Sunday Morning Book Thread 10-19-2014: Doom and Gloom [OregonMuse]


dystopia 4.jpg

Good morning morons and moronettes and welcome to AoSHQ's stately, prestigious, and high-class Sunday Morning Book Thread. The only AoSHQ thread that is so hoity-toity, pants are required. Or kilts. Kilts are OK, too. But not tutus.


Heh.

I had last week's book thread up on my work computer last week, the one with the photo of the 3 ugly cavemen, and one of the managers happened to walk by and see it, and remarked, "Oh, I didn't know Grand Funk Railroad was doing a reunion tour."


Deriding Dreary Dystopias of Dreck

Author/editor Kathryn Cramer over at the HuffPo wants you to know that she's had it with dystopian sci-fi:

As our world became more complicated and our shiny futuristic infrastructure began to age and fail, dystopias emerged as a subgenre of science fiction...In 2011, following the Fukushima disaster, Neal Stephenson came to the realization that much of our crucial infrastructure is aging, and we are dependent upon infrastructure built in the 50s, 60s, and 70s. He wrote about this in an essay called Innovation Starvation. He gave a speech on this subject at GoogleX conference. Michael Crow, President of Arizona State University challenged him, saying that we had stopped getting big stuff done because science fiction writers like Stephenson had stopped envisioning it.

Well, that's certainly an interesting perspective, but I doubt that it's true. I think the real reason we're no longer getting "big stuff" done is that it just costs too damn much. Combine this with the fact that, most, if not all, of the governments of the world are run by idiots who have absolutely no clue how wealth is created, and who are only interested in taking it from people they don't like and giving it to those they do, and you get a sure-fire recipe for a bleak dystopian future full of poverty, want, and hard times.

One of the purposes of this article is for Ms. Cramer to promote her own, recently published anthology, Hieroglyph: Stories and Visions for a Better Future, which is fine. It's a compendium of "techno-optimistic" stories by writers such as Cory Doctorow, Bruce Sterling, and Neal Stephenson. But this revolt against the smothering, ubiquitous presence of dystopian-themed fiction is being introduced as if it's some Big New Thing.

However, if Ms. Cramer was familiar with the indie sci-fi writers, or even had been reading the stately and prestigious AoSHQ book thread, she would have known that we had this covered a year ago. 'Human Wave' science fiction has been around for awhile. In fact, Sarah Hoyt wrote her HW manifesto back in 2012. I kind of like her guidelines for writing. For example:

5 -- You shall not commit grey goo. Grey goo, in which characters of indeterminate moral status move in a landscape of indeterminate importance towards goals that will leave no one better or worse off is not entertaining...

6 -- Unless absolutely necessary you will have a positive feeling to your story. By this we don't mean it will have a happy ending or that we expect pollyanish sentiments out of you. Your novel and setting can be as dystopic as you want it. In fact, your character can die at the end. Just make sure he goes down fighting and dies for something, so the reader doesn't feel cheated.

For some examples of this, we can start with Ms. Hoyt's own works, such as Darkship Thieves, the first of her Darkship trilogy, followed up by Darkship Renegades, and then A Few Good Men.

There are more human wave authors listed at this old post at Sabrina Chase's blog, with the caveat that the prices she quotes no longer apply.

Webster's Insults

And while I was on the HuffPo site, I came across this piece on some forgotten words from Webster's original 1828 dictionary, and I amused myself by imagining the insults a modern-day politician could create using them. For example, under babblement (babblement means, as you might guess, 'senseless prattle'), we learn that that another word for gossip or chatter is twattle. That's the first word. Combine this with sheep-bite, which means 'to practice petty thefts' and you have this: "my opponent is a twattling sheep-biter", and is that a great insult, or what? It has an almost Shakespearean flavor to it, I think.

Another word on the list is obambulate, which means 'to walk about', and considering how close the first part of this word is to the president's name, you'd think the author would either (a) make a joke, or (b) at least give some indication that such jokes could be made. But being that this is the HuffPo, you know this isn't going to happen. HuffPo writers are a bunch of tardigradous, daggle-tailed mafflers, every one of them.

Not to mention fopdoodles and rakeshames. Or, in modern language, MSNBC.


More Book Covers

Last week I linked to a bunch of really crappy book covers. But this week, I hope to do you a better turn by linking to some better ones, namely, 30 Beautiful Vintage Dust Jackets. Just scroll down past the 'Find vintage books with beautiful dust jackets' search form on that page. Most of them appear to be from the 1930s to the 60s.

Thanks to Mike Hammer for the link.


Google Announces New Products

I love competition:

Google has announced a bevy of new products today, including a new phone. The most compelling new device is a tablet, dubbed the Nexus 9. It is made by HTC and the hardware will seriously give the Apple iPad Air a run for its money.

The Google Nexus 9 features a 8.9-inch display with IPS LCD technology, an 8-megapixel camera at its back, a 1.6-megapixel camera up front, and an NVIDIA Tegra K1 2.3GHz (64-bit) processor under the hood. There is a staggering 2 GB of RAM, which destroys the iPad Air which only has 1 GB. Great sound is provided by the HTC BoomSound speakers, which is the same audio featured in the HTC One M8 and HTC One M7.

That's an impressive amount of horsepower for a tablet. Not that I'm complaining. I really like my Nexus 7, so the 9 may be worth looking at as a future upgrade, perhaps when the price comes down a bit.


NYC Local

If you're ever in New York City and want to visit some of the local independent bookstores, here is a slideshow presentation of the 10 best. I'm not sure what criteria was used to determine that these particular bookstores are the best, other than the opinion of whoever it was who compiled the list.

But the photos are nice, regardless.


The Advent of Our Lord and Saviour

This one's a real hoot. In a thread from a couple of weeks ago, moron commenter D-Lamp brought The Gospel According to Apostle Barack: In Search of a More Perfect Political Union as "Heaven Here on Earth" to my attention.

