#Hamilton and More | Rapid Reviews

Hamilton (Disney+)

Can you call it a musical when 99 percent is singing? Or is it borderline opera? There’s a funny thought after seeing Jefferson and Hamilton engage in a rap battle: opera.

It was a bit harder to keep an open mind regarding a musical about Alexander Hamilton’s life. The hype was real; it was off the charts. Everyone talked about the play and how wonderful it was. I felt like nothing short of the players coming on stage and telling the world how to cure cancer was going to be “wow” enough. But, as the play progressed, I found myself enjoying it more and more. By the end, I was invested.

The singing was wonderful. I loved how they used the company players/background players as “special effects,” such as acting like a hurricane or rewinding time.

It was a little hard to get the jokes at first. The singing–especially the rap songs–went too fast and all I could hear was “blah, blah, blah-blah…*laughter*.” I felt like, “What did I just miss?” It made the experience less enjoyable to feel left out. Other times, I could understand them, but they would move on to the next lines so quickly I didn’t have time to process the joke.

Speaking of enunciation, the players, for the most part, enunciated the lyrics well. I could tell they had experience projecting for a theater crowd. However, there were times when it seemed like they muttered or sang fast.

The lighting was also well done and everyone hit their marks and cues, as far as I know. You know the old theater saying, “If you make a mistake, act like you didn’t…the audience will never know.” The whole performance seemed fluid.

Finally, I enjoyed how the singers fluctuated their voices so you could tell when they were sad, scared, or happy. Their acting ability came through their singing, which can be hard to do sometimes. (I also enjoyed the few times they broke the fourth wall by addressing the audience or acknowledging that a sad scene had just occurred.) 

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Breaking Free by Caleb Monroe (book)

The story about a man and his griffin was immediately captivating. The way Monroe described the storm made me feel like I was there with Jacob. The way Monroe described Jacob’s mental issues made me feel Jacob’s pain; I felt as if I were in his shoes. I felt each bout of anxiety.

The book did have typos and missing words here and there but not enough that I couldn’t figure out the story. Also, I felt like I couldn’t get a completely clear picture of what Jacob looked like. I could piece together an image from his actions, like brushing his hair back, but it felt fuzzy.

I really enjoyed that the book seemed to be meant for teens, or older teens, yet the main character was in his 20s. The book had the style and language of a book targeted for a mid to late teen audience. Normally, a teen story will focus on teenage characters. The book could be classified as new adult, but it seemed to miss the more mature language, violence, and themes new adult fiction might contain–except for Jacob having a mental illness. This twist in the classification of genre made the story even more intriguing, though confusing at first when I tried to figure out Jacob’s age. It took me a few chapters to realize he was an adult.

Finally, it didn’t seem like there were large sections of boring material, or large areas of endless exposition. Any exposition seemed to flow right in line with the story. Near the end, I did start to feel tired and wanted to finish, but that is more because I was almost done reading and I wanted to finish than anything to do with the story.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Do you have any movies, books, or games to recommend? Let me know in the comments. Don’t forget to like, follow, and share.

Until the next wormhole…thanks for reading!


Do you like sci-fi and fantasy? Hungry for adventure?

From July 1-31, many of my books will be on sale during the Smashwords Summer/Winter Sale. The participating books will be anywhere from 25% to 100% off. While there, check out some of the other participating authors.

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