A to Z Challenge: Music from Favorite Films “K” Karate Kid II “Glory of Love” & Cobra Kai “Don’t Look Back” #AtoZChallenge #CobraKai #KarateKid

I’ve joined in for the A to Z challenge this year which runs from April 1st to the 30th. My choice of theme is Music from Favorite Films. I’ll be sharing the songs in order of film title and will write a little about my thoughts on the movie as well.

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Anyone a Karate Kid fan? I grew up watching the movies and have been a fan since the very beginning. Believe it or not, there isn’t one Karate Kid film that I haven’t enjoyed, even the newer remakes with Hilary Swank and Jaden Smith. Nothing beats the originals though.

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In Karate Kid II, Mr. Miyagi (Noriyuki “Pat” Morita) returns to Okinawa because his father is dying. He agrees to take Daniel (Ralph Macchio) with him not knowing that trouble awaits upon their arrival with Miyagi’s former best friend Sato and his cronies. Mr. Miyagi is reunited with a past love, Yukie, and Daniel falls in love all over again with Yukie’s niece, Kumiko. Everyone struggles to make peace with Sato while Daniel runs into trouble with Sato’s nephew.

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This second film is beautiful with interesting additional characters and an all new plot. It was nice to learn more about Mr. Miyagi’s past and why he left Okinawa in the first place. I’ll never stop loving Mr. Miyagi with all of his life lessons.

Daniel-san, never put passion before principle. Even if win, you lose.

Overall, this is an excellent follow up to the first film. Continue reading “A to Z Challenge: Music from Favorite Films “K” Karate Kid II “Glory of Love” & Cobra Kai “Don’t Look Back” #AtoZChallenge #CobraKai #KarateKid”

Book Review: Echo North by Joanna Ruth Meyer #BookReview #2019ReadingChallenge #EchoNorth #Retelling

Echo North 

By Joanna Ruth Meyer

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My review:

The first quarter of Echo North was wonderful and had me captivated as everything was setting up, but the rest of the book was up and down for me. I wanted to fall in love with this book, but it turned out to be just an okay read for me.

The story begins with Echo, a young girl who lost her mother at birth and now lives with her father and brother. After attempting to help a wolf in a trap escape, Echo is attacked and her face is permanently scared. She’s treated differently because of her scars and ends up working in her father’s bookshop with little belief in herself. After being reunited with the wolf who attacked her, she agrees to live in his magical house for one year which will spare her father’s life. The wolf intends for her to be the new ‘keeper’ of the house because he’s dying and there is no one to tend to it. Echo wishes to find a way to save his life as she struggles to help keep the house from unbinding, with more rooms disappearing each day.

“Everyone is searching for their true selves. But everyone hides their true selves from each other. Look for the truth. If you find it, you will see through the enchantment.”

I love retellings and did feel the similarities (although subtle) to Beauty and the Beast and East of the Sun and West of the Moon, but the book had some definite uniqueness to it. I can say with certainty that I haven’t read a book with a library of enchanted ‘book mirrors’ in it before, where you enter a mirror and become part of the story within in, visiting all different sorts of book-worlds, all containing different adventures. The idea is unique to me and what I found most interesting in the tale. I also had questions throughout the story with certain parts that were puzzling, but appreciated that everything was nicely wrapped up by the end of the book.

Continue reading “Book Review: Echo North by Joanna Ruth Meyer #BookReview #2019ReadingChallenge #EchoNorth #Retelling”

A to Z Challenge: Music from Favorite Films “J” John Wick “Killing Strangers” #AtoZChallenge #JohnWick #Movies #Music

I’ve joined in for the A to Z challenge this year which runs from April 1st to the 30th. My choice of theme is Music from Favorite Films. I’ll be sharing the songs in order of film title and will write a little about my thoughts on the movie as well.

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Update:

I couldn’t post yesterday because my youngest son broke his arm after dancing on a slide. Kids will be kids! Of course it had to be his dominant arm, so it’s going to be an interesting couple of months. I’m hoping to keep up with the April challenge and some book reviews, but a hiatus may be on the horizon. I apologize if things get a little quiet, but I’ll try to keep up with everyone’s posts too.


My film pick for “J” had to be John Wick. Here’s a quick summary:

John Wick (Keanu Reeves) is an assassin who’s been in retirement since he married his wife Helen. After losing Helen to a terminal illness, John receives a puppy which was arranged by Helen before her death. This new puppy is helping John as he deeply mourns his wife and tries to move on. An encounter with a group of Russian mobsters leaves John beaten to a pulp after his vintage Mustang is stolen and his new puppy is killed. John becomes enraged, coming out of retirement, and setting out to take revenge on everyone responsible.

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John is a man of focus, commitment, sheer will, something you know very little about.

Continue reading “A to Z Challenge: Music from Favorite Films “J” John Wick “Killing Strangers” #AtoZChallenge #JohnWick #Movies #Music”

A to Z Challenge: Music from Favorite Films “I” Innerspace 1987 “Cupid” #AtoZChallenge #Innerspace #SamCooke #Movies

I’ve joined in for the A to Z challenge this year which runs from April 1st to the 30th. My choice of theme is Music from Favorite Films. I’ll be sharing the songs in order of film title and will write a little about my thoughts on the movie as well.