Hear ye and know ye that this is no ordinary book. It is, as its author informs us, divinely inspired:

[A]s I began to contemplate ways to assist Barack in his 2012 re-election bid something miraculous happened. I felt God's (His) Spirit beckoning me in my dreams at night. Listening, cautiously, I learned that Jesus walked the earth to create a more civilized society, Martin (Luther King) walked the earth to create a more justified society, but, Apostle Barack, the name he was called in my dreams, would walk the earth to create a more equalized society, for the middle class and working poor. Apostle Barack, the next young leader with a new cause, had been taken to the mountaintop and allowed to see over the other side. He had the answers to unlock the kingdom of "heaven here on earth" for his followers. The answers were repeated - over and over - in speeches Barack had made from his presidential announcement to his inaugural address. Those speeches or his teachings contained the answers to the middle class and working poor people living in a "heaven here on earth." For when the answers were unlocked and enacted, Apostle Barack’s vision of America would be realized.

You might well ask, what sort of person would write such a book?

Barbara A. Thompson is a native of Tallahassee, Florida, with graduate degrees from Florida A&M University and Florida State University. She has been teaching for more than twenty-five years at the university level with experience in the areas of health, physical education and sport management. She is a professor at Florida A&M University...

Naturally. Only a peer-reviewed academic could be responsible for producing this mind-bogglingly stupid hagiography. Next time one of your liberal relatives or facebook friends tries to tag you with the "conservatives are dumb" line, just show them this. It should shut them right the hell up.

I've never seen a book on Amazon with 100% one-star ratings. The three "5-star" ones? They're actually joke reviews.

Once you get tired of laughing at that, I would recommend Obama: The Greatest President in the History of Everything by Frank J. Fleming. I especially like the review written by the guy who first bought it and then realized, "But this is satire!"


Books By Morons

Heh. Heard from a moron this week who identifies himself like this:

Hello,as a long time heckler under a thousand different names, none of which are Hector or Average Joe...

Not sure which one of you he is, but he wants us all to know that he has just published two novels. The first is Wolf Hunters : Origins. It's about

...settling a frontier with the premise that even with advanced technology, you can't carry with you all the modern, magical stuff. You are (at first) limited to hand tools, and primitive construction. Eventually the heroine makes a discovery that changes everything and wars start.

It's mostly about human behavior, mostly about characters. There are no dragons, vampires, or magical spells cast by wizards. It's about wilderness survival, about being hunted, about military tactics, about small unit tactics, and survival.

Wolf Hunter is 869 pages long, so you'll be in for a good, long read.

He's has also written a sequel, Wolf Hunters : Transitions. I don't know anything about him, but I like his Amazon bio:

Retired, after a lifetime of menial labor, the last fifteen years in an eighteen wheeler. Five of those years in a forty two wheeler.

Started reading Science Fiction in the sixth grade, a book by Andre Norton "The Stars are Ours". It changed my life. My parents bought me Zane Grey's westerns, all of them, and World Book Encyclopedia which I read as though they were novels.

I have trouble finding Science Fiction that I want to read, so I'm writing my own.

Sounds like a Real MoronTM. He also asks:

As a newly self published, never before published author, reader feedback would be appreciated. Thanks,


___________

How many of you are familiar with the Lone Ranger's backstory? I wasn't, until I read the wiki entry:

The Lone Ranger was named so because the character is the only survivor of a group of six Texas Rangers,[citation needed] rather than because he works alone (as he is usually accompanied by Tonto)...A posse of six members of the Texas Ranger Division pursuing a band of outlaws led by Bartholomew "Butch" Cavendish is betrayed by a civilian guide named Collins and is ambushed in a canyon named Bryant's Gap.[12] Later, an Indian named Tonto stumbles onto the scene and discovers one ranger is barely alive, and he nurses the man back to health. In some versions, Tonto recognizes the lone survivor as the man who saved his life when they both were children...Among the Rangers killed was the survivor's older brother, Daniel Reid, who was a captain in the Texas Rangers and the leader of the ambushed group.

And now moronette Sgt. Mom has just published her own take on this and other events in the life of this legendary hero in her new book, Lone Star Sons: Being The Entertaining and Mostly If not Always True Adventures of Texas Ranger Jim Reade and his Blood Brother Delaware Scout Toby Shaw in the Time of the Republic of Texas, which has just been released on Kindle for your reading pleasure at the low, low price of $2.99. I was fortunate enough to be one of the alpha readers for this book, and the stories were a delight to read. This book is actually intended for a YA audience, but don't let that deter you, fans of Sgt. Mom and of the Old West in general should thoroughly enjoy it.

___________

So that's all for this week. As always, book thread tips, suggestions, bribes, rumors, threats, and insults may be sent to OregonMuse, Proprietor, AoSHQ Book Thread, at the book thread e-mail address: aoshqbookthread, followed by the 'at' sign, and then 'G' mail, and then dot cee oh emm.

What have you all been reading this week? Hopefully something good, because, as you all know, life is too short to be reading lousy books.

Posted by: Open Blogger at 09:31 AM




Comments

(Jump to bottom of page)

1 Fallout 3!


Yay!

Posted by: EC at October 19, 2014 09:27 AM (doBIb)

2 Crickets . . .

Posted by: Sharkman at October 19, 2014 09:35 AM (rXB/r)

3
I had been working on a re-read of all the Mercedes Lackey Elemental Masters series on the Kindle. But the latest Ebola stuff made me think of The Stand so I stopped at Book 6 on the previous and picked up on the former. Although I am only a short way into it (long book), the parallels with this Ebolla stuff are amazing.

