Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Once Upon A Time - The Jolly Rodger

We start out this episode with Hook and his band of pirates being, well, pirates. Pretty sure this is the lost year. They steal a carriage and find some jewels. Their reward - a night of drinking, of course. This is the Hook I LIKED! A dastardly, dashing scoundrel.

Hook's men have purchased him a prostitute. As he walks with her outside, he pays her and tells her that in the morning she'll tell his men she had a grand time. She kind of resembles Milah a bit. Nice of him though. As Hook is walking away, someone attacks him. It's Ariel!! He is confused, as he has no clue who she is. She tells him that she knows exactly who HE is and that he is going to pay for what he's done (all while holding a knife to his throat). I would have thought that Hook would have met her when they all came back from Neverland at the dock. Didn't he?

Storybrooke - Present

Emma and Charming are putting together a baby crib. So adorable, because they are clueless. Snow is concerned that they should be focusing on finding Zelena and Rumple whom they have not seen since the showdown. Charming says that the crib is a statement. They are not going to let Zelena get the baby. Regina enters and says that she put a protection spell in place that cannot be undone by blood magic. Snow ponders why Zelena would want her baby, and Regina tells her that there are plenty of spells that require baby parts (EWWW). Emma is done waiting around. She wants to play defense. Regina scoffs that she barely outwitted the witch. She says that Zelena has powerful magic. Emma wants Regina to teach her how to control her magic. Regina agrees but only if they do it HER way. She wants Emma to fully commit to it. Emma agrees. I think it's well past time that Emma learned more about her magic. Emma immediately tells Charming and Snow that she'll be careful and they offer to watch Henry. Emma tells them that Henry wants to hang out with people who are more fun. Namely Hook. Henry likes Hook is basically what they are saying. Sigh.

At the docks Smee confronts Hook. Wants to know why they are not banding together and basically being pirates again. Hook reminds them that they cannot leave Storybrooke without becoming monkeys (which fair point. Hook is totally right). Smee wants to know where the Jolly Rodger is. Hook tells him that it is not here. Hook tells Smee that he has no intention of leaving Storybrooke. Smee wants to know WHY Hook wants to stay. Hook snarks back and Smee takes off as Emma and Henry walk up. Emma asks him if he can take care of Henry. Hook replies that if she wanted to get close to him all she had to do was ask. She says she isn't surprised that he's making this all about him. She tells him that she needs him to watch Henry so she can go learn magic from Regina. Also, I know people wont care, but her TRUE LOVE just died pretty much YESTERDAY. Now is not the time for flirting Hook. He tells her that is a reasonable plan, and that it's about time she embraced her magic. She says she is not embracing anything. After she defeats the witch she's done. Heading back to New York with Henry. Hook tells her that she can't pretend this never happened. Hook says he tried to return to his old life and it didn't work. Emma wants to know what he's hiding, what happened in the last year. He says she can't return to her old life, no matter how much she wants to. I agree that Henry deserves to know. He has family that loves him.

Charming and Snow want to show Henry that they are just as much fun as Hook. Awww, those poor Charmings. They want to be the cool Grandma and Grandpa again. As they are walking along the beach they hear a commotion. It's Ariel who has just washed ashore and a bunch of people are there to help her. Snow wants to know where she's been. Ariel says she has been under the sea searching for Prince Eric. She says that she couldn't find him after the second curse. I hope Eric is okay. Poor Ariel. Charming says they don't know anything because of the memory loss, but Hook might know something. Ariel seems reluctant, and unsure if he'd help. Snow says that he helped them get back Henry, so she thinks he would.

 Enchanted Forest - Missing Year

Hook wants to know why Ariel has the knife to his throat. She tells him that she know he kidnapped Prince Eric and she wants him returned to her. I have a bad feeling about this. Hook admits it sounds like something he would do, but she has the wrong pirate. He grabs the knife and puts it to her throat. She tells him that one of Eric's men escaped, and told her that it was Hook's ship that took Eric - The Jolly Rodger. This gets Hook's attention. He questions Ariel about what she knows (while still holding the dagger to her throat) and she says that all she knows is the dagger he has against her throat came from the ship. Hook removes the dagger to look at the handle, and sees two entwined letter Bs on the it (so we're going to meet Blackbeard right?). Hook runs to tell his crew about the Jolly Rodger's fate. He wants to take it back, obviously. Smee wants to know whose funeral they will be attending, and Hook tells him Blackbeard. Smee says Blackbeard is the most cutthroat pirate to ever set sail. He seems scared. Hook doesn't care. He wants his ship back. He hasn't been himself since he got back, and it's because he doesn't have 'her'. Smee says that he's talking about the ship like it's a woman. Hook says that women come and go, but a pirate's life is forever. Ariel walks in as they are discussing this, and says that she wants Eric back, so she's going too. Hook tells her that few people put a dagger to his throat and live to tell the tale, so she should leave before changes his mind (threatening women again, excellent). She tells him no, that she's going. She brings up the pirate code. Says that since she gave him information, he has to repay her in equal favour. Ariel's so smart! Love her.

Storybrooke - Present

Hook and Henry are playing some sort of dice game at Granny's. Charming comes in and Hook leaves Henry at the table to go talk to him. They introduce him to Ariel (so she can't remember any of the time she interacted with Hook? Hmmm... and yet she knew there was a missing year) and she asks him if he's seen Eric. Mentions that Eric loved to sail and was from the Maritime Kingdom. Hook looks a little sad and hesitates before saying he's never heard of Eric. I think something bad happened to Eric.

Regina brings Emma to her vault thing. Tells her not to touch anything. She wants to teach Emma a foundation first, and build from there in terms of teaching her magic. Sounds like a solid plan. Regina want to know who is watching Henry (she assumes the 'Uncharmings' are). Emma tells her that Hook is. Regina does not look happy. Emma says that Henry likes him. Regina says Hook is impulsive, violent, and has a hook for a hand, of course a 12 year old boy likes him. Emma says she trusts Hook because he brought her back to Storybrooke. Regina is like "of course he brought YOU back" and Emma is like "what does that mean?" and Regina basically says that everyone sees the yearning looks and doe eyes they give each other. Emma says she doesn't yearn. Regina allows that maybe SHE doesn't but Hook does. I need ALL the wine.

