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Reviews Written by
S. Sommerville "Author of A Russian Prostitute's Guide to Pakistan and Other Tales of Grit and Valor" (Raleigh, NC)
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Envy
Envy
by Sandra Brown
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
Price: CDN$ 8.55
137 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Pleasantly Surprised, Dec 20 2003
This review is from: Envy (Mass Market Paperback)
A most excellent suspense/mystery novel indeed! Great description, characterization, a meaty plot, perfectly paced and just plain interesting. I would rate this as a must-read for anyone who enjoys writing fiction (especially those who are staring out). Sandra Brown has created here a book within a book within a book.
The story line you can get from the editorial and/or other reviewers, I just wanted to throw in my two cents and rant a bit on how much I enjoyed this work. Check it out.

Gerald's Game
Gerald's Game
by Stephen King
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
Price: CDN$ 9.45
156 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars The Most Underrated King Novel, Dec 19 2003
I can see why some people might be turned off from Gerald's Game due to the kinky theme. But it's hard to deny that this is probably his most wickedly terrifying novel to date. An upper class lawyer's wife, chained to a bed, out in the middle of nowhere is forced to face her past. All the while, the sound of a chainsaw is heard in the distance, and a starving dog enters the house. She is hearing voices in her head, she thinks she sees an awful looking man in the shadowed corner, staring at her. There was one part in particular that grossed me out (it's towards the end, you'll see when you get there). Also, this is one of the best endings that King has ever come up with. It wrapped up nicely, not leaving me with any questions or doubts.
If you are into psycological horror, and are not bothered by the sexual content, then give this one a try. Chau.

Crepusculo
Crepusculo
Offered by Vanderbilt CA
Price: CDN$ 37.95
4 used & new from CDN$ 3.11

5.0 out of 5 stars Diego Vasallo Shines!, Nov. 29 2003
This review is from: Crepusculo (Audio CD)
While Mikel Erentxun has had (well deserved) success as a soloist, it is Diego Vasallo who has quietly remained low key. Here, on Dhu's final studio recording, he shines on vocals. "Nunca me enamoraria de noche" and "Balada" are the best songs on this album and fit right in among Duncan Dhu's best. They are acoustic tunes in the vein of classics like "rosa gris" and "Esos ojos negros". Other notables are the Erentxun sung tunes, "Siempre (al abandonarnos)", "Nada" and "Imagino."
This album will probably not blow you away, but it is a must have for Dhu/Erentxun/Vasallo fans, as it features excellent acoustic rock tunes, done by the most consistent men in the rock en espanol scene.

Tributo a Jose Alfredo Jimenez XXX
Tributo a Jose Alfredo Jimenez XXX
Offered by langton_distribution
Price: CDN$ 29.81
4 used & new from CDN$ 29.80

5.0 out of 5 stars Plenty of Bang for Your Buck!, Nov. 29 2003
I was absolutly blown away by Aterciopelados beautiful rendition of one of my favirote Jose Alfredo Jimenez tunes, "Que Te Vaya Bonito". It brings a whole other dimension to the song. Fantastic.
Another knockout is "Serenata a la luna" done to perfection by Julieta Venegas. It makes me itch even more to hear her new album. Other notables include El Tri, Saul Hernandez, Ana Belen and King Chango. This album I believe is important, as it reintroduces the young generations to Jose Alfredo, who was the greatest composer of all time in my book. I hope that this will prompt young ones to seek out their grandparents records, and acquiant themselves with the one who helped shape Latin music as we know it today, perhaps more than anyone else.

Que Te Pasa Que Estas Borracho
Que Te Pasa Que Estas Borracho
Offered by Vanderbilt CA
Price: CDN$ 35.95
4 used & new from CDN$ 11.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Moenia & Genitallica Steal the Show, Nov. 29 2003
Moenia's techno-pop version of "huellas en la baja mar" is outstanding. They use the same "atari" sound found in their latest hit "en que momento".
Genitallica does a mean version of "visita nuestro bar", which turned out ultra catchy. They truly make it their own song, adding in their crazy stylings to the piece.
The rest of the album is ok. Celso Pina's cumbia version of "que te he hecho yo" is unique, and fresh sounding, but is certainly not worth running through the red lights to obtain. Overall, this is rather weak, but again, Moenia and Genitallica make up for the rest of them.

