Blu-Ray Giveaway: The Fades Season One

Courtesy of BBC Home Entertainment, I have a Blue-ray copy of The Fades: Season One for one (1) lucky winner.

About The Fades
The Fades is a new supernatural horror series by 2011 Royal Television Society Award-winning writer Jack Thorne. Iain De Caestecker is Paul, a young man who is haunted by apocalyptic dreams that neither his therapist nor his best friend, Mac (Daniel Kaluuya), can provide answers for. Worse still, Paul has started seeing the Fades – the spirits of the dead – all around him. They’re everywhere but normally can’t be seen, heard or touched – until now. An embittered and vengeful Fade has found a way to break the barrier between the dead and the living. And Paul, Mac and their loved ones find themselves in the middle of it all. The worst is only yet to come as the fate of humanity rests in the hands of the two friends who already have enough trouble getting through a day in one piece, let alone saving the world.

Special Features Include:
Extra scenes
Deleted scenes
Behind the scenes clips
“Mac Explains” web videos

Contest is open to US residents only. To enter, just fill out the form below. Contest ends March 23. I’ll draw a name on March 24, and notify winner via email.

Good luck!

Read moreBlu-Ray Giveaway: The Fades Season One

Sci-Fi – Fiction Book Review: The Galahad Legacy

The Galahad Legacy by Dom Testa

In the distant future, a passing comet has left behind a deadly pollutant in Earth’s atmosphere. Bhaktul’s disease is fatal for all humans, but only takes effect in adulthood. In the search for a cure, one scientist devises an idea to send a group of young people to another planet where they can live free of the deadly disease and allow a future for humanity. Only 251 teenagers are sent in the impressive ship Galahad. Together, these teenagers must survive and thrive in order to reach their destination and keep humanity alive.

Triana Martell has just returned from her trip through a wormhole, and with her an alien representative of the Dollovit. Radiation is destroying the Galahad’s shields, so time is running out to reach their destination of Eos. The Dollovit aliens have offered a rescue and a choice of new homes. But their offer comes with a price.

The Galahad Legacy is the sixth and final book in the Galahad series. (Yes, the cover says #5. It’s a typo.) Testa has taken his readers on a wild ride through space with unique aliens, malicious saboteurs, high tech wonders, and an artificial intelligence with a sense of humor. As it would in high school, relationships have changed and developed in unexpected ways among the teens. Though, in regards to their jobs, the teens have been forced to mature and some have gained wisdom beyond their years. Self-sacrifice is more the norm than Merit’s constant (and annoying) lust for power.

There are numerous plot twists and surprises along the way. And this latest installment is the most exciting yet. Full of adventure, mystery, suspense, teenage angst, and tough choices – The Galahad Legacy is a fantastic conclusion to a series I didn’t want to end. It felt like the adventure was just beginning.

Sci-Fi – Fiction Book Review: Partials

Partials by Dan Wells

After war with the Partials (genetically engineered beings that look like humans) humanity is the endangered species. An engineered virus called RM wiped out most of humanity, and has killed every baby born since the war. Sixteen-year-old Kira is in medical training and is tired of the countless births without one baby that lives. The government is forcing younger and younger young women to get pregnant without hope of saving the babies. Now a violent revolution is looming because of opposition to the pregnancy laws. Kira decides to find a cure to RM using any means necessary, even if it means risking her life to save humanity.

Wells’ dystopian world is dark and seemingly hopeless, with the youngest known person a young teen. Humanity is dying out, no one seems safe from violent revolutionary attacks, the Partials and their goals are still a mystery, and soon Kira will be forced to get pregnant before she even knows what she wants to do with her life. Kira is a very sympathetic character, mature yet knows she isn’t ready for marriage and her own family yet. The setting and subject matter reminds me quite a bit of the Hunger Games. Though, Partials is slower-paced and more dramatic than action-packed.

I was hooked from the start with this surprising new YA debut. First in a trilogy, Partials has a creative hook on the post-apocalyptic setting with the mysterious Partials and the added horror of humanity dying out. Dark, and full of suspense, I loved every minute of this addicting YA novel. Science fiction fans of all ages should enjoy this intense futuristic adventure.

Partials will release from Balzer + Bray (Harper Teen) on February 28, 2012.

Blu-Ray Review: J. Edgar

J. Edgar

Official Synopsis:
During his lifetime, J. Edgar Hoover would rise to be the most powerful man in America. As head of the Federal Bureau of Investigation for nearly 50 years, he would stop at nothing to protect his country. Through eight presidents and three wars, Hoover waged battle against threats both real and perceived, often bending the rules to keep his countrymen safe. His methods were at once ruthless and heroic, with the admiration of the world his most coveted, if ever elusive, prize.

