Michael Connelly

American author Michael Connelly was born 21 July 1956. He writes very exciting detective novels and other crime fiction, notably those featuring LAPD Detective Hieronymus “Harry” Bosch and criminal defense attorney Mickey Haller. After graduating from the University of Florida in 1980, Connelly got a job as a crime beat writer at the Daytona Beach News Journalwhere he worked for almost two years until he got a job at the Fort Lauderdale News and Sun-Sentinel in 1981. There, he covered the crime beat during the South Florida cocaine wars, an era that brought with it much violence and murder. He stayed with the paper for a few years and in 1986, he and two other reporters spent several months interviewing survivors of the 1985 Delta Flight 191 plane crash, a story which earned Connelly a place as a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. the honor also brought Connelly a job as a crime reporter at the Los Angeles Times. He moved to California in 1987 with his wife Linda McCaleb, whom he met while in college and married in April 1984. After moving to Los Angeles, Connelly went to see the High Tower Apartments where Raymond Chandler’s famous character, Philip Marlowe, had lived (in The High Window), and Robert Altman had filmed. Connelly got the manager of the building to promise a phone call in case the apartment ever became available.

Ten years later, the manager tracked Connelly down and he decided to rent the place. This apartment served as a place to write for several years, but it was more based on the nostalgia of the place than the comfort of it (for example, it didn’t have air conditioning).After three years at the Los Angeles Times, Connelly wrote his first published novel The Black Echo, after previously writing two unfinished novels that he had not attempted to get published. The novel was sold to Little, Brown to be published in 1992 and won theMystery Writers of America’s Edgar Award for best first novel.The book is partly based on a true crime and is the first one featuring Connelly’s primary recurring character, Los Angeles Police Department Detective Hieronymus “Harry” Bosch, a man who, according to Connelly, shares few similarities with the author himself. Connelly named Bosch after the Dutch painter Hieronymus Bosch, known for his paintings full of sin and redemption, including a painting called “Hell”, a copy of which hangs on the office wall behind Connelly’s computer. Connelly describes his own work as a big canvas with all the characters of his books floating across it as currents on a painting. Sometime they are bound to collide creating cross currents. This is something that Connelly himself creates by bringing back characters from previous books and letting them play a part in books written five or six years after first being introduced.[3]Connelly went on to write three more novels about Detective Bosch — The Black Ice (1993), The Concrete Blonde (1994), and The Last Coyote (1995) — before quitting his job as a reporter to write full-time.

In 1996, Connelly wrote The Poet, his first book not to feature Bosch; the protagonist was reporter Jack McEvoy. The book was a success and earned Connelly comparisons to author Thomas Harris by reviewers. In 1997, Connelly returned to Bosch in Trunk Musicbefore writing another book, Blood Work (1998) about a different character, FBI agent Terry McCaleb. The book was made into a film in 2002, directed by Clint Eastwood, who also played McCaleb. The story features McCaleb, an agent with a transplanted heart, in pursuit of his donor’s murderer. The book came together after one of Connelly’s friends had a heart transplant and he saw what his friend was going through with survivor’s guilt after the surgery.When asked if he had anything against the changes made to fit the big screen, Connelly simply said; “If you take their money, it’s their turn to tell the story”.Connelly wrote another book featuring Bosch, Angels Flight (1999), before writing Void Moon (2000), a free-standing book about Cassie Black, a Las Vegas thief. In 2001, A Darkness More Than Night was released, in which Connelly united Bosch and McCaleb to solve a crime together, before releasing two books in 2002. The first, City of Bones, was the eighth Harry Bosch novel, and the other was Chasing the Dime, a non-series novel.

