Books, movies, reviewage and other mixy things

In the works…. I will return

2013 disappeared in a black hole full of work, new ventures, moving (twice), a house remodel, and about a bazillion other things.

I love this site, I have no interest in letting it go black. Yet there are only so many hours in the day. With Digital Simplicity (my web and video company) taking me beyond full time status, I need to rearrange a few things here.

Over the next few months Otherwhere will be receiving a make over. Cleaner, simpler, mobile friendly and fast. Gone will be the days of lengthy reviews and the giant PITA that is databasing book info. If I want to keep this site going I have to make it work for me. Really it’s providing me with an interesting problem to solve.

How do I create a book and movie review site that is easy as pie to use and won’t take up more than 2 minutes of my time for any given review?

Yeah, still working on that one.

I’ve been writing movie reviews for the better part of 10 years now. That’s a stupid amount of time, and material that I don’t want to give up.

While I am problem solving this blog, feel free to check out http://www.digitalsimplicity.co where Blog Dev has been permanently moved too. Tips and tricks about how to work your website, as well as the landing page for my web development services.

I love this community, and reading is still something I do every day without fail. I just have to readjust a few things around the craziness that is my new normal.

Bear with me, I will be back!

BY - February 3rd, 2014 - News - 3 comments

Hit and Run: People care beautifully, that is reality

Last night, after a long drive back from a wedding in Park City, UT, my family was involved in a hit and run accident along with a motorcyclist. The motorcyclist had been keeping pace with us for a few miles, good looking guy, young and no helmet. As we turned onto Sheridan (which is extremely busy), he was still right next to us.

Brakes started squealing like crazy behind us, and I thought at any moment I would hear a crash. I did. A maroon caddie crashed into the back of our SUV bounced off of us and hit the motorcyclist. Then he drove away. He didn’t even slow down.

I looked back and saw the motorcyclist stagger and roll to the ground, immediately I turned and caught the license plate of the vehicle that clearly was not stopping. Within seconds we were pulled over, I was on the phone with 911 dispatch and my EMT of a brother was heading over to the crash.

But this story isn’t about us.

The government bitches and moans about the intolerance, injustice and relative lack of care of people in our country. People en masse tend to do the same thing. But this is the reality. Within seconds of all this happening, people had gathered around the motorcyclist – including a nurse and two EMT’s who were all off duty – redirecting traffic, and protecting him. Several people had caught the license plate number and had pulled over to make sure that descriptions and information was given to the police.

Hispanic and Caucasian alike, with their inherit languages were all present, everyone was incredibly helpful and with the team work the police had the driver’s address before we left the scene.

Lakewood police and the first responders, were there within minutes. There was no anger or frustration, they gladly took down all the information necessary to catch the guy along with pictures, descriptions and tellings of the accidents. By the time we left, the motorcyclist had been taken by rescue. Thankfully he was still conscience, able to move his arms and legs and didn’t appear to have any serious injuries. The whole thing maybe lasted 20 minutes.

When it comes down to it, people will take care of each other, no one needs to tell us how to, that’s what this story is about. And that’s a beautiful thing.

BY - August 5th, 2013 - News - 2 comments

Saved by the Music Guest Post and Giveaway with Selene Castrovilla

Saved By The Music Blog Tour

I can’t take credit for creating the setting of Saved by the Music. It was real. My aunt built a concert hall out of a disgusting, filthy barge. It’s called Bargemusic, and it’s been successful for over thirty years.

But I wasn’t a teenager – I was younger, about eight or nine. And there was no Axel.

Aunt OlgaI always knew I wanted to write a book about the metamorphosis of the barge, and about my relationship with my aunt. I just thought it would be nonfiction. Actually, I wanted to make it a picture book. But editors kept saying, “I see a novel.” I was scared.

The thing that carried me through the writing process was the water. It meant so much to my aunt, and she passed her love of tide and currents to me. Water represents possibility, and a constant flow. It is a perfect vehicle for a novel, because it is cleansing and it represents change.

So there I was with water, and a boatyard. And a barge, which in itself was a daunting prospect to write about. I knew it in my head – I’d lived on it. But I had to convey it to readers, vividly. I took a breath and started describing the chaos, the filth, the lumber everywhere…All this to take the reader on a journey. With the water supporting, beneath us.

bargeAnd then came Axel. He appeared hazily, this boy with a secret. I knew he was rich, and I wanted him on a sailboat because it looks lonely but yet capable at the same time. I wanted to show a vulnerable boy in a mysterious place, yet capable of setting sail. The boat is also romantic, at least in my mind. I can only hope I passed that feeling to my readers.

