Thursday is for Dance reviews and authors

Posted: Thursday, August 09, 2007 by Travis Cody in

We're a week closer to discovering who is America's favorite dancer. If that doesn't interest you, then please scroll on down for yet another Thursday 13 list of authors from my library.

If neither of those things interest you, oooops! Sorry! That's what I got today.

The Final 6

Judges tonight are Mary Murphy, Nigel Lithgow, and the most excellent Debbie Allen.

Dancers perform two routines in pairs and a solo in their own style for votes to advance four to the finale.

The first dance:

Lacey (swing and Latin) and Pasha (ballroom) dance Hip Hop choreographed by Dave Scott. We’ve been waiting for this pairing – but not for Hip Hop, although we liked that! Pasha always surprises us at how versatile he can be. And Lacey’s movement was sharp and precise. They had a few issues with synching up the side by side movement, but it didn’t matter. They danced well, they performed well, and they had great energy.

Sabra dances her solo – beautiful, joyful, and dramatic movement as always.

Lauren (contemporary jazz) and Danny (classical ballet) dance contemporary choreographed by Mia Michaels. That was perfect for the two of them. They had wonderful fluid movement with amazing technique and energy. We really liked that. All of the movement was so powerful and looked so effortless. That was a professional dance. Wow.

Pasha dances his solo – he has told a complete story in about 30 seconds.

Sabra (contemporary) and Neil (contemporary) dance Jazz choreographed by Mandy Moore. There was quite a bit of gymnastics in that choreography, which we liked. They showed power and control, and made the movements look sharp and effortless. But we did enjoy the dance much more when they finally got away from the table.

Lauren dances her solo – we have enjoyed her journey on this program.

And the second dance:

Lacey (swing and Latin) and Pasha (ballroom) dance smooth Waltz choreographed by Hunter Johnson. We would have preferred a swing or a jive, or even a Broadway, but we will take that one. We couldn’t take our eyes off of it. It was beautiful and passionate and absolutely lovely. It was like a fairy tale, as a Waltz should be.

Neil dances his solo – we love the way he is able to control his movement in the air.

Lauren (contemporary jazz) and Danny (classical ballet) dance disco choreographed by Doriana Sanchez. We didn’t care for that at all. We’re not fans of disco. And the camera moving around so much really bothered us. I will give them props for performing very difficult choreography. This is just not a style that appeals to us. The judges were very complimentary, and I must say that the dance did have lots of energy and performance.

Lacey dances her solo – she’s a tremendous performer, hawt and sexy!

Sabra (contemporary) and Neil (contemporary) dance Paso Doble choreographed by Tony Meredith. Neil kept his hips centered and that’s not right for Paso. You must lead with your hips in every movement. The final lift was outstanding. Sabra was tremendous. The screams and cheers for that dance were somewhat overdone. It wasn’t worth that kind of response. The judges were a little too effusive in their praise – the choreography was wonderfully difficult but Neil’s technique wasn’t up to standard for a Paso. Sabra was fantastic.

Danny dances his solo – only three words will do: brilliant professional dancer.

The choreography and the dancing were excellent for the most part tonight. And now Pam and I must each decide who we want to win and cast our votes. No more splitting.

We rank the dancers tonight from best to not best – because they are all outstanding at what they do. There’s no “worst” in this group of six.

1. Danny
2. Neil
3. Sabra
4. Lacey
5. Lauren
6. Pasha

We have no idea if that’s how they will ultimately rank. It’s up to the fans now and if you’ve watched these kinds of reality shows before, you know that the best isn’t always the winner. It comes down to the dancer who has connected most with voters.

Results are next Monday, because tonight is FOOTBALL!!!


Yeah I know, it’s only the first pre-season game. But it’s football and I’m ready for it. Tonight it’s Super Bowl champion Indianapolis Colts vs Dallas Cowboys.

I get bored very fast with pre-season games. But it's only a month now until the real deal. And that's worth one more...


I've hit an interesting section of my library. This group of 13 authors consists of several books that I've inherited from various sources. Some I haven't read, so applying the rating system is problematic.

As a reminder, here are the ratings: (NR) Not Recommended, (R) Recommended, (HR) Highly Recommended, (RR) Really Recommended. If I haven't read the book, I won't put a code for the author unless I'm familiar with other work.

