Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Movie Review: Hopalong Cassidy Returns (1936)

One-legged miner, aptly named Peg Leg, finds gold but before he can stake a claim he is is killed by the criminals that run the lawless town. Windy is working for the town newspaper for some reason and he and the publisher call Hoppy in as the new sheriff to tame the lawless town. Hotheaded Johnny has left the series and seems to be replaced by Buddy, Hoppy's goofy tenderfoot nephew. Another fine entry in the series with a truly terrifying gunslinger outlaw named Blackie, and an unexpected budding romance between Hoppy and the villainous woman Lily that owns the saloon. I liked this one a lot.

Saturday, August 24, 2019

Review: Deadman's Lament

Deadman's Lament Deadman's Lament by Linell Jeppsen
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Young Matthew Wilcox, orphaned and in the care of a shopkeepers family is orphaned again and captured by a group of violent outlaws. One of the outlaws named “Top Hat” is exceedingly psychotic and kills and sodomizes without conscience. Matthew manages to escape and vows vengeance on Top Hat. Many years later Matthew is now sheriff and word of Top Hat’s location sets the stage for a showdown. The book is a well written revenge tale. I can’t say that it breaks any new ground, although the Top Hat character is one of the most vile antagonists that I’ve read in a Western. Plenty of violence and gore, so not recommended for the faint of heart. Overall an enjoyable book.

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Friday, August 23, 2019

Review: Mac Detective Series 05: The Brave, Bad Girls

Mac Detective Series 05: The Brave, Bad Girls Mac Detective Series 05: The Brave, Bad Girls by Thomas B. Dewey
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The sixth book in the “Mac” series of detective books is an ambitious one, telling the stories of several women, a young debutante charged with murder, a teacher accused of being a communist sympathizer, her principal (and a love interest for Mac), and Mac’s friend (another love interest!) who are all involved in a complex web of relationships that include a slew of other characters. This makes the book somewhat difficult to follow without paying strict attention. This is not necessarily a weakness. The plot, although complex, holds together beautifully and the journey is well worth it. Definitely one of my favorites of the series and recommended for readers that have an affinity for books with multiple plot lines and very many characters. There is a lot of depth here and I am adding this to my list of books that I intend to reread someday.

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Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Review: The People That Time Forgot

The People That Time Forgot The People That Time Forgot by Edgar Rice Burroughs
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The second book in Burrough’s Caspak trilogy finds young Tom Billings mounting a expedition to find missing friend Tyler Bowen, who was lost in the previous novella. High adventure ensues with Billings partnering with a native girl to survive the various creatures and murderous tribes of the inhabitants of Caspak, where each tribe makes up a subset of human biological evolution. The book was written over 100 years ago has the stale prose of that time, although once I got past *that* annoyance the story sucked me in and I couldn’t put it down. The world-building and inventive biology were very impressive, and the story was teeming with adventure and action. The story requires dedicated reading due to the complexity and the odd names. If I had been reading another book concurrently I would surely gotten lost and stalled out.

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