Regina is showing Emma a book of spells. They discuss Rumple's teaching techniques. Regina basically tells Emma that Rumple was a tough teacher. If he tried to teach you to swim and you didn't learn, you ended up drowning. It gives Regina an idea, and she magics them to a bridge that doesn't look stable.

Back with the Charmings/Ariel/Hook/ they are discussing how to find Eric. They decide to check Rumple's shop to see if there is something that belongs to Eric there so they can use a locator spell to find him. Hook wishes them luck, but Snow says Hook should go. He remembers more, and her and Charming can watch Henry. Hook pulls Charming aside. He tells Charming it's a bad idea. He thinks Ariel's Prince might be dead (I think Hook knows he is dead) and that they shouldn't give her false hope. Charming says there is no such thing as false hope, and tells Hook to go with Ariel.

 Enchanted Forest - Missing Year

Ariel doesn't like land travel. Totally adorable. Hook agrees with her. Her cloak gets stuck, and Hook tears it which makes Ariel upset. He tells her that mending a cloak should be the least of her worries. She might not find Eric, or survive herself. She says she will. He reminds her that Blackbeard is a fearsome pirate and she should prepare for the worst. He insinuates that he would kill Eric if he had him (as that's what pirates do). She says that she is surprised to hear that Hook would kill Eric if he had him. She's heard stories from people who think that he's a hero for reuniting Snow White with her family. Hook tells her not to believe every story she hears. She tells him that being good is not a bad thing. He tells her that he is a pirate, always will be. End of story. I basically can't even right now.

Storybrooke - Present

Ariel and Belle are reunited. So adorable. Both ladies are beautiful, and lovely. They ask her if she's found anything of Eric's. Belle says she hasn't, but she'll help look (of course she will, because Belle is awesome). Hook goes to search and finds his telescope (is that what they are called?). He uses it to look around the shop and sees the symbol for Ursula. Turns out it's attached to Eric's cloak. Ariel is happy, but Hook looks sad. I think something awful happened, and Ariel is going to be crushed. Ariel gives Hook a hug for finding it.

Back on the bridge.. Regina tells Emma that since her power comes out when she's pushed by her instincts, they are going to use it. She starts removing boards from the bridge, until Emma is barely hanging on. She urges Emma to save the bridge, save herself. She falls, but ends up come back by causing the bridge to float. It's a kick ass scene. Regina tells Emma that she is mad that Emma has wasted her potential.

Back in Gold's shop, Belle is sprinkling Eric's cloak with a locator spell so that it'll return to it's owner. Ariel thanks her for everything (because Belle is busy trying to find a way to release Rumple). The cloak takes off out of the shop with them quickly following.

 Enchanted Forest - Missing Year

They found the Jolly Rodger. Hook mentions the ship is beautiful, and soon it'll be back in his loving arms. Ariel is like 'you're talking about a boat like it's a woman'. Smee just wants to know what the plan is. Hook's plan is to simply walk up and announce himself it appears. Total pirate move, but not the brightest. He calls out Blackbeard, who looks awesome. He actually looks like Disney's version of Hook. Hook and Blackbeard sword fight. This is all very much what I expected when Hook joined the show. Lots of awesome pirate shenanigans. They've been missing. Hook wins by tricking him with a loose floorboard. He is about to kill Blackbeard before Ariel rushes over, and wants him to find out where Eric is first. Blackbeard laughs and says that the rumours are true. Hook's gone soft. Hook gets Blackbeard to finally tell where Eric is though - a deserted island that only he knows the location of. Blackbeard was going to use Eric for ransom. Ariel offers to pay whatever it is. Turns out what Blackbeard wants is to prove that Hook is not a pirate anymore (at least that is what he wants now). He offers to give the location of Eric in exchange for the Jolly Rodger. I wonder what Hook decided.

Storybrooke - Present

The cloak leads them to the water. It goes under the sea. Ariel realizes that this means Eric is gone and starts to cry. She hugs Hook again, and he tells her that he is sorry. Did he not give up the Jolly Rodger? If not, where is it? Is it too much to hope that Eric was turned into a merman?!

Snow and Charming are going to teach Henry to drive a car?! Funny, but it just feels weird. Henry is not a good driver. He ends up hitting a mailbox and almost causing an accident.

Ariel is very sad. She thanks Hook for giving her closure. She knows their story is over, she just wants to know how it ended. Ariel tells him that he is more than a pirate, that he has a true heart (OMFG. I CAN NOT). If he ended up getting Eric killed, he's a jerk not to tell her what happened.

 Enchanted Forest - Missing Year

Ariel is basically pleading with Hook to help her. She beseeches him to do the right thing. She asks him if true love is worth more than the ship. Hook basically says love is nothing but pain, and that he's doing Ariel a favour. All he needs is his ship. Hook pushes Blackbeard off the plank as Ariel screams no. Hook announces that everyone who swears an oath to the new captain will be given quarter, anyone who doesn't can walk the plank. Ariel smacks him across the face, and says she was wrong. That he is heartless. She tells him he'll never be happy because of it. She dives into the water telling him that Eric is still out there, and she's going to find him. *sniff* I wonder what happened, and where he is now.

Storybrooke - Present

Ariel is walking the docks by herself when Hook calls her. Tells her that he hasn't been truthful. He fills her in on the stuff that happened in the missing year. He apologizes and tells her that he sacrificed her saving Eric for his ship. She smacks him and calls him a coward, and a monster. "You let a man die for your ship!". He tells her that he was empty, and that he thought the ship could fill the void in his broken heart (obviously about Emma *rolls eyes*). Ariel is pissed still. Hook says he would give anything to take it back, make it right. Ariel says she doesn't trust a man that doesn't believe in love. He says that he does. She wants him to swear on it. She asks him if he still loves this girl. He says yes. She wants him to swear to it on her name. He swears it on Emma's name (NEAL DIED ONE DAY AGO! SERIOUSLY WRITERS?! CAN YOU WAIT BEFORE YOU DO THIS?!). Ariel reveals herself to be the witch in disguise. She blows some green magic at Hook, and gets rid of the disguise. She tells Hook that Ariel did in fact find Eric after all (oh, yay! I am happy for Eric and Ariel). He wants to know how she knows this. She says she has spies in all the realms. She says that Ariel and her prince have been living happily ever after on some island. She tells him that she knew she could use the guilt he felt about that decision to her advantage. She cursed Hook so that next time he kisses Emma it will steal her magic. He will steal everything that makes Emma special, magical, and everything that makes her a threat. He says that he will tell Emma what happened. She says that she'll send the Dark One to kill Emma before he can tell her. He thinks that if Zelena could have killed Emma, she would have already. That's why she sent the monkey to watch over Emma. She shrugs that it no longer matters, he is going to remove her magic. She says that she can always hurt those Emma cares about - her parents, friends, Henry. Hook tells her to stay away from Henry. She laughs that he's become quite fond of the boy. She basically gives him an ultimatum of kissing Emma, or everyone Emma loves will die.

