who do you side with?

First and foremost, Riddler steals the show for me here. He’s creepy and damn memorable with his riddle filled dialogue and his ruthless nature. This is the Riddler I’d love to see on screen. The story has a great character list that doesn’t get used much except for show, though Riddler does have a nice stroll with Poison Ivy and there is a epic sniper war between Deadshot and Deathstroke. The story isn’t bad but I felt disappointed, although it does pick up by the end. The art is fine but the character designs are more classic based and none really standing out. I was not a fan of Joker in the story, who just comes off as blah to me here. In the end, it’s not a bad story I suggest checking out if you like the Riddler and want a very villain based story, and may the gaming gods bring you glory.

 

Guardians of the Galaxy/ All New X Men: The Trial of Jean Grey

trial of Jean Grey

So, before we begin, let me pose a question that has been asked in fiction and is what got me to read this book: how far should you go to prosecute someone for something they haven’t committed yet? I love the All New X Men series, where the original 5 X Men go forward in time to stop a radical mutant movement while having to come to terms with there futures, whether it’s Iceman coming to terms with his sexuality, Beast discovering he’ll lose much of his physical humanity and it will eventually be his end, or in this case, Jean Grey finding out she will be the death of millions as the Dark Phoenix.

A console of planetary figureheads led by J-son of Spartax ( Star-lord’s real father; Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017) changed that hard). Earth has been put under a sort of quarantine because of the damage done to the universe as well as the amount of super-powered people there. The Guardians of the Galaxy have fought back and forth against this. The problem is, word gets out Grey is alive and well on Earth. This news sparks outrage amongst the others, especially Earth’s former ally Gladiator of the Shi’ar Empire who takes it upon himself, against everyone else’s wishes to have her captured and brought to trial and punished. A crew of mercs attack the X men and manage to capture her; the Guardians investigate thinking it was part of a plot from J-son Quill, showing up soon after Grey was captured. The X men and Guardians decide to free her, but it’s the Guardian’s allies, the Star-Jammers that wrecks Cyclops’s world- meeting his long lost father in space. Can the Guardians of the Galaxy and X men free Jean Grey and bring down a alien empire?

I had a lot of fun with this story and it’s a quick read. My favorite aspect was the interactions between the two teams, like Angel and Iceman being terrified of Groot or a quiet exchange between X-23 and Drax. The character roster and art work is pretty good and may I say the variant covers, which feature a member from each team paired together which are pretty epic. Good news for those who aren’t familiar with either series or it’s characters, there is a character sheet and two detailed synopses that bring you up to speed. The only drawback I have is there isn’t as much action as I would have liked to have seen and while it doesn’t make much sense, I would have loved a quick fight between the two. In the the end as I stated in my post 5 Marvel stories that hooked me and I’d say it’s worth checking out. May the gaming gods bring you glory.