Received in July

The following are the books, movies, television shows, etc. I received last month for review and/or giveaways:

Barb Hendee/ND Author Services:
The Hunters’ Girl by Barb Hendee

Del Rey:
Malorie: A Bird Box Novel by Josh Malerman

Disney Hyperion:
Hood by Jenny Elder Moke
Snow Day for Groot! by Brendan Deneen
Tristan Strong Destroys the World by Kwame Mbalia

Penguin / Razorbill:
Goddess in the Machine by Lora Beth Johnson

Saga Press:
The Only Good Indians by Stephen Graham Jones
Live to Tell the Tale by Keith Ammann
Savage Legion by Matt Wallace

Simon Pulse:
Legendborn by Tracy Deonn

Subterranean Press:
The Best of Michael Marshall Smith by Michael Marshall Smith
Comes a Pale Rider by Caitlín R. Kiernan
Dying With Her Cheer Pants On: Stories of the Fighting Pumpkins by Seanan McGuire

Titan Books:
Alpha Omega by Nicholas Bowling

Tor:
Architects of Memory by Karen Osborne
The Relentless Moon by Mary Robinette Kowal
The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V. E. Schwab
Uranus by Ben Bova

Tor Teen:
The Princess Will Save You by Sarah Henning

War Planet Press:
Warbot 1.0: AI Goes to War by Brian M. Michelson

The Princess Will Save You – Book Review

The Princess Will Save You by Sarah Henning

Synopsis:
When her warrior father, King Sendoa, mysteriously dies, Princess Amarande of Ardenia is given what would hardly be considered a choice: Marry a stranger at sixteen or lose control of her family’s crown.

But Amarande was raised to be a warrior―not a sacrifice.

In an attempt to force her choice, a neighboring kingdom kidnaps her true love, stable boy Luca. With her kingdom on the brink of civil war and no one to trust, she’ll need all her skill to save him, her future, and her kingdom.

Review:
The inspiration for this novel was Princess Bride. This becomes really evident at times, with quite a bit of similar dialog and events. But don’t expect the same lighthearted humor. While there isn’t much in the way of humor, there is plenty of suspense, drama, and intrigue. And in this novel, the princess does the rescuing.

The Princess Will Save You is a fun YA novel that will appeal to fantasy fans of all ages. The adventure and mystery make for an engaging read. As well as several exciting twists and surprises. This is the first in a planned series, so don’t expect all threads to be wrapped up. But I certainly look forward to the next installment.

Volition – Interview with Tony Smith and Ryan Smith

Tony Dean Smith (Co-Writer/Director/Co-Producer) & Ryan W. Smith (Co-Writer/Producer) join SciFiChick.com today to talk about their new film Volition!

Where did the idea come for the script?

TONY: The original kernel was something I stumbled upon in film school. I became convinced that IF clairvoyance was real and that they could see “ahead”, then it must pre-suppose that “ahead” had already happened. The story wasn’t fleshed out yet, and certainly didn’t have the character, plot or themes of Volition, but it did explore the relationship between perception and time. I almost made a short version many times, but I’m thankful that Ryan and I got our greasy paws on the material and turned it into Volition.

What was the process for co-writing?

RYAN: We’re lucky as brothers to have a lot of shared experience, so the process of writing together is very smooth. That said, we also sometimes see things from different perspectives, so we’re always pushing one another to stretch and improve. Generally, we’ll brainstorm and outline together for a long time, until we feel we have a good handle on the beats of the story. At that point, we’ll divide the outline in the middle, and each take a half to write in script form. Often new discoveries will happen for each of us in that process. Once those half-drafts are written, we’ll trade sides and each re-write the other person’s work. We repeat this over and over until we have a cohesive piece that feels like it represents us both.

What are some of the themes of the film?

TONY: At its core, Volition is ultimately about becoming unstuck. It’s about finding the courage and clarity to do what’s right, even in the face of insurmountable odds. Most of us believe something about ourselves and becomes paralyzed in that fixed idea of who we are. We feel like we’ll never write the novel, never get in great shape, etc. To overcome the feeling and fear of change, this film shows us that our perception is our primary prison – and to break free – we must do the opposite of what brought us here…

What do you hope viewers will take away?

RYAN: We hope viewers will be gripped by the film’s cerebral puzzle, but also leave emotionally charged and moved.

Would you want the ability to see the future?

TONY: I already knew you’d ask that, so… 🙂 My own personal experiences with dreams/meditation/clairvoyance have certainly shaped my worldview, enough to make a movie out of it. The human brain is almost like a quantum computer, and I’m quite sure we’re just at the beginning of understanding our place in this incredibly creative universe. Would I truly want to know the future? No. The present is where the fun is. 🙂

RYAN: Good question! Personally, I would not want that ability. It’s hard enough without clairvoyance to keep myself present in any given moment. I think if I knew how my future would turn out, I’d really struggle against apathy. I feel for our character, James. His predicament would not be easy.

What were some of your favorite moments on the set?

TONY: I think what I take away most is the incredibly passionate and family-like atmosphere we had. Movies are fun and even though we had a brutal schedule (with a near-impossible script to shoot), my favourite memory is the in-between moments with the cast and crew. The laughing, the crying, the bleary-eyed, but always smiling faces as we moved into longer and longer shooting days. 🙂

RYAN: A lot of the film was shot at night, so half of the time the cast and crew were in some level of delirium. It’s fitting, given the time-bender that is this film, that much of the shoot involved a sense that days were blending into nights, that our perception of time was off-kilter. I remember pretty much every cast and crew member, at some point, finding a nook or cranny to take a nap in.