Hook goes to speak with the Charmings. Emma answers the door. She wants to know where Henry is. He mentions he's with Snow and Charming. Her and Regina want to know what he was doing all day in that case. He tells them that he was helping Ariel find her Prince. Regina seems surprised Ariel was there. Hook mentions the spell worked on the cloak, and Ariel swam off to find Eric. He says that Ariel asked him to say goodbye to Snow. So he's not even going to tell Emma? Sigh. Regina wants to find out if Ariel is on the island. She wants Emma to use magic to take a peek at them. Hook says it's bad form to spy on such a private moment as their reunion, but Emma is like 'let's do it'. I think Emma likes magic. I think Regina knows something is up. Regina helps Emma tap into the magic and they see Eric twirling Ariel around on the beach (just like Hook said). Emma gets wide eyed and is all "You did this? You brought them together?" Sigh... NO HE DID NOT! HE SOLD HER OUT AND IS LYING TO YOU. I would be happy because, hello pirate, but he is not doing it for that reason. He tells Emma that it was actually Ariel. She never stopped believing. Emma tells Hook that he's full of surprises.

Henry and the Charmings come back. Henry is excited that he got to drive. Regina is less than thrilled. She hides it by saying it's because she's the mayor and can't have underage (and unlicensed) drivers on the road. Emma says someone could have been hurt. Henry says it was fun, and Charming seems proud of himself. Emma relents and gives Charming a little smile. All Charming wants is to be cool Grandpa again.

Snow asks about Ariel. Hook says she went off to find Eric when they found out where he was. Emma confirms (they checked in via Skype...for Henry's benefit). They are going to have dinner at Granny's and Emma invites Hook. Tells him that whatever happened in the last year, whatever he is not telling her, she doesn't care. She says she is done living in the past (meaning Neal's death is being swept away). He declines and leaves.

Love the ending group shot of Regina, Henry, Emma, and the Charmings having a family dinner. Henry deserves it. All that is missing is Rumple, Belle, and Henry's dad. Hook uses his telescope to look on them, wistfully.

So they are setting up some epic romance thing with Emma and Hook now. Neal's been dead for a day and is basically forgotten. I bet we'll never even hear his name again on the show. My desire to watch season four is quickly dwindling to nothing.

It appears we might get some answers next week about Cora and who Zelena's father is! At least I have that to look forward to. 

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Prisoner of Night and Fog by Anne Blankman

Prisoner of Night and Fog by Anne Blankman
Release Date - April 22, 2014
Publisher Website - Harper Collins
Publisher Social Media - Twitter/Facebook/SavvyReader
Pages - 416 pages
My Rating - 4.5/5
**received in exchange for an honest review from the publisher**

Here is the Goodreads synopsis
In 1930s Munich, danger lurks behind dark corners, and secrets are buried deep within the city. But Gretchen Müller, who grew up in the National Socialist Party under the wing of her "uncle" Dolf, has been shielded from that side of society ever since her father traded his life for Dolf's, and Gretchen is his favorite, his pet.

Uncle Dolf is none other than Adolf Hitler.

And Gretchen follows his every command.

Until she meets a fearless and handsome young Jewish reporter named Daniel Cohen. Gretchen should despise Daniel, yet she can't stop herself from listening to his story: that her father, the adored Nazi martyr, was actually murdered by an unknown comrade. She also can't help the fierce attraction brewing between them, despite everything she's been taught to believe about Jews.

As Gretchen investigates the very people she's always considered friends, she must decide where her loyalties lie. Will she choose the safety of her former life as a Nazi darling, or will she dare to dig up the truth—even if it could get her and Daniel killed?

From debut author Anne Blankman comes this harrowing and evocative story about an ordinary girl faced with the extraordinary decision to give up everything she's ever believed . . . and to trust her own heart instead.
After reading the synopsis I knew I had to read Prisoner of Night and Fog. It has all the element that immediately would pique my interest - a historical setting, a mystery, and a forbidden romance. Combine this with the inclusion of Adolf Hitler being a close family friend, and I was sold. I was thrilled to discover that Anne Blankman captured all of this, and so much more in her debut novel.

The sense of foreboding, and dread is inescapable from the moment you start reading.We are shown the crippling fear that many people must have felt during this time all too clearly. You know where history dictates this ends, and as a result character safety is never guaranteed. As Gretchen becomes more determined to find out the truth, and grows closer to Daniel, that feeling only intensifies. Being on edge for an entire novel isn't something I've experienced before. It was excruciating but I found myself pulled under this book's spell as a result.

This forbidden romance was painted it quite a different way than I expected. The stark reality of what being together could cost them is realistically dealt with. The risk is taken, but not lightly. The kindness that Daniel shows Gretchen, and her willingness to accept that kindness draws them together in a way that felt authentic, and romantic. This couple immediately invoke sympathy. You wish for them to make it. You want it be easier for them. It was perfectly balanced between the romance of falling in love, and the incredible danger doing so presented.

Physical reactions to books happen to me routinely. Normally I am a crying mess if the book is sad. This book however, had me shaking in anger while sobbing. A brutal, rage inducing scene that left little doubt as to the terror that was to come. The notion that some of Hilter's followers were violent, cold hearted men should surprise nobody, but this scene will stay with me for a long for both the rage, and chill it left in it's wake.

Hilter himself is an imposing, dominating presence throughout the entire book. Even if he is not directly present his influence is felt in every scene. He is shown to be both charismatic, and unstable. Caring and ruthless. We get a sense of the man who was able to persuade and command and see just how volatile he was. It read like the research had been done, and care was taken to capture the essence of what he might have been like. His character is certainly commanding, and larger than the pages of this story.

These little moments where attention to detail is evident are peppered throughout the novel's pages. The author surrounds her characters with factual details, and people. Having this firmly grounds the story to a particular timeline, and helped me immerse myself into the story.

