On my 50 books/50 movies challenge for 2012, I’m actually one up on the books (although it won’t look like it here because I’m woefully behind on reviewing them). I’m not sure how that happened, as usually I’m way ahead on movies. I suspect it was the bit of a slump Hollywood seems to go through in the winter months. Whatever the cause, summer is here! However, The Avengers is still dominating the box office and I had a nasty stomach virus so movie watching happened at home this week. You can’t stream it on Netflix, but you can get the DVD or if you have the movie channels it’s playing there. So here we are with book #13 and movie #14:

Book: Demon Marked

by Meljean Brook

I was first introduced to this author when my book club picked The Iron Duke to read. I loved it so much, I decided to check out this paranormal romance. I’m so happy I did! I had such a good time reading it, and it was fascinating to me to watch the protagonist learn about emotions and how to handle them. See, she’s a demon, but she has no idea how she came to be one. And Nicholas? He might as well be a demon, because he’s learned to bottle his emotions to hide them from the demon who pretended to be his mother. You can see how twisty this gets already, right? The fun thing about this read was the male lead wasn’t completely Alpha, and the female lead was strong but with a lot of very real, human issues. There’s a few steamy moments but they do come later in the book. If you are looking for lots of sex scenes, this isn’t your book. If you are looking for an interesting story, check this out.

First Line: “Ash hadn’t meant to frighten the girl. She hadn’t even noticed the little blonde until after the subway train pulled away. The disembarking crowd quickly dispersed, leaving the underground platform empty but for Ash and a few other waiting passengers.”

I liked the first line. I immediately wondered who Ash was, and how she’d frightened a little girl. That kept me turning the page until I figured out that what scared the girl was Ash’s eyes, which had started to glow. Glowing eyes…cool! I read on, and was hooked.

This is not the first book in the series. Far from it, it’s the latest. So if you like to read a series from the beginning, start with Demon Angel. I haven’t read it, but it’s on my To Be Read pile as we speak.


Movie: Source Code

Jake GyllenhaalMichelle Monaghan and Vera Farmiga

This is an action/thriller with science fiction all over it. It’s twisty and turny, with hints of time travel and an over riding question of “what would you do if…”

“What would you do if you only had a few seconds to live?”

I don’t want to give any spoilers on this one because the plot twists were the things I enjoyed the most about this movie. So all I can tell you is there’s plenty to wonder about, get enraged over, contemplate, and at the end a real mind-bending what-do-you-believe moment. All good things, whether you are into science fiction or not.

This has more of an action/thriller/military feel to it than science fiction, so for those who don’t like hard core tech stuff, never fear. This is a mystery, plain and simple. Someone bombed a train. Our protagonist must discover who, because that person is planning on destroying all of Chicago with a dirty bomb.

If that plot sounds basic, well it is. But the part that isn’t is how he goes about sorting out who did it, which he does by reliving the 8 minutes before the train blows up. Over, and over, and over. And over. How he’s able to do that, and why he does it, felt original and fresh to me. It also tangled my mind with all kinds of “what if” scenarios. I get so tickled when a movie does that.

I liked this movie so much I watched it twice. The acting is great, the directing brilliant, and I liked that the action enhances the plot, rather than demanding center stage. This is an action movie for those who like to think.

I’d love a discussion on the meaning of the ending, but… well, I’ll wait, because I don’t want to ruin it for you. Go, watch, then come back and chat.