What are some of your favorite movies or stories?

TONY: Far too many to list, but I always care and am moved by people doing the good thing. So for me, anything with a redemptive arc is what I love. As far a favorite story… go find Stephen King’s “The End of The Whole Mess.” It’s a short, but it says everything about what I want to do as a filmmaker. It has scope, epic ideas… and very grounded, flawed characters. Brilliant story.

RYAN: Children of Men is high on my list, and we thought about that film early on, for the look and feel of Volition. We both love the grounded nature of the sci-fi elements at play. Also, it’s more than just a “what if” cerebral exercise, it’s filled with complex characters that tug at your heart.

Is there anything else you would like to share?

TONY: We’d love to keep the conversation going! Ryan and I are always around on social media etc, so we’re hoping to connect with other fans, filmmakers and sci-fi lovers. We’re also excited to slowly tease what’s next for us, as we transition into making that a reality.

RYAN: We’d love to hear from anyone who checks out the film. There is lots to debate in the ending and throughout. We encourage your readers to find @volition_movie on Twitter. Tony’s at @tonydeansmith and I’m at @ryanwarrensmith. We’re excited to connect!

_________________________________________
ABOUT VOLITION:
AVAILABLE APPLE TV, PRIME VIDEO & OTHER DIGITAL PLATFORMS: July 10, 2020

DIRECTOR: Tony Dean Smith
WRITERS: Tony Dean Smith & Ryan W. Smith
CAST: Adrian Glynn McMorran, Magda Apanowicz, John Cassini, Frank Cassini, Aleks Paunovic, Bill Marchant

SYNOPSIS: In this time-bending cerebral science-fiction thriller, a man afflicted with clairvoyance tries to change his fate when a series of events leads to a vision of his own imminent murder. Awarded as BEST FEATURE at the Philip K. Dick Film Festival, among a slew of other awards and critical acclaim, VOLITION is a tightly-wound puzzle of a ride.

RUN TIME: 92 Minutes
RATING: Not Rated
GENRE: Science-Fiction Thriller
DISTRIBUTOR: Giant Pictures
YOUTUBE TRAILER: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HZQaf-2ZlmA

Race to the Sun – Book Review

Race to the Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse

Synopsis:
Lately, seventh grader Nizhoni Begay has been able to detect monsters, like that man in the fancy suit who was in the bleachers at her basketball game. Turns out he’s Mr. Charles, her dad’s new boss at the oil and gas company, and he’s alarmingly interested in Nizhoni and her brother, Mac, their Navajo heritage, and the legend of the Hero Twins. Nizhoni knows he’s a threat, but her father won’t believe her.

When Dad disappears the next day, leaving behind a message that says “Run!”, the siblings and Nizhoni’s best friend, Davery, are thrust into a rescue mission that can only be accomplished with the help of Diné Holy People, all disguised as quirky characters. Their aid will come at a price: the kids must pass a series of trials in which it seems like nature itself is out to kill them. If Nizhoni, Mac, and Davery can reach the House of the Sun, they will be outfitted with what they need to defeat the ancient monsters Mr. Charles has unleashed. But it will take more than weapons for Nizhoni to become the hero she was destined to be . . .

Review:
Nizhoni can see monsters, but otherwise she is smart and loyal girl. She and her friend Davery are likable and relatable. Their journey into Navajo lore is exciting, perilous, and magical.

Race to the Sun is a fun, middle reader fantasy. Fans of Percy Jackson will enjoy this standalone story with fascinating Native American folklore. I only wish the villains would have been fleshed out a little more. But the journey Nizhoni follows is perilous and engaging. With plenty of adventure, suspense, and humor – this fast-paced story was a joy to read.

Received in June

The following are the books, movies, television shows, etc. I received last month for review and/or giveaways:

Blu-Ray/DVD:
Pennyworth – The Complete First Season
Head of the Class – The Complete First Season

Atria:
The Preserve by Ariel S. Winter

CamCat Books:
So You Had To Build A Time Machine by Jason Offutt

Disney Hyperion / Marvel:
Paola Santiago and the River of Tears by Tehlor Kay Mejia
Captain Marvel: Beware the Flerken! by Calliope Glass
The Mirror Broken Wish by Julie C. Dao
The Unstoppable Wasp: Built On Hope by Sam Maggs

Harper Voyager:
Alien Secrets by Ian Douglas

Saga Press:
The Kingdom of Liars by Nick Martell

Simon Pulse:
Sia Martinez and the Moonlit Beginning of Everything by Raquel Vasquez Gilliland

Subterranean Press:
Fishing for Dinosaurs and Other Stories by Joe R. Lansdale
Princess Floralinda and the Forty-Flight Tower by Tamsyn Muir

The Kingdom of Liars – Book Giveaway!

Courtesy of Saga Press, I have a copy of The Kingdom of Liars by Nick Martell for one lucky winner!

Contest is open to US residents only. No PO Boxes please. To enter, just fill out the form below. Contest ends July 17. I’ll draw a name on July 18, and notify winner via email.

ENTER DAILY TO INCREASE YOUR CHANCE OF WINNING!

Good luck!

Read moreThe Kingdom of Liars – Book Giveaway!

WP2Social Auto Publish Powered By : XYZScripts.com