February, 2021

February 6th, 2021, 2:35 p.m. - Heroes vs. villains

6. Vicious (V.E. Schwab)
Mostly good, but when you have a character who can raise the dead, you lose a lot of suspense. I might read the sequel sometime, but I'm not sure.

Up next: Such a Fun Age (Kiley Reid)

February 7th, 2021, 1:15 p.m. - "There's a special place in Hell for gays that encourage women not to support other women." "I know – it's called Bravo, and we're doing amazing on it"

Mr. Mayor – "Respect in the Workplace": Great work by Natalie Morales, always a welcome part of any show. I giggled at the twist that her character wasn't flirting with Neil because she liked him but because he reminded her of her wife. Rating: 4 empanadas

February 13th, 2021, 2:16 p.m. - I'm probably not having kids, but if I did, I would want one just like Briar

7. Such a Fun Age (Kiley Reid)
This was different from what I expected, and dragged a bit in places, but I like Reid's writing. She's great at creating characters who are complex, flawed, and realistic.

Up next: Shiver (Allie Reynolds)

February 14th, 2021, 2:08 p.m. - "I feel terrible about what happened today, and I also had a couple follow-up questions about the kiss of death that you gave me"

Mr. Mayor – "Avocado Crisis": I can't get a good read on Mikaela. Is she smart or dumb? Is she competent or incompetent? Does she actually like her job? How did someone like her get into politics? She needs more character development. Rating: 3 avocado fish

February 19th, 2021, 8:08 p.m. - Is it really a "locked-room thriller" if nothing that thrilling happens?

8. Shiver (Allie Reynolds)
So close to being good. It's 50-75 pages too long and not enough happens. But the story's there.

Up next: They Can't Kill Us Until They Kill Us (Hanif Abdurraqib) and The Absolute Book (Elizabeth Knox)

February 20th, 2021, 1:18 p.m. - "I'm too hot to be your wife. When your eyes go, it would be a waste"

Mr. Mayor – "Hearts Before Parts": This one was kind of a clunker. And I still can't get a read on Mikaela. Great casting for the two guest stars, though. Rating: 3 bassoons

February 27th, 2021, 2:06 p.m. - "Wait, what was I furious about before? It was good"

Beartown – "Episode 1": Wow, Kevin's father is even more unlikable here than he was in the book. Also, can we please not try to make the future rapist sympathetic? Rating: 4 swear words Maya and Leo are only allowed to say in Swedish

Mr. Mayor – "#Palmtreereform": If other shows put half as much effort into their dialogue as this show puts into Holly Hunter's, every show on TV would be amazing. Rating: 4 pineapples with big googly eyes

February 28th, 2021, 2:26 p.m. - "When that world falls to pieces, maybe we can use whatever is left to build a better one for ourselves"

9. They Can't Kill Us Until They Kill Us (Hanif Abdurraqib)
Clint Smith said of the author, "Hanif Abdurraqib has a way of taking slices of our cultural landscape, examining them, and transforming them into observations and analyses that leave me underlining the entire page." That is the perfect way to describe him. Every other sentence of this book made me want to commit it to memory.

Up next: Girl A (Abigail Dean) and The Absolute Book (Elizabeth Knox)

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