The Americans. The best TV show in a decade worked its way to an appropriate ending—tense, understated, and heartbreaking. I tend to be a more careful observer of writing and directing than I am of acting, but Noah Emmerich was incredible, and his character pivoted in ways that I didn't see in the earlier seasons. Give that man an Emmy. As I watched the final episodes, I realized that there are few weekly/serial shows ready to fill its space. I applaud the Americans for its measured pace and slow consideration of work and family, and damn—I'll miss it. (Grade: A+)

Blackout/All Clear by Connie Willis. A friend recommended these novels to me, and although I don't have a particular interest in the period (World War II), I found Willis's depiction of the period to be absolutely captivating. I wanted a bit more of the sci fi to be foregrounded, but maybe I'll get that in Willis's other work, which I've now added to the (forever growing) reading list. I read All Clear in two days—I couldn't put it down. (A-)

Kindle Paperwhite. Speaking of books, I bought a Kindle Paperwhite—partially due to ailing eyes and a growing reading-on-screens aversion, and partially due to my love of Overdrive. The state of Ohio has a wonderful library system, and Overdrive's new Libby app makes it very easy to import books into the Paperwhite. I'm sure I'll still buy too many paper books, but right now the Paperwhite is really working for me. (A)

God of War. My interest in video games is waning, and I rarely play games to their conclusion anymore, but this one was a compelling exception. I was engrossed with the world-building and the development of the father/son relationship, and I spent a fair bit of time sailing around the world, looking for new mysteries and story threads. There's a lot of critical hype around this game, and I think it's well deserved. (A)

FC Cincinnati. Cincinnati now has a major league soccer team. Given how terrible the Reds are this season, should I pick up soccer as a second sport? If I get on at the ground level—depsite the hype—can I avoid being bandwagonesque? (Grade: Incomplete)

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Tim Lockridge



tim lockridge

writer, reader, professor

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