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January 2012 | www.ed-rex.com


January 2012

Well of good intentions slakes no thirst

Cover to Well of Sorrows, by Benjamin Tate

January 12, 2012, OTTAWA — I hate coming down hard on books by relatively unknown writers; given my 'druthers, I'd much prefer to pass over them in silence. At the same time, if a writer goes to the trouble of sending me a review copy (even an electronic copy), it seems disrespectful to ignore it.

So I've struggled with this review, and not only because I have been "friends" with the author (or rather, with his pseudonym) on Livejournal for a while, but because it became clear in the reading that Benjamin Tate's heart is very much in the right place.

Well of Sorrows tries hard to play with, and even to reverse, many of epic fantasy's tired tropes. The protagonist is more peace-maker than warrior, and in plays of scenes of glorious battle we are given the blood and the shit and the brutality of hand-to-hand combat.

Unfortunately, good intentions alone don't make for good art. Well of Sorrows suffers from shallow characterization, structural confusion and world-building that is not remotely convincing. Click here for my full review (hardly any spoilers).

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Blistering Barnacles! The Adventures of Tintin reviewed!

January 6, 2012, OTTAWA — Remind me, please, if ever I get the urge to spend good money on a "major motion picture" from out Hollywood way, that I shouldn't get my hopes up too high.

My girlfriend and I decided to ring in the new year by doing something we've never done in the nearly two years since we became Involved. You guessed it, we decided to go out to the movies, that time-honoured North American tradition.

For quite different reasons, we both had an urge to see Steven Spielberg's The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn, and so we set out this past Tuesday night, one of the coldest of the winter thus far.

I don't think I'm committing any spoilers in saying that we were both disappointed. Not an awful movie, but not a good movie, either. It looked good, had a few laughs, but if you are among those who want some story to go along with the eye-candy, you'd be out of luck. Billions of billious blue blistering fight scenes! Click here for my full review!

 

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