Currently Reading and Playing

I didn’t make these part of my goals for 2014, but I hope, this year, to read more books and play more video games. If that sounds like a huge waste of time given all the other things I have to focus on, let me reiterate a tad: I hope, this year, to read more books and play more video games instead of wasting time on the kinds of things I usually waste time on, like checking my Facebook feed fifty times a day.

I got a "few" new books over the holidays.
I got a “few” new books over the holidays.

I’ve been letting my books and games pile up for quite a while now, and with the new year and the fact that I’m going to be spending a lot of time on airplanes in the near future, I thought it was a good time to declare my desire to work on those two piles. And in honor of that, here’s a quick review of what I am currently reading and playing:

Currently Reading:
Dead and Gone (a Sookie Stackhouse novel)

Honestly, I didn’t know that these books existed until a friend of mine introduced me to the True Blood TV show. I’m not a great lover of the wave of “tame” vampires that are storming the nation, but I have to admit to loving True Blood, and so last Christmas my parents bought me the boxed set of books. I whipped through them in a flash, only to find out that the boxed set was not, in fact, all of the books…just the first so many. So this year my hubby bought me the next four in the series.

These books aren’t going to be for everyone, of course, especially if you’re not a fan of vampire romance, but that’s not the whole point of the books, like so many others. No, these books are actually quite well written, have a delicately interwoven plot of dozens of characters and twisting, turning story-lines, and are filled with lots of danger, adventure, and mystery. And yes, a fair little bit of romance. Really, these stories have everything. And I must admit, the author has surprised me on quite a few occasions. Pretty much every one of these novels has some kind of main mystery involved in the plot (who killed who, who planted the bomb, who kidnapped such-and-such) and I can’t honestly say that I’ve been able to guess any of the endings yet. Maybe that just speaks poorly for my own cognitive skills, but as I’ve been known in the past to work out the ending of a book/movie/TV show/video game well before anything began to be revealed, I personally think it speaks more of the author’s writing skill.

If you can’t stand the idea of any vampire ever being a good guy, stay away from these books, but if you’ve got a bit of an open mind and enjoy reading about supernatural creatures of all kinds, give them a try. Personally, I’m hooked.

Currently Playing:
Tearaway (Playstation Vita)

I didn’t know much about this game before hubby picked it up for me for Christmas, aside from the fact that it was made by the same people who did Little Big Planet, but I am definitely glad that I got to give it a try.

The game-play is very unique, cute, and fun. The game utilizes both the rear and front touch screens of the Vita, as well as all the buttons as well. You play as both the messenger, Atoi, and yourself as the mysterious “You” who lives outside the game world. Atoi is controlled by the main buttons, and “You” interact via the touch screens. For example, when certain types of ground appear in the game, “You” can touch the rear screen, which makes your finger burst through the ground in the game. You can then drag your finger back and forth around the world to knock out the bad guys, known as Scraps.

There is a lot more interaction as well, including taking photos of yourself for use in the game, using your finger and virtual paper to create papercraft items for the characters’ use (one little squirrel asks you to make him a crown), and tilting the Vita back and forth to move various platforms and obstacles.

All in all the game is just adorable, amusing, creative, and lots of fun to play. It’s the first game that I’ve beaten in quite a while because I just couldn’t put it down, and now I’m busy going back and collecting all the extra little bits and pieces. Seriously, if you have a Vita this one is definitely worth a go. It’s by far one of the most innovative games I’ve seen in a long time.

                                                       

Hopefully in the following months I’ll have more books and video games to talk about, but in the meantime, please share with me! What are you reading or playing?

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