So, after that last post saying how difficult it is writing reviews … here’s a review. The irony is not lost on me! I chose to review a TV show I recently bought on Amazon, then decided as I wrote it that it would be something good for the blog as well. So here goes.
Warehouse 13 was a recent discovery of mine and instantly became one of my all-time favourite shows. Imagine Bones, take out the gory bits, and replace them with the “anything goes” fantasy style of Charmed, give it a steampunk makeover, and you’ve got an idea what it’s like. Admittedly slightly cheesy now and then, but that’s the way I like my TV. You also might like it if you like Buffy. The relationship between Claudia and Artie is quite close to that of Buffy and Giles, and W13 also stars Anthony (Stewart) Head and James Masters.
The warehouse of the title, dubbed “America’s attic”, is the place to protect everyday objects that have inexplicably been imbued with mysterious powers. The main characters track down the objects, called “artefacts”, and protect the
warehouse, and by extension the world. The main antagonists usually want the artefacts for themselves.
Every artefact is different, which makes for nicely varied episode plots. For some reason I never quite figured out, they all seemed to belong to dead famous people (“people with Wikipedia pages”)—Sylvia Plath’s typewriter, Jack the Ripper’s lantern, Lewis Carroll’s looking glass, HG Wells’ time machine … you get the idea. There’s a degree of predictability occasionally in some of the individual episode arcs, but overall the show twists and turns nicely. The good guys are loveable, even the grumpy ones (Artie). The bad guys (and the morally ambiguous guys) are equally fascinating, and for some reason are mostly English.
The show ran for five series, and I think wrapped up quite well. I have watched the box set twice over now, but not all the bonus features yet. That delight is still to come!
Copyright note: The photographs are borrowed from syfy.co.uk, hollywoodreporter.com, geeknation.com, gamesradar.com, and warehouse13.wikia.com.
It’s still National Poetry Month–just about (not long left)–so here comes my new poetry post. As promised, I’ve included a short review, and a poet feature.
Echoes, by Janice T
The author has a real gift with words. The neo-Victorian style–the first anthology I have read of it–is very different to both contemporary poetry and pre-twentieth century movements; archaic and occasionally modern language with both traditional and non-traditional rhyme structures.
My favourite in the collection is probably Skyline, one of the shorter poems. One of my favourite quotes is
Against the distant hills,
Soft sentries, washed with Summer’s gold.
The verdant green did swell
As if to reach beyond their hold
(From Endless Orchards)
I first discovered McSherry‘s work during my poetry module. A few are freely available to read, others are published in anthologies and magazines. Her poetry is contemporary, very lyrical with a lot of nature imagery. In terms of style, hers is not far off from my own, with an exception:
It’s more that I’m writing, and stealing things from everywhere, rather than I feel like I have to write about something in particular.
I usually need a subject to begin writing, though I can deviate from time to time.
Since trying to keep my posts ‘useful’, I have found that they have become a lot less frequent and attract less readers. So I have made a decision to set aside a specific weekly time to focus on this and do it properly. Hopefully this should solve the problem.
I’ve written hardly any poetry over the summer, so this week has been a real bonus for me as I worked on about four drafts, and written two more from scratch. I’ve been researching more poetry competitions with a view to submitting to bigger ones, hopefully being in with a chance.
Described as an anthology of “the best in Heroic, Epic and High Fantasy, and with plenty of Sword and Sorcery thrown in”, Fantasy Short Stories: Issue 1 doesn’t disappoint. The five shorts are of a generally high quality writing. I prefer indigenous fantasy novels to short high fantasy, but enjoyed most of the stories–one or two were a little violent for my liking. I think my favourite, and the strongest, was “The Empty Dark” by C L Holland; it was the most engaging and the ending was the most satisfactory of the collection. I liked the idea behind “The Pivot” but found the narrative style difficult to follow. Overall I would recommend the issue.
Fantasy Short Stories: Issue 1 is available on Kindle and other ebooks for £3.08.
For writers: details for submissions are located in the back, and on the website (link above).
I am trying out a new post format–do the headings work for you? Or do you prefer the days of my rambles? Please let me know.