Category: book review


2015 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2015 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 780 times in 2015. If it were a cable car, it would take about 13 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

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Episode #62.”It’s Your Funeral”

It seems as though this week’s episode focuses on television.  Gil T. basically listens in as Tim M. and Eric talk about; “The Man in the High Castle” (an Amazon TV series pilot), “12 Monkeys,” and more.

2014 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.  It was a slow year for me but 2015 will be bigger and better.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 1,500 times in 2014. If it were a cable car, it would take about 25 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

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“Attack on Titan, Vol. 1”
by Hajime Isayama
Paperback, 208 pages
Published June 19th 2012 by Kodansha Comics
(first published March 7th 2010)

I can’t say I’m a big fan of Manga, I like most of the stories, but the books seem gimmicky to me. I love comic books, and I love a good story, but with Manga comics the books are printed backwards and it takes me about halfway through the book before I start to get the hang of reading right to left. I understand the original printings in Japan are written that way, but they could easily be printed in the same way books are printed on this side of the planet and nothing will be missed. When Western hemisphere books are printed in the other countries that read in the opposite direction they are printed to make it easier for the readers there. So to be geek chic when you find a good Manga they are printed to be read “backwards.” The only reason this happens is to be different, cool, or hip.

I had to overcome this bias because I had heard a lot of good reviews about both the “Attack on Titan” Manga books and TV series. When I started reading this book I hadn’t yet started watching the TV series and all I knew was that it was a survival series much along the lines of “The Walking Dead.” Yes it did take some time to get used to reading backwards, but once I started flowing with the story I was rewarded with a great story told in comic book form and using the tools of flashbacks, and weapon and tactics specifications all interwoven in the story. Again I say, I would have enjoyed it more if I didn’t have to retrain my brain to read backwards.

As for the story, it is a survival story set 100 years after the Titans have forced humanity to live behind walls. Humankind is down to just a few thousand people who live in a city surrounded by three concentric walls. The walls protect them from their enemies, the Titans. The Titans are humanoid giants that eat the humans alive. Untouched by the Titans for a century, humanity has become complacent. But Eren Jaeger, a trainee in the Army has had enough. While his fellow citizens are content to hide, Jaeger has the passion to take action to not only protect the city, but to learn what the Titans actually are. But on his first mission he comes face to face with horrors beyond his imagination and secrets from his own past that could shift the tides of war.

I have since started watching the animated TV series and am hooked. The story is phenomenal. I am glad I read the Manga first only because it introduced me to the TV series which I could have easily not watched and would have missed out on a great show. If they do reprint these to be read from left to right I will definitely continue to read the series, but until then I’ll just have to settle with the fact that I’m too old to be taught new reading habits.

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“Peter Pan”
by J. M. Barrie
read by Christopher Cazenove
Published by Blackstone Audio
Approx. 5 hours

It’s time once again to visit a classic, this time a children’s classic, “Peter Pan.” I had thought I had read “Peter Pan” before, but I must have been wrong, or maybe read a cleaned up/Disneyfied version. I know the Disney film version was definitely made more fun for the kids and all the versions on television were fun (remember Sandy Duncan as Peter?). Don’t get me wrong, the original is the way to go and the story really should be read by all, but maybe wait until the teen years before reading this dark story about a boy that never grows up.

The gist of the story seems to always be there in the retelling of the story. Peter Pan sneaks into the Darling family home and in his hasty retreat leaves his shadow behind. Returning to retrieve the shadow he finds the shadow to not want to remain attached to Peter. Wailing in sorrow, Peter wakes Wendy, the oldest of the Darling children. Wendy proceeds to help Peter by sewing on his shadow. Peter is smitten by Wendy and tells her of Neverland where children never have to grow up. He brings Wendy back with him, despite some stern protestations from Tinker Bell, a fairy who seems to be in love with Peter. Tinker Bell becomes insanely jealous and proceeds to make Wendy’s life difficult. Wendy’s arrival at Neverland brings her to her new role in life, that as a mother the Peter’s “Lost Boys.” She makes the boys more responsible and soon falls into the role of mother and as time goes by she and her brothers begin to forget about their home.

Peter wants them to forget so they may stay forever with him. But soon Wendy breaks out of her stupor and begins to remember her life before and tries to return home, but is captured by Captain Hook, the pirate leader who is always out to kill Peter.

The darkness in the story dwells within the characters of Peter, Tinker Bell and Captain Hook. Peter is a knowing kidnapper of Wendy and the boys and will not let them escape. Tinker Bell is insanely jealous and nips at Wendy every chance she gets. Finally there’s Captain Hook, who lost his hand to a crocodile. Hook doesn’t merely want to capture the Lost Boys, he wants to kill them, and he wants to keep the young Wendy as his bride. Very dark and mature story matter here that makes revisiting the classic worthwhile.

In this audiobook version published by Blackstone Audio, the reader, Christopher Cazenove, does a smash up job creating voices for all the wily characters in the story while reading with just enough vigor to never allow the listener to get bored.

Grab this classic and be prepared to remember the fun while being surprised at some of the darker sides of the story you may have missed.

Episode #45.

 

Episode #45 “The Lambda Factor”

Gil T, Eric and Tim all join up to talk nerdy, this time around Gil T. & Tim Matson go see “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes,” and review the movie in the parking lot of the Eagle Theater.  Gil T. and Eric wrap around the review with Eric’s review of the same movie, they also discuss “Tammy,” “The Strain,” Archie comics, changes in Captain America and Thor, and more.