The mystery itself is pretty straight forward, and the outcome is easy to determine. However, what makes this particular mystery work is the surrounding tension. We know what comes next. We know how this ends. Gretchen, and Daniel's safety is not guaranteed, and so by investigating the murder, they are taking steps that will put them in danger. This is what the focus is, rather than figuring out the mystery, and Anne Blankman pulled it off impressively.

Prisoner of Night and Fog combines a thrilling murder mystery with historical events. It captures the starkness of a forbidden love, and the crushing realization that sometimes people are not as you see them to be. Fans of historical novels will devour this and immediately look for the sequel.

Monday, April 14, 2014

The Lonesome Young by Lucy Connors

The Lonesome Young by Lucy Connors
Release Date - April 8, 2014
Publisher Website - Razorbill/Penguin
Publisher Social Media - Twitter
Pages - 336 pages
My Rating - 3.5/5
**received in exchange for an honest review from the publisher**

Here is the Goodreads synopsis
Get swept away in the first book of the sensational romantic drama that is Romeo and Juliet meets Justified.

WHAT HAPPENS when the teenage heirs of two bitterly FEUDING FAMILIES can’t stay away from each other?

The Rhodales and the Whitfields have been sworn enemies for close on a hundred years, with a whole slew of adulterous affairs, financial backstabbing, and blackmailing that’s escalated the rivalry to its current state of tense ceasefire.


And now a meth lab explosion in rural Whitfield County is set to reignite the feud more viciously than ever before. Especially when the toxic fire that results throws together two unlikely spectators—proper good girl Victoria Whitfield, exiled from boarding school after her father’s real estate business melts down in disgrace, and town motorcycle rebel Mickey Rhodale, too late as always to thwart his older brothers’ dangerous drug deals.

Victoria and Mickey are about to find out the most passionate romances are the forbidden ones.

. . . ON A POWDER KEG FULL OF PENT-UP DESIRE, risk-taking daredevilry, and the desperate actions that erupt when a generation of teens inherits nothing but hate.
The Lonesome Young has a great setting, a deliciously tense feud, and some fantastically high stakes. It's a story of romance, betrayal, and learning to stand up for yourself. I immediately loved certain aspects of the story, but there was one aspect that didn't quite work for me.

The characters ended up endearing themselves to me rather quickly. Victoria is an intelligent, observant young woman. Her love for her sister was something I could understand and relate to. Mickey is determined to be looked at as more than just a Rhodale. He wants to rise above the stigma, and be better than his brothers. His short fuse temper adds a little bit of danger to him, but he melted my heart with how much he cares for his sister and mother.

The feud between the two families serves to create an interesting dynamic and tension. It offers high stakes that the author follows through on. We see the casualties, and the risks this type of feud can cause. The inclusion of drugs (and everything that comes with it) only increases the danger. It's this aspect of the story that held my interest, and urged me to keep reading. The romance could have almost been left out of it, except for the potential bridge between the families it creates, and the extra drama it causes. I don't think I was prepared for it to get this tense, this early. The pacing of the plot is quick, and is like a chain reaction that just keeps building.

The only aspect that didn't quite work for me was the, for me, slightly rushed romance. There was hardly any build up from the intense attraction, to them being in love. This is supposed to be a 'defy everything' type of love, and I wished it had been explored more. As mentioned, the characters themselves are great, and there is some promise in the romance. The scenes between them are filled with chemistry and tension. It would have worked better, for me, if it had been a slower build. There are only a few times where they are alone together and can actually talk, and it seems to happen in such a short span of time. The pacing of the plot perhaps creates this illusion as it seems everything is happening within days (it's actually longer than that). Lucy Connors history with writing romance is evident, and she certainly makes their attraction scorch off the pages. I fully bought into the lust, and attraction they had for each other, and that it had the potential to turn into something deeper. It's only saving grace is that situations like this help to increase feelings.

The Lonesome Young has interesting characters, a dynamite feud, and enough tension to ignite a fire. While the romance itself lacked, there was more than enough chemistry between the characters to satisfy. 

Saturday, April 12, 2014

TV Talk With Kelly - Bates Motel

As you may know Kelly, from Kellyvision, and I are doing TV recaps. We recapped American Horror Story: Coven on her blog, and now we're recapping Bates Motel (season 2) on mine. Please note, this is more our reactions/thoughts than a true recap, and obviously there will be SPOILERS!

Kelly is everything in blue, and I am the other colour (is it brown? Whatever it is).


BATES MOTEL - Season 2, episode 5 - The Escape Artist

Norman completely blacks out during these fugue states and for longer than I expected. He doesn’t seem to remember anything. Norman is concerned that people told his mother. He also flat out lied that this has never happened before. Can’t say I agree with Cody’s not telling anyone though. I think Norman needs help and people keep ignoring it.

I also don’t think I believe that she won’t tell anyone.  I really, REALLY don’t trust that girl.  (Norman DOES know about his fugue states, right?  I mean, obviously he knows about the one with the teacher the night she died, but he knows they happened before, too, right?)

‘I am trying to be unconscious. Why are you throwing water on me?’ Oh, Dylan. I feel so bad for him. Drinking yourself to oblivion is not going to help though.

It’ll help short term. ;)  Clearly he just needs it to work short term.

So this fire at Agent Romero’s house is going to be a major problem for Dylan, huh?. *please don’t die*

I’m very concerned for Dylan.  We know he isn’t in Psycho (or even mentioned) so that means he’s pretty expendable.  Although maybe he’ll just have a huge, horrible fight with them and leave town.  *crosses fingers*

Did Norma just put egg shells into the bowl? She’s obviously stressed out due to Norman’s questioning about why Dylan moved out, and if they should help.  

I think she did!  I wonder if that was in the script or if Vera Farmiga just improvised it.  (Have I mentioned lately how much I love this show?)

Agent Romero is checking into the hotel because someone burnt down his house. It’s kind of funny (especially that his request is privacy).

I loved that!  He’s trying so hard to be left alone and Norma’s like, “What can I do?”

Norma has back up against the by-pass highway but, is it just me, or is it a little sketchy that he wants to meet at his boat? Maybe it’s just because it’s this show.

I agree.  I think it’s definitely just the show, but yes.  It’s like every single thing is like, “Oh, is this going to lead to something bad?” And usually it does.

