TNT’s Leverage Returns Tonight

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Leverage returns tonight with the first of six all new episodes. Last summer left off with Tara Cole (Jeri Ryan) joining the team temporarily while Sophie (Gina Bellman) decided to take a break. Tonight’s episode is “The Runway Job.” A mistreated sweatshop worker comes to Nathan (Timothy Hutton) for help, and the team goes undercover in the world of high fashion. While the missing Sophie definitely affects the team dynamics, Ryan’s character is quite a bit more likeable in this episode. She’s not as confident and has a better sense of humor. The Runway Job is another masterpiece – fantastic plot and writing, with huge twists, and as fast-paced as ever. Don’t miss it.

Leverage Season 2 Recap:

"Leverage"

Book Review: Star Trek: Mirror Universe: The Sorrows of Empire

Star Trek: Mirror Universe: The Sorrows of Empire

Star Trek: Mirror Universe: The Sorrows of Empire, by David Mack

After returning from a mirror universe, where Earth and Starfleet is ruled by a peaceful democracy, Spock makes a decision to change his universe. Formulating a plan, along with the help of Kirk’s former consort and a secret weapon, Spock wants to overthrow the current tyrannical Empire and pave the way for democracy.

The story of Spock’s rise to power is told over the course of almost 30 years. The mirror universe Spock is similar to the original in that he is just as logical and brilliant, plotting out a seemingly-impossible dream that won’t come to fruition until years later. But this Spock is also brutal, willing to kill to justify a free society for future generations. For him, the “needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or one” and plenty suffer for his ideals. Unfortunately, he seems to feel little remorse for all of the atrocities that are done in his name. He literally becomes the thing he hates most. It’s certainly an interesting take on a parallel Spock -one we barely have a glimpse of in the original series show.

Mack has done a wonderful job of showing us an expanded Mirror Universe, where Starfleet is a harsh and feared military regime and Earth is governed by a cruel Empress. It’s a gripping story, full of suspense, danger and intrigue. A surprisingly quick read, I finished it all in one afternoon. You may not agree with everything that Spock does, but it will certainly make you think about how he rationalizes that the ends justify the means. Is he a brave idealist? Or a single-minded murderer that should have found a less costly way of paving the way for freedom? The challenge that is set forth is certainly compelling.

Book Review: Rampant

Rampant

Rampant, by Diana Peterfreund

Astrid Llewelyn has average 16-year-old girl struggles with boys, the pressure to have sex, and thinking her mother is crazy. But when her boyfriend is attacked by a unicorn, it seems that mom isn’t as crazy as she seems. Forget the fairy tale unicorns. The real unicorns are blood thirsty, man-eating monsters. And Astrid comes from a long line of unicorn hunters. When Astrid’s mother sends her to Italy to hone her blossoming skills as a warrior, Astrid is less than enthused. She isn’t sure that she wants to be a hunter, giving up her freedom to deal with constant danger and violence.

Peterfreund has done an incredible job of world-building a place of magical unicorns and virginal female warriors entrusted with protecting the world from the vicious creatures. As Astrid discovers, there’s a mysterious connection between the unicorns and the hunter’s skills. And the characters are completely believable – one girl’s struggle with her mother’s death and wanting revenge, peer rivalries, dealings with boys and sex, and the moral ramifications of hunting a species to extinction.

The story is gripping, from beginning to end. The author obviously did a lot of research into Italy’s history and architecture, as well as fighting and archery techniques. Astrid is a reluctant heroin, but has strong character, and does more than her share of growing through her struggles, both losses and wins. This young adult fantasy is a remarkable and fascinating story full of mystery, love, heartache, mysticism, adventure, and conflict. Utterly unique, this bizarre twist to unicorn lore has left me wanting more.

Being Human Season 2 Airs Sunday in the UK

Being Human Season 2

Just a reminder for friends in the UK, that season 2 of Being Human starts this Sunday, January 10th on BBC3 at 9.30pm!

Check out a new preview clip:

There is also a preview trailer on the official Facebook page, plus more Being Human content such as photo galleries from season 2 – become a fan to ensure you don’t miss out on all the important news:
http://www.facebook.com/BBC.Being.Human

Those of us the in US are still waiting for our release date…

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