Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Rey Mysterio Behind the Mask

Rey Mysterio is the high flying, 619 hitting, West Coast Poping superstar of the WWE. His start in wrestling began in Mexico learning the lucha libre style from the age of eight. His size and weight were always against him, and it wasn't until promoters saw him in the ring that they realized that Mysterio could wrestle. Mysterio worked his way through a few Mexico wrestling promotions then had his big break in ECW in the mid-1990's. He then went on to WCW along with quite a few Mexican wrestlers like the late Eddie Guerrero, Psycosis, Juventude, and Konan. He had to make a name for himself there in WCW, which put most of its time into talent like Goldberg, Scott Steiner, Kevin Nash, Scott Hall, and Hulk Hogan. When WWE bought out WCW in 2001 Rey was with out a job. He wrestled in Mexico again, and it wasn't till April 2002 when he would get the call from WWE about a job. He mainly wrestled cruiserweights and fought for the Cruiserweight Championship (which has been retired by the WWE) in his first few years with the WWE. He also went up against the likes of Kurt Angle and Undertaker just to name a few. In early 2005 Mysterio and Eddie Guerrero became Tag Team Champions and at Wrestlemainia 21 they would face each other, the first time Tag Team Champions had faced each other. Their feud continued over the summer with Eddie claiming that Dominick, Rey's son, was really Eddie's. It culminated in a ladder match at the 2005 Summer Slam for custody of Dominick. Rey won and he and Eddie went on to other feuds. It was in November of 2005 that Eddie Guerrero passed away and the wrestling world was in shock. Rey would go on to win the Royal Rumble in January of 2006, dedicate the match to Eddie, and go on to Wrestlemainia 22 to win the World Heavyweight Championship. He would hold the championship till the Great American Bash in July where he lost it to Booker T, with help from Chavo Guerrero. This set up their feud which went on till October of 2006 when Chavo and Rey met in an I Quit match, which was part of an injury angle for Rey. In 2007 and 2008 Mysterio would go on to have feuds with JBL, MVP, and Chris Jericho. He would be drafted to Raw in 2008, and then drafted back to Smackdown in 2009 with the Intercontinental Championship. He would loose the title in early September to John Morrison only to return in October at Hell in the Cell PPV and begin a feud with Batista, which is currently going on.

I enjoyed Rey Mysterio's book. It's nice to see from the point of view from a lucha libre wrestler from Mexico, and what it took Rey to rise through the ranks of professional wrestling, considering he's not as big as some of the other wrestlers in the WWE today. This book ranks up there with Batista, Chris Jericho, Shawn Michaels, and Steve Austin books as my favorites of the wrestling biographies.

T.B. 12/30/09

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Teach Me by R. A. Nelson

This novel explores a student / teacher affair from the viewpoint of the student. Carolina (Nine) doesn't exactly fit in with the other teens at her high school and when Mr. Mann joins the staff at her school and she has him for English, she feels an instant connection. Before long, they seem to be mutually stalking each other and having inappropriate contact outside of school. Just when things are going great and they're planning their future (she's a senior and just turned 18), he suddenly breaks up with her for no reason. Then she learns he's getting married and she is set to destroy him - without revealing their relationship to the authorities. Soon things get out of hand, and a violent storm puts her and her best friend in danger.

I found this novel unsatisfying. Nine is just a little too psycho for my taste - breaking into his house and smearing jelly on his bed, giving his wife her wisdom tooth, "shooting" him in public - she's just a little too "Fatal Attraction" for my taste. I've never had that insane type of love before, so maybe heartbreak causes you to respond in that type of way, but it was a little too much to swallow. I wanted her to just expose him and be done with it. I would have liked some more build up to their relationship or through the relationship. How could both of them be so willing to do something they both know is wrong? What made their love so intense that she would turn crazy? And his reason behind his break up isn't anything terrible (frankly, it's a little predictable) so why didn't he just tell her? I just don't understand all of the secrecy among the characters. Overall, it was just unsatisfying.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan

The hands and teeth in this fast paced horror story are zombies ever reaching for living flesh to gnaw on. The battle of the living against the zombies has been going on for quite some time and seems to be a losing battle. Zombies carry a virus that causes anyone who is bitten to turn upon their inevitable deaths. Animals are not affected but not used to help guard the small community. Zombies breach a poorly constructed fence and attack a small village where the people believe themselves to the last living beings. A small group of Six manage to escape down a path they discovered quite by chance. They are friends who have grown up together and a lone small child. Two girls and two of the young men expected to be married until the breach. None are betrothed to their true loves which creates romantic tension and a little depth to an otherwise simple horror story. They come upon a deserted village built in trees the zombies cannot climb. They one of their group chooses to go on in hope of finding a other surviving people. Not really trusting this natural leader, the others stay behind to face whatever fate awaits them. There is lots of exciting action and uncertainty. It held my attention. But, I am sorry I was bothered by hints of secrets kept and never fully explained. I was bothered by the poorly built defenses. If zombies avoid water, why were there not moats. And, why when some folks turn were their heads cut off permanently destroying them while others were set loose in the forest with the other zombies to come back and prey on the village? There is to be a sequel, perhaps how the virus got started, why no cure was ever found and other questions will be answered?
JDW 12/17/09