In 2001, Connelly left California for Tampa Bay, Florida together with his wife and daughter, so that both he and his wife could be closer to their families. But even though Connelly moved from one coast to the other, his novels still took place in Los Angeles; he feels no desire to write books set in Florida.[4]In 2003, another Bosch novel, Lost Light, was published. With this book, a CD was released, Dark Sacred Night, the Music of Harry Bosch, featuring some of the jazz music Bosch listens to.Connelly himself says he prefers listening to rock and roll, jazz and blues. While writing he listens exclusively to instrumental jazz, though, because it does not have intrusive vocals and because the improvisational playing inspires his writing. The Narrows was published in 2004. This book was a sequel to The Poet, but featured Bosch instead of McEvoy. Together with this book, a DVD was released called Blue Neon Light: Michael Connelly’s Los Angeles. In the film, Connelly presents some of the places in Los Angeles that are frequently featured in his books.[1]The Closers was published in May 2005 and was the eleventh Bosch novel. It was followed by The Lincoln Lawyer in October, Connelly’s first legal novel. It featured defense attorney Mickey Haller, Bosch’s half-brother. The book was made into a film in 2011, directed by Brad Furman; Matthew McConaughey played Mickey Haller.

After releasing Crime Beat in 2006, a non-fiction book about Connelly’s experiences as a crime-reporter, He wrote Echo Park, which begins in the High Tower Apartment that Connelly rented and wrote from. His next Bosch story, The Overlook, was originally published as a multipart series in the New York Times Magazine. After some editing, it was published as a novel in 2007. In October 2008, Connelly wrote The Brass Verdict, which brought together Bosch and Mickey Haller for the first time. He followed that in May 2009 with The Scarecrow, which brought back McEvoy as the lead character. 9 Dragons, a novel taking Bosch to Hong Kong, was released in October 2009. The Reversal, released in October 2010, reunites Bosch & Haller as they work together under the banner of the state on the retrial of a child murderer. The Mickey Haller novel The Fifth Witness was released in 2011.The Drop, which refers, in part, to the “Deferred Retirement Option Plan” that was described in the 2008 novel The Brass Verdict. was published on November 28, 2011. One of his most recent Bosch novel, published on November 26, 2012, is titled The Black Box.

Connelly was one of the creators and executive producers of Level 9, a science fiction action TV series that aired for 13 episodes in the 2000-2001 season on the UPN television network. His novel Blood Work was adapted into a film in 2002 with a screenplay by Brian Helgeland and direction by Clint Eastwood, who also played the lead role.Connelly was the subject of the 2004 video documentary Blue Neon Night: Michael Connelly’s Los Angeles. He occasionally makes guest appearances as himself in the ABC comedy/drama TV series Castle. Along with Stephen J. Cannell, James Patterson, andDennis Lehane, he is one of Castle’s poker buddies.Connelly’s novel The Lincoln Lawyer was made into a film in 2011, with Matthew McConaughey playing defense lawyer Michael “Mickey” Haller. Following the commercial success of the film, the ABC network had commissioned a pilot for a TV series featuring Haller from the production studios Lions Gate & Lakeshore. His books, have also been translated into 36 languages, and have garnered him many awards icluding the Edgar Award, Anthony Award, Macavity Award, Los Angeles Times Best Mystery/Thriller Award, Shamus Award, Dilys Award, Nero Award, Barry Award,Audie Award, Ridley Award, Maltese Falcon Award (Japan), .38 Caliber Award (France), Grand Prix Award (France) and Premio Bancarella Award (Italy) and he was also the President of theMystery Writers of America from 2003 to 2009

Ernest Hemingway

American author and journalist Ernest Hemingway was Born July 21, 1899. His economical and understated style had a strong influence on 20th-century fiction, while his life of adventure and his public image also influenced later generations. However, long before Ernest Hemingway wrote his first story, his mother was busy writing about him, in a series of scrapbooks documenting the future author’s childhood. the contents of five Hemingway scrapbooks are available online, giving fans and scholars the chance to follow the life of one of te 20th century’s literary greats from diapers to high school degree.Grace Hall Hemingway began the series of scrapbooks by describing how the sun shone and robins sang on the day in July 1899 when Hemingway was born.The scrapbooks also contain childhood paintings and tell of Hemingway playing the cello, suiting up for a ‘lightweight’ football squad and taking up boxing. During his junior year of high school, he was on his school’s prom committee and, according to a report card note from his Latin teacher, showed ‘improvement both in attitude and work.’

