Category Archives: Adventure

Trailer for “Enter the Warriors Gate”

Trailers – This film, “Enter the Warrior’s Gate” opened in China last year and will be seen here in the US next week. The official synopsis is:

Epic fantasy-adventure meets martial arts action in this thrilling film written by Luc Besson & Robert Mark Kamen. After a mysterious chest opens a gateway through time, teen gamer Jack (Uriah Shelton) is transported to an ancient empire terrorized by a cruel barbarian king (former WWE superstar Dave Bautista). Jack will need all of his gaming skills as he battles to defeat the barbarian, protect a beautiful princess, and somehow find his way back home.

So, this looks like a pure tongue-in-cheek, fun adventure movie. It is hard to say from this 2:05 trailer if it will be any good. I am sure most of the younger teenage gamer boys will want to see it.

If You Liked “Avatar” You Will Want to Visit Disney World

Disney – Teasers – The movie “Avatar” was a big hit in 2009. Now you can visit the world of Pandora, or at least a 12 acre recreation of it in Disney World. The expansion will open this May in the Animal Kingdom park. When I was there in January of 2017 we could see that the expansion was nearly done and where the entrance will be.

Disney says “Pandora – The World of Avatar will transport guests to a visually stunning world complete with floating mountains and bioluminescent plants. Here, guests will be able to experience two excursions that will truly push adventure to the next level. First, the family-friendly Na’vi River Journey will send guests down a sacred river hidden within a bioluminescent rainforest. Their journey will end in an unforgettable encounter with a Na’vi Shaman, a figure who has a deep connection to the life force of Pandora. And second, the Avatar Flight of Passage excursion will offer the jaw-dropping experience of riding on a Banshee over the world of Pandora.

There is more to be seen in an interview with James Cameron as he gives a preview tour.

The video above gives a little background to the mew Pandora world, though it talks mostly about Animal Kingdom in general. The new land is oriented heavily towards nature and ecology.

Special Effects for “Kong: Skull Island”

Trailers – Industrial Light and Magic (ILM) handle the  Special Effects for the latest Kong movie that opened recently. This short (4:37) video gives a little background into some of the ‘creature creations’ for the movie.

I have not seen it yet myself, but the movie looks full of action and interesting visual effects.

Review of “Sealed Up”

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Book Reviews – “Sealed Up” eBook was published in 2016 and was written by Steve Dunn Hanson (http://stevedunnhanson.com). Mr. Hanson has published three books.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘PG’ because it contains scenes of Violence. The story is mostly set in Mexico. The primary characters are Dr. Nathan Hill, an anthropologist at UCLA and Audra Chang, a DEA agent working undercover.

A popular televangelist, Luke Clinton is under surveilance by the DEA. He has a mission in rural Mexico and it is thought that he has some ties to a drug cartel. Chang has been placed in his employment to discover if there are any irregularities.

A shaman in Mexico, Kish, is passed a box with secrets  by his mentor. The contents causes Kish to set in motion a plan to get Hill and a few select others to his remote village. He offers them, through intermediary Clinton, something ancient that is worth the risks they might endure. Chang gets involved when Clinton asks her to accompany the expedition as his representative.

Hill, along with Chang and a couple of others head to Mexico on a quick expedition guided by Kish to search for hidden secrets. There are hidden motives for the trip and before long all of their plans are disrupted. Complicating all of this is interest by the drug cartel that has indeed been working with Clinton.

I thought that this was an interesting 8.5 hour read of 404 pages. This is more of an adventure story than anything, with the pursuit of ancient artifacts interwoven with intrigue. I liked the characters and the plot, though it was a little dull at times. There was a bit of action, but certainly nothing ‘edge-of-your-seat’. I liked the cover art for the book. It does a good job at hinting at what is to come. I give this novel a 3.8 (rounded up to a 4) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Review of “Breakfast, Tea & Bourbon”

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Book Review – “Breakfast, Tea & Bourbon” eBook was published in 2017 and was written by Pete Bissonette. This appears to be Mr. Bissonette’s first book.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘G’ (as far as I read). The primary character is Nels Ware who sets off with four friends in search of a hidden treasure. He has looked at the clues and thinks he knows the location. Off they go in a dilapidated RV to retrieve the $50,000 and have a lot of fun along the way.

I gave this book about 40 minutes of my time and reached the 17% point when I just had to call a ‘Rule of 50’ on it. By that point they were on their way and had only accomplished drinking. Beyond two drink recipes where the primary ingredient was Bourbon, and a recipe for making olive spread, the story had really gone no where.

Usually by the 10% point at least you know the basic plot and the antagonists. This book had sounded interesting when I read the abstract. I was disappointed. Oh, and there are clues in the story that are supposed to lead you to find a real $50,000. The cover art is OK. I give this novel a 2 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Review of “The Templar Archive”

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“The Templar Archive” eBook was published in 2016 (September) and was written by James Becker (http://www.james-becker.com/  a terrible web site as it requires Flash to operate). Mr. Becker has published 11 novels.

I received a galley of this novel for review through https://www.netgalley.com. I categorize this novel as ‘PG’ because it contains scenes of Violence. The story is mostly set in France and Switzerland. The primary characters are antiquarian bookseller Robin Jessop and computer expert David Mallory.

This is the second volume of the “Lost Treasure of the Templars” series and picks up a short time after that novel ends. Using clues discovered in the first book, Jessop and Mallory travel to France to pursue their findings. What they find in Notre Dame Cathedral sends them to Switzerland.