Posted by: Vic at October 19, 2014 09:35 AM (T2V/1)

4 Your Life's Work: Librarian
http://bit.ly/1oiZKM9

vintage b/w ed vid c/o Weird Universe

Posted by: mindful webworker - comic booker at October 19, 2014 09:37 AM (Ya0K5)

5 Worlds Apart Book 10 is out.

http://tinyurl.com/kskpevg

Battle-damaged and low on supplies after its climactic battle with "Ialdabaoth" at the end of Book 09, the pathfinder ship Pegasus limps into the Eventide system, where it's crew hopes to repair and restock.

Instead, they find a very backwards world, Eventide, of limited technology and resources. Worse yet, the meddling aliens known as the Kariad are about to once again fix Eventide's social inequalities, as they tried with disastrous consequences on other worlds.

What proceeds from this set up is a story of free market capitalism, pornography, Shakespeare... and a flamingly obvious 'Firefly' parody.

Posted by: Gregory of Yardale at October 19, 2014 09:38 AM (9y18Y)

6 Worlds Apart Book 10 is out.

http://tinyurl.com/kskpevg

Battle-damaged and low on supplies after its climactic battle with "Ialdabaoth" at the end of Book 09, the pathfinder ship Pegasus limps into the Eventide system, where it's crew hopes to repair and restock.

Instead, they find a very backwards world, Eventide, of limited technology and resources. Worse yet, the meddling aliens known as the Kariad are about to once again fix Eventide's social inequalities, as they tried with disastrous consequences on other worlds.

What proceeds from this set up is a story of free market capitalism, pornography, Shakespeare... and a flamingly obvious 'Firefly' parody.

Posted by: Gregory of Yardale at October 19, 2014 09:38 AM (9y18Y)

7 Combine this with the fact that, most, if not all, of the governments of
the world are run by idiots who have absolutely no clue how wealth is
created, and who are only interested in taking it from people they don't
like and giving it to those they do, and you get a sure-fire recipe for
a bleak dystopian future full of poverty, want, and hard times.



Exactly. Look at the truly capitalistic countries and you will see they are still getting things done. We haven't been a capitalist country since before the 1900s, sone argue even earlier. But the combines impact of FDR, LBJ, and now even worse the Choom King and we are now mired in socialist shit and are sinking faster on the charts than a heavy weight river fishing sinker.

Posted by: Vic at October 19, 2014 09:41 AM (T2V/1)

8 I am doing a drive by just to celebrate the fact that I can now be considered among the prestigious high-fallutin' morons and ettes in the book thread.

I am finally reading a book. Yay!

CS Lewis's The Great Divorce. Engaging almost right from the beginning. Love him.

I actually read Jim Geraghty's The Weed Agency. Highly recommend it. It was very well put together, hilarious, insightful and all too real. I was very impressed.

Ok. Need to get ready for church.

Toodles.

Posted by: Chique - free MWR! at October 19, 2014 09:41 AM (r+7wo)

9 Many years ago, I had read and enjoyed "Point of Impact" by Stephen Hunter.


For some reason,I am now Binge Reading the rest of the "Bob Lee Swagger" series, in the order that he wrote.

On my Nook Simple Reader.

Posted by: Village Idiot's Apprentice at October 19, 2014 09:42 AM (ziM/C)

10 Unless absolutely necessary you will have a positive feeling to your
story. By this we don't mean it will have a happy ending or that we
expect pollyanish sentiments out of you. Your novel and setting can be
as dystopic as you want it. In fact, your character can die at the end.
Just make sure he goes down fighting and dies for something, so the
reader doesn't feel cheated.



The first three books of the "Dies the Fire" trilogy are another fine example of that. Since then the series has kinda been wasted and I have dropped it. But the first three were great.

Posted by: Vic at October 19, 2014 09:43 AM (T2V/1)

11 Because I'm suffering from Adult Onset Attention Deficit Disorder, I'm bouncing back and forth betwixt three or four books at any give time:

Strike, the third in D.J. MacHale's SYLO YA trilogy
Skunk Works, by Ben Rich
Tigers I and II And Their Variants, by Walter J. Spielberger
Hail Hibbler, by Ron Goulart

Rereading "Skunk Works" after drooling over the SR-71 at Udvar-Hazy. Pulling out "Tigers" after that treadhead fest the other night. I HAD to buy "Hail Hibbler" after seeing that excrevescent cover in the above-linked post. It's even more retina-melting in real life. And don't be jealous, but it's a first edition!


Posted by: All Hail Eris at October 19, 2014 09:46 AM (QBm1P)

12 A good end of the world series is the Breakers series by Edward W. Robertson.

Well-written with nice twists, great characters, and a few Holy Shit moments.

Posted by: eman at October 19, 2014 09:46 AM (MQEz6)

13 A break from the relentlessness?
Try, "Yankee Boyhood", 1950, by R.E. Gould. (Those in the know may recognize that Gould is Ralph Moody's Uncle Ralph.)
It is, as Quarrel told Bond about his breakfast choices, "Mos' refreshin'."

Posted by: he of the hijacked browser at October 19, 2014 09:49 AM (sWmUD)

14 I work for a highway construction co. that also does what you would call infrastructure construction.

The idea that the underground infrastructure in your community is only 50 or 60 years old is a joke. You may live in a relatively new neighborhood but I assure you the VAST majority of the underground infrastructure in your area is much older.

The systems will collapse without continuous maintenance. There is no way to avoid it.

Posted by: weird flunky at October 19, 2014 09:50 AM (Dz5K8)

15 All Hail Eris > Adult Onset Attention Deficit Disorder

When full-blown, one has trouble actually reading comments, instead just hitting refresh like a lab-trained coke monkey.

Posted by: mindful webworker - oot oot at October 19, 2014 09:50 AM (Ya0K5)

16 Toodles.

Posted by: Chique - free MWR! at October 19, 2014 09:41 AM (r+7wo)

LOL, I haven't heard anyone use that term since I lived out in CA with a British woman.