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Innerspace is a favorite 80s movie and a great one for music.

In this Sci-Fi comedy, Lt. Tuck Pendleton (Dennis Quaid) volunteers to participate in a science project where he’ll be miniaturized. He’s put inside a pod and shrunken down to microscopic size before being sucked back into a syringe. The plan is to be injected into a rabbit, but things quickly go awry when the science project is hijacked. In an attempt to save him from being kidnapped while in the syringe, the head scientist injects Tuck into a human named Jack (Martin Short). Not long after, Tuck discovers that he’s actually inside a human man after he implants a camera into the optic nerve. Not only can Tuck see what Jack sees, but they can talk back and forth to each other as well. Together, these two have to find a way to get Tuck back out before Jack is taken out by the bad guys or Tuck runs out of resources.

Continue reading “A to Z Challenge: Music from Favorite Films “I” Innerspace 1987 “Cupid” #AtoZChallenge #Innerspace #SamCooke #Movies”

A to Z challenge: Music From Favorite Films “H” Hell or High Water “Outlaw State of Mind” #AtoZChallenge #HellorHighWater

I’ve joined in for the A to Z challenge this year which runs from April 1st to the 30th. My choice of theme is Music from Favorite Films. I’ll be sharing the songs in order of film title and will write a little about my thoughts on the movie as well.

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My choice for “H” was a little difficult–I had to narrow it down from about seven movies and songs, but finally chose Hell or High Water. This ended up being one of the best movies from 2016.

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Quick summary: Toby Howard (Chris Pine) and his brother Tanner (Ben Foster), who has recently been released out of prison, need to raise enough money to pay off the reverse mortgage on their mother’s ranch. She has just recently passed away, and now that oil was discovered on the ranch, they need to secure the future of Toby’s sons and ex wife by raising $43,000 dollars to pay it off. After they make two robberies, Texas Ranger Marcus Hamilton (Jeff Bridges) and his partner deputy (Gil Birmingham) try to stop them from committing their final crime.

Continue reading “A to Z challenge: Music From Favorite Films “H” Hell or High Water “Outlaw State of Mind” #AtoZChallenge #HellorHighWater”

Book Review & Giveaway: American Flowers by Michael A. McClellan – Win a $10 Amazon Gift Card & 6 eBooks #BookReview #Giveaway #AmericanFlowers @McLellanBooks

American Flowers 

By Michael McLellan

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My review:

American Flowers by Michael A. McLellan is a book about two teens, both from broken homes, who are struggling to get their lives together. Chris is caught up in drugs and Allie needs to find a place to live. Neither one of them have much support from anyone.

Something these two characters have in common is horrible parents. They haven’t been loved or instructed properly by anyone. Chris is in a bad spot due to poor decision-making; he just doesn’t have the mental capacity, mainly because he’s living with an alcoholic father who couldn’t care less about him. Allie was just thrust into a bad position because her dad left, and a man her mother got involved with ended up abusing her. Allie tried to tell the truth but nobody believes her–she’s simply told to stop making up stories which is incredibly distressing. These parts in the book were hard to read for me because it’s a horrible position to be in, especially for a troubled teen. When Allie meets Chris, they fall in love with each other and one thing leads to another sending them both down a dark and dangerous path.

Continue reading “Book Review & Giveaway: American Flowers by Michael A. McClellan – Win a $10 Amazon Gift Card & 6 eBooks #BookReview #Giveaway #AmericanFlowers @McLellanBooks”

A to Z Challenge: Music from Favorite Films “G” Gladiator “Now We Are Free”

I’ve joined in for the A to Z challenge this year which runs from April 1st to the 30th. My choice of theme is Music from Favorite Films. I’ll be sharing the songs in order of film title and will write a little about my thoughts on the movie as well.

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Gladiator is a movie I watched multiple times in the theater during the month of its showing in 2000. I wanted to take everyone I knew to see this movie. It instantly became a favorite, and nineteen years later remains in my top ten favorite movies of all time.

Continue reading “A to Z Challenge: Music from Favorite Films “G” Gladiator “Now We Are Free””

A to Z Challenge: Music from Favorite Films “F” Fireproof “While I’m Waiting”

I’ve joined in for the A to Z challenge this year which runs from April 1st to the 30th. My choice of theme is Music from Favorite Films. I’ll be sharing the songs in order of film title and will write a little about my thoughts on the movie as well.

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I’ve probably seen this movie twenty times and never tire of it. In Fireproof, Caleb (Kirk Cameron), a fireman, is struggling with his marriage to Catherine (Erin Bethea). Caleb’s been quite selfish and refuses to help pay for house improvements because he’s saving to buy a boat. He also expects Catherine to maintain everything around the house even though she also works as a hospital administrator.

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It’s all just added stress for Catherine as she struggles to help her parents because her mom has recently suffered a stroke.

It gets to the point to where Caleb and Catherine have little respect for one another and argue constantly. Catherine bursts–she can’t take it anymore and asks to leave the marriage. In a heated argument, Caleb agrees with her. Continue reading “A to Z Challenge: Music from Favorite Films “F” Fireproof “While I’m Waiting””