Recommendations

Brief thoughts on mostly Amazon items I love.  Purchasing through these links helps support this site and also buys kibble for Sparkle the dog.  Enjoy!

Kindle VoyageKindle Voyage – It took a long time for me to take the plunge and buy an e-reader, but I’m happy I did.  The Voyage is an amazing product, which is why it sits at the top of this list.  It’s small and light, and fits nicely in your hand.  The crisp resolution looks as sharp as any real life printed page, and I love being able to customize fonts and sizes.  As advertised, their Bookerly font makes for very easy reading.  But what separates the Voyage from the pack is the automatic screen brightness.  It’s absolutely awesome!  I love being able to fire up the Voyage anywhere and just start reading, regardless of how bright or dark it is.  Can’t recommend the Kindle Voyage enough!

BEKANT Sit/Stand Desk (Ikea) – Since recent studies discovered that sitting is more dangerous than a rocket launcher wielding Tyrannosaurus Rex, I have been hankering for a sit/stand desk.  I am not a fan of dying.  It took awhile for someone to deliver an affordable option that didn’t involve apple crates and disappointment.  Ikea nails it with the Bekant.  It’s low on frills, but it gets the job done simply and elegantly.  Push a button to raise or lower the desk.  And done.

Star WarsThe Original Star Wars Trilogy – Everything has already been said about Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi.  These films defined my childhood, my passions and who I am.  Say what you will about George Lucas, but he created something truly magical.  We’ve been captivated ever since.

The Lord of the Rings Trilogy – Peter Jackson’s first Tolkien trilogy still knocks me over every time I watch it.  Breathtaking filmmaking bolstered by strong performances makes for an epic trilogy that may never be rivaled.

Game of Thrones (books and series) – Love it, hate it or be forever confused by it, you can’t argue that George R.R. Martin hasn’t created something massive.  The sprawling and often maddening books may excite us and piss us off in equal measure, but they’re staggering achievements.  Is the HBO series better?  Maybe?  David Benioff and D.B. Weiss have focused the storylines, nailed the characters and created a controversial show that is one of the last water cooler programs on television.

Mad Max: Fury Road – Find the biggest TV you can, turn it up as loud as the neighbors will allow, and sink in for one of the most pure cinematic experiences ever made.

Cabin in the WoodsThe Cabin in the Woods – A masterpiece of post-modern horror, this movie celebrates the genre by transcending it and blowing it up.  I love this movie so much.

The Walking Dead – Darabount’s first season is one of the best first seasons of any show ever made.  Rick’s survival and escape from Atlanta could not be more riveting viewing, and I’m still watching.  Great TV!

Banshee – Not for the squeamish or easily offended, this Cinemax series might be entertainment in its most decadent form.  With big action sequences, scene-chewing characters, ample sex and non-stop insanity, you don’t want to miss it.

Red Rising –Suffice to say, Pierce Brown’s first novel is one of the most riveting and exciting books I’ve ever read.  I can’t recommend it enough.  Golden Son, the follow-up, is also terrific.  Read more thoughts here.

California Bones – Greg van Eekhout’s first book in the Daniel Blackland trilogy is a weird and wild reimagining of Los Angeles through the eyes of a powerful wizard who also happens to be a talented thief.  The world van Eekhout creates is both familiar and very strange, and reading it often made me want to squint and turn my head sideways for a better view.  Bone magic rules the land, and warring wizards literally consume their enemies to gain power.  It’s trippy stuff but a very fun read.

WoolWool – The first book of Hugh Howey’s post-apocalyptic series sucks us in with tragic but wholly engaging stories, as it unspools the mysteries of this harsh world.  The less you know the better, but expect riveting tales that will keep you up long into the night.

Playstation 4 – I held off on buying one until Battlefront and Fallout 4 came out, but wow.  It’s not a massive jump from the PS3, but everything is just… better.  The main interface is more fluid and engaging.  The controller feels great.  Of course, the graphics are also stunning.  Color me impressed.

Fallout 4 – I’ve only begun to crack the surface of this sequel to my all-time favorite game, but Bethesda appears to have once again upped the ante on the RPG gaming experience.  Calling it ridiculously immersive and incredibly engaging doesn’t begin to describe it.  Go ahead and kiss your life goodbye.

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