A few mini reviews: Michael Kiwanuka, Tom Wolfe, and vampires


Here’s how we’re entertaining ourselves these days:


What We Do In the Shadows (2014)

Currently streaming on Amazon Prime. A funny, grisly, low-budget mockumentary following modern-day vampires who share a flat in New Zealand. I actually conked out before I could see the last twenty minutes or so, but it kept me giggling throughout, especially the parts where they meet a pack of werewolves (not swearwolves):

Looks like we’ve got another phrase entering the family lexicon. Not for kids or sensitive viewers. Goofy and gross and a little bit sweet. Features a few of the actors from Flight of the Conchords (which I still haven’t seen).


Bonfire of the Vanities by Tom Wolfe

Reading again after many years and wondering if there’s any way this book could have been written in 2017 without rioting. Wolfe is merciless to everyone, of course, black or white, rich or poor, connected or unconnected, but man is he merciless. Change.org would have had his head on a pike.

Anyway, the writing is better than I remembered – self-indulgent, but he deserves to be indulged. Reading it is like shamefully, hungrily working your way through an entire platter of eclairs all by yourself. I was blown away at how he allowed the facts of the central event to unfold gradually over the course of hundreds of pages, letting cowards and manipulators tell more truth than the (relatively) innocent. Should be required reading for any number of reasons.

Listening to:

Michael Kiwanuka’s latest album, Love and Hate (2017). Here’s one of the best songs, “Cold Little Heart”

His voice just tears me up. He sounds like a faithful man who’s being tried. The whole album is fantastic, and the producers (including Dangermouse) keep you on your toes.

Tell me what’s getting you through the week!

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4 thoughts on “A few mini reviews: Michael Kiwanuka, Tom Wolfe, and vampires”

  1. Music: Steve Green, and Cruxshadows.
    Netflix: Supergirl and Flash just released new episodes!
    Book: Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie

  2. Elly Griffith’s mysteries–the Ruth Galloway series in particular, but I just started the Magic Men series as well. Excellently written, with spunky, flawed, human characters.

    Darby O’Gill, The High Kings, and whatever other good Irish groups I can find on my Pandora station. I particularly like “Tim Finnegan’s Wake.” “Tim Finnegan lived in Walkin’ Street (in the middle of the street, he was homeless!)…”

  3. – Youtube recordings of J.R.R. Tolkien reading his own poems
    – Natsume Yuujinchou – gentle anime, like a more thoughtful Spirited Away. (Free on Crunchyroll.com.)
    – Blast Points podcast – PG-rated fun and silliness about all things Star Wars

  4. Introduction to Christianity
    – Papa Benedict.
    Better Call Saul
    -absolutely fantastic, on Netflix.
    22, A Million
    -Bon Iver, Simcha, check it out, tis great.

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