Emma and Norman are so cute. She’s also equally cute with the new guy. I just like Emma. She’s awkward and sweet. I don’t think Norman is happy about Emma’s date though. Too bad, Norman. You had your chance and you hooked up with Bradley. ‘He sells pot’ ‘Nobody’s perfect’. You’re one to talk Norman. Bradley was awful and you liked her.

I think he loves Emma and he doesn’t know it yet.  I hope so.  

Norma is not going to like Cody. I am actually laughing at the thought of Norma going off on her. It’ll be awesome, and you know it’s going to happen (sooner than I think, apparently). Cody is rude. Rude is not even a strong enough word.

I HATE CODY.  I can’t wait for Norma to go off on her because I agree, it’s totally coming.

Oh, Cody. Rule number one of being friends with Norman is to never insult his mother. She was trying to get Norman to pay for things right? Not just me.

Not just you.  (Prediction: Norman will end up killing her.)

Awww. I forgot Emma didn’t have anyone to talk to about these things. I am glad that Norma was kind to Emma and didn’t shatter her ‘dream’.

I loved that scene.  I thought it was super sweet and just poignant.

Cody comes from an abusive home. I feel sorry for her a bit. I have a feeling she’ll actually run away eventually.

I do but I don’t.  I think she’s awful, even if there’s a reason for it.

This is not what I pictured when he said boat. That is a yacht. I am still not clear on WHY this guy doesn’t want to by-pass. He also has a lot of money. I wonder what he’s involved in, and how much this is actually going to cost Norma. I am pretty sure this guy has plans of his own.

I don’t trust him.  I don’t trust anyone.

Haha. This plan is actually kind of awesome, because it’ll totally stall things. Again though, what does this guy get out of it?

Romero is a badass. Totally sure cops are not allowed to do that though. I would be pissed about my house though too.

Same.  I’m not sure how this is going to play out.  (Only five episodes left, right?  I hate that these seasons are so short.)

Norman is way too nice for Cody. Date Emma, Norman. DO IT! So Norman told her the truth. He is confiding about his fugue states. How long until ‘Norma’ takes over because Norman is about to have sexytimes? I still think Cody is no good for Norman.

I think that’s exactly what’s going to happen.  I think that Cody is going to meet Mother.

Oh, I hope this date goes well for Emma. She deserves it. I am laughing that this boy wants to have a weed farm of his very own. They are all kinds of cute together.

I hope this goes well for Emma.  I just want her to be happy.

I love this ‘friendship’ developing between Romero and Norma. I also love that she washed his clothes. Haha. It’s so Norma. ‘You smiled. I thought your face was paralyzed’. HAHA. Norma can be funny.

Norma is really funny; I wish we saw more of that.  And yes, I love their friendship.

Huh, so guy with the boat is involved with the drug business… big shock.

I am pretty sure everyone in town is involved with drugs.  Or human trafficking.  Or both.

Dylan’s line of work is going to get him killed. Do not like. Plus he seems to have a death wish. WHAT THE HELL DYLAN?!

Norma is such a mom here. I like it. Norman is also such a teenager here. I love these scenes as I’ve mentioned, because it makes the later stuff more heartbreaking. Norman is totally just going to do the teenager thing and sneak around with Cody.

I loved that scene, too.

Oh, Norma. You’ve got yourself involved with some shady people (must be a day that ends in Y).

I just hope that she will survive long enough for Norman to kill her.  

New girlfriend for Dylan? Maybe not since she’s his boss.

She looks so familiar! How do we know her? (UPDATE: I looked it up and she was on the original Beverly Hills 90210.)

The preview for next week looks stellar (as usual). I LOVE this show.


Friday, April 11, 2014

Weekly Obsessions

The awesome Kelly at KellyVision started posting a weekly post highlighting whatever she happened to be obsessed with that week. I LOVE this idea, so much in fact that I will be doing it myself every Saturday.

Here are my obsessions this week. Super short and sweet this week but pretty much everything else is eclipsed by the casting news!


Beyond The Pale Motel by Francesca Lia Block

I stumbled across the cover for this and while I like it enough, it was this synopsis that made me quickly add it to my 'to be read' list
Maternal, sexy Catt and her beautiful, daring best friend Bree are hairdressers at an L.A. salon called Head Hunter, and work out at a gym called Body Farm. They have over a decade of sobriety behind them and are getting close to living the lives they've always wanted.

But when Catt's husband, Dash, leaves her, and then her neighbor is brutally murdered, possibly by a man being called the Hollywood Serial Killer, Catt's world begins to come crashing down. The murdered victims all seem to bear a chilling resemblance to Bree. Catt suspects that Bree is the next target of the Hollywood Serial she losing touch with reality or simply coming to terms with the truth?

In this terrifying and intensely erotic novel, Francesca Lia Block explores the dangers of modern living, loving and dying with lyrical edge and sensational attitude.
You can add it to your Goodreads account and pine away like I am because its not released until September 16th.


Ryan Kwanten cast in Stolen

As per Lucy Christopher's Facebook...

I am flailing over this news. I've wanted Ryan Kwanten to be cast as Ty since I read Stolen. He's going to be PERFECT. Stolen is still one of my all time favourite YA novels, and I was worried about it being made into a movie. The fact that Lucy is writing the screenplay and that they cast my perfect Ty makes me hope this will be a fantastic adaptation. I can't wait for more news about this movie, and for the eventual movie posters, trailer, etc.

*I also confirmed with Lucy via Twitter that Ryan is indeed Ty in the movie*

David's Tea Frequent Steeper Program

I have a slight obsession with tea, especially David's Tea. They have an amazing variety, and I love discovering a new favourite. They recently launched a frequent steeper program that allows you to accumulate points towards free tea. This is basically heaven for me. I have already signed up. Oh, and the May tea of the month? Chocolate Macaroon... as if I didn't want it to be May badly enough.

What are you obsessed with this week?

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Great by Sara Benincasa

Great by Sara Benincasa
Release Date - April 8, 2014
Publisher Website - Harper Collins
Publisher Social Media - Twitter/Facebook/SavvyReader
Pages - 272 pages
My Rating - 4/5
**received in exchange for an honest review from the publisher**

Here is the Goodreads synopsis
In Sara Benincasa's contemporary retelling of The Great Gatsby, a teenage girl becomes entangled in the drama of a Hamptons social circle, only to be implicated in a tragedy that shakes the summer community.

Everyone loves a good scandal.

