Category Archives: thriller

[Review] Boy Nobody – Allen Zadoff

Book Title:                  Boy Nobody (The Unknown Assassin, #01)
Author:                         Allen Zadoff
Number of pages:   340


boy nobody - allen zadoff coverThey needed the perfect assassin.

Boy Nobody is the perennial new kid in school, the one few notice and nobody thinks much about. He shows up in a new high school in a new town under a new name, makes a few friends, and doesn’t stay long. Just long enough for someone in his new friend’s family to die-of “natural causes.” Mission accomplished, Boy Nobody disappears, moving on to the next target.

But when he’s assigned to the mayor of New York City, things change. The daughter is unlike anyone he has encountered before; the mayor reminds him of his father. And when memories and questions surface, his handlers at The Program are watching. Because somewhere deep inside, Boy Nobody is somebody: the kid he once was; the teen who wants normal things, like a real home and parents; a young man who wants out. And who just might want those things badly enough to sabotage The Program’s mission.

 (re: Goodreads @ Boy Nobody – Allen Zadoff)

Should this book be picked up? the tl;dr spoiler-less review:

— If you’re on a book slump and enjoy spy-espionage YA-thrillers, then this book should help you get over that hurdle. It basically feels like a young adult Jason Bourne series
— The pacing is incredibly gripping, action-oriented, and delivers succinct chapters. It follows a first person perspective of a sociopathic assassin featuring modern tech in social media and handheld gaming
— There is diversity in this book but it can feel like it panders to terrorist propaganda without making any waves to change the way of thinking
— Character development is a hit-and-miss. Instalove/lust propels various plot points which is both surprising and predictable given reader skepticism
— Rating: 3.25/5


Initial Thoughts

With Criminal Minds, CSI, NCIS, iZombie, Stalker, The Blacklist and perhaps every other rehashed crime television show; I should really become a profiler. Or at least reincarnate into someone who has aspirations for preventative crime.

Disclaimer: Potential spoilers inherent to this review from here onward.

Continue reading [Review] Boy Nobody – Allen Zadoff

[Alternatives] – Movies – Coherence

Alternatives is the tagline feature for other forms of entertainment outside of discussing literature. These posts may encompass television, movies, games, and music with a randomized flavour of the moment approach to each post.

Movies – Coherence (2013)

Genre: Science-fiction, Thriller, Drama
Duration: 89 Minutes
Directed/Written By: 
James Ward Byrkit

On the night of an astronomical anomaly, eight friends at a dinner party experience a troubling chain of reality bending events. Part cerebral sci-fi and part relationship drama, COHERENCE is a tightly focused, intimately shot film whose tension intensely ratchets up as its numerous complex mysteries unfold.

coherence_xlgCoherence is as coherent as someone attempting to convince you that coherence is spelled with a –rent. (Okay that doesn’t make any sense at all but I’m running with it.)

Coherence is a solid, in-your-face, handheld recorded (well…not quite, but it looks like it), claustrophobic and dialogue-improvised film that gave me mental and physical chills. I’m not going dissect this film because it’s a viewing best experienced without prior inclinations. I’ll just say that I elicited, “what the [expletive]?” on numerous occasions and perhaps I have an affinity for swearing more when enjoyment increases—or perhaps not—but my swear jar sure is pleased. But I’ll try to spur some interest anyways while making some half-baked commentary.

Continue reading below at your own discretion.

Continue reading [Alternatives] – Movies – Coherence

[Alternatives] – Movies – Nightcrawler

Alternatives is the tagline feature for other forms of entertainment outside of discussing literature. These posts may encompass television, movies, games, and music with a randomized flavour of the moment approach to each post.

Movies – Nightcrawler

Genre: Crime, Thriller, Drama
Duration: 117 Minutes
Directed & Written By: Dan Gilroy

"NIGHTCRAWLER is a pulse-pounding thriller set in the nocturnal underbelly of contemporary Los Angeles. Jake Gyllenhaal stars as Lou Bloom, a driven young man desperate for work who discovers the high-speed world of L.A. crime journalism. Finding a group of freelance camera crews who film crashes, fires, murder and other mayhem, Lou muscles into the cut-throat, dangerous realm of nightcrawling -- where each police siren wail equals a possible windfall and victims are converted into dollars and cents. Aided by Rene Russo as Nina, a veteran of the blood-sport that is local TV news, Lou thrives. In the breakneck, ceaseless search for footage, he becomes the star of his own story."

nightcrawler - movie posterNightcrawler—not to be confused with the Marvel mutant—gives a master class in shameless journalism that panders to fear mongering and is served with a side of ambitious, sociopathic enthusiasm of the everyday schmuckn. This is perhaps the superficial layer of the film and it works just fine. But the meaning is rooted in how Louis Bloom (Jake Gyllenhaal) treats himself as an enterprise. From discovering where his core values and interests lie to business modeling and analytics, every action reinforces Lou’s corporate mantra as he navigates the competitive landscape while maintaining and manipulating his relationships with only success in mind. It becomes incredibly fascinating (and a tad bit frightening) to witness Lou endorse the American dream; an aspect this film paradoxes so well of today’s culture of ambition. “If you want to win the lottery, you have to make the money to buy a ticket.” Logically sound, metaphorically resilient—Ayn Rand would surely endorse this film—and it is a meaning best understood post-viewing.

Continue reading [Alternatives] – Movies – Nightcrawler