Favorite Surf Breaks…
What I’m Watching, Reading and Recommending!
Guilty Pleasure Alert!
Recently caught the first 2 eps. of #Riviera on a Delta flight and really enjoyed this Thriller set in the South of France which stars Julia Stiles (Jason Bourne, Mona Lisa Smile) as a woman caught up in web of lies. Created by Neil Jordan (The Crying Game). Lots of twists and turns. Airs on Sundance Now. 10 eps. Good Binge!
Here’s My Top 10 TV Series of 2017:
- American Gods (Starz)
- The Young Pope (HBO)
- Big Little Lies (HBO)
- Outlander (Starz)
- The Leftovers (HBO)
- The Americans (FX)
- Westworld (HBO)
- Riviera (Sundance Now)
- Sherlock! (PBS Masterpiece)
- Berlin Station (EPIX)
Are you an Abraham Lincoln fan? I grew up with Lincoln (we are both Native Sons of Hodgenville, Kentucky), so I am leery of books about him, but George Saunders’ wonderful book set in The Bardo, the Buddhist Purgatory, is a wonderful backdrop to the Lincoln Presidency during the death of Willie Lincoln.
Echoes of Thornton Wilder’s Our Town. Terrific read.
Big Little Lies on HBO and streaming. This 8-episode limited series adaptation of Liane Moriarty’s novel about Moms in Monterey really hooked me with a fantastic twist on a Whodunnit.
Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, Shailene Woodley and Laura Dern are the most prominent Moms who juggle their secrets with carpools and play dates. Very watchable TV. Great script by David E. Kelley and wonderful direction by Jean-Marc Vallee (Wild).
Timely, Topical TV.
Binge-watch S1 and Enjoy.
Keri Russell, Matthey Rhys, Noah Emmerich and Margo Martindale topline an excellent cast in this based-on a true story set in the ’80s about KGB operatives in the U.S. Already in S5 on FX, I just never got around to watching this gripping spy-drama on-air. Fantastic!
American Gods by Neil Gaiman
Gaiman’s book really hooked my inner-mythological fanboy. Everyone who ever immigrated to America brought with them the Gods in whom they believed. Those Gods either thrive or diminish based on how many people continue to pay tribute to them.
Read the book before checking out the TV adaptation on STARZ (which looks perfectly cast), which has been picked up for S2.
OUTLANDER on Starz. This TV show is an excellent adaptation of Diana Gabaldon’s internationally best-selling series of novels. Set in Scotland, the first season follows a modern-day woman who inexplicably travels in time to that country’s violent past in the 1700s. Lots of Men in Kilts, sword play, and beautiful Highland scenery. But, it’s the characters that keep you enthralled. Very Adult-themed Romance Science Fiction Historical Fantasy. Ron Moore (Battlestar Galactica) executive produces.
LA LA LAND stars Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling in Damien Chazelle’s (Whiplash) charming ode to young romance in Los Angeles. Wistful. Charming. Fun.
A lock for a Best Picture Oscar nom.
Check out the soundtrack : Various Artists – “LA LA LAND”
PRINCE LESTAT and the REALMS of ATLANTIS
Anne Rice’s latest in her popular Vampire Chronicles series catches up with Lestat, Louis, Marius and Co. as they wrestle with the consequences of Lestat becoming The Prince.
HARRY POTTER and the CURSED CHILD
Okay, it’s not a book, but rather, the script to a 2-part Play. And yet, it reads just as easily as one of Rowling’s books in the Potter franchise. Here, we catch up with Harry’s son Albus and his best friend Scorpius Malfoy when they get a hold of a TimeTurner to disastrous results. Enjoying a sold-out run in London’s West End but not heading to Broadway until spring of 2018.
CITIZENFOUR. Chilling. Humanizing.
READY PLAYER ONE by Ernest Cline.
Hands down, my favorite book of the last five years.
Cline presents the future of Entertainment and how we consume it, but also, how Entertainment will consume Us. Plus, some cool ’80s trivia.
BLUNT TALK on Starz. The second episode had me in stitches! Cancelled after two seasons. Pity. Great role for Patrick Stewart to show his comedy chops.
WILD by Cheryl Strayed is a wonderful book (as is the film adaptation direct by Jean-Marc Valle). Strayed puts your there alongside her on the Pacific Crest Trail and will make you want to hike.
Series To Binge Watch:
- Another Period (Comedy Central)
- Orphan Black (BBC America)
- Penny Dreadful (Showtime)
A continually surprising Horror series with new takes on Dracula, Frankenstein, Dorian Gray, The Wolfman, et al. Binge-watch all three seasons which were written by John Logan (SPECTRE, Skyfall). With Eva Green, Josh Hartnett and Timothy Dalton.
- Mozart in the Jungle (Amazon)
- Hamilton: The Documentary (PBS.org)