June A&E: Books, Movies, and Video Games

This is what I read, watched, and played in June.

Books: The Manual of Detection by Jedediah Berry

I asked Berry if he would write a sequel to The Manual of Detection. I was pleasantly surprised when he replied.

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TV Shows: Jessica Jones by Melissa Rosenberg

A friend told me that you don’t need to be a tough guy to solve mysteries. This made me think about gender in detective stories. TV critic Maureen Ryan talked about that in Variety.

“Two mainstays of film noir are the tough-talking dame and the cynical private eye, and one of the pleasures of Marvel’s Jessica Jones is that it unites both types in one thorny and fascinating character.” — Maureen Ryan of Variety

Comparable: Alias, Dexter, Fringe, The Fall, and Veronica Mars.

Video Games: The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings by CD Projekt Red

This is an amazing game that I had trouble starting. You don’t need to play the first Witcher game to play this one. The main character, Geralt, has amnesia like a magical, silver-haired Jason Bourne.

The Witcher 2 has wonderful decisions and branching paths without clear good and evil choices. This game can be difficult, and I switched between Normal and Easy difficulty several times before I learned the combat.

I am very excited to play The Witcher 3 now!

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A&E: Jessica Jones and Danielewski’s The Familiar

This is what I read, watched, and played in April and May.

Books: Night Film by Marisha Pessl and The Familiar: Into the Forest by Mark Z. Danielewski

TV Shows: Daredevil and Jessica Jones

I have been reading and watching a lot of detective fiction lately: The Wolf Among Us, The Big Sleep, and Ozgur in The Familiar. I’ve realized I love the accessories and conventions of these stories.

The great novelist Raymond Chandler said, “The ideal mystery was one you would read if the end was missing.”

Video GamesHalf-Life 2 by Valve

The 10+ year-old game is great. I finished it for the first time last month, and Half-Life 2 certainly deserves its stellar reputation. The gameplay and story hold up really well compared to modern games.