Awesome Audiobooks: 4.5/5 Quest of the Dreamwalker by Stacy Bennett

Disclaimers: Forgive any spelling issues I heard the audiobook. And I don’t own the rights to the pic. Got it off of audible.com.

Summary:

Cara’s a dreamwalker who’s practically raised by an evil sorcerer bent on gaining immortality. Captain Mason Khourey and Archer are mercenaries who get caught up in a tangled web of danger and intrigue. (Totally was not picturing the name spelled like that.)

Additional Comments:

– The world-building is fun, but a few aspects aren’t really fleshed out. Cara’s abilities aren’t really fully realized. I think that’s probably because this is book 1 of a longer story, but still, we’re told she’s a dreamwalker and then given maybe 2 glimpses of this at at play. Could be because it’s part one of a longer story.

– The characters are great, though I will say Cara kind of got annoying. I ended up liking Falin a lot more than Cara and she came into the book like 8 hrs into the story. There were a few points when she does something massively stupid that made me raise an eyebrow, but I can understand to some extent the necessity in moving the plot forward that way. It’s just not pretty.

– Several plot points fall under “well, that’s convenient” but it’s still a very compelling story.

– The end twist is excellent. But then the book continues, opening up a new aspect to the journey, which really messes with the sense of closure that could have been had.

Content warnings: at least 2 “adult” content scenes; graphic violence and disturbing images

– The narrator’s performance worked wonders in bringing the story to life. It’s a long story, but he handled it well. The voices are distinct and pleasant to listen to.

Conclusion:

If you’re a fan of the genre, this is definitely a series to snap up.

 

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Movie Review: 4/5 Stars Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Men Tell No Tales – Surprisingly Good

Introduction:

The fifth installment of Pirates of the Caribbean, Dead Men Tell No Tales, follows in same footsteps as the first few. It’s weird. It’s loud. It’s got a gorgeous soundtrack. They were never the “serious” tales. Overall, I enjoyed this one much more than 2-4. It suffers from being a sequel, but that’s to be expected. As a story, it has quite a few “convenient” moments, but it’s pretty standard fare action/adventure/humor with quite a bit of Disney’s touch upon the tale.

I’ll try to keep this relatively spoiler free. No promises though.

Additional Comments:

  • Casting worked out very well. I thought the guy who played Captain Sullivan would annoy me because his voice is super annoying in the trailer. It’s the same voice in the movie but thankfully, his speaking parts are limited and most of the time he’s just stomping about shouting. The young man they got to play Henry Turner and the young woman they got to play, Carina (sorry, dunno if it’s supposed to be K or C), did nice jobs with their roles. Depp is his usual oddball self as Captain Jack Sparrow.
  • The opening scene in St. Martin sets the tone for what you’re going to get. It’s pretty funny among other things.
  • There’s no real sense of danger for our heroes and heroine during any of the times they’re on the land. You know they’re going to escape. It’s just a matter of how.
  • The banter between Henry and Carina is not always funny, but they do innocent charm decently well.
  • Although I think this movie’s world’s better than 2-4, it also makes more sense if you’ve seen them, especially the 2nd movie.

Conclusion:

I don’t think it’s a see-8-times in theaters movie, but it’s certainly well-worth watching. I was entertained. I’ll probably end up buying the soundtrack. As usual, it’s a beautiful score that mixes the old and the new. Not bad for something inspired by a ride at Disney World.