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What Am I Waiting For? Books on My To-Read Shelf

I have been a terrible reader lately, and it is all because of the vile temptress of Netflix. For literal years, I’ve prided myself on being that pretentious person: not watching television, certainly not owning a television (goodness, no),  not using the letters “T” and “V” in the same sentence, blah blah blah. My very patient friends have put up with this for a long time, and I’d like to publicly thank you. You were right, and I am now a huge, TV-addicted weenie.

In the last month, I’ve binged several shows, the most recent of which has been the American version of Shameless (which you can check out here). I’m having a great time, but I also have been majorly neglecting my to-read pile. Here’s what I have not been reading, but will maybe someday read when the latest season is over and also my laptop dies and maybe my internet gets disconnected: Read More..

TV Killed the Literary Star

The sophomore season of Donald Glover’s cult-favorite TV show Atlanta kicked off yesterday, continuing the story of Earnest “Earn” Marks and his struggle to make money (and sense) in an often absurd world. It’s likely one of Glover’s lesser-known works among his renaissance-man slate of music and acting—such as playing Lando Calrissian in an upcoming Star Wars spin off.

Though the comedy doesn’t have the clout of a celebrated galactic saga, it’s nonetheless a complex and enjoyable piece of storytelling. Television has earned increasing recognition as a true art medium—going beyond its reputation as just entertainment—and Glover’s layered vision of modern city life convincingly furthers this trend.

With the new season underway, I’ve found some analogs in the fiction stacks that backlight a few of Atlanta‘s somewhat familiar literary underpinnings. Read More..

This is Just a Distraction

What a strange thing it is to be an American today. Sometimes we may feel as if we are literally dodging bullets while simultaneously posting fake jubilance to social media, attempting to appear happier than we really are. Yesterday, I shared to facebook a think-piece on North Korea and then about two hours later, a filtered picture of my cats (who are adorable, by the way, but just needed that extra pizzazz the Nashville filter brings). Guess which one got more comments.

It is no wonder this environment can leave us feeling frazzled (and only frazzled, if we are lucky) and looking for solace and escapism. The news is chock-full of tragedy– terrorism, wars, Nazis– Actual Nazis have taken over the news cycle.

People are always yelling at other people not to be distracted. The idea of caring about too many things is worrisome to a lot of folks.THIS IS JUST A DISTRACTION. We are always warned of distractions in all caps.

The logical reaction to all of this is to log off of social media. But, what are we supposed to do if we’re not mindlessly scrolling through our ex-of-20-years-ago’s vacation pics? I mean, how is he affording that boat, anyway? Some will turn to books, of course. For others, films or unhealthy vices. Maybe you’re the kind of person who hits the gym and works it out. I always try to be a gym person but, in reality, I’m more of a wine person. What I’ve come to realize lately, though, is that when it comes to tumultuous times, what I’m not is a book person. Read More..

The Chaperone Keeps Rolling with PBS Adaption

When the news was announced last month that Masterpiece would be adapting The Chaperone by Lawrence author Laura Moriarty and that it would be scripted by Julian Fellowes and starring Elizabeth McGovern (both of Downton Abbey fame, left), I was so emotionally overcome, I nearly got the vapors.

The news was announced smack-dab in the middle of my Moriarty Read Fest. I had recently plowed through The Rest of her Life and The Center of Everything and had become an instant fan. The Chaperone was already next on my to-read list… and, of course, I’ve been building and sculpting my obsession with Downton Abbey for years now. I mean, what isn’t there to love? The drama! The fashion! The villains! And the fact that every over-the-top scenario takes place before a beautiful background (in Downton’s case the rolling, English countryside) just makes the show all that more enjoyable. Read More..

For the Love of American Gods

Brian Reitzell is one of the greatest contemporary composers of our generation. You may have heard of him from his well-known work on The Virgin Suicides or Lost in Translation, but I first fell in love with Reitzell’s music after watching the canceled-way-too-soon series Hannibal on NBC. Reitzell manages to create music that is unlike anything you’ve ever heard, so imagine my delight when he joined forces with Bryan Fuller again after their stellar collaboration on Hannibal to bring the world of Neil Gaiman’s American Gods to life for Starz. Read More..

RuPaul’s Drag Race & a Bit of Jargon

It’s finally happening, squirrel friends! Season 9 of RuPaul’s Drag Race airs Friday, March 24th at 8/7c on VH1.

The herstory of Drag is one of struggle, damnation, and, most importantly, fabulous ferocity. Drag is something that has been widely misunderstood, and even more widely unaccepted. RuPaul Charles—more appropriately, Mama Ru—has been working for decades to expose Drag to the masses as a normal and respected practice and art form.

In that time, he has gained notoriety as not only a fashion icon, but as a feminine icon. Drag has shaken the foundations of commonly accepted gender roles and expanded what American society accepts and embraces as beauty. People are beginning to accept that Drag is not taboo. Thanks in large part to the success of RuPaul’s Drag Race and its contestants, the world is learning to not only accept Drag, but to respect it. Read More..