Cannonball Read IV

A bunch of Pajibans reading and reviewing and honoring AlabamaPink.

Archive for the tag “photography”

Quorren’s #CBRS Review #31 Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

There’s nothing I can really say that hasn’t already been covered in any other review of this book.  In theory, the books sounds great.  In practice, it fails.  Sometimes that happens when you try something innovative.

The books follows Jacob, who has a Big Fish kind of grandfather.  Grandpa tells a lot of tall tales, which as Jacob ages, he starts to disbelieve.  After his grandfather’s death, Jacob begins having nightmares and general anxiety issues.  He decides to visit the house his grand father stayed in during WWII in Wales, which turns out to be an olde time Xavier Academy for Mutants.

The books is interspersed with slightly creepy old fashioned photos, several of which use trick photography, like the Cottingley fairies.  It is kind of a novel idea to take a bunch of old photos and construct a story around them.  However, like I said, it doesn’t work so well in practice.  Several photos were a stretch for the author to include them in the story.  Some of the photos we’re lead to believe are of Miss Peregrine’s students.  However, when Jacob locates the mutant school, those particular students are never introduced.  I REALLY wanted to know what the deal was with those two creepy twins in the weird masks and I was left disappointed.

The story really does suffer from many plot holes and unresolved mysteries.  It had a lot of potential.  The author would’ve been well-advised to let this story ferment a bit.  Maybe set it on a shelf for a few months and read it with a more critical eye.  As the book ends on a cliffhanger, I can only hope the next one has better writing.

 

xoxoxoe’s #CBR4 Review #17: Cary Grant: A Life in Pictures, edited by Yann-Brice Dherbier

Cary Grant: A Life in Pictures, edited by Yann-Brice Dherbier, is a mostly enjoyable coffee-table book collection of images of the iconic Hollywood leading man.

“The critics,” says Grant, have often accused me of playing myself on screen. But that is much more difficult than they think.”

Using an assortment of black and white and color candid and publicity shots of the star, as well as some movie posters and film stills, fans of Grant will wish the volume was even more jam-packed with photos — and more substantive information about the actor.

The book includes a filmography, listing the more than 70 films in Grant’s long and illustrious career, as well as a short chronology of his life. The photo credits show that the source of the majority of images included in Cary Grant: A Life in Pictures are from Getty Images, Magnum Photos, the Library of Congress, and other archives.

The book has a nice, bold graphic look to it, with photos interspersed with quotes from people who worked with Grant, like directors Howard Hawks and Alfred Hitchcock, but most sections feature well-known quotes from the star, including,

“I pretended to be somebody I wanted to be until I finally became that person or he became me.”

The opening essay by editor Yann-Brice Dherbier gives a brief outline of Grant’s life, career, and marriages, and his transformation from Archibald Leach into superstar Cary Grant. Film buffs may be put off however, by a text which is unfortunately riddled with typos, and even includes a few mistakes, such as a misidentified woman in a photo caption.

Cary Grant: A Life in Pictures is not intended for anyone who wants an in-depth look into the star’s life, or a critical analysis of his films, but rather a pleasant pictorial reminder of the man’s style and elegance.

Article first published as Book Review: Cary Grant: A Life in Pictures. Edited by Yann-Brice Dherbier on Blogcritics.

You can read more of my pop culture reviews on my blog, xoxoxo e

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