Audio Review: A Knight in Shining Armor (Montgomery, Book 16) by Jude Deveraux

A Knight in Shining ArmorHeroine: Dougless Montgomery is unhappy but fighting it. She’s determined to make her relationship with a man, who on paper is a great catch. In reality, he’s a douchebag who takes his bitterness about her trust-fund wealth out on her, while pretending he isn’t. He plays just enough of the lover to string her along, but he takes pleasure hurting her feelings and expectations. So is isn’t so surprising to learn, that a romantic trip for two, becomes a miserable nightmare when he insists his daughter tags along, which turns Dougless into the third wheel. Eventually, she snaps on the trip after an encounter with the nasty daughter, and runs weeping into a historic church. Her tears bring to life a man dead 400 years.

Hero: Nicholas Stafford, Earl of Thornwyck, a sixteenth-century knight, is not pleased to be pulled by magic to stand before a strange weeping woman. She is obviously a witch and he must return home because her trickery is too bizarre to contemplate. He especially wants to get back in time to his rightful place to clear his name of the slander of treason and find out who betrayed him to the Queen. He’s convinced staying near the witch woman will eventually send him back, if he helps cure what ails her. But being close to her and learning about her world change his heart forever.

Review: I really can’t stand it when a heroine stays with a fellow who is so obviously bad for her because she fears societal pressures or being alone. I am really unsympathetic toward her situation because she perpetuated it herself. It felt like a huge portion of the book was spent showcasing just how bad her current boyfriend was before the hero was introduced. Thank goodness Audible’s app has the ability to double and triple time the reading speed.

Once the hero is introduced the story and romance crackle like wild fire and take off just as fast. I loved their interactions, I loved the hero’s attempts to learn and understand modern society, I loved how they plan a future and the magic of time strips it from them. I especially loved when the heroine goes back in time to a point prior to him jumping forward and the hero had to fall for her a second time. Angsty and delicious. So much good stuff happened in the past. I really loved how both parties jumped and learned about the other’s time period and life.

BUT!!!!

Why is it that the hero and heroine do not actually wind up together? I do not care for this look-alike nonsense at all. Very frustrating. Extremely frustrating. Everything was great until “Bam!” Time separates them permanently and that’s it. No more time pretzels to bring the hero forward or the heroine backward. Not cool. It’s not the same, because the hero’s physical twin or reincarnation or whatever does not have the hero’s memories.

Narrator: Steve West, had a great voice. Had to turn the reading speed up though because he reads very slow and precisely. It’s very British in its reading in a good way, especially sped up a bit. I loved his accent.

Rating: ★★★★☆

Buy: A Knight in Shining Armor

[phpbay]knight shining armor jude deveraux, 10, “”, “”[/phpbay]

Movie Review: Alice in Wonderland starring Mia Wasikowska, Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter, and Anne Hathaway

I honestly thought I wouldn’t like this Tim Burton film. Everything looked just entirely too too much and over the top. The trailers didn’t really appeal to me. I went to the 2D version because it was cheaper, so if I didn’t like it I hadn’t shelled out a lot of dough to see it. I was surprised by how many kids were in the theater – I expected the movie to be dark and I thought it was rated higher for more mature audiences. It’s not. It’s pretty kid friendly actually. To make a long story short, loved it. Like LOVED it.

The Actors:

  • Mia Wasikowska is a wonderful Alice. Perfect from the tips of her curly blond hair to the points of her little toes. She’s a treat to watch.
  • In the trailers, Johnny Depp, looks and sounds so completely bonkers, I was afraid he’d overplay the part. But Johnny’s performance is surprisingly poignant and full of charm.
  • Helena Bonham Carter was another who I thought would overplay, but she’s every inch the Red Queen without being too much.
  • Anne Hathaway plays the flighty White Queen. I couldn’t tell if she was good or bad for half the movie (yes clearly I’ve not read the books… shh… bad reader no cookie.)
  • Crispin Glover was great as the Knave of Hearts also known as Stayne.
  • Voice actors Michael Sheen and Alan Rickman did wonderful in their parts.

The Costumes:

  • Alice Kingsley’s multiple outfits. You’d think the magic juice and cake would make her clothing shrink and grow accordingly, but it doesn’t. It leads to a bunch of hilarity and costume changes allowing Alice to fit into this new mad world.
  • I’m on the fence for Johnny Depp’s makeup as the Mad Hatter. On one hand I love it – and he can certainly wear it. The eyelashes are awesome. On the other hand I really dislike the purple on white skin palette.
  • Every costume for the Red Queen was gorgeous. It’s Tudor period meets Disney.
  • Did not like the White Queen’s costumes. Or more accurately put, I hated that Anne Hathaway had dark thick black eyebrows and thick black/mauve lips against all that white. Very bizarre.
  • Knave of Hearts face makeup was excellently done. He really looked like he had scars on his face.

CGI:

  • The scenery will blow your mind in a very good way.
  • All of the creatures and inhabitants of Wonderland (Underland) are highly stylized. I loved the White Rabbit and the March Hare the best. Go Team Rabbits. Er… Team Hares?
  • Absolem or the Blue Caterpillar looked like a wrinkled old man. I especially liked his forays into the real world.

Favorite Moments:

The Mad Hatter: Have I gone mad?
Alice Kingsley: I’m afraid so. You’re entirely bonkers. But I’ll tell you a secret. All the best people are.

The Mad Hatter: [to Alice] You used to be much more…muchier. You’ve lost your muchness.

Alice Kingsley: This is impossible.
The Mad Hatter: Only if you believe it is.

If you can’t tell by my quotes you should know some of the best parts in the whole film are between Alice and Mad Hatter. They help each other, save each other, rescue each other, look out for each other… I was very disappointed when Johnny Depp didn’t appear in the real world as either himself or as someone new for Alice to meet that looked like her old friend. I thought there was romance in the air there… perhaps for a sequel?

Overall a wonderful movie and well worth the price of admission. I think I just might go see it in 3D.

Rating: 4.5 Stars

Buy: Alice in Wonderland (2-Disc Special Un-Anniversary Edition)

[phpbay]alice in wonderland 2010, 10, 617, “”[/phpbay]