Posted by: Vic at October 19, 2014 09:51 AM (T2V/1)

17 I found a book The Blue Nile among my grandfathers things a few years ago and finally got around to reading it. Its a history of western conquests of that area from about 1800 thru the 19th century. What happened there just illustrates how futile it is to deal with Muslim fanatics. Nothing has changed in hundreds of years there and we damned sure aren't going to change them. Better to just contain them and let them do their tribal thing without interference.

Anyway my copy it was a book of the month club book dated 1962 written by Alan Moorehead. I understand he wrote several books on that area and am going to try to track them down.


Posted by: freaked at October 19, 2014 09:51 AM (JdEZJ)

18 I read Count to a Trillion by John C. Wright. I'm afraid I can't recommend it unless you don't want to sleep or get other things done (like study for your solid state midterm).

Seriously, if you aren't reading Wright, you aren't reading right. Also highly recommended is his Awake in the Night Lands series. Wright creates science fiction with literally universal themes and consequences, intelligently exploring reality in a compelling and thoughtful way. His works, unlike much of what's been written lately, have a sense of wonder in them.

I'm currently working through the next book in that series as fast as I can.

Posted by: .87c at October 19, 2014 09:51 AM (AZtLb)

19 The first three books of the "Dies the Fire" trilogy are another fine example of that. Since then the series has kinda been wasted and I have dropped it. But the first three were great.
Posted by: Vic at October 19, 2014 09:43 AM (T2V/1)
-------

They are SO good. But as with any "fish out of temporal/technological water" story, like Eric Flint's 1632 series, I enjoy the initial onset of scrambling to survive, and the social and cultural impact. What really got me to thinking in the first book, "Dies the Fire", was the deep cultural divide between the generation that grew up in our globe-spanning technological world and the children who were born into what was essentially a non-functional Early Middle Ages. They would have very little common ground.

Once they've become acclimated it just becomes another medieval swords 'n' castles series.

Posted by: All Hail Eris at October 19, 2014 09:55 AM (QBm1P)

20 Posted before I read the thread (in true moron style). John C. Wright's stuff is completely in line with the type of literature Hoyt is espousing. Wright is calling it Superversive.

Seriously, read Awake in the Night Land or Count to a Trillion

Posted by: .87c at October 19, 2014 09:55 AM (AZtLb)

21 I don't know if it's already been covered here, but I've finished "The New Class Conflict", by Joel Kotkin. I only heard of the book because Glenn Reynolds has been pushing it pretty hard, so I decided to give it a read.

The book deals with the impact of the new economy on class segregation and it's impact, especially on the middle class (the yeomanry). There are some interesting insights comparing the new oligarchs (Gates, Zuckerberg, etc.) and their ability to control society compared to the old "robber barons". Hint: they are, if anything, far more powerful than the old tycoons. There is also discussion of how societies may adapt to address these not-always-desirable developments in order to mitigate their worst features.

Overall, this is a book I should have loved, but to be honest, it came across as a bit lightweight, and while competent, didn't live up to Reynolds' description. It's worth a read, but I see it as more of an incremental addition to this topic than the seminal work I was expecting. Perhaps I just spend too much time here and on related websites, but the ideas and concepts weren't as new or compelling as I expected. Three stars out of five.

Posted by: pep at October 19, 2014 09:55 AM (4nR9/)

22 Thanks OM for the mention.
Amazon lists the first book as 800 pages but I make it 440 single spaced on 8.5x11. Still too long but it explains how the characters came to be.

Book two is more action since the characters, and their habits are know.

Typos became an obsession and though they are still being found, I'm down to one or two (I hope).

I have no idea if I have any talent, so tips, hints, clues, and suggestions are needed. I know y'all are smarter 'n better educated than am I .

Thanks again for noticing.

Posted by: Skandia Recluse at October 19, 2014 09:56 AM (HOMjM)

23 Wait... the Gospel of Barack is not parody??

Until I read past the quote, I presumed it had to be.

Holy smoke.

Posted by: mindful webworker - oot oot at October 19, 2014 09:57 AM (Ya0K5)

24
Man, man, your time is sand, your ways are leaves upon the sea
I am the eyes of Nostradamus, all your ways are known to me

Posted by: Bradley Manning at October 19, 2014 09:57 AM (e8kgV)

25 23
Wait... the Gospel of Barack is not parody??


People are gullible.


Posted by: Joseph Smith at October 19, 2014 09:59 AM (4nR9/)

26 25
23

Wait... the Gospel of Barack is not parody??

People are gullible.




Posted by: Joseph Smith


I know, right?

Posted by: Marshall Applewhite at October 19, 2014 10:00 AM (4nR9/)

27 Blessed are the sheet-changers,

for they shall inherit Ebola.

Posted by: The Gospel of Barack - Book 16:11 at October 19, 2014 10:03 AM (KBvAm)

28 It is kind of a trick, but I think "La Peste", by Albert Camus is best read as a dark comedy. Not as good as Evelyn Waugh, but still funny.
It's a mental trick, p'raps, like the one that brought 6 salmon flies into the landing net of Trout Fishing in America's correspondant thay day beside the Klamath River.
Or, it could be a physical trick, to keep the comedic floating, as it were weightless despite the weight of all that sheer meat, a trick akin, as Humbert Humbert told us, to certain attainments in the arts.

Posted by: he of the hijacked browser at October 19, 2014 10:03 AM (sWmUD)

29 Just bought the Wolfhunters book.

I'll read it and write a review for next week or the week after.

BTW, the review will be one sentence citing the number of Ewoks out of five.

Posted by: eman at October 19, 2014 10:04 AM (MQEz6)

30 "People are gullible.




Posted by: Joseph Smith

I know, right?

No Shit

Posted by: Zombie Joseph Goebbels at October 19, 2014 10:04 AM (ziM/C)

31 Get thee behind me, Reggie.

Posted by: The Gospel of Barack - Book 11:16 at October 19, 2014 10:05 AM (KBvAm)

32 For those interested I just checked Amazon and they have the Blue Nile in paperback but kind of pricey. You can get it used. My local library doesn't have it.