The idea of going down into the hold of Axel’s boat is also indicative of his state of mind. The descent is literal, but also metaphorical. Axel is wealthy, so he could live on a yacht. But I wanted him on something modest enough to show that money is not what motivates him, and small enough to mirror how he feels after the abuse he’s been dealt. And the water comes into play again, fluctuating up and down. Willow notes how much more she feels the sensation of floating on Axel’s boat, and that is no accident.

Aunt Olga in early barge daysThe boatyard is a metaphor in that it is a world unto itself, both a safe haven for Willow and Axel against the harsh real world, but also a place that occasionally turns against them. I will leave it to the reader to interpret that. What I mean to do with my setting is set my reader’s mind in motion – just as the water always is.

And the barge itself is a character, is it not? Made of steel, it is imposing and protecting simultaneously. It is dirty and ugly – but perhaps it can be saved. I think a main theme in this book is the consideration of salvation. What – and who – is worth redemption? There is more to things (and people) than what meets the eye. And there is more to this setting than the dreary boatyard it appears to be.

Saved by the Music
Saved by the Music
Selene Castrovilla

The last place fifteen-year-old Willow wants to spend her summer is on a run-down former coffee barge, which her aunt is converting into a floating concert hall. In Saved by the Music, Willow thinks she’s alone until she meets Axel, an older teen who lives isolated from the world on the sailboat docked nearby. An unlikely romance sparks as the two grapple with their darkest secrets and bond through shared pain and laughter. It is a summer where music must do more than just soothe the soul.

Saved By The Music: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iTunes

eBook Publication Date: May 13, 2013

Selene CastrovillaSelene Castrovilla is an award-winning teen and children’s author who believes that through all trends, humanity remains at the core of literature. She is the author of Saved By the Music and The Girl Next Door, teen novels originally published by WestSide Books and now available digitally through ASD Publishing. Her third children’s book with Calkins Creek Books, Revolutionary Friends, was released in April. Selene holds an MFA in creative writing from New School University and a BA in English from New York University. She lives on Long Island with her two sons. Visit her website www.SeleneCastrovilla.com for book excerpts and more information!

Author links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Tumblr | Goodreads

Winner’s choice between iPod Nano or Kindle Fire (or Paperwhite) + SAVED BY THE MUSIC ebook (US only), and 10 second prize winners will receive an ebook copy of SAVED BY THE MUSIC (International).
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July 1  – A Book and a Latte (Kick-off interview)
July 2 – The Fake Steph Dot Com (Guest Post)
July 3 – Cuzinlogic (Review)
July 4 – Ja čitam, a ti? (Review)
July 5 – OtherwhereCo (Guest Post)
July 8 – alwaysjoart (Review & Guest Post)
July 9 – Katie’s Books (Review)
July 10 – Judith’s Choice Reads (Review & Character Interview)
July 11 – Ladybug Storytime (Review)
July 12 – Reader Girls (Review & Guest Post)

BY - July 5th, 2013 - Features - 7 comments

Denver Comic Con 2013: Wheaton, Whedonverse, Trek and Lafayette

Denver Comic Con 2013

Denver Comic Con 2013

Day one and six thousand people were turned away by the fire department due to the line that wrapped around the giant Convention Center in Denver. That’s a pretty darn good metaphor for the rest of the weekend. Oversold, badly trafficked and (sadly) under informed. Many missed out on George Takai and William Shatner as no one knew you had to get tickets for the panel before hand. Not enough doors were open to get people registered ending in a three hour line, for those who weren’t turned away. I’m not sure what happened between last year and this year but it wasn’t an improvement.

That all being said, it was still a fabulous weekend. Wil Wheaton was a huge highlight and worth all the PETA-ness of the lines. Needless to say it was a long weekend, so here is a recap, told through tweets and pics. Here’s to next year!

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BY - June 2nd, 2013 - ComicCo Sundays - Leave a comment

The Doctor Who Experiment

Doctor Who - The TARDISFor years I’ve read of the wonders of Doctor Who. Even James Marsters expounded on its apparent awesomeness, as he was in Torchwood. To which I immediately told myself I need to get on that. Since Spike… I mean James is apart of this universe.

As I am totally incapable of watching a show without context I started the recent iteration of Doctor Who starting in 2005. Apparently they couldn’t afford more than a Hi-8 camera. And there ended my experiment thanks to the cheapest look Britain could find.

Until recently.

Needing something to watch while I code websites I decided to give the insane Doctor another chance. Three seasons later with the episode “Blink” I finally got it. By the way that episode, is pure genius, even my husband was enthralled.