As Hemingway matured, the scrapbooks showcased his earliest attempts at the craft that would come to define his professional life. Among them were a short story from his high school’s literary magazine, clippings from some of his first assignments as a high school newspaper reporter and a sonnet in which 16-year-old Hemingway seemed to poke fun at himself.’Nobody likes Ernest, that, is straight stuff,’ he said, ‘and when he writes stories – we all cry “Enough.” By the time Hemingway was five, his mother noted that he was collecting war cartoons and had an appreciation for characters with courage.’He loves stories about Great Americans,’ she wrote.The scrapbooks have a plethora of family photos from the Hemingway family’s home in Oak Park, Illinois, and their vacation cottage on a lake in Northern Michigan, including shots of a bare-bottomed baby Hemingway playing in the water by a canoe.They include letters to Hemingway and others he wrote as a child, including a note of contrition in which he confessed to bad behavior in church.’My conduct tomorrow will be good,’ 13-year-old Hemingway promised.

Hemingway produced most of his work between the mid-1920s and the mid-1950s, and won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1954. He published seven novels, six short story collections and two non-fiction works. Three novels, four collections of short stories and three non-fiction works were published posthumously. Many of these are considered classics of American literature.emingway was raised in Oak Park, Illinois. After high school he reported for a few months for The Kansas City Star, before leaving for the Italian front to enlist with the World War I ambulance drivers. However In 1918, he was seriously wounded and returned home. His wartime experiences formed the basis for his novel A Farewell to Arms. In 1922, he married Hadley Richardson, the first of his four wives. The couple moved to Paris, where he worked as a foreign correspondent, and fell under the influence of the modernist writers and artists of the 1920s “Lost Generation” expatriate community. The Sun Also Rises, Hemingway’s first novel, was published in 1926.

After his 1927 divorce from Hadley Richardson, Hemingway married Pauline Pfeiffer. They divorced after he returned from the Spanish Civil War where he had acted as a journalist, and after which he wrote For Whom the Bell Tolls. Martha Gellhorn became his third wife in 1940. They separated when he met Mary Welsh in London during World War II; during which he was present at the Normandy Landings and liberation of Paris. Shortly after the publication of The Old Man and the Sea in 1952, Hemingway went on safari to Africa, where he was almost killed in two successive plane crashes that left him in pain or ill-health for much of the rest of his life. Hemingway had permanent residences in Key West, Florida, and Cuba during the 1930s and 1940s, but in 1959 he moved from Cuba to Ketchum, Idaho, where sadly he committed suicide on July 2, 1961. However A farewell to Arms remains a popular novel and ‘The scrapbooks his Mother created are part of the collection that Hemingway’s widow, Mary, gifted to the JFK Library and Museum after the author’s 1961 suicide.

The Snowman

A film adaptation based on the exciting Jo Nesbø crime thriller The Snowman is due for release in October. Originally due to be directed by Martin Scorsese, it’s Directed by Tomas Alfredson (Let the Right One In, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy) it stars Michael Fassbender, Rebecca Ferguson, JK Simmons, Charlotte Gainsbourg and Toby Jones, with a score composed by Jonny Greenwood.

It features Norwegian detective, Harry Hole who is investigating a number of recent murders of women around Oslo. His experience of an earlier training course with the FBI leads him to search for links between the cases, and he finds two – each victim is a married mother and after each murder a snowman appears at the murder scene. Then more women disappear and are believed to have been abducted or murdered in a similar way. Almost all of the victims vanished after the first snowfall of winter and a snowman is found near the scene, this fact having been ignored by the original investigators.

Further digging leads Harry and his team – including newcomer Katrine Bratt, recently transferred to Oslo from the Police Department in Bergen – to suspect that paternity issues with the children of the victims may be a motive for the murders. They discover that all of the victims’ children have different fathers to the men they believe to be their father. Following DNA testing, results lead the investigation down a few wrong alleys and several murder suspects are eliminated from the enquiry.

Within a short time, Harry Hole and Katrine are drawn together – personally as well as professionally. In the past he has avoided having affairs with female colleagues, but he is now tempted. During a departmental party, Katrine tries to seduce Harry and though he rejects her, Harry has fantasies about her and realises that she is a kindred spirit – a brilliant detective able to notice the smallest of details and understand the connections between them. Moreover, she has the same kind of obsessive dedication to the job which he himself has – an obsessiveness which had earlier caused his girlfriend, Rakel, to break off their relationship. To complicate matters further, during the investigation, Harry continues to meet with Rakel clandestinely, despite the fact that she is in a new relationship.

