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5 Quick Picks June 29, 2017

Posted by nrhatch in Books & Movies, Travel & Leisure.

If you are in the market for books, movies, or games, here are 5 Quick Picks:

After enjoying the movie, A Man Called Ove, I requested the book . . . terrific!  It’s charming and thought-provoking and hilarious and heartbreaking.

The “cat annoyance” plays its part to purr-fection:

  • “The cat gives him a judgmental stare, as if it’s sitting on the decision-making side of the desk at a job interview.”
  • “The cat looks at Ove as if this has been a round of negotiation and it’s considering a proposal.”
  • “The cat is sitting in the middle of the kitchen floor.  It sports a disgruntled expression, as if Ove owes it money.  Ove stares back at it with a suspicion normally reserved for a cat that has rung his doorbell with a Bible in its paws, like a Jehovah’s Witness.”

* * *

Two movies we enjoyed in recent weeks:

(1) Miss Sloane ~ a terrific political thriller with lots of twists and turns; (2) Hidden Figures ~ based on the true story of mathematicians at NASA in the 60’s.

Both feature intelligent women in lead roles.  Yay!

* * *

A neighbor suggested I check out the television series,This Is Us.  

After watching the first 6 episodes, I’m hooked!

The show features a great cast of characters, well written dialogue (amusing & real), and interesting interplay between “now” and “then.”

* * *

While in Colorado, we played a new-to-us game ~> Blokus.  Great fun!  Per Amazon:

Blokus received a Mensa award for promoting healthy brain activity! This thinking game also delivers friendly competition to keep the mind sharp and the excitement going!

Aah . . . that’s better!

Do you have any quick picks to share?


1. Val Boyko - June 29, 2017

Great picks Nancy! I loved Ove’s cat too …. especially when we goes in the car.
This is Us got a bit over the top for me … every episode tried to top the last with a range of human raw experiences.
Thanks for the shares 😊

nrhatch - June 29, 2017

I watched the entire 1st season of This Is Us and enjoyed it, for the most part . . . but I understand what you mean.

I guess the writers wanted to include something for everyone ~> Heart Attacks. Fat Camp. Cancer. Death. Addiction. Betrayal. Nervous Breakdowns. Extreme Anxiety. EVERY character had a MAJOR life-changing event which occurred at warp speed.

And we still don’t know how “dad” died!

Val Boyko - June 29, 2017

I think it was HIV. He was a drug user and homosexual.
Perhaps in the next series, someone will run for political office, or join the military!

nrhatch - June 30, 2017

You’re probably right. I thought cancer because I recall them mentioning chemotherapy.

2. Kate Crimmins - June 29, 2017

I saw one episode of This is Us and the jury is out but maybe I need to understand the characters better. I did catch the last 2 episodes of Genius (Einstein) and enjoyed it. Now I’d like to see the earlier ones. I’ll have to look up Blokus. We have a game group and we’re always looking for a challenge (that you can do after a drink!).

nrhatch - June 29, 2017

Blokus is a great game . . . for 4 players. There’s a strategy to it (like chess) where you want to plan a few moves ahead.

Another game your group might enjoy ~ RummiKub. It’s a bit like Rummy 500 (the card game), but tiles can be moved around after being played. First one to use all their tiles wins. It works with 2-4 players.

I’m going to check out Genius. Thanks for the pick!

3. Jill Weatherholt - June 29, 2017

I got hooked on THIS IS US. I’m so ready for the new season. Any idea when it starts?

nrhatch - June 29, 2017

Here ya go:

This Is Us Season 2 will premiere on Tuesday, September 26th at 9 pm.

There will be plenty more memories to look back on since the network has already decided to go ahead and renew This is Us for season 3, too.

“This Is Us is as good as anything we’ve ever had. We’re thrilled to renew it for two seasons and there’s no doubt it will have a long life on NBC,” said the network’s entertainment chief Jennifer Salke in a statement back in January when the news was announced (via THR) . “On behalf of everyone at NBC, we’re grateful for the artistry of the cast, crew, and producers assembled by our gifted creator, Dan Fogelman. In a world where there are literally hundreds of television dramas, we’re proud to have one of the very best that is also one of the highest-rated.”


Jill Weatherholt - June 29, 2017

Great news, Nancy…thanks for the info!

4. Ally Bean - June 29, 2017

I’ve heard so many people mention This Is Us so now I have to watch it. It can’t be coincidence that I keep hearing about it. Also, the quotes from A Man Called Ove are keepers.

nrhatch - June 29, 2017

I had a fun (but tough) time choosing just 3 quotes from A Man Called One ~> once I decided to focus on the “Cat Annoyance,” the task got easier . . . but still fun!

5. L. Marie - June 29, 2017

I’ve heard that Blokus is very fun.
And Hidden Figures is great!
A friend of mine keeps mentioning This Is Us. I’ll have to see it when it comes to Netflix since I gave up cable TV.

nrhatch - June 30, 2017

Blokus is great ~ reminded me of Tetris. You might also be able to watch “This Is Us” on-line on NBC.com.

6. Debra - July 8, 2017

I loved Hidden Figures and think This is Us is absolutely wonderful! But all other recommendations are new to me and I will definitely check them out. I have enjoyed your previous recommendations so keep them coming! 🙂

nrhatch - July 8, 2017

Will do, Debra.

BTW: I’m glad I saw A Man Called Ove before reading the book ~ I enjoyed both, but seeing the characters in the movie added life to the page as I read the book.

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