 

You can  reach Gil T. ( @gilwilson ), Eric ( @ericbill ), Tim Kocher ( @TimKhastosay ) and Tim Matson ( @timgonmad ) on twitter but even better you can tweet to @nerduppodcast and we’ll get the message.  So tweet us and let us know what you think. Or leave a voicemail by clicking on the “send voicemail” tab on the right hand side of the nerduppodcast.blogspot.com page.

 

There are ways you can help support the podcast one is to simply make a donation by clicking on the PayPal donation button on the top right of the page or you can check out our Merch table.   Just click on the NerdUp Merch Table button on the top of the podcast page or just visit http://www.cafepress.com/nerduppodcast.

 

Episode #41.

 

Episode #41 “Space Warp”

 

In this exciting episode of the NerdUp Podcast, Gil T. Eric Billingsley & Brandon Bell get together to talk about; the Sonic the Hedgehog movie, Aquaman in the upcoming Dawn of Justice movie, the Superman Celebration in Metropolis, Illinois which featured: Dean Cain, Billy Dee Williams and Sophie Aldred (Ace from the final season of the original run of Doctor Who, you know, the one where Sylvester McCoy was the Doctor).  Finally, we close out the podcast talking about video games and the Steam Box  and SteamBoy.

 

You can  reach Gil T. ( @gilwilson ), Eric ( @ericbill ), Tim Kocher ( @TimKhastosay ) and Tim Matson ( @timgonmad ) on twitter but even better you can tweet to @nerduppodcast and we’ll get the message.  So tweet us and let us know what you think. Or leave a voicemail by clicking on the “send voicemail” tab on the right hand side of the nerduppodcast.blogspot.com page.

 

Now another way you can help support the podcast is to check out our Merch table.   Just click on the NerdUp Merch Table button on the top of the podcast page or just visit http://www.cafepress/nerduppodcast.

 

Click here to listen or right click to “save as” a file on your  computer, or you can listen subscribe via an rss feed (link is on the right side of the webpage) or you can subscribe via iTunes.

NerdUp Podcast Episode #40.

NerdUp Podcast Episode #40 “The Beta Cloud”

 

Well we just can’t stop talking about IndyPopCon.  This time around the NerdUp Podcast Posse talk about “X-men: Days of Future Past,” “Plume,” “Henchmen,” “The Edge of Tomorrow” and lots of other nerdy stuff.  We close out the podcast with a “What’s bothering Tim” segment, this time around we approach the subject of “Fake Geeks and Bullying.” Pass this one along you may have friends that need to hear the message.

The NerdUp Podcast now has its own twitter account.  You can still reach Gil T. ( @gilwilson ), Eric ( @ericbill ), Tim Kocher ( @TimKhastosay ) and Tim Matson ( @timgonmad ) on twitter but even better you can tweet to @nerduppodcast and we’ll get the message.  So tweet us and let us know what you think. Or leave a voicemail by clicking on the “send voicemail” tab on the right hand side of the nerduppodcast.blogspot.com page.

Now another way you can help support the podcast is to check out our Merch table.   Just click on the NerdUp Merch Table button on the top of the podcast page or just visit http://www.cafepress/nerduppodcast.

Click here to listen or right click to “save as” a file on your  computer, or you can listen subscribe via an rss feed (link is on the right side of the webpage) or you can subscribe via iTunes.

Episode #39 IndyPopCon Recap.

 

Episode #39  IndyPopCon Recap

In this episode Gil T, Tim Matson, Eric and Isaac venture to IndyPopCon and totally nerd out.  Hear interviews with the band “Five Year Mission” and a bonus of their song “Mirror, Mirror,” Pokemon and Yu-gi-oh voice actor, Eric Stuart, Jackson Bostwick (Captain Marvel from the 70s Saturday Morning series “Shazam/Isis Hour,” Comedy duo Paul & Storm, the living Meme – Bad Luck Brian.  All the while Gil T, Tim and Isaac recap day 2.  But mainly you just hear Tim being an extreme Joel Hodgson fanboy.   Check out the pics on the NerdUp Podcast Facebook page for more fun.

The NerdUp Podcast now has its own twitter account.  You can still reach Gil T. ( @gilwilson), Eric (@ericbill) and Tim Matson ( @timgonmad ) on twitter but even better you can tweet to @nerduppodcast and we’ll get the message.  So tweet us and let us know what you think.

Or leave a voicemail by clicking on the “send voicemail” tab on the right hand side of the nerduppodcast.blogspot.com page.

Episode #38

Episode #38.

“Seed of Destruction”

In this episode Gil T. Wilson, Isaac Wilson & Eric Billingsley, team up to discuss “X-Men; Days of Future Past”, Amazon Prime, and IndyPopCon plus a few other nerdy topics.  The NerdUp Podcast now has its own twitter account.  You can still reach Gil T. ( @gilwilson), Eric (@ericbill) and Tim Matson ( @timgonmad ) on twitter but even better you can tweet to @nerduppodcast and we’ll get the message.  So tweet us and let us know what you think.

Or leave a voicemail by clicking on the “send voicemail” tab on the right hand side of the nerduppodcast.blogspot.com page.

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