The Commute: Homecoming, Bosch and Orphan X

I used to commute on my bike, but I live too far away from the city now, so unfortunately the train it is. I would love to write on the train, J.K.  style, but she must have lived on a quiet route.  As much as a standing up desk is recommended, I cannot bring myself to jot one word down in vertical position.
Normally I don't mind the train, but British trains, are dirty, slow, and how to say this? Weird. My husband, who commutes everyday, comes back every night with a new tale. Yesterday in the packed rush hour train a women grabbed on to his water bottle that was strapped to his bag. Not for a sec, no, she held on, for the whole trip.
Anyway, I have become dependent on entertainment to get me through.

This is what I listened, watched and read on the train this week:

Gregg Hurwitz

To distract me, books should be simple and engaging. The title gives it all away, in this case.  Even if you never heard about it, I think you can guess the story. In the vein of Nikita, or an episode in Alias, or even the Americans, Evan Smoak, the orphan, was raised in a secret government program to become a killer. After struggling with his conscience Evan manages to get out. Now he freelances as The Nowhere Man, a saviour of people in need. When he gets a call, he knows an innocent is in danger. When his new client contacts him, on the run from the mob, they have kidnapped her father and want her to pay off gambling debts, his very orderly live starts to crumble.  Bullets start to fly, the girl is sexy and doesn't seem to be trustworthy, and with mayhem about rain down on him, Evan's neighbour makes him babysit her kid (that was my favorite bit).
Aside from a small thing, (I hate it when the story gets interrupted by chapters from the bad guys point of vue) it's a fast paced and not very complicated ride. The reviews were ecstatic  and I was late to the party,  Bradley Cooper is going to play Evan and the sequel Nowhere man just came out this week, but if you haven't read it yet, don't expect anything earth-shattering, just uncomplicated fun, a bit of pretentiousness, and enough action to keep the pages turning.

Eli Horowitz, Micah Bloomberg and  Mark Phillips 

Now this is exciting. A podcast going back to old school radio. Bringing fiction, a play, such a simple concept, but for some reason not often done. Homecoming is about a government facility in Florida who welcomes soldiers, helps them with their reintroduction in to society. Al least that is what they claim to be. With flash back and forwards, it centers on caseworker Heidi Bergman, Catherine Keener, who after being let go by the facility, works as a waitress. Oscar Isaacs plays Walter Cruz the soldier she invested most of her time in, David Schwimmer plays her asshole boss Colin Belfast. It's mysterious, funny, nicely structured, very naturalistic, I loved it and it made the time fly by. 

BOSCH on Amazon Prime

Again late to the show. It's renewed for a third season, one of Amazon Prime most popular shows, but I was convinced it would be any good. I read all of Connelly's books, and was reluctant to see them change the iconic police detective. But you gotta love TV. In movies a drunken British lush will morph into Emily Blunt. Always trying to make characters commercial, appealing and bland. Amazon let Connelly produce, and even if Titus Welliver is not how I imagine Bosch at all, he is believable, like Jamie 'Marlo' Hector as his partner and Annie Wershing as his lover, and kind of a loser rookie cop. Reviewers have complained that the show was formulaic, but that's missing the point. Connoly is the master of formulaic, a good thriller always has to be at once comforting and scary. His style does that seamlessly. It's impossible to pay attention to Connelly's writing, it's invisible. It is just story. It seems so easy, and extremely hard to do. Dazzling with stylistic flourishes, incredible sentences, original word play, is easier. For anyone with talent, it is so much harder to just disappear and tell a story. So, is the show the same? Again it is hard to know. So you just have to compare it to something as Major Crimes, a show that covers much of the same ground. Bosch it is much more gripping,  smooth, well acted, fast paced. Effective.