SHREK – Movie Review

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Dear Fantasy and Fairy Tale fans,

I watched a very funny movie that I thought was wonderful. Shrek and Donkey made me laugh.

Shrek – the Ogre

The movie begins with, “Once upon a time there was a Lovely Princess. But she had an enchantment upon her of a fearful sort. Which could only be broken by love’s first kiss. She was locked away in a castle, guarded by a terrible fire-breathing dragon. Many brave knights had attempted to free her from this dreadful prison. But none prevailed. She waited in the Dragon’s keep. In the highest room of the tallest tower, for her true love and true love’s first kiss.”

Shrek, the ogre, is cleaning in the swamp where he lives.  The towns people are coming after him. Lord Farquaad has ordered all Fairy Tale Characters to be arrested.

The talking donkey is almost arrested. He meets Shrek. Shrek allows him to stay in the swamp for one night. Donkey says, “In the mornin’ I’m makin’ waffles.”

Donkey

Lord Farquaad evicted the fairy tale creatures from their homes. They are all hiding in Shrek’s swamp.

Shrek and Donkey travel to Farquaad’s kingdom. He wants the evictions lifted so the characters can go back to their homes.

The Magic Mirror tells Farquaad he needs to marry Fiona if he is to be King of DuLac. She is a prisoner of the dragon. He is having a tournament to choose a winner to rescue Fiona from the dragon.

Lord Farquaad and the Magic Mirror

Shrek and Donkey arrive at DuLoc and enter the contest. In an easy victory, they defeat all of the solders—pro wrestling style. Farquaad sends Shrek to kill the dragon and rescue Fiona.

He and donkey agree to get his swamp back. They leave for the dragon’s castle.

Upon arrival at the castle, they cross a robe bridge. It suspends over a moat of fiery lava.

Donkey finds the dragon. Shrek grabs its tail. The dragon flings him through Fiona’s roof. He lands in her room.

As the dragon is about to eat donkey, Donkey starts complimenting the dragon. She falls in love with him.

Shrek rescues donkey and Fiona. They escape. As they travel back to DuLoc, Fiona insists on hiding each night.

Later at DuLoc, Farquaad and Fiona are being married. Shrek and Donkey ride the dragon to the wedding. During the wedding, at sunset, Fiona turns into an ogre.

Fiona

Fiona says, “When I was a little girl, a witch casts a spell on me. Every night, I turn into an ogre.”  “By night one way, by day another. This shall be the norm until you find true Love’s first kiss. and then take Love’s true form.”

Farquaad orders her locked in the tower forever. Donkey and dragon enter the room. The dragon eats Farquaad.

Shrek kisses Fiona. The spell is broken. Fiona changes into an ogre permanently. They marry in the swamp and leave for their honeymoon.

The movie ends.

This is a wonderfully funny movie. It was a pleasure to watch. I love Shrek, Donkey, and Fiona. Lord Farquaad is a laugh.  To bad he was eaten by the dragon.

Until we talk again.

“May good fortune guide your path”

J.A. Ireland

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Storm Front by ABC’s Richard Castle — Book Review

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Dear financial thriller  readers,

I read another novel by writer and star of ABC’s Castle, Richard Castle. The book begins in Venice, Italy. A ruggedly handsome gondolier is rowing his flat bottom boat under the Calle delle Ostreghe footbridge. He is singing as he rows the boat for his British costumer.

CASTLE on ABC

CASTLE on ABC

The gondolier is working undercover to capture his British passenger. The British Citizen is wanted  for treason. As he rowed the flat-bottom boat into the open waters of Laguna Veneta, they approached a fishing boat.  The white, fiberglass boat was operated by three men with AK-47’s. An albino on board passed his British passenger a bag.

The gondolier made his move. He quickly subdued the three men using his lethal skills. Next he subdued his British passenger.  The bag contained two million in diamonds. He called his superior. “Waste Management, this is Vito. It’s time to pick up the trash.”

“We knew we could count on you, Derrick Storm.”

*

The story switches to Zurich, Switzerland. The seventy year old, Wilhelm Sorenson, is with his latest young female acquaintance, a nineteen year girl old named Brigitte, in his home. His wife is gone to their chalet in the Loire Valley for a weekend of wine tasting. He is the top currency trader at Nationale Banc Suisse, the largest bank in Switzerland.

Storm Front on Kindle

Storm Front on Kindle

Six men are secretly in Sorenson’s home as the two played.  After brutally killing Brigitte, one of the men torchers Sorenson. The robber with a patch over his eye removed Sorenson’s finger nails – one by one. “Now,” said the robber with the patch, “Tell me your pass code to the Mon Ex Four Thousand in your office.”

After receiving the pass code from Sorenson. Patch shot him in the head.

The following day, after the two mutilated bodies were found by the gardener. Interpool was brought in. Interpool immediately called Jedediah Jones. He in turn called Derrick Storm.

Derrick Storm is working at The Orphanage of the Holy Name in Bacau, Romania. Jedediah Jones informs him. “Gregor Volkov is back.”

*

The book switches to New Your City. We are introduced to G. Whitely Cracker of the Cracker Family. Whitely is also a currency trader. He uses a Mon Ex 4000 in his office.

*

As the plot grows, more currency traders from around the world, who also use Mon Ex 4000’s, are murdered in a similar fashion.

Why are the currency traders being murdered?

Derrick Storm must discover the plot of the murders before it is too late.

The twist at the end of the book caught me completely off guard.