It is not available on the Kindle at all.

Posted by: Vic at October 19, 2014 10:05 AM (T2V/1)

33 But I LIKE dystopian fiction; it gives me good ideas on how I'm going to survive the impending ebola-laden zombie apocalypse. BTW, I've typed the phrase "zombie apocalypse" so many times my phone now auto-populates the phrase into my messages.

Posted by: PabloD at October 19, 2014 10:05 AM (JTRE0)

34 31
Get thee behind me, Reggie.





Posted by: The Gospel of Barack - Book 11:16


Okay, now that's funny.

Posted by: pep at October 19, 2014 10:07 AM (4nR9/)

35 BTW on The Stand, for those of you who have the original version of the book instead of the extended version. Keep the original. All the extra stuff doesn't really add much other than diarrhea of the typewriter and it slows the plot of the book already probably too slow.

Posted by: Vic at October 19, 2014 10:10 AM (T2V/1)

36 CS Lewis's The Great Divorce. Engaging almost right from the beginning. Love him.

I know, right? TGD is one of Mrs. Muse's favorite books.

Posted by: OregonMuse at October 19, 2014 10:11 AM (yRdR4)

37 BTW on The Stand, for those of you who have the original version of the book instead of the extended version. Keep the original. All the extra stuff doesn't really add much other than diarrhea of the typewriter and it slows the plot of the book already probably too slow.

Unfortunately, the Kindle store only has the extended version.

Posted by: naturalfake at October 19, 2014 10:12 AM (KBvAm)

38 the Blue Nile in paperback but kind of pricey. You can get it used. My local library doesn't have it.It is not available on the Kindle at all.

Dang. I was hoping it was one of those old books from the 19th century that Amazon made available as a Kindle freebie.

Posted by: OregonMuse at October 19, 2014 10:13 AM (yRdR4)

39 I do like Sarah Hoyt's attitude. I'm waiting for the next Darkship book.

I used to always look for Ron Goulart books, I liked the tossed-salad / pie in the face plotting. I just checked up and found that he has written a ton of books.
Alas, I have lost interest and am working on other books now.

Right now I am trying to read an anthology of historical essays on the Jews in Spain. It is slow going between limited time and limited attention span.

Posted by: Kindltot at October 19, 2014 10:13 AM (t//F+)

40 Thanks for the linky, OM - and do I still owe you a print copy of your very own? (Send me your mailing address, if so!)
This week, I had a book event in Fredericksburg - book club asked me to come for their meeting, as they had just finished the Trilogy - and of course, they bought books from me, including the last six copies of Lone Star Sons which I had on hand, which went like hotcakes. It seems they were all buying as Christmas presents for grandsons - and they were absolutely thrilled to know that the adventures of Jim and Toby were absolutely g-rated. Some cursing, a bit of violence or the aftermath of same, and no overt sex, just a mild flirtation here and there. The good ladies and gentlemen of the club have nothing against it, of course - but they did not want to see explicit details of it in books for their grandchildren.

This affirms my suspicion that keeping it g-rated is a good way to go...

Posted by: Sgt. Mom at October 19, 2014 10:16 AM (95iDF)

41 Thanks for the linky, OM - and do I still owe you a print copy of your very own? (Send me your mailing address, if so!)

No, I received it in the mail on Friday.

Thank 'ee kindly, ma'am.

Posted by: OregonMuse at October 19, 2014 10:17 AM (yRdR4)

42 It is slow going between limited time and limited attention span.
Posted by: Kindltot at October 19, 2014 10:13 AM (t//F+)
----
I know! After I build my impenetrable lair on Skull Island with my HyperPowerBall winnings, I'm just going to read all the books I've been stockpiling for When I Have The Time. Of course I have the time now if I would just budget for it. , But, AOADD you know. I should start a GoFundMe for it. I just can't decide on what color ribbon...


Posted by: All Hail Eris at October 19, 2014 10:18 AM (QBm1P)

43 Trivia note. In the old radio show "The Green Hornet", it was established that he was related to the Lone Ranger. Grand nephew if I recall. Same last name.

Posted by: HH at October 19, 2014 10:21 AM (Ce4DF)

44 I'm looking for a copy of The White Nile which Moorehead wrote before The Blue Nile. I see I can get a used copy from Amazon for about $3.00.

Something I learned from The Blue Nile was a fellow name Muhammad Ali came to power in Egypt and tried to make a country out of the mess it was in the early 1800s. He's sometimes known as the Father of Modern Eygpt. As usual though his methods were barbaric. He also conquered Syria, but lost it again when the British got involved.
Lots of facinating history from the era that I had not previouly been exposed too.

Posted by: freaked at October 19, 2014 10:21 AM (JdEZJ)

45 The libs have systematically removed all hope.

After promising "hope", because everything they say is a lie.

Posted by: Mega at October 19, 2014 10:23 AM (QCo5R)

46 I have never read The Stand. I know, it's impossible. I have read everything Mr. King has written but when I tried to read it, something about it bores me. Everyone I know has read it and loved it. Even people who hate Stephen King have read The Stand. I am going to attempt it again, how many pages should I give it? I tried 100 but I have been told that's not enough. I have so many books on my TBR pile, I hate taking time with this, but I have been told it's a masterpiece, so I'll try again.

Posted by: abbygirl at October 19, 2014 10:26 AM (iR4Dg)

47 46 The miniseries was pretty good.

Posted by: steevy at October 19, 2014 10:27 AM (v5UtH)

48 The third book in the "Hard Luck Hank" series just became available on Kindle and I am reading it now. I like this series. It's scifi, not dystopian, although it's set on a crime ridden space station. Sort of like a Casablanca/Raymond Chandler story with aliens. The hero has a mutation which means it's difficult to hurt him and bullets don't do anything to harm him. Quite a bit of humor. It's self published. Author is Steven Campbell.