Hoover was a man who placed great value on secrets—particularly those of others—and was not afraid to use that information to exert authority over the leading figures in the nation. Understanding that knowledge is power and fear poses opportunity, he used both to gain unprecedented influence and to build a reputation that was both formidable and untouchable.

He was as guarded in his private life as he was in his public one, allowing only a small and protective inner circle into his confidence. His closest colleague, Clyde Tolson, was also his constant companion. His secretary, Helen Gandy, who was perhaps most privy to Hoover’s designs, remained loyal to the end… and beyond. Only Hoover’s mother, who served as his inspiration and his conscience, would leave him, her passing truly crushing to the son who forever sought her love and approval.

I had high hopes for this film, as I’m fascinated by the early days of the FBI and the conspiracy theories surrounding J. Edgar Hoover. Unfortunately, the film did not live up to my expectations. The story was very choppy, bouncing back and forth from Hoover’s early years to just before his death. A senior Hoover is giving his memoirs, and talking about his glory days. I would have loved to get a deeper insight into Hoover’s psyche and have had more depth into the forming of the FBI and his political ideals. Instead, we’re only shown a Hoover who rants against the Bolsheviks (Communists), and his forming of the FBI seemed to be set on fast-forward. There were brief glimpses of the take down of several infamous mobsters, a lengthy investigation into the Lindbergh baby kidnapping, and too much time spent on Hoover’s private life.

It felt like the screen writer read through Hoover’s Wikipedia entry and had to mention every single allegation about his private life. Which was pretty ridiculous since Hoover kept his private life private and certainly didn’t discuss it in any memoir. I wouldn’t have minded a brief look at his private life, but I wanted to see more of a concentration on his work as that was his priority in life. The social drama was very slow and drawn out. Though, the political drama was much too rushed and not explained well.

The saving grace of the film was the acting. Leonardo DiCaprio did an amazing job as both young and old Hoover. He was pure perfection in the role. There were a slew of other famous faces in brief cameo appearances, each bringing their talent but never over-shadowing. Supporting actors Naomi Watts (as Hoover’s secretary Helen Gandy), Armie Hammer (as Hoover’s protégé and close friend Clyde Tolson), and Judi Dench (as Hoover’s mother) were all stunning in their performances as well.

J. Edgar arrived onto Blu-ray Combo Pack, DVD and Digital Download February 21 from Warner Home Entertainment Group.

The Blu-ray Combo Pack and DVD include an UltraViolet Digital Copy of the film.

Black Howl Blog Tour and Giveaway!

Christina Henry stops by today to talk about her latest book on her Black Howl Blog Tour!

Can you tell us a bit about Black Howl and where we are in Madeline Black’s story?

In BLACK HOWL, Maddy’s got problems on top of problems, as usual. There are ghosts popping up all over Chicago whose deaths have not been foreseen by the Agency prophets. This means that these deaths are outside of the natural order, and it’s up to Maddy to find out who’s behind it all.

Of course, Maddy’s love life hasn’t gotten any easier either. Gabriel is now her thrall, and their happily ever after looks like it’s more out of reach than ever.

Urban fantasy/paranormal novels are popular and widespread right now. What different about the Black Wings series that sets it apart from the others?

The genre has just exploded in the last few years, and it’s amazing for fans of the paranormal. It means there’s something out there for pretty much everyone. I think BLACK WINGS and its sequels are a little bit different because the books are a real mash-up of genres – there’s action, comedy, romance, more action! Plus, while there are more books featuring angels than there were when I first wrote BLACK WINGS, angels remain a fairly small subset of the overall genre.

How many books do you have planned for the Black Wings series?

Right now there are at least six books planned for the series. After that, we will see how much more story there is to tell.

What’s next for you, after Black Howl? Any other stories on the horizon?

I do have an idea for a stand-alone novel and another series, but they are both in the planning stage. I’ve got two books in the BLACK WINGS series scheduled for this year and I’m not sure I’ll have time to do much else!

Tell us a bit about yourself and your experience in writing.

Read moreBlack Howl Blog Tour and Giveaway!

John Carter Fan Trailer Blows Away Official One

Here’s the trailer that “should have been” for John Carter. This fan-made trailer is extremely well-executed and puts the “Official” trailers to shame. Going by the official trailers, no one would know anything ABOUT the movie, let alone that it’s based on the classic novels by Edgar Rice Burroughs. If this fan-trailer can circulate enough, maybe the film will have a chance at succeeding.

UPDATE: If you’re a fan and would like to help this fan-run campaign, check out:

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