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Showing posts by: Elizabeth Poteet click to see Elizabeth Poteet's profile
May 24 2017 2:00pm

The Dirty Dancing Remake Is ... Fine

Dirty Dancing on ABC

Before we go any further, there’s something I want y’all to know. I am not a Dirty Dancing superfan. Not by a longshot. I grew up “watching” the movie at sleepovers in between prank calling school crushes and playing MASH, and while I own the soundtrack, I don’t listen to it regularly. It was an impulse buy from a bargain bin at Walmart. I can’t tell you which song belongs to which scene or recite any lines from the original film other than the iconic “baby in the corner” one.

Needless to say, I didn’t go into watching the TV remake with any real expectations. I wasn’t prepared to hate it, I wasn’t prepared to love it. I’m Switzerland.

Now, if you love the original, I think we both know why you’re reading this post. You want to hear all about how horrible it was. How little Miss Sunshine is no Baby. How the TV movie pales in comparison to the theatrical release. If that’s the case, superfans, don’t watch the TV movie. You’re gonna hate it. Don’t read this post, you’re gonna hate that too.

Because, as we established, I’m not a fan, and I found the remake to be perfectly fine.

Let’s break down some of the good, the bad, and the baby.

[The good, the bad, and the Baby]

Nov 25 2016 10:30am

In Defense of Breaking Spines

Source: Shutterstock

We’re not monsters. We’re not bad people.We’re not book hating anarchists. We’re your friends, your neighbors, your sisters and spouses. We work next to you, come to your book club, eat at the same Thanksgiving table. We’re bibliophiles, casual readers, publishing professionals. And we like breaking our books’ spines. We like turning down the corners on the page. We like the feeling of a worn book in our hands. Not because we don’t cherish our books, but because we love them so much. You see our devotion in the fine lines down our mass market spines, the battered covers of our beloved romances, the finger smudges on the ink. Each mark we make is a reflection of our excitement. We are the readers who forget our subway stops, who know that when you are in a book time and space and comfort doesn’t matter. Water warped pages from when we simply must keep reading while in the bathtub. Torn covers from multiple journeys at the bottom of a bag. Creased corners from when a passage was so good, so amazingly good, we needed to be able to find it in a second. Spines that lay flat so we can hold the book in one hand while eating that slice of pizza with the other. Those broken spines, the perfectly broken spines, that mark our favorite scenes so our books automatically flip to the chapters where we most want to linger and reread, that keep our books open so we can get lost, that take us back to the places and characters who have become part of us, those broken spines are how we show our love. We’re not monsters. We’re not bad people. We’re not book haters. We love our books, but we love the stories in them more. That’s why we have multiple copies of the books we adore. We are the people that break the spines and we’re not apologizing. 

Mature content below the jump. Parental supervision is advised.

(Just kidding but the content may shock some viewers) 

[Read more...]

Nov 11 2016 10:30am

8 Linda Howard Comfort Reads for Every Situation

What are the best Linda Howard novels?

Cry No More by Linda Howard

Confession: I’m a serial re-reader. When I’m stressed, tired, overworked, overwhelmed, sad, or just plain lazy, I turn to my old favorite shelf for a pick-me-up. A book I know I’m going to love, a book that feels like returning home. Sure, I know the ending, but so what? I love these characters, I know these characters, I miss these characters. You don’t stop talking to your BFF just because you know each others’ secrets. If you do, you’re a bad friend.

And for me, the author I always pick back up when life isn’t going the way I want: Linda Howard.

I really cannot preach enough about the gospel of Linda Howard, circa 1999. The mid-to-late-90s (plus a handful of early 2000s titles, which I’m sneaking in) are my jam when it comes to prime comfort read material. For me, that time period is a perfect merger of the alpha heroes—they know what they want and aren’t afraid to go after in—of the 80s and the heroines I associate with modern romances—they are smart, kickass, competent, who are vocal about sex, demand respect, and don’t take any shit. Plus, the plots are pretty darned good. Serial killers, psychic heroines, sultry New Orleans nights, hunky neighbors, a librarian in disguise!**

And while I will never claim to be a Linda Howard expert (I would need at least one advanced degree in Howardism), I have a lot of opinions. Very strong opinions. So if you’re stressed, tired, overworked, overwhelmed, sad, or just plain lazy, and looking for a guaranteed read here is my definitive list of The Ultimate 90s Girl Guide to Linda Howard.

[And the top 8 are...]

Jul 29 2014 12:23pm

First Impressions of Outlander Episode 1, “Sassenach”: Wait ’n’ See

Jamie and Claire in Outlander series premiere

Last night, major Outlander fan Lizzie Poteet attended an NYC screening of the first episode for H&H, even going so far as to risk her seatmates' disgust to live-tweet the post-screening Q&A with the cast and crew in order to feed our insatiable appetite for all things Jamie/Claire. (Thanks/sorry, Lizzie!) Here, she gives us her Outlander backstory (we all have one, don't we?) and then shares her first impressions of the Outlander series premiere, which Starz will begin streaming this week on August 2 and which will air on U.S. television on August 9. (Full disclosure: Lizzie is an assistant editor at St. Martin's Press/Macmillan, Heroes and Heartbreakers' parent company.)

For me, Outlander was one of those books, the ones you put off reading for years because you know, deep in your heart, that once you read it…you’ll never go back. And at the time, I simply didn’t have room for another rabid obsession in my life—I already had Lord of the Rings, Julie Garwood, and Buffy. Could I handle another fandom? Because here’s the thing we all know about the first book in Diana Gabaldon’s time travel series, Outlander is simply irresistible.

I have a working theory—confirmed by Executive Producer Ron Moore last night—that it is literally impossible to pick up Outlander and not fall in love with Jamie and Claire. You may not be a series regular and they may lose you after a few books, but the thing is: that first book is magic. It transcends genre and time. Maybe it’s because as my friend Amanda put it, “it’s this really realistic romance about a woman who travels through time…” But it is. It is really realistic. And epic. And romantic. And just plain good.

[Can the television series measure up?...]