Five Awesome Steampunk Adventures
October is usually a time for orange leaves, pumpkins, ghouls, and ghosts. But, I think it should be a month of clockwork trains, aeronautical goggles, and steam-powered machines more amazing than you can imagine. In essence, October is steampunk.
October 15th marks the anniversary of when the New Orleans, the first US steamboat, made the long journey along the mighty Ohio and Mississippi Rivers from Pittsburgh, PA to New Orleans, LA. Owned by Robert Fulton and Robert R. Livingston, and built by Nicholas Roosevelt, the New Orleans was a marvel of its time and ushered in a new way for people to travel in luxury.
In honor of the New Orleans journey, here are 5 ways can have your own steampunk adventure in portable, but sadly not steam-powered, book form.
Posted by Christopher Urie
Lovecraft Middle School: The Slither Sisters Available as Kindle eBook Deal!
If you still haven't read Tales from Lovecraft Middle School: The Slither Sisters after today's eBook deal, we really have nothing to say to you.
Thanks to today's Kindle Daily Deal, you can snag a copy for only $3.99! So why don't you slither over to Amazon and get yourself a copy?
See what I did there? Eh? Slither?
Posted by Basia Padlo
Five Classic Children’s Books That Should Be Adapted by HBO
Posted by Maria Vicente
From Toothless to Smaug to Maleficent: 10 of Our Favorite Dragons in Pop Culture
Daenerys’ roaring children, Benedict Cumberbatch’s Smaug, Toothless’ reappearance on the big screen: dragons are definitely in style this season! Fire-breathing, scaled, and generally-winged, dragons have been a big hit in myth and fiction for centuries. These days, they’re taking popular fiction and the big screen by storm. You can even check out this reference guide to compare the size of your favorite dragons! Here are 10 of the most beloved dragons in pop culture; which are your favorites?
Posted by Margaret Dunham
Literary Monsters the Winchesters Need to Face on Supernatural
If you’ve never watched Supernatural before, well, okay, first off, you should just watch Supernatural. Seriously, it’s awesome, and on Netflix. Go on; go add the show to your queue. I’ll wait…
For those who don’t know the show (yet, anyway, because you just added it to your Netflix queue) Supernatural is a show on the CW that follows two brothers, Sam and Dean Winchester, as they travel around the country hunting various monsters, getting into varying degrees of trouble.
The show is exciting, weird, heartbreaking, scary, fun,
the guys who play Sam and Dean (Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles) are incredibly attractive, and the show brings in an impressive amount of monsters from various legends. From angels and demons, a wendigo, to Zeus himself, Sam and Dean have faced several formidable foes.
However, I’ve got a few other names from literary lore that I would love to see go up against the Winchesters.
Frankenstein’s Monster—Frankenstein, Mary Shelley: The Winchesters have already faced a man, Doc Benton, who managed to keep himself alive for centuries by replacing his old, decaying body parts with newer, healthier organs. Benton kept himself alive purely by science—no magic needed. Definitely similar to Frankenstein’s monster, the only thing being that Doc Benton experimented on himself, while Dr. Frankenstein’s monster was an unwilling participant.
I would love to see the boys with figuring out the right thing to do with a highly misunderstood monster, and I would love to see how the writers would place Frankenstein and his monster into modern times. How would the modern-day populace react to some creepy, hermit scientist reanimating corpses in his creepy house? Would Dr. Frankenstein be violating his HOA by doing this? Do HOAs cover bringing back the dead?
How would the neighbors approach Dr. Frankenstein after his monster wreaked havoc on the town? I can see it now, instead of an angry, torch-bearing mob, would we could have an intense Twitter campaign! #StopFrankenstein #NoMoreMonsters
Mr. Hyde—The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Robert Louis Stevenson: I’m honestly shocked the Supernatural writers haven’t done a Jekyll/Hyde episode yet. Really, the closest thing we’ve gotten is episode 17 of season two, “Heart”, where the Winchesters meet Madison, a young girl who they suspect to be the target of a roving werewolf. Of course Madison is the werewolf, and because this is Supernatural and no one can just be happy on Supernatural, Sam has to kill Madison right after they begin to fall for each other.
The difference here is that Dr. Jekyll knowingly created Mr. Hyde by creating and drinking a potion to create a consciousness completely free of conscious or other moral entanglements. Dr. Jekyll starts out in control of Mr. Hyde, but if you know the story, you know that eventually Mr. Hyde begins to awaken on his own while Dr. Jekyll sleeps, without the potion. Dr. Jekyll then has to take drastic measures to defeat his evil alter ego.
Knowing Supernatural, if Sam and Dean were to encounter a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde situation, the monster’s ultimate demise would probably be something incredibly gut-wrenching. Dr. Jekyll would have a family, which Mr. Hyde would have probably hurt. There would be some tragic goodbye scene with his wife and his impossibly adorable children, or maybe Mr. Hyde would be killed before Dr. Jekyll’s loved ones could say goodbye.
The Supernatural writers have a special skill in finding new, tragic ways to break my heart, so you know what? On second thought, maybe I don’t want this to happen.