Storm Front, by author Richard Castle of ABC’s Castle is a well written financial thriller. This novel, as well as his other novels are must reads. In this writers opinion, all of Richard Castle’s novels are very good, thrilling books.

I hope you have enjoyed my review of Storm Front, by author Richard Castle. You can watch him on ABC’s Castle.

Until we talk again.

May good fortune guide your path.

J. A. Ireland

Ghosts of Fear Street – Book Review

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Dear Science Fiction Readers,

If you’re a scifi fan and a cat lover, you’re sure to like this book review by author, R. L. Stine.

The book begins at the gymnastics club practice at Shadyside Middle School. Wendy Chapman is practicing for the all city meet on Saturday. Only three gymnasts will represent their school.

As she works on the four-inch wide beam, her best friend, Tina Barns watches enthusiastically.

Ghosts of Fear Street

Ghosts of Fear Street

As she works her routine, Nancy Morrow, a fellow gymnasts, makes faces at her. Due to the distraction, Wendy falls. “What’s wrong Wendy, I thought you liked cats. Cats always land on their feet,” taunted Nancy.

“You’re improving, Wendy,” said Ms. Mason, the gymnastics teacher.

After the practice, in the locker room, Nancy continued with her taunting of Wendy. Nancy is jealous of Wendy because she skipped the fifth grade, due to her high academic skills. Nancy also dislikes Wendy because Wendy likes cats. Nancy is allergic to cats.

After school, in frustration, Wendy and Tina leave the school and take the bus to Division Street Mall. “There it is,” said Wendy excitedly as they arrive at the mall, “The Shady Side Cat Circle Breeders Show is open.”

The large room is full of long tables with cats in cages. Wendy and Tina are excited as they explore the exhibit.

Behind a curtain, they stumble upon Mrs. Bast and her  booth. Her cats names are Curios and Samantha. She sells photos, posters, T-shirts, bracelets, knickknacks, pins, earrings,  and necklaces, etc…. All items are five dollars.

Tina finds a purple bracelet made of cat shaped beads. Wendy likes a metal charm of a black cat. In the center of the cat’s forehead is a spider shaped white star.

Mrs. Bast declares to Wendy, “That’s a werecat charm. It’s not for sale.”

Wendy asked, “What’s a werecat charm?”

Mrs. Bast explains, “Werecat charms turn the owner into a werecat every night after midnight. Werecats are very large, very wild cats. They prowl the Fear Street Woods every night. Werecats and regular cats are mortal enemies. After the first full moon, werecats and the human blend together.”

Now Wendy wanted the charm more than ever. During a moment of distraction, Wendy places five dollars in the tray and grabs the werecat charm.

With the charm around her neck, she and Tina leave the cat show. A cat claws Wendy as they exit the building.

That night at home, Wendy asks for a cat again. Again her parents refuse to allow her to have one. She goes to bed sad.

Wendy wakes one minute before midnight. She changes into a werecat. “I’m a werecat!” she exclaims.  She exits her bedroom through the window and goes prowling in the night.

The next morning, she thinks she was dreaming that she was a werecat as she prepares for school.

At school, and especially during gymnastics practice, Nancy’s taunting continues.

That night, at Tina’s home, during a sleep over, Wendy and Tina watch a nature movie for a school project. As they watch the documentary, the normally cuddly cat, Shalimar, stays away.

At midnight, Wendy changes in to a werecat and exit’s Tina’s home. She goes prowling.  She finds Nasty Nancy’s home.

She sneaks into Nancy’s bedroom. Knowing that Nancy is terribly allergic to cats, she rubes her cat fur all over Nancy’s bed as she sleeps.

After fleeing Nancy’s room, she is confronted by a black werecat. At dawn, she narrowly escapes the werecat.  She realizes the locket from Mrs. Bast’s booth is causing her to become a werecat. She tries to remove. She can’t!

Later that morning at gymnastics practice, Nancy is sick, due to her severe allergy attack.

Ms. Mason begins the Shadyside Middle School  gymnastic  tryouts. Wendy’s performance on both routines is perfect. She can’t believe how her balance has improved.

Due to Nancy’s illness, she scored poorly and Wendy replaced her on the team.

Later, Wendy tells Tina about the werecat charm. Tina just laughs.

“Take the locket off,” orders Wendy.  Tina tries and fails to remove it.

After school, they ride their bikes to the cat show. “The cat show is gone and so is Mrs. Bast,” said Wendy with alarm.

That night, Wendy changes into a werecat and battles the black werecat again.

The next day, they see Mrs. Bast. They follow her to a small, shabby, house. When Wendy sees Mrs. Bast’s home, she thinks Mrs. Bast is a witch.

When Mrs. Bast sees Wendy, she says loudly, “It’s you!”

Wendy explains her dilemma. “Can you get this locket off?”  Mrs. Bast removes the charm.

That night Wendy changes into a werecat again. She boldly hunts the black werecat. She is terrified when she discovers that the black werecat has two friends. There is a golden, a black, and a very large werecat.

As they changed into humans again, she discovers that her dad, mom, and brother are werecats.  Her dad tells her that all of her family, as far back as anyone can remember are werecats.

The book ends.

The Ghosts of Fear Street, by author, R. L. Stine is an easy and fun book to read. It is short and only takes a couple of hours  to read. If you like cats, this book will be even more entertaining.

I hope you have enjoyed my book review.

Until we talk again.

“May good fortune guide your path”

J. A. Ireland