The Following – Season 2… Still Following

image from The Hollywoodreporter.com

Well, six episodes into season two of The Following and so far I’d say the second season is Okay, not great, not bad, just Okay.

Turns out Joe didn’t die at the end of the first season (this was revealed before the 2nd season started so no secret).  He’s been hiding out at a pen pals place for the last year.  Ryan Hardy, after initially not dealing with the death of Claire very well, has turned things around and seems to be living a normal life.  And Mike Weston is still trying to get Ryan to open up to him.

Needless to say Joe has had enough of hiding and finally makes contact with Emma, which then leads to a reunion Emma didn’t think would happen.  Ryan spends the first few episodes almost falling for another blonde named Lily, to only discover that she is a new kind of follower.  Weston and Hardy are called in to consult for the FBI which eventually leads to Hardy giving Weston the trust he’s been working so hard to get.  Toss in Hardy’s niece and a new group of sociopathic family with Lily at the helm and you’ve got season 2.

Watching last night’s episode I started to think of Fox’s show 24.  I’m really thinking that The Following is similar to 24.  Instead of the inept CTU we’ve got the inept FBI; rather than Jack Bauer we’ve got Ryan Hardy.  Like Bauer, Hardy works outside the system he doesn’t trust.  Hardy has also taken it to another level in terms of taking people out, whether it be one or several,  Hardy Jack Bauers the hell out of people.   And finally,  rather than terrorists who are one step ahead of everyone, Joe and his new enemy Lily, are the ones who keep getting away.  Not sure if anyone else sees the similarities but that’s what kept popped up in my head.

So, overall, season 2 is Okay thus far.  Still deeply disturbing with sick, twisted people who make me question what’s wrong with me for watching this show.  If you like blood and gore and can put aside so of the ridiculous things that happen, this is the show for you.  I’ll keep watching since I’m inexplicably drawn to it and hope it will keep its slow,  steady rise in getting better with each episode.   Any one else out there a fan of The Following?

Book Store Love and a Reading Challenge

Ahh – the bookstore.  So full of potential, so many books to buy and read, so easy to spend hours and hours there.

image from forbes.com

One of my favorite things to do isto go to the bookstore, peruse the titles, and leave with hopefully at least three new books to read.  It’s almost as if I’m physically incapable of leaving the store without a book.  Every Tuesday, when a lot of th

e new books are released, I’ll check out the new releases and make note of which books I’ll need to pick up.  There are also the release dates of the books I know are coming out and will put on my calendar so I won’t forget.

There is just something about the vibe of a bookstore that makes me feel like it’s a natural place to be.  It feels as though it’s a scholarly place but not one that is full of pretense or will make someone feel inferior if they don’t know everything.  I’ve gone to the bookstore with particular books in mind and I’ve gone with absolutely no idea about what book I’ll want to pick up.  I’ll always find myself walking around looking through the different sections and the next thing I know it’s 2 hours later.  Sometimes I haven’t found anything and other times I’ll have a stack of books and will have to, reluctantly, decide which ones to put back since I don’t want to spend a massive amount of money.

The sad thing about bookstores is that there seems to be less and less of them. The advent of Amazon.com as well as e-readers and the ability to download books means fewer people are making a trip to the bookstore.   I read a brief article on Forbes.com stating the need for stores to evolve with technology.  While I do agree with that idea I also think we need to remember and experience the feeling of getting out and actually living the vibe of the bookstore.   It makes you feel alive and as though you are connecting with both the tangible (people, physical books) and the intangible (the story in the writer’s mind, the image in our head).

As part of my quest to keep bookstores in business and to have regular posts on my blog, I’m taking part in The Mad Reviewer 2014 Reading Challenge. I’ve signed up for the slightly sane reviewer challenge – read 26 books during 2014 year and review all 26 of them on mThe Mad Reviewer Reading Challenge Buttony blog.  The Mad Reviewer will check to be sure I’ve met my end of the bargain and, if so, I’ll be placed in a drawing.  I’ll be sure to mark any book reviews with the button to the right.  I’m adding my own little twist to this challenge – I’m going to make sure every book I read is bought from a bookstore.  Meaning, I must have gotten into my car, drove to the bookstore, and purchased the book from there.  No ordering on-line (which I don’t do too often) or borrow the book from anyone. My way of keeping brick and mortar stores in business as well as experience the awesome bookstore vibe in person.

So keep on reading but don’t forget about the rewards of the bookstore.   Physical books are great as well as visiting a place that temporarily houses those wonderful books.