Then Katrine Bratt attempts to frame one of the major suspects, however this backfires spectacularly when she herself becomes a suspect. Harry chases her across Norway and finally catches up with her at a previously discovered murder site. She is apprehended and committed to a psychiatric unit. At the same time, Hole’s superior officers decide that the scandal of allowing a serial killer to work on the murder case will be damaging and determine that they require a scapegoat to appease the press. Due to his previous issues with alcoholism, and poor reputation within the police department, Harry Hole is put forward in absentia. However another victim is discovered, and Hole realises that the murderer is still at large…

Jane Austen

English novelist Jane Austen tragically died in 18th July 1817. She was born 16th December 1775 and her works of romantic fiction, set among the landed gentry, earned her a place as one of the most widely read writers in English literature. Her realism and biting social commentary have gained her historical importance among scholars and critics. Austen lived her entire life as part of a close-knit family located on the lower fringes of the English landed gentry. She was educated primarily by her father and older brothers as well as through her own reading. The steadfast support of her family was critical to her development as a professional writer. Her artistic apprenticeship lasted from her teenage years into her thirties. During this period, she experimented with various literary forms, including the epistolary novel which she then abandoned, and wrote and extensively revised three major novels and began a fourth. From 1811 until 1816, with the release of Sense and Sensibility (1811), Pride and Prejudice (1813), Mansfield Park (1814) and Emma (1816), she achieved success as a published writer. She wrote two additional novels, Northanger Abbey and Persuasion, both published posthumously in 1818, and began a third, which was eventually titled Sanditon, but died before completing it.

Austen’s works critique the novels of sensibility of the second half of the 18th century and are part of the transition to 19th-century realism. Her plots, though fundamentally comic, highlight the dependence of women on marriage to secure social standing and economic security. Her work brought her little personal fame and only a few positive reviews during her lifetime, but the publication in 1869 of her nephew’s A Memoir of Jane Austen introduced her to a wider public, and by the 1940s she had become widely accepted in academia as a great English writer. The second half of the 20th century saw a proliferation of Austen scholarship and the emergence of a Janeite fan culture. Biographical information concerning Jane Austen is “famously scarce”, according to one biographer. Only some personal and family letters remain (by one estimate only 160 out of Austen’s 3,000 letters are extant), and her sister Cassandra (to whom most of the letters were originally addressed) burned “the greater part” of the ones she kept and censored those she did not destroy. Other letters were destroyed by the heirs of Admiral Francis Austen, Jane’s brother. Most of the biographical material produced for fifty years after Austen’s death was written by her relatives and reflects the family’s biases in favour of “good quiet Aunt Jane”. Scholars have unearthed little information since. Since her death Jane Austen’s novels such as Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, Northanger Abbey and Emma, have all remained popular and have given rise to numerous television and film adaptations.

Clive Cussler

American adventure novelist and marine archaeologist Clive Eric Cussler, was born July 15, 1931 in Aurora, Illinois. His exciting thriller novels, many featuring the character Dirk Pitt, have reached The New York Times fiction best-seller list more than seventeen times. Cussler is also the founder and chairman of the real-life National Underwater and Marine Agency (NUMA), which has discovered more than sixty shipwreck sites and numerous other notable sunken underwater wreckages. He is the sole author or lead author of more than 50 books. Born in Aurora, Illinois, Cussler grew up in Alhambra, California and was awarded the rank of Eagle Scout when he was 14. He attended Pasadena City College for two years and then enlisted in the United States Air Force during the Korean War. During his service in the Air Force, he was promoted to Sergeant and worked as an aircraft mechanic and flight engineer for the Military Air Transport Service (MATS) After his discharge from the military, Cussler went to work in the advertising industry, first as a copywriter and later as a creative director for two of the nation’s most successful advertising agencies. As part of his duties Cussler produced radio and television commercials, many of which won international awards including an award at the Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival.