This is geekery at full throttle. A strange mix of sci-fi toys, cheap tricks, genius, social commentary, childishness and insanity it’s hard to not eventually get pulled in. Very creative in their worlds, effects and makeup as well as drastically improving production values got me glued. It’s cheesy and slightly creepy at the same time. Like peanut butter and bananas it shouldn’t work but it does.

Torchwood - James Marsters as Captain John Hart - Adrian Rogers/BBC Worldwide

James Marsters in Torchwood

I’m also sure every english actor ever is on this show at some point as is Andrew Garfield (Spider Man), Anthony Head (Giles), Catherine Tate (The Office) and many, many more.

The experiment continues, we will see if I make it all the way through (probably will). And all of this, just to watch Spike in Torchwood. 

BY - May 21st, 2013 - Thoughts, TV - 1 comment

Return of Otherwhere

http://hyperboleandahalf.blogspot.comA little over a month ago, I announced a mini-sabbatical. Holy moses did life get busy. A major moved coupled with a renovation, boat loads of work and the usual chaos of life, graceless shoved Otherwhere to the bottom of the priority pile.

Now my pile of reviews is getting higher and while the chaos of the move is past and the renovation is (mostly) done, work is still kicking my ass. Which is awesome for me, but bad for my blog. Blah blah blah.

I’m back.

I won’t be posting every day like I had been previously, but every book and movie that I read/watch will be reviewed. And rest assured, while I may have had to take a break from reviewing I never went a day without reading and with a summer full of some seriously epic flicks, there is no way I was going to miss those.

Happy days are here again.

BY - May 18th, 2013 - News - Leave a comment

Mini Sabbatical

I LOVE having Otherwhere.Co and for the last year and a half it has been wonderful getting to know the blogger community. Once in a while though, life gets in the way.

With a chaotic upswing in work, training and a move coming up it’s getting harder and harder for me to find time to keep it up here.

I have no intention of letting Otherwhere go dark, and as the chaos is (hopefully) temporary, so too will my absence be. I am still reading and writing and in the near future those reviews will be up here.

Thank you for being a reader, and I will be back!

BY - April 14th, 2013 - News - 1 comment

Feature & Follow #56

Feature & Follow

Follow & Feature Friday is hosted by Parajunkee and Alison Can Read. It is a great opportunity to find and meet new bloggers. Grab the code over at their website to join in on the blog hop!

Welcome!!! For those of you who have not been here, welcome to the hell mouth...er I mean Otherwhere.co. While books are certainly a main focus here, you will also find movie reviews and entertainment news! Poke around, leave a comment, join this site, follow my Twitter/FB/Goodreads/Linky and tell me what you think! Happy blogging!

Have you ever read a book that you thought you would hate — ? Did you end up hating it? Did you end up loving it? Or would you never do that?
If there is a girl in jeans/flowly dress/hoodie on the cover standing on a suitcase/dock/floral couch, and takes place in high school, I am predisposed to hate it. Nine out of ten times, I’m right. No matter how I try, I just don’t care about high school anymore. Probably because it was over a decade ago for me.

To be fair, once in awhile a high school themed book will surprise me, though typically the high school piece is way in the background.

On the Blog (slacker style):

[Blog Dev]: Change the WordPress default From email address and name
[Movie Review]: G.I. Joe: Retaliation
[CO Book Month]: This Colorado Life #4: Our Colorado Faves
[Book Review]: Drink Deep (Chicagoland Vampires, #5)
[CO Book Month]: This Colorado Life #3: Colorado bookish memories

BY - April 4th, 2013 - Follow Friday - 8 comments

Change the WordPress default From email address and name

BY - April 3rd, 2013 - Blog Dev - 2 comments

This Colorado Life #4: Our Colorado Faves

This Colorado Life

Did you know?

Denver is the mile high city. The 13th step of the state capital building is exactly at 1 mile above sea level. Did you know that Denver won the vote to become state capital against Golden by one vote?

All right time to gush (or rant)! What is your favorite (or least favorite, or do both) thing about living in this state? (ie, the weather, the people, the sports, nature, etc…)

There is a feel to the seasons here that I’ve never experienced anywhere else. Summer nights in Downtown Denver, fall in the mountains, the lights at Christmas, the bi-polar weather of spring… it’s like they have their own scent, their own emotional tone. I love it.

There are so many things about this state I love… but the thing I love the most, is that it’s home.


Tomorrow at 8pm MDT is our final Twitter party. Join us as we wrap up Colorado Book Month.


BY - March 25th, 2013 - Memes - 1 comment