The X Factor

imagesIndiana Jones and the Temple of Doom created an uproar in the movie industry. While it didn’t meet the criteria for an R rating, the intensity of the violence and its unrelenting action and danger freaked out so many kids and parents and caused so many complaints that the PG-13 rating was born – probably the same people that brought their six year old grandchildren to see Deadpool and didn’t think twice. Before that, there were just four ratings by the Motion Picture Association of America: G (general audience), PG (parental guidance suggested), R (no one under 17 without guardian), and X (now NC-17, meaning No One Under 17 Admitted, no way, no how, this will scar you for life).

Of course, as a kid, you can’t help but wonder, what’s in an X movie? What could be more violent than people beating each other up? What could be grosser than people naked?  How many more swear words are there? And then the internet was born and we’ve never wondered since.

Surprisingly, though, some of our favorite movies DID have an X rating at the start. Film makers want to be cutting-edge and push envelopes, but an X/NC17 rating c51q55v7qvblan sink an otherwise profitable film because it cuts out the teen crowd that hangs out at theaters every week and also makes some adult film-goers leery. After repeated trips back to the editing room, most of the movies do achieve their golden R rating.

Some, however, never do. Three movies were nominated for Oscars despite their X rating: Midnight Cowboy, A Clockwork Orange, and Last Tango in Paris. Midnight Cowboy actually won the Best Picture Oscar for 1970. When rereleased in 1971, it carried only an R rating, even though not a single edit had been made. It had been given the X rating for “homosexual suggestions,” and that was no longer a criteria. Times were already changing.

Two things are usually to blame for an X rating: extreme violence/gore, or explicit nudity/sexual content. It’s hard to believe, but for all the outcry against The Exorcist (some vi51kp0kgvmdlewers were taken away by ambulance), it only garnered an R rating. (So, in 1969, homosexuality would get you a deadly X rating, but by 1973, demonic possession, gore, blasphemy, and violent sexual situations involving children would not. Go figure.) Sometimes the fix was something so banal as toning down the brightness of the blood (Taxi Driver), which makes you wonder who is actually doing the judging and rating of the films. Others, like Cliffhanger, needed adjustments to almost every single scene. Although Casino cranks in at more than 420 utterances of the Fornication word (that’s almost 2.5 for every minute of film49), it was the violence that created its problems.

Here is a list of popular films you’ve probably heard of, and probably have seen, that were originally rated X before being edited yet again (American Pie needed four tries) to win the magic R. Some of these are very good films that just happen to be a little more graphic than others. Some of them you knew were headed for trouble just by the title (Freddy Got Fingered), but others, especially twenty years later when there sometimes doesn’t seem to be a limit on sex or violence in movies or on television (Boogie Nights drew trouble for a 10-second shot of a prosthetic penis, yet Life of Brian and Trainspotting didn’t for showing a real one), make you scratch your head at what the fuss was.

 

Looking For Some Hot Romance to Read?

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We’re into the hot and steamy summer.  Here’s a new author with a hot romance series to help you feel the burn.

Chanel Cleeton is the author of the new series Wild Aces.  It’s about a group of  F-16 fighter pilots who fly fast, love hard, and live dangerously.  The stories are sexy, funny, emotional, and heart wrenching.  These are the very realistic portrayals of relationships between military and non-military couples – touching on the struggles and triumphs of loving a military person.

flyThe first book in the series is Fly With Me.   While partying in Las Vegas, clothing boutique owner Jordan Callahan takes a gamble on U.S. Air Force fighter pilot Noah Miller, but when the dangers of his job become all too real, she must decide whether or not she is ready to risk everything for love.

Having the story told from both Jordan’s and Noah’s point of view in vivid detail was an added bonus.  The author nailed the dynamics between them – the reader feels their frustration, their happiness, their love, their wild ride of emotions.  The characters are in their 30’s or older, so there is a bit of maturity about the story.  The secondary characters prove to be just as interesting as the main couple and you’ll be eager to read about them in upcoming books.

Being in love is hard.  Being in the military adds a whole other dimension to it.  This is a beautifully written story that let’s you inside the emotional journey.

intoBook two is Into the Blue .    Eric Jansen—call sign Thor—loves nothing more than pushing his F-16 to the limit. Returning home to South Carolina after a tragic loss, he hopes to fix the mistake he made long ago, when he chose the Air Force over his fiancée.  Becca Madison isn’t quick to welcome Thor back. She can’t forget how he shattered her heart. But Thor won’t give up once he’s set his sights on what he wants—and he wants Becca.  Thor shows Becca that he’s no longer the impulsive boy he used to be, and Becca finds herself irresistibly drawn to him. But will Thor be able to walk away from his dream of flying the F-16 for their love or does his heart belong to the sky?