Naomi Rye usually dreads spending the summer with her socialite mother in East Hampton. This year is no different. She sticks out like a sore thumb among the teenagers who have been summering (a verb only the very rich use) together for years. But Naomi finds herself captivated by her mysterious next-door neighbor, Jacinta. Jacinta has her own reason for drawing close to Naomi-to meet the beautiful and untouchable Delilah Fairweather. But Jacinta's carefully constructed world is hiding something huge, a secret that could undo everything. And Naomi must decide how far she is willing to be pulled into this web of lies and deception before she is unable to escape.

Based on a beloved classic and steeped in Sara Benincasa's darkly comic voice, Great has all the drama, glitz, and romance with a terrific modern (and scandalous) twist to enthrall readers.
Putting your own twist on a classic story must be incredibly daunting. Sara Benincasa's modernized, and gender bent, take on The Great Gatsby makes it look effortless. Her passion for the source material comes thorough to create a nostalgic, but still surprising read.

The Great Gatsby, in my experience, is a very polarizing novel. My experience has been that people either love it, or dislike it with a great passion. I think how one reacts to Great may depend on which grouping you fall into. If you loved The Great Gatsby there are plenty of moments that will delight and thrill. The characters and reminiscent, the setting, the themes all pay a little nod to the source. However, I think there are enough surprises, and that Sara has tweaked it just enough, that she makes it her own.

The writing is a perfect blend of humour, and insight. There is a flair needed to capture the essence of the melodramatic nature of The Great Gatsby without it becoming eye roll worthy and Sara Benincasa manages it. Her previous writing has obviously sharpened her skills, and as a result, Great is a tightly paced read.

The lavish parties, the glitz, the glamour that is Gatsby is here is spades. Fashion takes centre stage and it's an excellent fit for this story. The decadent parties, ferris wheel, and fancy restaurants all offer a stark contrast to the rapidly spiraling events of the novel.

Lies and masks are a huge part of what drives this story. Jacinta has carefully created an air of mystery that is meant to hide her true secrets. Plenty of characters are hiding secrets and are covering them with lies. As each one snowballs into the next, and the novel rushes to it's tragic conclusion, you're left wondering how well you really knew any of the characters. This does make talking about the characters incredibly difficult, because unraveling their secrets is part of this novel's fun.

The gender switch was an intriguing twist to the story. It added an extra layer to the novel's themes. Having the roles reversed added a nuance that you wouldn't recognized unless you had read The Great Gatsby. The female characters in this felt much more layered, and complex than the original. I've always felt the men in The Great Gatsby got most of the attention. It really shone a light on how the female characters are given a power they didn't have in the original.

The bright spotlight put on the rich upper class is harsh and unforgiving in this novel. We see the darker side to 'having it all' laid out in these pages. Dating someone because their 'suitable', entitlement, desperation to main appearances, ostracizing others are just some of the scandalous behaviours demonstrated during the novel. I appreciated how it was done without going overboard. Everything, even the most grandiose, felt plausible within this world.

The story is told from Naomi's perspective and as a result everything is filtered through her eyes. She's the only character whose motivations, feelings and desires are fully known to the reader. Her awakening to the world around her, and how she reacts to it, is a fascinating perspective to follow. She acts as a reader surrogate in a lot of ways as she journeys through this tumultuous summer.

Sara does a fantastic job with the other characters as well, so much in fact that I wanted to get inside many of their heads. Delilah and Jacinta, specifically. Each of them was alluring and captivating for their own reasons. Deliah mainly because she's the least developed. We know very little about her, never mind what drew Jacinta to her. Jacinta because her thought process, particularly towards the end of the novel, would have been engrossing as a reader. The fact that I wonder about them, and want more of them just shows that did what they were supposed to do as characters.

Fans of The Great Gatsby will find much to delight over, and there is still plenty to please those who haven't read the source material. It's a scandalous, voyeuristic look at a life changing summer in the Hamptons and will be a perfect addition to your beach bag this summer.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Once Upon A Time - It's Not Easy Being Green

I am still angry. Upset. I can not believe that the reason for the entire show was killed off last week. Rumple had Regina cast the curse so he could find Baelfire. Bae is the catalyst for EVERYTHING. Also, the poor kid (and eventually man) sacrificed and sacrificed and doesn't get a happy ending? Is this a show about hope or not? because right seems like it's not. It seems like being a good person gets you nothing, and being a villain gets you everything. *rage*

On with this week's show were apparently Neal gets a funeral that is interrupted by the Wicked Witch. Can't wait *eye roll*


So we quickly see that Zelena is not originally from Oz (at least it very much appears she just appeared there). A nice couple took her in, and baby Zelena showed her magic capabilities by knocking over a tree. After the husband expresses his concerns about a baby that can do magic, the wife insists they keep her. They name her Zelena (so Cora didn't even name her? Ouch) and head off down the yellow brick road to the Emerald City. Oh, and Zelena wasn't green as a baby! What happened to turn her green?!

PRESENT - Storybrooke

I can't watch this. *cries all the tears* Sigh... I am not even going to snark on the fact that Hook gets to put the first shovel of dirt into the grave because this is too sad. It should have been Henry, Rumple, or Emma. Rumple isn't even able to be there!! GRRRR. Seriously, THE REASON FOR THE SHOW, PEOPLE! THE WHOLE REASON FOR THE SHOW. Emma looks devastated and grabs the swan necklace. Love this so much.

Rumple is crying and broken. My heart. I can't. Zelena comes to pour salt into the wound, asking Rumple if Baelfire was worth all the trouble since he died anyways. Rumple replies that Bae was worth every bit of it. This feels incredibly final. The shot of Emma with the shovel, Rumple here. It just feels like there won't be a magic fix this time, no matter how much I want one. I also, sadly, think that's the most we're going to get...*sigh* It's not like Baelfire isn't important or anything.


So the father Zelena told Rumple about is the 'adoptive' father. He isn't very kind to her. He doesn't like her magic, and calls her wicked. He claims that she drove him to drink. He's awful to her and she tells him that if she caused him that much trouble, she'll leave. She is going to see the Wizard of Oz to get him to provide her with a family that cares about her.

PRESENT - Storybrooke

Emma is pissed. She's throwing those darts like she means it. Hook has to come over and tell her that there are better was to grieve Baelfire, like rum. Emma says no thanks, she likes anger. She wants to get Zelena, for Henry especially. Emma thinks that if she says anything good about Neal to Henry it'll just come across like she's trying to make Henry feel better. Hook immediately offers to talk to Henry about Neal. THE GUY WHO HANDED HIM OVER TO PAN. Seriously, writers? Hook, of course, leaves that part out. Emma looks so grateful that Hook will talk to Henry. I can't. I seriously...just no. They might as well be screaming "HOOK AND EMMA FOREVER". They just barely buried Neal. Sigh.