Following them are members of the Dominican Order from whom they barely escaped from in the first book of the series. Not only are they faced with these killers, but another group has become interested in them as well.

The problem solving skills of Jessop and Mallory are stretched by the puzzles they are faced with. They must also avoid the Dominicans sent to kill them.

This was an enjoyable 7+ hour read of this 478 page Thriller. This was not the best book of the problem solving adventure genre that I have read, but it was decent. I think that one problem that I had was that most of the villains were not very evil. The author did keep the pace moving along well. The cover is OK though I am not sure what aspect of the story it is supposed to convey since Jessop and Mallory were in caves not stone tunnels. I give this novel a 7 (rounded up to a 4) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Review of “The Wrecking crew”

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“The Wrecking Crew” eBook was published in 2016 and was written by Taylor Zajonc (http://taylorzajonc.com). This is Mr. Zajonc’s first novel.

I received a galley of this novel for review through https://www.netgalley.com. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence, Mature Language and Mature situations. This novel is set in at various places in the contemporary Mediterranean and Indian Oceans.

The primary character is Jonah Blackwell, a diver, adventurer and sometimes criminal. He is rescued from a Moroccan prison by Dr. Hassan Nassiri. Nassiri wants Blackwell to help him find the wreckage of the plane his mother was on. Unfortunately, the area where the plane went down is near the Somali coast, well within the range of pirates in the area.

This starts an adventure that is full of harrowing moments and edge-of-you-seat Thrills. The pair steal a boat and find that they have inadvertently kidnapped an attractive young female engineer. They make their way to Anconia Island, a city-state created on an ocean platform in the Indian Ocean. Anconia is owned and run by billionaire Charles Bettencourt.

They are able to be resupplied and leave to find the downed plane. Before long they find themselves under attack. While the area is certainly at risk from Somali pirates, the crew discovers that the pirates are not the only threat. They also come to suspect that the plane carrying Nassiri’s mother did not go down by accident. As days pass, the crew grows in size as they pick up a few new members. They must risk life and limb time and again to save themselves and to overcome the deadly enemies that they have stirred up.

I spent 7.5 hours with this 436 page novel. It was an enjoyable read, reminiscent of books by Clive Cussler. As in most Thrillers, the story seems to stretch the limits of believability to carry the plot and preserve the primary characters. Not only is there action and adventure, but both Blackwell and Nassiri find love interests as well. The way the book concludes, we are likely to see sequels, and I look forward to reading them. I give this novel a 4.4 (rounded down to a 4) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Book Review of “Mariner’s Ark”

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“Mariner’s Ark” was published in 2015 (May) and was written by Peter Tonkin (http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/t/peter-tonkin/). Mr. Tonkin is a prolific writer with 40 novels published. This is the 29th novel in his “Richard Mariner” series.

I obtained a galley of this novel for review through https://www.netgalley.com. I would categorize this novel as ‘PG’ as there are a very few instances of Mature Language. This Action Thriller novel is set off the western coast of North America. The primary characters are Richard Mariner and his wife Robin.

Richard and Robin are on the west coast to meet their California bound container ship Sulu Queen, observe close friend Nic Greenbaum’s Olympic multihull racing sailboat in action, and to take Nic’s multi-million dollar yacht down to his elaborate new home in Mexico.

The sailboat takes off towards Mexico with Nic’s daughter at the helm and with Nic’s yacht following. An epic Pacific storm, an ARKstorm, is headed towards the west coast. An accident at sea puts the yacht and all aboard her in danger.

Richard, who has flown back to California to take care of issues with his container ship, is soon headed south in the Sulu Queen hopefully to find wife Robin. His ship is also carrying much needed emergency supplies for the storm torn west coast of Mexico.

This was an enjoyable 7 hour Action Thriller read. In typical fashion, there is one disaster after another facing the characters. It did seem to end rather abruptly. I can see another chapter or two easily possible after the point where the book ended. I give this novel a 4 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com).

Book Review of “Sherlock Holmes, The Missing Years: Japan”

“Sherlock Holmes, The Missing Years: Japan” was published in 2015 (March) and was written by Vasudev Murthy (http://vmurthy.blogspot.com). Mr. Murthy has published 5 books.

I obtained a galley of this novel for review through https://www.netgalley.com. I would categorize this novel as ‘G’. This Mystery novel is set in the late 1890s in the time after Sherlock Holmes was thought to have died at the Reichenbach Falls.

Dr. John Watson receives a message from Holmes, who he thought was dead, asking him to come immediately to Japan. Watson sets off and encounters death and intrigue along the long way from London to Japan. Reuniting with Holmes, they evade Moriarty’s minions and fight to make their way to Tokyo. Watson learns that Holmes has undertaken a mission for the Japanese government to thwart plans by the Yakuza and Moriarty to dominate Europe.

Now, they must avoid capture and get the vital information to the Japanese government. If they fail, not only will Japan fall, but so will the governments of Europe.

The story was written much in the same voice as the original Sherlock Holmes tales. Several ‘letters’ were included in the story attempting to add background information, but I often found them distracting and confusing. While a classified as a mystery, there was really little mystery in the story, but more of an adventure. I did enjoy the 6 or so hours I spent reading the story, though it was not as good as the originals. I give this novel a 3.5 (rounded up to 4) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com).