It’s the last weekend of May 2018; where does the time go? Whether you’re thinking about staying in and laying low, partying with some friends, or sitting outside in the sun with a good book, we have some great tunes, movies, and books to recommend.
TV and movies
Here are some of the movies and TV shows Windows Central is enjoying this week.
Game of Thrones
Recommended by Rich Edmonds, staff reviewer
Did you know that you can have an HBO subscription with Amazon? Well, you do now. For $14.99 a month (atop of Prime), you can access a bunch of additional content through the online retail giant, including the exceptional Game of Thrones.
Recommended by Cale Hunt, staff writer
I was only about 15 when Super Troopers came out, which was about the perfect age to appreciate all the stupid jokes throughout. Lo and behold, I still laugh as hard 15 years later. This is a movie about what it’s like to be highway patrol, give or take a bit of goofing around. It’s all fun and games until the ‘downsizing’ word comes into play, and it’s up to the crew to prove their worth lest they be cut from the force.
If you don’t mind some crude humor and haven’t yet seen Super Troopers, it’s now time. Just ignore that 35 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
Here’s some of the music the Windows Central team is listening to this week.
Frank’s Wild Years — Tom Waits
Recommended by Al Sacco, managing editor
Tom Waits’s music is a bit of an acquired taste. But he’s long been one of my favorite musicians, and Frank’s Wild Years is the Waits album that got me hooked.
It’s a quirky mix of alternative, classic rock, bluesy-lounge-tunes, and even some carnival-esque calliope sounds, all backed by Waits’ unmistakable and leathery voice. My favorite songs from the album are Temptation, Way Down in the Hole (the opening theme song from HBO’s ‘The Wire’), and Telephone Call from Istanbul. But, honestly, every single tune on this 17-track gem is a classic in its own right.
Again, I think most people either love Waits’s stuff or hate it, but if you’re in the former camp, it doesn’t get much better than Frank’s Wild Years. And it pairs particularly well with a large snifter of bourbon. Just sayin’.
The End of That — Plants and Animals
Recommended by Cale Hunt, staff writer
Plants and Animals is a Canadian band from Montreal that can make a lot more noise than you’d expect from three people. When I first got my hands on The End of That, released in 2012, I listened to it non-stop for months. After that, I took a long break but now have rediscovered it. ‘Lightshow’ is probably my favorite song on the album, but it’s really one that you can listen to all the way through every time.
Here are the books we’re reading this week!
The Rook — Daniel O’Malley
Recommended by Dan Thorp-Lancaster, staff writer
I just picked this one up yesterday, so I haven’t had a chance to dive into it yet. But after reading the rear cover, I couldn’t pass it up.
The Rook is a book that combines elements of spy intrigue with the suspense that naturally comes with it, along with a dash of supernatural thrills and humor. The story kicks off with protagonist Myfanwy Thomas wa upking in a London park, surrounded by dead bodies and no recollection of how she got there. She later finds that she’s actually a member of a secret organization that defends the world from supernatural threats.
Something about the combination of the supernatural with espionage really caught my eye with this one, so I’m excited to tear through this 486-page thriller this weekend.
Safe is a crime novel set in the late ’00s in and around Los Angeles, and it’s the story of a recovering addict, locksmith and government-employed safe cracker, nicknamed ‘Ghost,’ and a gangster called ‘Glasses,’ whose paths cross and become intertwined when Ghost decides to steal money from a safe that belongs to Glasses’s boss during a DEA drug raid, to help a loved one who’s in trouble.
The story is fairly straightforward, but the storytelling is unique in that it flips back and forth between the two mens’ parallel perspectives as they each try to achieve their respective objectives: get away with the money (Ghost), and make sure Ghost doesn’t get away with the money (Glasses). The writing is sharp, the dialogue authentic, and the descriptions of LA’s seedier neighborhoods and the people who occupy them is memorable and inspired.
Safe is definitely not a feel-good novel, at least not yet — I still haven’t finished it. But it’s authentic and gritty, with some complex and original characters that are tough not to like. It’s well-worth a read.
Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Wildlands: Dark Waters — Richard Dansky
Recommended by Richard Devine, reviews editor
Video games go beyond just the thing you load up on your PC, console, or mobile device these days, with many having novels or TV spots created to go with them. One such effort is this novel by Richard Dansky, which serves as a precursor to Ghost Recon Wildlands, one of my favorite games right now. And Dansky actually writes games for Ubisoft, so he’s got the credentials to make it worth a read for fans of the series.
What have you been watching, reading, and listening to this week? We want to know, so drop a comment and share your recommendations.
If none of these recommendations strike your fancy, check out a list of all of our past recommendations. We promise you’ll find something you’ll like.