Clive Cussler began writing in 1965 when his wife took a job working nights for the local police department where they lived in California. After making dinner for the kids and putting them to bed he had no one to talk to and nothing to do so he decided to start writing. His most famous creation is marine engineer, government agent and adventurer Dirk Pitt. The Dirk Pitt novels frequently take on an alternative history perspective, such as“what if Atlantis was real?” or “what if Abraham Lincoln wasn’t assassinated, but was kidnapped?”The first two Pitt novels, The Mediterranean Caper and Iceberg, were relatively conventional maritime thrillers. The third, Raise the Titanic!, made Cussler’s reputation and established the pattern that subsequent Pitt novels would follow: a blend of high adventure and high technology, generally involving megalomaniacal villains, lost ships, beautiful women, and sunken treasure. Cussler’s novels, like those of Michael Crichton, are examples of techno-thrillers that do not use military plots and settings. Where Crichton strove for scrupulous realism, however, Cussler prefers fantastic spectacles and outlandish plot devices. The Pitt novels, in particular, have the anything-goes quality of the James Bond or Indiana Jones movies, while also sometimes borrowing from Alistair MacLean’s novels. Pitt himself is a larger-than-life hero reminiscent of Doc Savage and other characters from pulp magazines.

Clive Cussler has had more than seventeen consecutive titles reach The New York Times fiction best-seller list.Following the publication in 1996 of Cussler’s first nonfiction work, The Sea Hunters, he was awarded a Doctor of Letters degree in 1997 by the Board of Governors of the State University of New York Maritime College who accepted the work in lieu of a Ph.D. thesis. This was the first time in the college’s 123-year history that such a degree had been awarded. In 2002 Cussler was awarded the Naval Heritage Award from the U S Navy Memorial Foundation for his efforts in the area of marine exploration. Cussler is a fellow of the Explorers Club of New York, the Royal Geographic Society in London, and the American Society of Oceanographers. As an underwater explorer, Cussler has discovered more than sixty shipwreck sites and has written non-fiction books about his findings.

Forbidden planet

I’ve recently watched the classic 1956 American science fiction film Forbidden Planet again. It stars Walter Pidgeon, Anne Francis and Leslie Nielsen and is considered one of the greatest science fiction films of the 1950s which ultimatley inspired many modern Science fiction stories. The characters and isolated setting are similar to those in William Shakespeare’s The Tempest.

It takes place In the 23rd century, where the starship C-57D reaches the distant world Altair IV to determine the fate of an Earth expedition sent there 20 years earlier. Dr. Edward Morbius, one of the expedition’s scientists, unsuccessfully tries to persuade the relief ship not to land, saying he cannot guarantee their safety. Commander John J. Adams, Lieutenant Jerry Farman, and Lieutenant “Doc” Ostrow are met by Robby the Robot, who transports them to Morbius’ residence. Morbius describes how one by one the rest of the expedition was killed by an unknown planetary force that vaporized their starship, the Bellerophon, as the last survivors tried to lift off. Only Morbius, his wife (who later died of natural causes), and their daughter Altaira were somehow immune. Morbius offers to help them prepare for the return journey, but Adams says he must await further instructions from Earth.

However That night, an invisible intruder sabotages equipment aboard the starship. Adams and Ostrow confront Morbius the following morning wanting answers. Later Adams and Altaira are also attacked by a tiger, which had previously been tame in Altaira’s presence, Adams disintegrates the animal. Adams and Ostrow then learn Morbius has been studying the Krell, a highly advanced native race that perished overnight 200,000 years before. In a Krell laboratory Morbius shows them a “plastic educator”, a device capable of measuring and enhancing intellectual capacity. Morbius then takes them on a tour of a vast, 20 miles square, Krell underground machine complex, still functioning and powered by 9,200 thermonuclear reactors.

To prevent further sabotage, Adams orders a force field fence deployed around the starship. However It proves ineffective when the intruder returns and murders Chief Engineer Quinn. Morbius warns Adams that he has had a premonition of further deadly attacks, similar to what happened with the Bellerophon. That night, the invisible creature returns But the ship’s weapons have no effect, and it kills Farman and two others. Morbius, asleep in the Krell lab, is startled awake by screams from Altaira. Later, while Adams tries to persuade Altaira to leave, Ostrow sneaks away to use the Krell educator. Ostrow explains to Adams that the underground machine was built to materialize anything the Krell could imagine. He says that the Krell forgot one thing: “Monsters from the Id”. Adams asserts that Morbius’ subconscious mind created the creature that killed the members of the original expedition and attacked his crew; however Morbius refuses to accept this accusation.

