The Queen – Kiera Cass

PrintOn the Cover: Before America Singer’s story began, another girl came to the palace to compete for the hand of a different prince….

Don’t miss this digital original novella set in the captivating world of Kiera Cass’s #1 New York Times bestselling Selection series. This prequel story takes place before the events of The Selection and is told from the point of view of Prince Maxon’s mother, Amberly. Discover a whole new Selection with this inside look at how Maxon’s parents met—and how an ordinary girl named Amberly became a beloved queen.

Published: 2014

Why I Chose It: I’ve had my eye on Kiera Cass ever since reading The Selection series, and I finally decided to check out one of her novellas.

Other Books in this Series:

The Selection
Th
e Elite
The One
The Heir

The Review:

This novella takes place before The Selection and offers a window into the previous selection ceremony. While this story seemed to be an in-depth look into the future Queen, Amberly, I have to admit I am not impressed with her character.  While I was told in The Selection that everyone adored her, I certainly never felt that I was witness to that adoration. I always felt that she was a bit of a wallflower. This novella seemed to only stress that feeling to me – at one point she is practically forgotten by all the other Selected women. Not to mention that she is extremely overshadowed by Prince Clarkson.

I will admit, I was fascinated by Clarkson in this story. I love to hate him in the Selection series, so I really had to try to reconcile myself to meeting his younger self and to picture him as a young attractive bachelor. Yet the glimpses we get of who he will become and what made him that way are incredibly interesting and at times downright chilling. Clarkson, for me, was the real highlight of this story, and I definitely enjoyed being able to build on his character from the Selection series.

This novella has a very narrow focus. It does not help with any world building or exposition of the plot or setting of the stage for the Selection series. It exists for one purpose: to develop the characters of Queen Amberly and King Clarkson. I do think this is an interesting look into the King and Queen, and it does fill in a couple of holes with their characters in the actual series. I think this story will really only appeal to true Selection fans who are looking to further their interaction with Kiera Cass’ world, and gain a deeper understanding of some of the characters we meet there.

Rating: 4 / 5

The Queen French Cover

 

 

 

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The Untouchables (1987)

Untouchables PosterFrom imdb.com: During the prohibition wars of the 1920s, Federal agent Elliot Ness assembles a team of mob fighters to bring Chicago crime boss Al Capone to justice using unconventional means. 

Why I Chose It: After hearing my family talk about this movie I wanted to check it out!

The Review:

I wasn’t sure what to expect when I started this film, mostly due to the cast. I have not been exposed to a lot of Kevin Costner, and I don’t know Robert De Niro’s earlier work. I’ve never really been a fan of either, so I was concerned that I would be turned off of the film due to the cast alone. I was pleasantly surprised by the opening of this movie. Right away Costner and De Niro fit into their roles so naturally that I didn’t even pause to reconsider the casting. I also enjoyed seeing Charles Martin Smith in another role outside of American Graffiti, but I was most intrigued by Andy Garcia. I really only know him from the Ocean’s 13 films, so he was a bit of an unexpected surprise. I definitely enjoyed him in the film, and he had a key role in one of my favourite movie moments.

George Stone

I appreciated that this movie was not just action. While there was a lot of good action and some genuinely exciting scenes, there was also focus on building and telling a good story. While the action may have caught my attention, the storytelling intrigued me. I wanted to know what happened with the IRS and case they were building against Capone, and I loved that the action happened in and around that story line. I was very happy to see the different layers of storytelling present in the movie.

Eliot Ness

Overall, the feel and pace of the movie was exactly what I wanted, and I actually kind of loved the feel of an 80’s movie set in the 1920s. I did find that minor parts of this movie were a bit cheesy – perhaps not a big surprise for an 80’s mob movie. But though I may have rolled my eyes a couple of times, that didn’t stop me from getting caught up in the action and highly enjoying the last few scenes. If you like old gangster movies or old style action then check this one out – you just might like it!

Rating: 4 / 5

The Untouchables Team