Dancer Upstairs, the
Dancer Upstairs, the
DVD ~ Javier Bardem
Offered by Fulfillment Express CA
Price: CDN$ 20.00
33 used & new from CDN$ 1.36

5.0 out of 5 stars Subtle, Moving..., Nov. 17 2003
This review is from: Dancer Upstairs, the (DVD)
What I liked most about this film was the fact that it focused on the emotions and personal lives of the characters, instead of just showing blow 'em up action scenes. This is a slow-moving, drawn out piece, which engages the watcher in (the brilliant) Javier Bardem's poignant world of uncertaintity and sentiment. It is a political thriller with philosophical undertones, a great script, wonderful acting, and directed appropriatly by Malkovich. Also, because of the emotional engagement, the violent scenes are all the more terrifying. I highly reccomend this to all.

Red Church
Red Church
by Scott Nicholson
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
28 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Campy, Old-School Horror, Oct. 11 2003
This review is from: Red Church (Mass Market Paperback)
Fans of early King and Barker will dig this. Nicholson may do to backwood North Carolina what King did to rural Maine. The southern lingo, and the tabacoo chewin', god-fearin' folk characters give this book a charming appeal.
Set in the mountains, a descendant of a hung preacher who had proclaimed the coming of a "second son" comes home and buys "the red church". Soon enough, this mysterious preacher draws a following, and the rest is for you to stay up all night and find out.
I won't spoil the ending, but will tell you that I personally loved it. It's one of those that could spring various interpretations.
So...what are you waiting for?

The Association
The Association
by Bentley Little
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
36 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Little's Take on Homeowners Associations, Sept. 29 2003
I enjoyed this book, and not just because I have some horror stories of my own to tell regarding those socialist homeowners associations. Little's take is exaggerated, weird, sick, outrageously over the top, satiracle and just plain fun.
We're talking about a group of older men who worship article 90 in the ccr handbook, who murder children, minorities and gays. An association that can watch your every move, that dictates not only which color you may or may not paint your house with, but that dictates who your friends are, how you are allowed to wear your hair, etc.
There are some gruesome butchery scenes described as well, and some loveable characters, like Stumpy, the limbless man who lives in the forest.
If you are familiar with Bentley Little, then I need say no more. If you are not, well all I can say is that you will most likely either love or hate him. His stories are extremely exaggerated, gory and full of satire. If you are easily offended, then you'll do well to avoid his works. If you happen to enjoy stories about talking macaroni, crazy James Dean cults and Wicked gated communities, then give his stuff a try, you'll be in for a treat.

Quills
Quills
DVD ~ Geoffrey Rush
Offered by Warehouse105
Price: CDN$ 15.94
23 used & new from CDN$ 0.83

5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect, Sept. 19 2003
This review is from: Quills (DVD)
Wow! This is one of those that will stick with you, long after the credits have passed.
Marquis de Sade is locked away in an insane asylum, run by a well intentioned, but somewhat insecure priest, who allows Marquis to "expel the demons in his head" through his writings. Things then become interesting, as his writings are smuggled out of the asylum, and spread throughout France. These sexually graphic writings fall into Napolean's hands, and he is outraged, and sends in "the doctor" to attempt to silence the Marquis.
I will say no more, other than that this is a powerful tale, with heavy emphasis on the characters, the clashing of their ideals, hypocricy, censorship and SEX.
The acting is phenomonal, the scenery, directing...it all adds up to a real treat of a film.

Primer Instinto, El
Primer Instinto, El
Price: CDN$ 12.62
15 used & new from CDN$ 4.36

3.0 out of 5 stars Jaguares Rule, But This One..., Sept. 19 2003
This review is from: Primer Instinto, El (Audio CD)
I am a diehard fan of Caifanes/Jaguares, as they truly are the best of the major rock bands out of Mexico. This latest recording of acoustic and tropical interpretaions, however, just does not leave me with those mystical vibes I get from their other works. Not that it's bad, Primer Instinto does have it's moments, like "por un beso", "Viento" and "arriesgate". The thing is that most of these new versions are simply not as compelling as the originals.
Also, the English translations, found in the cover are awful. They are literal translations which do not capture the true meaning and feeling.
That having been said, I want to stress once again, that Jaguares are a great band, just chack out "cuando la sangre galopa" to find out what I mean. But, unless you are a true fan, I would avoid this one.

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