Posted by: Dr Alice at October 19, 2014 10:28 AM (cFCmn)

49 I did the same with "The Stand" as you, Abby. I too found it boring.

Posted by: Mega at October 19, 2014 10:31 AM (QCo5R)

50 But not tutus.

Are you saying that Neo-Neocon is not welcome in the book thread?

Posted by: rickl at October 19, 2014 10:32 AM (sdi6R)

51 Oh, and I'm reading the Stand now and really enjoying it - but I'm a sucker for a good apocalypse story and I like anything with multiple plot lines and lots of characters.

Posted by: Dr Alice at October 19, 2014 10:32 AM (cFCmn)

52 All Hail Eris, "Achtung!!! Ein Panzer! Schnell!"

Can't remember if I ever read any of Dies the Fire but in a similar vein is two books by Steven R. Boyett. In Ariel from 1983, Pete was your typical Florida teen when one day all the technology stopped and magic came back. Then one day she appears in his life, a young unicorn with a broke leg. Needless to say his life is never the same as they set out to New York City, via Atlanta, with help from a magic using samurai and a bunch of SCA types to battle the evil magician in the World Trade Center that wants Ariel's horn.

In 2009 Boyett wrote a sequel to Ariel called Elegy Beach. Fred is a teen in a California town. He grows up in a world of magic but surrounded by the decaying remains of the old technological world. Fred's friend Yan dream's of what is must have been like, that world of their parents with all the miracles called technology. Then Ariel steps out of the night and Fred learns his past and who his Dad really is. So once more Pete and Ariel go adventuring with Fred to stop Fred's best friend from returning the world to technology.

Posted by: Anna Puma (+SmuD) at October 19, 2014 10:33 AM (mow7O)

53 " I think the real reason we're no longer getting "big stuff" done is that it just costs too damn much."


It costs too much because the environmentalist BANANA left wages lawfare against everything good.


When I become your philosopher king, the loser pays rule will be expanded to include iron collars and chains for those who bring lawsuits against major construction projects and forcing them to labor as slaves with picks and shovels to build the things they tried to shut down.

Posted by: Obnoxious A-Hole at October 19, 2014 10:33 AM (PD6iL)

54 Posted by: Dr Alice at October 19, 2014 10:28 AM (cFCmn)
----
Thanks for the tipoff. I've gotten some good laffs with this series which reads like a great B-level gumshoe story in space. Hank's mad scientist buddy Dr. Delovoa has his own short story which I mean to read real soon now.

Posted by: All Hail Eris at October 19, 2014 10:37 AM (QBm1P)

55 " I think the real reason we're no longer getting "big stuff" done is that it just costs too damn much." It costs too much because the environmentalist BANANA left wages lawfare against everything good. "

We can't even get a man in to orbit right now. We first did that over 40 years ago. We blow too much money and effort on non-productive crapand are paralyzed by incompetence.

I'm still waiting on my damn jet pack and flying car.

Posted by: freaked at October 19, 2014 10:38 AM (JdEZJ)

56 Jim Hoft @gatewaypundit 2m
SOURCE OF CURRENT EBOLA EPIDEMIC IDENTIFIED: Bat-Eating Family in Guinea Village http://shar.es/1mEb8h via @gatewaypundit

Posted by: Costanza Defense at October 19, 2014 10:39 AM (ZPrif)

57 Trivia note. In the old radio show "The Green Hornet", it was established that he was related to the Lone Ranger. Grand nephew if I recall. Same last name.

Another trivia note: the very first "Lone Ranger" was a radio program.

Of course, we all know about the classic Lone Ranger radio program, but I had always figured they got the Lone Ranger character from some earlier story or book. Nope, not true. The radio program came first. The books came later.

Posted by: OregonMuse at October 19, 2014 10:40 AM (yRdR4)

58 37 Unfortunately, the Kindle store only has the extended version.





Posted by: naturalfake at October 19, 2014 10:12 AM (KBvAm)


That's why said if you have the original keep it. I read the original from the library. I bought a copy of the paperback. Unfortunately all they had in that was the extended. But I said what the hey. That's when I found the original was better. But I wanted the Kindle version for the re-read. I guess I can just skim the new stuff but so far I am just plodding through it.

Posted by: Vic at October 19, 2014 10:41 AM (T2V/1)

59 I'm still waiting on my damn jet pack and flying car.
Posted by: freaked at October 19, 2014 10:38 AM (JdEZJ)
------
Don't get me started on my foiled childhood expectations. The Man From GLAD promised me my own jet pack! Men lie!

Posted by: All Hail Eris at October 19, 2014 10:42 AM (QBm1P)

60 There is nothing wrong with dystopias, per se, it is just what the protagonists do when faced with living in them. Everyone points at the world of 1984 as the classic dystopian science fiction story, but Winston Smith was destroyed and he accomplished nothing, which in my mind makes it less a SciFi book and more like a novelization of Hayek's Road to Serfdom. (and no it is not, but it could be)

Science Fiction works well with dystopias, when the protagonist(s) are allowed to do what they do best: adapt, improvise and overcome in spite of societal and physical barriers in their way.

If it is just grey goo with all the characters crawling around a shattered world like headless slugs with no goal other than eventually dying pointlessly to underscore the pointlessness of their plight, then no, that it is really not science fiction. Such stories I always think of as riffs on Future Shock, or those other terrible books in the 70's about peak "whatever-de-Jour" that would mean TEOTWAWKI, and the moral of the stories are various layers of, "see you didn't obey me and we have to live on rats and use mechanical calculators now."

Posted by: Kindltot at October 19, 2014 10:43 AM (t//F+)

61 38 Dang. I was hoping it was one of those old books from the 19th century that Amazon made available as a Kindle freebie.


Posted by: OregonMuse at October 19, 2014 10:13 AM (yRdR4)

I haven't checked Gutenberg yet.

