Mike Flanagan’s Dark Tower Adaptation May Have Characters From Doctor Sleep

Mike Flanagan is still moving forward with his dream project—the adaptation of Stephen King’s The Dark Tower series. This isn’t the first time, however, that Flanagan has tackled King’s work. The filmmaker also directed Doctor Sleep, King’s sequel to The Shining that was critically well-received but didn’t do so well at the box office. Fans of the film, however, may get to see some of those characters once again in Flanagan’s Dark Tower project.

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Thumbs Up! Denzel Washington and Barry Keoghan Join Paul Mescal in Gladiator Sequel

Are you ready to be entertained? It’s been twenty-three years since Ridley Scott’s Gladiator premiered and we saw Russell Crowe star as the titular gladiator who faces off against Joaquin Phoenix’s Commodus (pictured above). After more than two decades, Scott is apparently ready to make a sequel focused on the son of Lucilla (nephew of Commodus), because he seems to think that’s the angle people really cared about from the first film.

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5 Unconventional Fantasy Heists

We hear heist tales from the time we’re children, don’t we? World mythology and folklore are filled with clever, tricky humans who steal items of value from demons and gods. Even Disneyesque fairy tales have them. Once Jack goes up that beanstalk, what is the rest of the story but a heist?

The fantasy genre embraces heists in all flavors and textures. Here are five of my favorites.

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Five Fantastical Musical Experiences You Can Find in the Real World

I’m no stranger to exploring the unique intersections of fantasy books and music. I’ve extolled the virtues of books that make great use of music. I’ve offered soundtracks to amp up your reading ambiance. Novels often have a melodic quality about them, threading music into the fabric of their worlds.

On the other hand, our own world offers fantastical musical experiences that are magical in their own right. Music has the power to connect us to the fantasies we seek out in our favorite books. Below are five ways of experiencing music that remind me of getting lost in a fantasy world…

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A Different Kind of Speculative Future: Meru by S.B. Divya

One of the obvious things that science fiction lets us do is imagine what humanity’s future could look like: Will we travel to the stars? And if so, what will we do there, and how will society have changed along the way? Many authors have explored potential scenarios, and many of those imaginings come with a world where humans continue to try to conquer everything they come across. Sometimes that drive is depicted positively, sometimes negatively, sometimes a mix of both. But in all these instances, homo sapiens’ drive to grow and conquer remains the same.

But what if that didn’t have to be the way? What if humans (or the beings that evolve from us) take a different approach to their place in the cosmos? What if growth and expansion aren’t the end-all and be-all for civilization?

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Expect the Unexpected — Star Trek: Picard’s “Imposters”

We in the early twenty-first century live in an age of constant news. Television, web sites, newspapers, magazines, all compete for the ability to inform you of things, whether politics, sports, local news, or entertainment.

In the face of all these different news sources, it’s always very impressive when a major production like Star Trek: Picard manages to surprise us with a guest star. But they did it this week, and even if it had been expected, it would’ve been welcome. And that they managed to surprise us with it, in a season that has been hyped up the kazoo, is pretty danged impressive.

I’m not saying what it is until after the cut-tag on the front page, so just to be sure: BIG HONKIN’ SPOILER WARNING!

[I’m gonna step outside so the three of you can get your bullshit stories straight…]

Five Stories About Precocious Young Wizards

Imagine, if you will, a story featuring a wizard, sorcerer, or mage who is not an elderly greybeard or crone but rather a child or teen. Ideal fodder for books aimed at younger readers (and some adults as well).  Such an original idea would no doubt earn billions…even though so very many authors have been down that road before.

Consider these five works from this well-established subgenre.

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Leigh Bardugo’s Six of Crows Might Get Its Own Series

Today, the second season of Shadow and Bone, adapted from Leigh Bardugo’s novels, premieres on Netflix. The series wraps in characters and storylines from both her Shadow and Bone and Six of Crows series, though leans into the main plot from the former—the fold in Ravka, the Darkling, the special powers of Sun Summoner Alina.

Those of us who hoped that season two might go a bit in the other direction—and perhaps include the ice court heist from Six of Crows—were disappointed when showrunner Eric Heisserer said they would not be using that story this time around. Though what he said was tantalizing: “That is a beefy and robust story that requires its own lane.”

And by “its own lane,” what he maybe meant was “its own show.” Heisserer has now told Entertainment Weekly that he’s been working on a Six of Crows spinoff—which would absolutely include the elaborate heist from the duology’s first book.

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Reading in a Fallow Month

In January, I made a new stack of books. It was comfort food, in part—fantasy, YA series, novels by friends and acquaintances, the lightest stories I could find in my to-be-read stacks. It was what I thought I’d be up for in the next month, books pulled off the shelves ahead of time because after a specific date in early February, I wasn’t going to want to wrangle books out of teetering piles or try to find things on shelves. I was going to be recovering, recuperating, resting—endlessly resting, a privilege that should be a right, after having surgery.

I read almost none of those books. Physically, I was in unfamiliar territory. And it turned out that my reading mind wanted to be there too.

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