Oh Tink! Yay! She comes and wants to talk to Regina about Robin. Robin comes over and wants to make sure Regina isn't upset with him. She assures him that he's not. As Robin leaves, Tinkerbell snarks at Regina that she should have talked to him the first time she saw him. She tells Regina that if she had life might have been very different. Tink is frustrated because Regina is still closed off, and storms off. I love Tink.

Charming asks Emma how she is. She's obviously not well. Zelena shows up and wants to make a speech to honour Baelfire, since she is responsible for his death (can she die now?!) and Emma wants to attack. Snow tells her no, that too many people will be hurt. Charming tells Zelena to stay away from them, and protectively puts his hand over Snow's stomach. Zelena sneers that she's not there for the anyways. Why does she want Snow's kid?! Regina wants to know why Zelena is there. Zelena tells her that since her cover is blown, she wanted to come see her little sister. I forgot that Regina wouldn't remember finding that out. Regina says she's an only child. Zelena tells her that Cora lied, they're half sisters. Zelena says that she brought Regina a gift. This sad day. She wants Regina to use it to dig into their past and find out the truth. She wants Regina to meet her in the town square for a showdown. Regina snaps that this isn't the 'wild west' and Zelena says 'no, dearie, it's the wicked west'. Zelena invites everyone to come see Regina lose and leaves taunting Regina with 'see you tonight, sis'.

Everyone immediately starts to question Regina about Zelena and if it could be true. Regina insists she's never met Zelena before. Granny quickly reminds them that anything could have happened during that missing year, so perhaps Regina pissed off Zelena during that. Regina gets huffy and walks out determined to find out what happened.

Henry and Hook are going on a boat. Doesn't look like the Jolly Rodger. He tells Henry that he knew Neal before either of them met Emma.


Zelena goes to the palace to meet the Wizard. ARE WE GOING TO GET TO SEE THE WIZARD?! I am excited. He knows that she wants to find her family. He shows her what she wants to see in a portal/looking glass on the floor. The wizard tells her that Cora gave birth to her in another land, and a cyclone struck and carried her to Oz. Zelena wanted to know why her mother abandoned her. The Wizard says it was because having a baby would have prevented Cora from becoming royalty. The Wizard also shows Zelena that she has a sister. He says that Regina became Queen and gave Cora what she wanted. Zelena sees Rumple in the portal/looking glass and demands to know who he is. The Wizard tells her that Rumple is a powerful wizard. The Wizard tells her that Regina has magic too, but hasn't been able to develop it. Zelena is shocked to hear that magic is a gift. She's immediately jealous, and says that Rumple should be teaching her, not Regina. She wants to go where they are. The Wizard gives her some silver shoes and tells her to click her heels together three times and they'll take her where she wants to go. He wants her to bring him something that belongs to Rumple in exchange for the shoes. He also warns her that she needs to be careful. It's one thing to want to know about your past, but don't become envious of things you cannot have.

She clicks her heels and ends up in Rumple's castle. She performs magic as Rumple walks into the room. He wants to know who she is. She explains that she's Cora's daughter. He yanks out a piece of her hair and proves with a potion that she is in fact Cora's daughter. I was hoping there was a twist to this but it seems that Zelena isn't lying.

PRESENT - Storybrooke

Snow, Emma, and Regina are at Regina's vault. Snow and Emma ask if Regina's found anything. Emma mentions that Charming has blocked off the town square in case the 'show down' actually happens. Regina finds a letter and declares that Zelena's not lying and rushes out.

Emma and Snow go find Charming, Tink and Belle. They are making plans to help Regina. Emma says that they can't interfere because of the fact that Zelena controls Rumple. They discuss the fact that Regina took off, and it appears that Zelena is in fact Regina's sister. Emma says that they need to take Rumple out of the equation to give Regina a fighting chance. They need to get back his dagger. Belle says it might be possible for her to get through to Rumple without the dagger. Emma says that it's worth a try.

Regina is by herself reading the mysterious letter. Robin comes and quips that they need to stop meeting like this. She immediately wants to know if Emma, Charming and etc sent him. He says no. He was patrolling the woods as a precaution after Zelena's threats. He asks her what is in the letter. He actually pick pocketed it from Regina. I LOVE it. She quips that he's lucky she's saving her strength for the witch. Robin tells her that she wants to talk about the letter. Regina relents and even lets him read it. It's a letter from Rumple, I think. He was telling Cora that her 'first born' is stunning, powerful with magic (even more powerful than Cora) and it's quite complimentary. Robin asks what the issue is. Regina admits that she turned to that letter for comfort in her dark moments. She thought it was about her. Robin asks her why she cares what 'that imp' thinks. Regina says if Rumple thinks Zelena is stronger than Regina can't win. Rumple taught her everything, and would know. I love how vulnerable Regina is letting herself be with Robin. It's sweet.


Rumple and Zelena are walking together. He tells her about the curse, and how he's seen that Cora's daughter would be the one to cast it (again, THE REASON FOR THE ENTIRE SHOW PEOPLE!). He thought it was Regina, but now he's not so sure. He tests Zelena's magic with a blindfolded game of hide and seek. He tells her to use her emotions to tap into it. It's successful when Zelena starts to use the hurt and anger at being given up, Regina getting everything, etc and she catches him. He is trying to get Zelena to balance the anger with happiness. She wants to know what happy memory Rumple uses. He tells her about the spinsters who took him in, and it's a rather sweet story. Zelena tells him after that her moment is when he agreed to train her. It made her feel wanted for the first time.

PRESENT - Storybrooke

Emma, Belle and others go to the farm house. Emma gives Belle the all clear to go into the cellar and talk to Rumple. Belle runs down to free him. He tells her to leave as he doesn't want to be ordered to hurt her. Belle beseeches him to try to fight it. She doesn't believe that he'd hurt her. She coaxes him closer and they almost share a moment before Zelena shows up. She teases that she was enjoying the show. Rumple tells Belle to run, and she does. She tells everyone outside it was a trick. Rumple comes out of the cellar doors and tells them that if they interfere again that he will kill them.