Posted by: Vic at October 19, 2014 10:43 AM (T2V/1)

62 When I become your philosopher king, the loser pays rule will be expanded to include iron collars and chains for those who bring lawsuits against major construction projects and forcing them to labor as slaves with picks and shovels to build the things they tried to shut down.

I, for one, would welcome you as our new overlord.

Posted by: OregonMuse at October 19, 2014 10:43 AM (yRdR4)

63 Jet packs? Here is a book that came out for children in 1954.

http://tinyurl.com/kyrghw9

Alas it seems it was truly all a dream.

Posted by: Anna Puma (+SmuD) at October 19, 2014 10:44 AM (mow7O)

64 I learned that Jesus walked the earth to create a more civilized society, Martin (Luther King) walked the earth to create a more justified society, but, Apostle Kate Upton walks the earth with a wiggle in her walk and a giggle in her talk and, oh baby, she's a what I like.

Posted by: The Great White Snark at October 19, 2014 10:45 AM (8MlTP)

65 44 The Blue Nile by Moorehead is better than his The White Nile. A lot more fun to read. Part 4: The British in Ethiopia is engrossing history of the British Expedition to Abyssinia in 1868.

Posted by: NaCly Dog at October 19, 2014 10:45 AM (u82oZ)

66 Want to thank the Moron who recommended Robert Aickman a couple weeks ago. I read Painted Devils and really enjoyed it. Spooky but subtle. "The Houses of the Russians" was especially effective. I will definitely be looking for more of his stories.

Based on that ISI satire list and Moron comments, I decided to check out Walker Percy's Love in the Ruins, and it's excellent, dark and very very funny. It's almost like Philip K Dick on the bayou in some ways, except that Percy's prose style is more interesting.

Thanks for helping me find good reads, folks!

Posted by: Plum Duff (former appellation lurker_above) at October 19, 2014 10:46 AM (uSViI)

67 A dystopian novel you might not have read is:

"Facial Justice" by L P Hartley (1960)


It's the story of a woman named , Jael.

She lives in a libtard utopia where everyone is made to feel guilty and no one may have or do anything which inspires envy in others.

Jael inspires envy in other women because she is beautiful and must be surgically "normalized".

The story goes in unexpected ways and is very well written as well as philosophically profound.

It was one of Anthony Burgess' 99 Great Novels of the 20th century.

Hartley captures the totalitarian, zero-sum, envious creepiness of the left quite well, but is too good a novelist to spell things out. He lets you discover it within the story.

Check it out.

Posted by: naturalfake at October 19, 2014 10:46 AM (KBvAm)

68 46 Posted by: abbygirl at October 19, 2014 10:26 AM (iR4Dg)


It is the only one by him that I liked. Read the forward by SK. He said he gets letter after letter from people who liked it and says it is not one of his favorite books.

Posted by: Vic at October 19, 2014 10:47 AM (T2V/1)

69 Screw infrastructure.

I want the gov't to spend my money telling us why lesbos are fat.

Posted by: Jade Sea at October 19, 2014 10:48 AM (+8vu3)

70 Screw infrastructure.

I want the gov't to spend my money telling us why lesbos are fat.

Posted by: Jade Sea at October 19, 2014 10:48 AM (+8vu3)

71 Back in the 1980s I read a series of books by Alexis Gilliland about a construction project manager building a space habitat in the asteroid belt who, through a series of circumstances winds up becoming the leader of an independent nation. The books were "The Revolution From Rosinante", "Long Shot For Rosinante" and "The Pirates of Rosinante". I have never seen these books anywhere except the Science Fiction book store in Chapel Hill, North Carolina where I bought them.


Although the books had a rather cynical view of human nature, they were generally quit positive in tone. I have often wondered why they were not more popular and why I have never seen any more work by Mr.Gilliland.


I see that they are now available on Kindle and at quite a bargain price. Get them. Read them. You will be happy you did.

Posted by: Obnoxious A-Hole at October 19, 2014 10:50 AM (PD6iL)

72 Posted by: Anna Puma (+SmuD) at October 19, 2014 10:44 AM (mow7O)
----------
SpaceX, Bigelow at all give me some hope for the future.

Posted by: All Hail Eris at October 19, 2014 10:50 AM (QBm1P)

73 I've been enjoying a collection of essays by E.B. White. Lord, that man can use the language.

Also, rereading "A Reverence For Wood" by Eric Sloane. He details how and why certain woods were used for certain jobs from colonial times and later, wrapped in a loose story line. Thoroughly informative and entertaining. I like all of Sloane's books and dip into them often. They make a great introduction to early America for youngsters.

Posted by: JTB at October 19, 2014 10:51 AM (FvdPb)

74 Those speeches or his teachings contained the answers to the middle class and working poor people living in a "heaven here on earth."

-
I have thought that Obola and the progressives are trying to build a tower to Heaven without God and, just like the Tower of Babel, it is crumbling and creating dissension among men.

Posted by: The Great White Snark at October 19, 2014 10:51 AM (8MlTP)

75 OregonMuse,

I have been to several of those NYC bookstores, and there is a clear political tilt in most of them....even The Strand (which is, by far, the biggest on the list).

I will leave it to your imagination which way they tilt.

Posted by: CharlieBrown'sDildo at October 19, 2014 10:52 AM (Zu3d9)

76 55
I'm still waiting on my damn jet pack and flying car.
Posted by: freaked at October 19, 2014 10:38 AM (JdEZJ)


Jet packs exist, but they can only carry enough fuel for a few minutes, so they're not very practical for travel.

As for flying cars, do you really want to share airspace with idiots who are texting or applying makeup? Not to mention the drunken illegal alien pilots.

Posted by: rickl at October 19, 2014 10:53 AM (sdi6R)

77 TheWhite Nileand Blue Nile were published 1960 and 1962.

For me the Blue Nile kind of filed in some history before Gordon, Kitchener, Churchill and all that mob. I have another book by Churchill "The River War" about his time there that was with this book when I found it.