Oh, and if you're interested in previous lists, click here.

1. John Milton (HR) - Paradise Lost
2. Margaret Mitchell (NR) - Gone With the Wind
3. Nicholas Monsarrat - The Cruel Sea
4. Ewan Mantagu - The Man Who Never Was
5. Robin Moore - The Fifth Estate
6. Michael Moorcock (HR) - The Elric Saga, The Nomad of Time
7. Anton Myrer (R) - Once an Eagle
8. E.M. Nathanson - The Dirty Dozen (I recommend the movie!)
9. Andre Norton - Chronicles of the Witch World
10. Leslie O'Kane (R) - Play Dead
11. Boris Pasternak (R) - Doctor Zhivago
12. James Patterson - Jack and Jill
13. Mario Puzo (NR) - The Godfather (see the film)


  1. The cruel sea sounds vaguely familiar... I might have read an abridged version in school ...

    By the way, congratulations on the 18th spot on the bestest blog(is it still called that?) site. I visited the new site once or twice recently, but got lost among the posts and comments :D

  1. Julie says:

    Great review baby! Once again another breathtaking episode, huh? I cannot choose a favorite and neither can the couple people that I know who watch it.

    So....not till Monday huh? How frustrating!

  1. Dan says:

    To answer the question "So You Think You Can Dance". No. I don't think I can dance. Actually, I know I can't. That's because I'm white. White men, by definition, can not dance.

  1. Shelby says:

    great list and great books!

  1. honey you do not recommend gone with the wind? i am speechless sir! simply speechless. i think i must go get a piece of cake so i don't simply faint from the shock of it all.....

    swoon, bee

  1. Great list, Trav!

    Happy TT

  1. wolfbaby says:

    i had to giggle at some of those NR and r's and agree... gone with the wind *shrudder* the movie as bad enough but the book ugh

  1. Man, I would have *loved* to see Pasha and Lacey dance the Paso Doble. *drools* I didn't think much of Neil/Sabre's performance until the final lift. It'll be interesting tonight! Happy TT!

  1. Travis says:

    Terra: Thanks. I found the site a little confusing as well. I think it's still Bestest Blog.

    Julie: Yup, not till Monday dangit. We had a hard time deciding on how to vote. Pasha was so good last night, and he has always been a favorite. Then we enjoyed Lacey and Sabra. But Danny is so damn good!

    Dan: Some white men can't, but some can - like me! LOL!

    Shelby: Thanks Ma'am!

    Bee: Awww I'm sorry dear. It just wasn't my kind of book. Have two pieces of CAKE.

    CWM: Thanks!

    Wolfbaby: I'm with ya!

    Joely: No kidding! But that smooth Waltz was so good! And Sabra is one of our favorites. This is the most talented group of dancers in the three seasons of the show.

  1. Footbaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaal! WOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!


    BTW - training camp for the Browns got washed out today, so no Quinn sighting for me. Sigh. Damn tornado warning!

  1. Danielle says:

    You are a clear example of a good writer needs to read!!!!

    As always be well and enjoy the day

  1. I've actually read most of this week's list. GWTW the book was a bit different than the movie...and frankly my dear....

    I'm sorta watching football from afar until MONDAY! (laughing)

    we need some sort of virtual football pool....

  1. Travis says:

    Songbird: Well, we'll see how Mr Quinn does. I gotta start looking at stuff again to see how my predictions will fall out.

    Danielle: Why thank you.

    Katherine: We should publish our picks for the weekend's games on Fridays and see who does best.

  1. Dang...I know I have a comment in my head, but I keep getting sidetracked. "Fame! I wanna live forever!" keeps rocketing around my brain.

    Which is good as it cushions the shock over the NR for GWTW. You realize the only book that outsales GWTW is The Bible? Guess which I prefer :P

  1. Skittles says:

    Holy cow.. the only one of those I've read is The Godfather!

    I remember Dirty Dozen, too! It was so good. It still is. :)

  1. Travis says:

    Starrlight: Sorry darlin - just can't recommend a book I didn't like.

    Skittles: It surprises me that I have so many books in my library that I haven't read. Those are mostly the ones I cleaned out of my grandfather's library. Some I got at library bag sales - fill up a bag for $1. I'm sure I'll get around to them someday.