About Me

Hello!  Welcome to my blog.  I am very excited to have a blog named after me (I am the Debbie of debbiewinkler.com) and I hope that I can help you decide whether to read the books I have read or watch the movies I have reviewed.  It would be great if I helped you find something new, too!  I try to review at least a book or movie every week day so there should always be something new to read about.

The blog is named after me, but it is actually a team effort between myself and my brother, Jerry.  The blog was his idea – he would do all the behind-the-scenes tech work and I would supply the content.  Though we live on separate continents and are time zones apart, we have always been really good friends and we are looking forward to working together.  Also, by doing the blog this way, we are able to concentrate on what we do best!   It is the best of both worlds, as far as I am concerned.

Books

I have been an avid reader since I was in kindergarten.  I have always loved to immerse myself in other worlds and pretend to be someone extraordinary, someone who looks forward to adventure and can solve crimes, finish the quest, and save the world.  I have pretty eclectic taste in books so I read a little bit of all genres and I read books suitable for a wide variety of age groups.  I have a large family and they rely on me for book recommendations and all of them like something different.  This is great because I try a lot of books that I would not otherwise pick up and I am often pleasantly surprised.  That said, I do not often read what is popular or bestselling – I read what interests me.  Also, I want to assure you that I have personally read every book that I review in this blog.  I don’t get these books for free and I am not a paid reviewer – this is simply a day-to-day dialogue of my book reading habits.

I used to be able to read a book or two a day when I was in middle school & high school and I foolishly thought that I would have even more time to read when I was older.  What a joke!  I do not have as much time to read as I used to, but I still read a lot more than the average person out there.  I have mountains of to-be-read books awaiting my attention and a huge backlog of books that I read over the last few years awaiting a chance to be reviewed.  I sometimes wonder how many reviews I would have if I started reviewing books when I was young…

Movies

Anyway, vying for my attention and partitioning time away from my book reading habits are movies!  Yes, the lure of the silver screen and all of its magic!  My sister introduced me to Netflix (the by-mail rental DVD service that charges you a flat rate per month) and I have never looked back.  I love going to see movies in the movie theatre and getting the full experience, but I am cheap enough to only pay for movies that I know are worth it.  This means that I rent a lot of movies that I know I will enjoy, but don’t really want to fork over $12 for.  My Netflix queue is almost always full (it holds 500 movies) and I am constantly checking out the new releases online.  I watch 10 or more movies a week through Netflix rentals and TV movies.  Now I am trying to capture my movie experiences by posting my reviews online and I must admit that it is fun to go back and remember everything I have watched in the last couple of weeks.  It will be even more useful to me next year when I can’t remember what I saw this year!

More About Me

So, it may sound like I spend all my time watching movies and reading books, but, alas, such is not the case!  I wish that I was independently wealthy and could spend all of my time focused on my hobbies, but I can’t afford it.  I work full time at a packaging company as a project manager, go to church every Sunday, babysit nieces and nephews, travel on vacations, go out with friends, play video games and watch TV shows.  I am also obsessed with the Lord of the Rings trilogy, loved the Pirates of the Caribbean movies and pretty much follow anything science fiction or fantasy related in the entertainment industry.  Eventually, I am sure that you will hear about these other adventures, but I haven’t figured out how I am going to squeeze them in as there are so many movies & books awaiting my reviews!

On a personal note, I am single female in my early 30s.  I live in Southern California, where I was born and raised.  I have 2 brothers and 3 sisters.  I currently have 13 nieces and nephews with who knows how many more on the way!  I also have a large extended family and quite a few friends who try their best to keep me out of mischief.

My Reviews

Another thing that you should know about me is that I give fairly low ratings in comparison to your average reviewer.  Most books & movies that I rate will get a 3 out of 5 star rating from me.  This is my average rating and means that the book was a good read, but not a great read or that the movie was entertaining, but nothing special.  These books & movies are still worth your time, but not necessarily standouts or something amazing or unusual.  Books & movies that get a 4 out of 5 star rating are very good – definitely worth your time to read or rent.  These books & movies are funny, memorable, well-written and action-packed.  Books & movies that get a 5 out of 5 star rating are simply amazing.  I don’t give many books or movies 5 stars, but, if I do, I hope that you put it on your to-be-read list ASAP or that you will run out to watch the movie in the theatres while you still can!  Books and movies that get 1 or 2 stars out of 5 are either poorly written, too predictable, unfinishable, boring or all of the above.  Again, these are my personal opinions and you are totally welcome to disagree with me on any and/or all of my ratings.

Although I may earn a small amount from affiliate links / ads, I do not have any kind of paid sponsorship for my book and movie reviews so you are reading my honest thoughts on the film or book that I have reviewed.  Of course, my review can be influenced by my mood at the time or whether I like a certain actor or actress or when I last ate.  Also, just because I give 2 books 4 stars does not make them equally entertaining.  I try to evaluate each book or movie on its own merits and rate it accordingly.

My reviews are divided up into 3 parts.  For books, I include: a synopsis of the book’s plot, my review or opinion on what I liked and didn’t like about the book, and content.  I added the content section for my cousin, Todd.  He doesn’t like to read books that are really violent or have a lot of gory details about murders.  He wants to know what kind of book he is getting into before he starts reading it.  While there are a lot of websites and reviews about movies and TV shows, there really isn’t anything set up for books.  Everyone is very concerned about what they and their kids are watching, but no one has set up a formal rating system for books.  I believe that my imagination is just as vivid and colorful as a TV or movie screen and I know that books are often a lot more violent and explicit than the most hardcore movie you can find.  I will not be assigning a rating, but I will tell you what kind of activity takes place in the book and help you find a book that is appropriate for you and any children you recommend books to.

For movie reviews, I include: a synopsis of the book’s plot, my review or opinion on what I liked and didn’t like about the book, and content.  The movie synopsis is most often taken from the DVD back cover or from Netflix.com.  My review contains my opinion on the movie.  I will try to include what I liked and what I didn’t like, what I was thinking about while I watched it and if I think it is worth your time to watch it.  The rating section will include any “hot” topics that may preclude your watching the film.  If you don’t like a lot of nudity or sex or violence or whatever, this section will include a short listing of what types of violence are in the film, if I felt that there was a lot of swearing, etc.  You can also check for this information on several other movie sites and I do encourage you to carefully select your movies based on more that the rating system.

Final Words

I am very excited to start this and hope that I can help other people find some great books & movies out there.  You should be hearing from me regularly regarding what books I am reading, what movies I am watching, my opinions on life in general and anything else I feel like sharing.  I am brand new at this so please stick with me while I get my bearings and hopefully have a smooth introduction to cyberspace.  We are still growing, but I hope that you will come back and visit often as I do post reviews every weekday so there is always something new to learn about!

Enough with the explanations.  I always hate introductions and forwards in books so I apologize for inflicting my own on you.  Hopefully these few paragraphs will help you know what to expect from me in the future.

I look forward to seeing you again!
Debbie