About The Author

chanelOriginally a Florida girl,  Chanel moved to London where she received a bachelor’s degree from Richmond, The American International University in London and a master’s degree from the London School of Economics and Political Science. Chanel fell in love with London and planned to stay there forever, until fate intervened on a Caribbean cruise and a fighter pilot with smooth dance moves swept her off her feet. Now, a happily ever after later, Chanel is living her next adventure.  She started out with publishing e-books and has now graduated to paperback novels.

Caution:  This series may be too sexually explicit for some readers. (But you can do what I do, skip over the explicit parts.  These books are too good to pass up!)

RT Book Reviews Magazine’s Author Career Achievement Awards 2015

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Each year, the editors of RT Book Review Magazine and 50 reviewers work together to narrow down a long list of nominees to find the one author who has made a great contribution in his or her genre.   Below are the 2015 winners.  Is your favorite author a winner?

Contemporary Romance – Linda Lael Miller is a #1 New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author of more than 100 historical and contemporary novels, most of which reflect her love of the West.

Paranormal Romance – Christine Feehan is a #1 New York Times bestselling author of over 40 published novels, including five series; Leopard series, Dark series, Ghostwalker series, Drake Sisters series, & the Sisters of the Heart series.

Historical Romance – Julia Quinn is a #1 New York Times bestselling author and one of only sixteen members of Romance Writers of America’s Hall of Fame.

Erotic Romance – Maya Banks is the #1 New York Times, #1 USA Today and international bestselling author of over 50 novels.

Romantic Suspense – Carla Neggers is a New York Times bestselling author of more than 60 novels, with translations in 24 languages.

Historical Mystery – Rhys Bowen is the New York Times Bestselling author of the Royal Spyness series, Molly Murphy Mysteries, and Constable Evans. She has won the Agatha Best Novel Award and has been nominated for the Edgar Best Novel.

Mystery – Janet Evanovich is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Stephanie Plum series, the Lizzy and Diesel series, twelve romance novels, the Alexandra Barnaby novels and Troublemaker graphic novel, How I Write: Secrets of a Bestselling Author, as well as the Fox and O’Hare series with co-author Lee Goldberg.

Urban Fantasy – Laurell K. Hamilton is an American fantasy and romance writer. She is best known as the author of two series of stories, the New York Times-bestselling Anita Blake: Vampire Hunter series and the Merry Gentry series.

Inspirational – Irene Hannon is the author of 50 romantic suspense and contemporary romance/women’s fiction novels. She is a seven-time finalist for and three-time winner of the RITA award—the “Oscar” of romance fiction—and a member of the Romance Writers of America Hall of Fame.

Mainstream – NancyThayer is the author of twenty-three novels about the mysteries and romance of families and relationships: marriage and friendships, divorce and love, custody and step parenting, family secrets and private self-affirmation, the quest for independence and the normal human hunger for personal connections.

August is National Romance Month and Read-a-Romance Month

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August is National Romance month and Read-a-Romance month and the Cheshire Library has a wonderful collection of romance titles for  you to enjoy – from books to movies!

There is a separate romance section of mass market paperbacks on the main level of the library, located near the front windows.  There you can find many genres of romance including contemporary, suspense, paranormal, inspirational, and historical.  There’s quite a variety so come on in and browse the collection.  You’re sure to find a title or two that appeals to you.

You can also browse this blog for posts on romance titles.  Just type Romance in the box under Search All Posts and it will give you a list of all the posts related to romance.  One of my favorites is Today’s Romance Novels.

Read-A-Romance blog celebrates the month in a big way.  Each day of August, authors will be posting something on the blog.  Below is a calendar listing the authors for each day.

 

You can also access more information about Read-A-Romance month on their facebook account here.

NPR comes up with a list of their 100 Swoon-Worthy Romances each summer.  You can access the list here.

The Cheshire Library also has a nice selection of romantic movies for you to enjoy.  A few are listed below:

Romantic Movies

Officer and a Gentleman

Pretty Woman

Bonnie and Clyde

Love Actually

Chocolat

Life Is Beautiful

A Walk To Remember

Notting Hill

Breakfast at Tiffany’s

Casablanca

Hope you enjoy the rest of your summer with these romantic selections!

 

 

Christian Grey Speaks – His Side of Fifty Shades of Grey

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If you are still fantasizing about Christian Grey, then you are in luck.   On June 1, 2015, it was announced that E L James is releasing a new version of her bestselling novel, Fifty Shades of Greydue out on June 18, 2015.  Fans of the trilogy will recognize this date as Christian’s birthday.   The new book – Grey – is written from Christian’s point of view.    In a statement released through Vintage Anchor (paperback imprint of Penguin Random House), James is dedicating the new book to readers who had “asked…and asked…and asked…asked” for a novel narrated by Christian.  James adds: “Christian is a complex character,  and readers have always been fascinated by his desires and motivations, and his troubled past. Also, as anyone who has ever been in a relationship knows, there are two sides to every story.”

Want to reread the original series?   Check out their availability in our catalog Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker, Fifty Shades Freed.

So, get ready to turn up your air conditioner and settle in for some hot reading!