Tiger Moon by Antonia Michaelis

This is a story within a story, within a story. It is a thrice told tale. It reads like a fairy tale or folk tale from India. There are many references to Hindu gods and customs as well as some Buddhist references. It is lyrically written, beautiful soaring language that paints vivid pictures in one's mind. A beautiful Young Woman has been betrothed to a violent, manipulative powerful man. She will be his eighth wife and must be perfect. She knows that on their wedding night he will find out that she is not and kill her. Shortly after she is brought to his harem to await the wedding, the man becomes ill. The girl spends her time waiting for her inevitable death in a courtyard from which she cannot escape. While there she meets a young slave. They enjoy each other's company. She begins to spin a tale of a young trickster/thief boy born into poverty who will become a hero when he rescues a captured princess from a tower in a town across the desert. It is the same tale she is living with some changes to make the telling better. Fahrad, the hero of the story in turn tells the story of his attempt to rescue the princess, riding on the back of a sacred white tiger with blue eyes. Fahrad must find a bloodstone and present it to the chief servant of the rich merchant who held the princess captive. Once he succeeds the servant will help Fahrad and the princess escape. Fahrad is stalked and thwarted at every turn by a stranger who is perhaps French or German or something else, which keeps the story exciting and fast moving. He and the white tiger have a wonderful, relationship both wise and funny. The ending is a mix of tragedy and success. Perhaps a high school girl who loves romance and lovely writing can appreciate this book as much as I did. But, I think this story will have a hard time finding readers. JDW 12/17/09

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Vampire Loves BY: Joann Sfar

This is the first volume of Joann Sfar Vampire Loves series. Ferdinand, the vampire, is in search for true love. He is not the ordinary scary vampire, instead he is charming, polite, and quite mature. He sucks animals for blood but occasionally bites humans in their sleep. He bites humans very carefully, like a mosquito. He is in love with Liana, a mandragona, a girl plant, who cheated on him with his best friend Michael Duffin. Ferdinand is depressed in a lonely castle with his cat Imhotep, until he decides to go out and search for love, while Liana is out doing the same, although she was cursed to drive men crazy. Throughout the whole story Ferdinand meets a variety of women , ranging from vampires, ghosts, and tree folks, and all with different personalities. Sfar comic Vampire Loves is definitely a must read if your
interested in comics that are funny, have mythical creatures, and romantic. Read the first volume of Vampire Loves and see if Ferdinand finds his true love. gv

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Tsubasa Cronicles

Tsubasa Chronicles is a graphic novel written and drawn by Clamp. The story begins as a girl and a boy named Shoaoran and Sakura,whose share a very special relationship, find themselves involve in an adventure traveling different worlds and making new friends, in the quest to find Sakuras heart, which was spread in different dimensions in the form of feathers. More than 100 chapters and 26 books has been translate to English a beautiful story of friendship and love, as for fine art too. A story worth give it a try.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Because I Am Furniture by Thalia Charlas

Anke's father is abusive to her brother, mother, sister but largely ignores her. On one level she is jealous of the attention the rest of her family gets and she is denied. On another level she knows she is lucky to be invisible to him. This is a novel in verse so the story is sketchy but it goes on with Anke's school experience, mostly boys and volleyball and even with less detail her home life and that of her sibs. I guess they are living in a wood heated home on an acreage somewhere since the kids are often chopping wood and it doesn't appear to be a punishment. Her father is apparently a lawyer? He at least has government type information he can share for some sort of school project. I at least think that the ending was predictable though apparently reviewers do not. Transitions between scenes don't exist. There is just a period a brief white space and something else begins. I sometimes had to reread to figure out that - oh that was a dream - etc. Okay, the atmosphere is very stark which I suppose is just right for a story of child/spousal abuse but I like to get into the heads of characters, see who they are. I cannot tell anyone more than one thing personality wise about Anke - she was strong - or her sibs and mother - they are weak. The entire plot is my father is abusing my sibs, over and over and over again. There is no insight as to why the characters act the way they do, how anyone feels about what is happening. Well Anke a little but not deeply. I do not get why anyone thinks this is a great read. Skip this book, really you can do better. JDW 12/3/09