Altaira then tells Morbius that she intends to leave with Adams and the creature reappears so Morbius commands the robot to kill it, however Robby knows the creature is a manifestation of Morbius and is unable to kill it (thanks to Asimov’s first Law of Robotics). So Adams, Altaira, and Morbius take refuge in the Krell Laboratory but the seemingly unstoppable rampaging monster pursues them until Morbius finally accepts the truth and confronts the creature himself….

Blade Runner

Blade Runner is a 1982 dystopian science fiction film directed by Ridley Scott and starring Harrison Ford, Rutger Hauer, Sean Young, and Edward James Olmos. The film, is a loose adaptation of the 1968 novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K. Dick. The film depicts a dystopian Los Angeles in which genetically engineered replicants, which are visually indistinguishable from adult humans, are manufactured by the powerful Tyrell Corporation to work in hazardous environments on off-world colonies. Those that escape and return to Earth are hunted down and “retired” by special police operatives known as Blade Runners.

The film won the prestigious Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation. The film’s soundtrack, composed by Vangelis, was also critically acclaimed and nominated in 1983 for a BAFTA and Golden Globe as best original score. The film brought the work of Philip K. Dick to the attention of Hollywood and several later films were based on his work. Ridley Scott regards Blade Runner as “probably” his most complete and personal film. In 1993, the movie was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress, being deemed “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant”. Blade Runner is now regarded by many critics as one of the all-time best science fiction movies. Seven versions of the film have been shown for various markets as a result of controversial changes made by studio executives. A director’s cut was released in 1992 and In 2007, Warner Bros. released The Final Cut, a 25th anniversary digitally remastered version. A sequel, Blade Runner 2049, is scheduled for release in October 2017.

Blade Runner is set In bleak Los Angeles in November 2019, where ex-police officer Rick Deckard works as a “Blade Runner” tracking down bioengineered beings known as replicants which have gone rogue and “retiring them” (a euphemism for killing). He is informed by his supervisor Bryant that four Tyrell Corporation Nexus-6 Replicants have come to Earth illegally. Although these Replicants only have a four-year lifespan they are extremely dangerous and are seeking ways to extend their lifespan. Deckard watches a video of a Blade Runner named Holden administering the “Voight-Kampff” test designed to distinguish replicants from humans based on their emotional response to questions. The test subject, Leon, shoots Holden after Holden asks about Leon’s mother. So Bryant asks Deckard to retire Leon and the other three replicants: Roy Batty, Zhora, and Pris. Understandably Deckard does not want to be Leon’s next victim and refuses. Bryant however coerces Deckard and he reluctantly agrees.

Deckard begins his investigation at the Tyrell Corporation to ensure that the test works on Nexus-6 models. While there, he discovers that Eldon Tyrell’s assistant Rachael is an experimental replicant who believes herself to be human. Rachael has been given false memories to provide an “emotional cushion”. As a result, a more extensive test is required to determine whether she is a replicant.

While Deckard searches for the replicants, the Replicants themselves are searching for Tyrell. Roy and Leon investigate a replicant eye-manufacturing laboratory and learn of J. F. Sebastian, a gifted genetic designer who works closely with Tyrell. Rachael visits Deckard. meanwhile Pris locates J.F. Sebastian. Later While searching Leon’s hotel room, Deckard finds a photo of Zhora and a synthetic snake scale that leads him to a strip club where Zhora works. Deckard is then told by Bryant to retire Rachael, who has disappeared from the Tyrell Corporation. Deckard spots Rachael in a crowd, and is attacked by Leon, but Rachael kills Leon.

Arriving at Sebastian’s apartment, Roy tells Pris the others are dead. Sympathetic to their plight, Sebastian reveals that because of “Methuselah Syndrome”, a genetic premature aging disorder, his life will also be cut short. Sebastian and Roy enter Tyrell’s secure penthouse, where Roy demands more life from his maker. However Tyrell tells him that it is impossible. So Roy kills Tyrell and Sebastian. Deckard then arrives at Sebastian’s apartment but is attacked by Pris. Roy then arrives and chases Deckard through the building in an exciting finale, intent on killing him, however Roy does something unexpected which causes Deckard to question the replicants humanity….