We’re Gonna Need an Even Bigger Boat: Cassie-la Swims Through ‘Big Ass Shark’ by Briar Lee Mitchell

Big Ass SharkBig Ass Shark by Briar Lee Mitchell
Genre: Fiction, horror, sharks, who needs regular sized sharks when you can have big ass sharks?
Rating: 3.75 out of 5 stars

Summary: Wannabe actress Misty’s life is turned upside down when she has a horrifying chance encounter with an enormous white shark, the long thought extinct Megalodon. Armed with a giant tooth and a video of her near death, Misty gets embroiled in a dangerous adventure involving a reporter, several scientists, an insane billionaire, some shark hunters and a park ranger. Not to mention a big ass shark named Ghostie.

I know what you’re not thinking: “But Cassie, last year you promised for Shark Week you would review Sharcano, a story about sharks made of liquid hot magma.”

Well sorry non-existant person, but try as I might I could barely make it through the prologue. To put things into perspective, I was able to finish the novelization of Jaws: The Revenge, which is about a shark following a widow to the Bahamas because her son broke a magical gourd. Yeah.

Not only was I pressed for time because Shark Week came an entire month earlier this year to coincide with actual summer and the plot of Jaws, but when something has that many similes in the first few pages, uses the phrase “the icing on the fight cake” and refers to animals as “meat trains” I have to concede defeat.

Thankfully, I had a backup.

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My Year in Reading: Cassie-la’s Best and Worst of 2014 Wrap Up

Jaws the Revenge2014 shall forever be known as the year I failed my reading goal for the first time since deciding I was going to start setting them. Rest in peace reading goals.

Regardless, I still smashed my reading totals from 2008-2010, even if I couldn’t mimic the success of 2011-2013.

I suppose this is what happens when you’re juggling a full time job and a part time job. Reading 150 books in a year and still keeping your life in order just isn’t feasible.

Despite the change in circumstance, in 2014 I read a grand total of 96 books (see full visual list HERE), failing my 150 book goal abysmally. 21 of those were novels, 5 were anthologies, 1 was non-fiction, 35 of them were young adult novels, 26 were graphic novels and trades, 5 were middle grade books, 2 were children’s books and 1 was a poetry collection.

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This Time It’s Voodoo: Cassie-la Harpoons “Jaws: The Revenge” by Hank Searls

Jaws the RevengeBook: Jaws: The Revenge by Hank Searls
Movie: Jaws: The Revenge
Genre: Fiction, horror, sharks, voodoo is actually a much better explanation than no explanation
Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars (book), 2.6 out of 5 stars (movie)

Summary: Everyone’s favorite man-eating shark is back for his final adventure! Or rather, a possible relative of everyone’s favorite man-eating shark is back for his final adventure. In the 4th installment of the film series, turned the 3rd installment of the book series, yet another Great White Shark is torturing the Brody family, and it’s all because Michael Brody broke a witch doctor’s magical gourd. Leaving everyone who picked up this book to ponder: “Yeah, but is that why it roars?”

Yet another Shark Week has come and gone (with twice as many fake documentaries) and this year I chose to read perhaps the most torturous shark story to date — aside from last year’s read — a novelization of the film Jaws: The Revenge. AKA Jaws IV. AKA The One That is Somehow Worse Than Jaws 3.

Jaws: The Revenge: it’s a tale as old as time. Man kills shark. Man kills a different shark. Possible descendent of deceased sharks follows the man’s family to the Bahamas and begins systematically killing them.

You know, that old story.

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Another Shark Week Come and Gone: Cassie-la Eviscerates “Sharc” by Paul Rudd

Sharc Paul RuddSharc by Paul Rudd
Genre: Fiction, horror, sharks, thriller, why do fictional governments keep allowing billionaires to build unsafe underwater aquariums and dinosaur filled islands?
: 2.67 out of 5 stars

Summary: Maxwell Baxter has a lot of money, so he builds an aquarium/resort/research center named the ARC to house the long thought extinct shark Carcharodon Megalodon with some help from the American government, Arnold Schwarzenegger, some scientists, and the BBC. Everything  is going swimmingly until the prehistoric behemoth escapes and begins to eat people. And whales. So many whales. Will our 8,000 heroes be able to stop it!?! Probably. There’s really not that much to worry about.


Last year to commemorate the best television watching week of the year I reviewed Peter Benchley’s Jaws and compared it to the film version from Steven Spielberg. And while the shark didn’t follow anyone to the Bahamas to roar at them it just didn’t live up to the film version, probably because everyone was too busy being terrible people and not enough time getting eaten alive.

So this year I decided to switch things up and read a non-Jaws centered novel and I did it in the easiest way possible, by seeing what I could borrow for free on my Kindle. Enter Sharc, a cautionary tale about why not to take presumed extinct giant sharks and try to lock them in confined spaces. AKA why we shouldn’t keep letting billionaires play with science. HASN’T JEFF GOLDBLUM SUFFERED ENOUGH!?!

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The Original Shark Week: Cassie-la Takes a Bite Out of “Jaws” by Peter Benchley

Book: Jaws by Peter Benchley
: Jaws
Genre: Fiction, horror, shark, thriller, one of the few times the movie was actually better
Rating: 3.6 out of 5 stars (book), 4.9 out of 5 stars (movie)

SummaryA vicious killer fish from the deep wreaks havoc on the seaside town of Amity, killing four people and ruining the economy for its poor citizens. Caught between his desire to save lives and save the struggling town, police chief Brody is forced to make some painful decisions. Add in a mob subplot, a wife dissatisfied with her life choices and a horny ichthyologist and you have a book that will have you jumping into the water, into the fins of a much nobler shark who’s at least true to himself.

Last August in a slightly inebriated post about reading as escapism, I had the brilliant (see: shark themed) idea to read and review Jaws in honor of Shark Week. AND I ACTUALLY REMEMBERED TO DO IT! You’re welcome everyone who still doesn’t actually care. And you’re actually welcome shark enthusiasts.

As documentaries and the internet will tell you, Jaws (the book, not the Spielberg movie- yes, there is a book) was inspired by the Jersey Shore attacks of 1916, not to be confused with the Snooki attacks of the 21st century. Scientists believe the five attacks were perpetrated by one shark, a SHARK WITH A LUST FOR BLOOD! Or one who was sick/starving and probably confused by the influx of flesh in the hypodermic needle strewn water during a freak heat wave. I kid, I’m sure the water was just full of mob bodies in 1916.

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