Hunger Games and The River, Episode 5

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Hi de ho, there! Welcome back to Fun Stuff Blog and Reviews.

In my attempt to avoid brain implosion this week I picked up the YA novel, The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. As a novelist myself, I don’t usually like to read the works of others while I’m composing my own but sometimes I just need the escape.

This post apocalyptic, dark adventure is set in a future where society at large is under the rule of the Capital, an elite sect that controls it populace with fear and the yearly reminders of what can happen to those who may oppose it through  a televised fight for survival called The Hunger Games. The country, having been divided into 13 strictly guarded districts, is forced each year to participate in a lottery where one boy and girl from each of these districts, between the ages of 12 to 18, is chosen to compete. The goal is to be the last survivor.

The story is written in the first person, as the character of a sixteen yr. old girl by the name of Katniss Everdeen who, after having lost her father to a mine explosion years earlier has had to provide for her family which consists of her severely depressed and detached mother and younger sister.

I honestly don’t want to divulge much more of the details since I don’t want to spoil the discovery of some truly touching story telling. But, I will tell you this book had me sniveling and looking for the kleenex pretty early on. That’s not to say that I didn’t have a few issues with Suzanne Collin’s writing style.

I found the present tense, first person awkward at times. It was too rigid and interfered with the flow of certain passages causing me to lose focus on the emotion of the moment to re-read what had been written. But for the most part, I was  engaged and really felt an empathetic connection with the character of Katniss.

I know that a film version of this novel is going to be released in March, I think. Not sure if you want to see the movie first, before you read the book, as most screen adaptations can’t measure up to the original author’s story. It’s your call. But if you enjoy a dark and stirring tale, The Hunger Games is a must read. I’ve already handed off my copy and once the rent is paid, will be heading back to Barns and Noble to pick up the sequel in this trilogy, Catching Fire.

And of course, this blog wouldn’t be complete without a re-cap of tonight’s episode of “The River

“The River” Episode 5

I’m a on the fence with this week’s episode of “The River”. Here’s how it went down.

Unfortunately, I tuned in 6 minutes into the action catching the intrepid crew of the Magus desperately trying to avoid a collision with an on coming ship. It’s night and in their attempt to avoid being hit, they run aground while the mystery ship just seems to disappear.

The Magus’ engines suffer a critical failure due to the crash which forces Tess to man the radio in an attempt to find help and the parts needed to repair their ship.

And as I predicted in last week’s recap, our newest member, Jonas, is questioning Lena about her relationship with Lincoln. She, of course, insist there is nothing between them.

So, after a 12 hour marathon stint over the radio, Tess finally raises a response from a near by ship and they quickly come to the rescue. It’s dark thirty on the river…,ooowh!

It is the Exodus, manned by a crew of four, that shows up to lend aid. The grateful crew of the Magus invites its rescuers to stay for dinner while Jahel and her father work at the repairs.

In the meantime, Lena and Jonas think they have spotted someone else aboard the Exodus and set out to investigate.

Hired gun, Kurt, becomes suspicious of their dinner guest, confronting one and even capping the guy several times, but he doesn’t die.

On board the Exodus, Lena finds her father, member of the lost Cole expedition, Russ Landry, locked below, in chains.

It turns out that the Exodus is some sort of ghost ship and its four passengers need to find their replacements before sunrise in order to finally leave the cursed ship. They almost succeed until Lincoln and producer Clark along with cameraman, Shaun come to the rescue with only minutes to spare.

Alas, our poor Lena must leave her father behind when he reveals to her that he is already dead. In tears she watches him disintegrate as the ghost ship goes up in flames.

The episode ends with Russ Landry’s epitaph on the screen which kind of threw me and forced me to search the internet to assure myself that the character wasn’t a real person that had actually died during the making of the series…, lol.

Not to say that I didn’t find this installment interesting but I would have liked to have seen more of the scary ghost instead of the two lightening quick flashes they gave us. And why didn’t Jahel pick up on the fact that she had a bunch a dead people on the ship. She is our physic connection. Shouldn’t she have sensed these things?

We did learn that Russ obviously got separated from Emmet Cole but we weren’t given a clear indication of why, only that they had lost the Magus somehow. And again there were references to the SOURCE and that Cole seemed to have become possessed by something that would cause him to disappear from the ship at odd times.

Well, quite murky goings on here, but I will be tuning in to see what happens next week. Until then, when you have the choice, buy MADE IN USA. Tired now. See ya later!

~ K. L. Parry ~ author of “The Pirate’s Daughter And A King’s Ransom”

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