Wednesday, 31 July 2013

EDITOR'S PICKS: This week Tyrone recommends a gripping Southern drama + J.K. Rowling's new mystery + The latest from reggae icon Alpha Blondy

FILM: When a movie's hero is on the run, he is almost always running toward a woman. In the taut, finely wrought 2013 drama Mud, with its river setting and deep Southern roots, Matthew McConaughey is the titular fugitive hiding out from men hot on his heels due to his part in a murder stemming from a love triangle gone horribly wrong. At the centre of this unfortunate mess is Juniper (an underutilized Reese Witherspoon), Mud's childhood sweetheart whom he is still crazy about. He's waiting on her to join him, when a pair of adventurous tween boys (terrific Tye Sheridan and Jacob Lofland) stumble upon his hiding place -- in classic Huckleberry Finn style -- and set out to help the poor soul reunite with his lost love. But as this captivating, well-acted film (written and directed by Jeff Nichols) reminds us, love may be many things, but easy isn't among them. 

BOOK: Author J.K. Rowling, she of the Harry Potter mega-franchise, did her best to outwit devoted readers by writing under the pseudonym of Robert Galbraith for her latest bestseller, the murder mystery The Cuckoo's Calling, released in April. For the experts, all it took was a bit of keen writing style analysis to discover that this absorbing tale of a private investigator looking into the death of a legendary supermodel is, in fact, the brainchild of the phenomenally acclaimed British scribe. Indeed, by their craft you shall know them. >> Also new in books: Kingston native Roland Watson-Grant's Louisiana-set new novel, Sketcher, published by the UK's Alma Books. 

MUSIC: After releasing more than a dozen reggae albums, West African reggae stalwart Alpha Blondy has just put out out his newest effort, the 15-track Mystic Power, filled with his signature contemporary sound and vocals delivered in a mix of English, French and his native Dioula. Listeners can also expect messages steeped in social consciousness and a mix of reggae beats and jazzy, funk-infused rhythms on tracks like "Hope," which gets an appearance from Beenie Man and a gripping interpretation of Bob Marley's "I Shot the Sheriff."

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