Hook and Henry are having a campfire. Henry wants to talk about Neal. Hook shows Henry a sextant and explains how it works. Henry wants to know what that has to do with his father. Hook tells him that he taught Neal to use it to navigate just like he'll teach Henry. Henry asks if they were in the Navy or something together. Hook says that Neal was just a boy when he taught him. Henry is all "But you guys were the same age". Way to go, Hook. Henry says that the more they tell him, the more confusing things get. He doesn't want to learn to navigate, he just wants to hear something about his father. Something that doesn't make Neal sound made up. Henry is having a hard time with his father being gone (me too, Henry. Me too). Hook tells Henry that he taught Neal to navigate because he had just lost his father. He thought the sea would help Neal deal with that. Henry immediately latches on to the fact that his father lost his father as well. Hook is trying to tell Henry the truth without right out telling him. Tells Henry that Neal lost his father to something dark and evil when he was around Henry's age. He tells Henry that he is a lot like Neal. This gets a nice smile out of Henry. WHY CAN'T NEAL COME BACK?! THAT BOY DESERVES TO KNOW HIS FATHER.

We cut to Zelena getting ready for her fight with Regina.


Zelena makes a meat pie for Rumple. He says he can't stay. He has to go give Regina a magic lesson. Zelena gets upset, and starts yelling. Rumple tells her to take her father's advice and 'put on a good face' because her inside's are starting to show. She's literally turning green from jealousy.

PRESENT - Storybrooke

Charming is trying to clear the town square when Zelena arrives. She tells him that nobody is going anywhere. Zelena has Rumple in tow. She demands to know where Regina is. Claims Regina is a coward and that she has 5 minutes or Zelena will turn the Dark One loose on them. Poor Belle. She looks so sad.

Zelena says Regina's time is up. Emma offers to fight Zelena herself. Zelena scoffs and says she doesn't deal with amateurs. Emma is like "Hello, saviour here". Zelena tells Emma that she has an inflated sense of self worth and sends her flying. Zelena asks if anyone wants to be next. Regina says she does and walks into the town square. They snark at each other and Regina wants to know what she ever did to Zelena. Zelena's reply is basically that Regina was born (because Regina can really help that) and it earns her a punch in the mouth from Regina (that draws blood). Zelena sneers that Rumple can't save her this time.


Zelena sneaks up behind Regina in her bedroom and tells her that Rumple is wasting his time by teaching her. She ends up stabbing Regina in the neck, but Rumple reveals it was actually himself disguised as Regina. Zelena is upset that Rumple tricked her. She says that just wanted to show him that she was more powerful. He tells her that it was test, and one that she failed. He says that she disqualified herself, because the curse requires the person who is casting it to sacrifice the person they love most. Zelena says that she can totally do that. Rumple says that HE is what she loves most, so that is not going to work. Zelena laughs at the notion that she might love him. Rumple tells her it's okay, he creates that reaction in women. He tells her that Regina has the job. Her green spot grows larger and Rumples teases that she might want to get it checked out. She tells Rumple to forget the curse, she will figure out another way to get him what he wants. He says that unless she can take him to a land without magic, it's not possible. She says that she can (the silver shoes). Zelena is mad now though and she won't let Rumple use the shoes. She says that he chose Regina. She tells Rumple that he'll have to kill her to get the shoes. He goes to, and she flies off. Leaving him with a sneer of 'next time we meet you will choose me'.

PRESENT - Storybrooke

Zelena tells Rumple that he should have chosen her. Regina laughs and is pretty much like 'you're jealous of me? That's what this is about?!' I hear you, Regina. They have a fantastic fight filled with Zelena complaining that Regina had everything Zelena ever wanted. Zelena eventually throws Regina and she crashes through the clock tower window. Zelena magics herself up and taunts Regina some more. Regina tells her to go ahead and kill her. Zelena says she doesn't want to kill Regina, just destroy her. She tells Regina she needs her heart to do that. She tries to take it from Regina, but it's not there. Regina tells her that their mother taught Regina one thing - never bring your heart to a witch fight. I bet Robin is keeping it safe for her (*swoons*). Zelena gets mad, and yells that she will get Regina's heart, and everything Regina ever had. Sigh. I am already over her jealousy shtick. Zelena flies off on her broom. Emma's totally worried about Regina. I like them being friends.

Regina tells them that Zelena wanted her heart. They muse on why. Regina points out that she has Charming's courage, and wanted her heart. She says they are ingredients. Emma wants to know if they are ingredients to a curse. Snow points out that they are already in Storybrooke, and that they already lost their memories, so what else could Zelena do. Lots, Snow, lots.

Regina runs to find Robin. He is in fact guarding her heart. Regina gets it back, and tells Robin that Zelena is right about one thing. She doesn't always see what she has until it's too late. She didn't always appreciate things. She gives him her heart for safe keeping. He asks her if she would really trust something so valuable to a common thief. She tells him that he can't steal something that's been given to him. She literally just gave him her heart. I love this relationship. Too bad I am still pissed at the way they handled Neal's death because I would be all about Robin and Regina together. Robin reminds her that they still have to have a drink together, and Regina smiles.

Henry and Hook come back. Henry seems glad to have gone, and wants to go again. After Emma gets Henry inside, she talks with Hook. She thanks him for taking Henry. He tells Emma that Henry has to know about his father, and remember everything. She just thanks him again, and walks inside.

Zelena is with Rumple. She tells him Regina is smart, but she is going to find Regina's heart. Rumple tells her that all of this isn't going to change anything. He'd still pick Regina if he had to do it again. She taunts him by saying that they'll just have to wait and see. She tells him that she isn't casting a curse, but a second chance.


Zelena goes to the Wizard again. She tells him to send her to the moment where her mother abandoned her. She wants to prevent it from happening. The Wizard laughs and tells her that it is impossible. She throws something at the screen, and it comes crashing down. It reveals that the Wizard is Walsh (yup, monkey Walsh). He doesn't have magic. He is originally from Kansas. She tells him that she has no use for him in that case. She wants someone to obey her, and turns him into a monkey. I bet that Emma will help Walsh break this curse. Zelena really wants to change the past. She sees that Rumple is telling Regina that she is the best pupil that he ever had. She turns fully green and sneers that when she done Regina won't have even been born.

So, she basically wants to make it so that Regina never existed right? If she succeeds that means everything changes. Can Neal come back in that case? Please.

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