Pennywise the Clown—It, Steven King: I had to put him on this list. For one, Pennywise scares me to death. The other reason for including him is, if you are a part of the Supernatural fandom, you know that Sam’s number one fear is clowns. He’s shared his brain with Satan himself, he’s shared a dark corner of hell as the torture victim of a trapped and infuriated Satan and Michael, he’s watched his brother get ripped to shreds and dragged to hell, he’s watched his girlfriend burn to death on his ceiling, but despite all that, clowns, man.
Sam’s dealt with other disturbing clowns, but nothing compares to the brightly colored nightmarish clown that is Pennywise. This clown is actually certifiably terrifying. You know that scene at the beginning of the book where Pennywise lures George into the gutter with balloons and cotton candy, telling him “everything floats down here”? Yeah, I’m gonna give that a big bucket of NOPE, NOPE, NOPE. I jump over gutters to this day because of this freaking clown.
Kill it with fire, Winchesters.
Smaug—The Hobbit, J.R.R. Tolkein: Sam and Dean have fought a “dragon” before (season 6, episode 12, “Like a Virgin”), but they took the idea of a dragon and gave it a sort of modern twist. They haven’t fought a true to legend, green and scaly dragon, and I would officially like to submit Smaug’s name for the first real dragon that the boys hunt.
Smaug is clever, he’s cunning, and if we’re going by The Desolation of Smaug, his velvety dragon voice comes from the ever marvelous Benedict Cumberbatch. If nothing else, I’m always one to vote for more Cumberbatch in our lives. Besides the voice, Smaug is not only a formidable monster, but Sam and Dean have a history of being actual burglars—pretty successful ones, at that. I think Mr. I-Am-Fire-I-Am-Death would get a run for his (its?) money if faced with the Winchesters.
Besides, I would love to see what would happen if Gandalf and his troupe of dwarves crashed the Men of Letters bunker and raided Dean’s carefully organized kitchen for food. I mean, come on, I can’t be the only one who can hear the dwarves singing, “Chip the glasses and crack the plates! That’s what Dean Winchester hates!”
Voldemort—Harry Potter Series, J.K. Rowling: Can I just say how much I would love to see the Winchesters at Hogwarts? We’ve seen witches before on Supernatural, and they are nothing like the witches and wizards of Hogwarts. I’d just love to see them dropped into a world where the supernatural and all the creatures found therein were completely commonplace. But most of all, I’d love to see them go toe-to-toe with He Who Must Not Be Named.
Voldemort is the type of monster the boys are made to fight—figuring out how to kill him requires extensive research (am I the only one picturing Hermoine and Sam burning the midnight oil in the library with Dean, Ron, and Harry complaining in the chairs next to them). Like most of the monsters the Winchesters fight, there is one, specific way in which Voldemort can be killed, and seeking out Voldemort’s horcruxes requires living on the run—which Sam and Dean really do already.
Since the boys would ultimately need Harry to destroy Voldemort, they would have to work together with Harry, Ron, and Hermoine. Dumbledore’s Hunter Army, perhaps?
Sauron and The Ring—The Lord of the Rings Trilogy, J.R.R. Tolkein: When keeping the seasons of Supernatural straight, I tend to think of them in term of the season’s “Big Bad” or the big, season-long quest. Finding John Winchester, The Yellow-Eyed Demon, Get Dean Out of His Crossroads Demon Deal, and so on. Defeating Sauron and the Ring would be an awesome season-long Big Bad.
Sam and Dean would easily fit into the role of co-travelers to the fires of Mount Doom. The boys would inevitably fight over who would bear the burden of the ring, Dean would be the one to ultimately carry the ring to Mount Doom because of penance, guilt, or protecting Sam—the stuff that normally motivates Dean to put himself through hell. What’s more, Crowley would be the perfect pseudo-Gollum!
Think about it, Crowley has far less unsettling face and voice than Gollum, but like Gollum he is equal parts helpful and trouble. Currently, in season nine, the boys are attempting to navigate an awkward relationship with Crowley, very similar to Sam and Frodo’s awkward relationship with Gollum. Sam and Dean need Crowley, much like Sam and Frodo needed Gollum, yet they far from trust Crowley. Crowley would be the perfect unlikely tour guide to the fires of Mount Doom. I could totally see him helping the boys navigate a rocky mountain face one moment, and leaping on Dean’s back, biting off Dean’s finger to steal the ring the next— I mean, he’s already bitten Sam once, so we know The King of Hell isn’t above biting.
Besides, the Lord of the Rings trilogy ends on kind of a sad note with Frodo sailing off with the elves to the Undying Lands. Ending an epic adventure with tragedy? Why, that’s right up Supernatural’s alley!
Supernatural was recently renewed for a tenth season, so who knows; maybe we’ll see some of these shiny, literary faces coming soon on a television near you. Either way, if you want to see who Sam and Dean face next, you can catch Supernatural on the CW on Tuesday nights.
Kendall is a voracious reader, occasionally an aspiring author, a proud geek, an awkward newbie of a ballerina, and obsessed with zombies and her 8 pound chiweenie, Chaucer.
If she isn’t working or in ballet class, you can usually find her tucked away in the dark corners of book stores or the library, on yet another ill-advised Netflix binge, or embarking on some gaming adventure, be it table top or on her Xbox. If you want to hang out with Kendall, you can find her on Twitter @Kendall_Ashley.
Posted by Kendall Ashley
Five Pieces of Poetry Science Fiction Fans Will Love
Posted by Alyssa Favreau