Stop the Pounding Heart (2013) - Sara Carlson, Colby Trichell, Tim Carlson Weaver
Sara, a girl being home-schooled on a goat farm alongside her 11 siblings, finds her devout values challenged after she meets Colby, an amateur bull rider (IMDb). This film was at the Cannes Film Festival in 2013 and was praised for its quiet tone and its faux-documentary style of storytelling. It's a slow, methodical film that demands your attention. Critics say it's worthy of your patience.
Pound of Flesh (2015) - Jean-Claude Van Damme, Darren Shahlavi, Charlotte Peters
A man's heroic attempt to help a woman in distress ends up with him waking up the next day without a kidney and plotting his revenge (IMDb). With a tag line "The Black Market is about to get bloody," why are you reading the newspaper and not watching this movie? Also, when will bad guys learn not to anger action stars?
Batman: Arkham Knight (PS4, XONE, PC)
Rocksteady Studios returns for the fourth and possibly last installment in the "Batman: Arkham" series. Taking place in Gotham City, the Scarecrow is aided by the "Arkham Knight" to unite many of Batman's enemies and kill him. Much like the previous games, gameplay will be focused on combat and stealth and will incorporate a large, open-world Gotham City to explore. Rocksteady has stated that they wrote the series with an end in mind, and that this game would come with a definitive conclusion. Early reviews are hailing the game for its graphics and extensive open world.
Grey - E L James (576 pages)
James builds off the success of her "Fifty Shades" franchise and brings readers the story from Christian Grey's point of view. Grey in the previous novels was a bit of a mystery to readers, and the story does carry its own baggage of controversy. Early readers either admired how human Grey became in this novel, or chastised James for ruining the mystery of Grey's character and distilling an already thin plot.
Truth or Die - James Patterson and Howard Roughan (416 pages)
The truth will set you free - if it doesn't kill you first. New York attorney Trevor Mann's world shatters when he receives a phone call telling him his girlfriend has been shot dead in a mugging. But the circumstances point to something more calculated than a random attack. Claire was a New York Times journalist and Trevor is convinced she had unearthed a secret so shocking that she was murdered to keep it coming to light. Chasing Clair's leads, Trevor will risk everything to discover what exactly she was killed for. It's time to find out the truth, or die. (Goodreads.com). This is Patterson's 140th novel, his eigth this year.
Country - Maya Banks (272 pages)
They say young love doesn't last, but a girl from the wrong side of the tracks with unique abilities and the hometown golden boy were determined to defy the odds. For Zack Covington, Anna Grace - his "Gracie" - was the one. Until one night forever alters the course of their future, when a devastated Gracie disappears without a trace, leaving Zack to agonize over what happened to the girl he loved. Now working for Devereaux Security, he stumbles across a painting featuring a special place only he and Gracie would know. The image is too perfectly rendered for it to be coincidence. His Gracie must be alive. When he finally tracks her down, he is shocked - and heart-broken - to discover the wounded shell of the girl he once knew and still loves (Goodreads.com). This is the third novel in the "Slow Burn" series.