Posted by: freaked at October 19, 2014 10:55 AM (JdEZJ)

78 I didn't say I wanted everyoneto have a flying car. I could dodge the ones who could afford it.

Posted by: freaked at October 19, 2014 10:57 AM (JdEZJ)

79 77
TheWhite Nileand Blue Nile were published 1960 and 1962.



For me the Blue Nile kind of filed in some history before Gordon,
Kitchener, Churchill and all that mob. I have another book by Churchill
"The River War" about his time there that was with this book when I
found it.

Posted by: freaked at October 19, 2014 10:55 AM (JdEZJ)

No point in checking Gutenberg then.

Posted by: Vic at October 19, 2014 10:58 AM (T2V/1)

80 There is always that collection of short stories titled Carmen Miranda's Ghost is Haunting Space Station Three that ranges from comedy to horror.

http://tinyurl.com/kxpd2l9

Posted by: Anna Puma (+SmuD) at October 19, 2014 10:59 AM (mow7O)

81 rickl, isn't that the opening to The Fifth Element? Badaboom?

Posted by: Anna Puma (+SmuD) at October 19, 2014 11:01 AM (mow7O)

82 The future won't be so bleak. In fact, it will be quite colorful.

Posted by: George Jetson at October 19, 2014 11:01 AM (ham8J)

83 Nood thread

Posted by: Y-not at October 19, 2014 11:01 AM (9BRsg)

84 Interesting: Ben Stein was on CBS Sunday Morning arguing that the US *should* ay ransom to terrorists like ISIS for innocent journalists. However, the closed caption of Ben Stein on "CBS Sunday" had this statement that was NOT in Ben's video: "Maybe Mr. Obama can make himself look tough some other way."

Posted by: Smilin' Jack at October 19, 2014 11:01 AM (Xzj0B)

85 Any thoughts on reading books on the 6" or 7" Kindle HD?

I have the basic e-ink Kindle and like it just fine. I've been reading some ham radio books that clearly need color to distinguish correct answers in quizzes and the ability to zoom the itty-bitty schematic diagrams.

The new Kindle HD 6" is looking very interesting to me.

Posted by: doug at October 19, 2014 11:03 AM (/NpR+)

86 I reread The Mote in Gods Eye to put me in a good mood. It puts me in a happy space.

Rereading Queen Victoria's Little Wars by Byron Farwell.

For more fun I read some Christopher Anvil short stories like "Rx for Chaos." His short stories from the '50s and '60s are still surprisingly relevant.

Posted by: NaCly Dog at October 19, 2014 11:03 AM (u82oZ)

87 People are gullible.
Posted by: Joseph Smith

Heh.

Had to search on Marshall Applewhite. Don't think I'll forget the name again.

Posted by: mindful webworker - oot oot at October 19, 2014 11:04 AM (R41hh)

88
A fast plug for my own books - I've moved Finishing Kick and Trail of Second Chances over to the Kindle Unlimited program. To the morons who have purchased them, monster thanks!
For those interested in the best running shoes to flee zombies, I have some suggestions.
As for what I'm reading - East of Eden by John Steinbeck. The man loved his words. All of them, god bless him. I'm going to have to get some of Sgt. Mom's books for detox.

Posted by: Long Running Fool at October 19, 2014 11:05 AM (77WNv)

89 85 The new Kindle HD 6" is looking very interesting to me.

Posted by: doug at October 19, 2014 11:03 AM (/NpR+)

Get the Samsung Galaxy Tab-2, it's cheaper and better. Download a Kindle emulator from Amazon.

Posted by: Vic at October 19, 2014 11:07 AM (T2V/1)

90
And apparently the link did not format in the post for the zombie fleeing shoes, so here it is in a non-html format. Someday, they will invent a browser where all the controls work for all the sites.
http://preview.tinyurl.com/pudmzkq

Posted by: Long Running Fool at October 19, 2014 11:09 AM (77WNv)

91 "The first three books of the "Dies the Fire" trilogy are another fine example of that. Since then the series has kinda been wasted and I have dropped it. But the first three were great.


Posted by: Vic at October 19, 2014 09:43 AM (T2V/1) "


I am not sure at which book in the series Steven Stirling referred to cats as "furry Republicans" for the third or fourth time but that was when I decided no not give him any more of my money or time.

Posted by: Obnoxious A-Hole at October 19, 2014 11:09 AM (PD6iL)

92 Speaking of plugs. November is fast approaching.

Which means what?

National Novel Writing Month. Do you have a story idea just wanting to burst out into the world? But your internal editor is doing everything it can to sew doubt in your abilities? Well can you pound out on your keyboard 50,000+ words of that story in a month and defeat your internal editor? Then November is just for you.

http://nanowrimo.org/

Posted by: Anna Puma (+SmuD) at October 19, 2014 11:10 AM (mow7O)

93 Like Our Dear Leader, I don't have philosophical opposition to happy, humanist sci-fi, but I'm definitely getting an "establish utopia!" vibe from the article. However, Neal Stephenson is pretty rational, and dare I say, conservative thinking, so maybe it isn't as bad as I'm expecting.

Posted by: Lauren at October 19, 2014 11:10 AM (BPMYx)

94 92 Anna ... What medium do you use for NaNo? My previous attempts were with a manual typewriter.

Posted by: JTB at October 19, 2014 11:17 AM (FvdPb)

95 @89 Galaxy Tab 2 runs Honeycomb; very old, very insecure. Kindle HD6 runs Sangria, based on Kit Kat. Kit Kat is more secure and efficient than Honeycomb.

Galaxy Tab 4 7" with Kit Kat is $166. Kindle HD 6" is $99 (both 8 GB storage).

If I could buy a good quality 6" or 7" tablet with pure Kit Kit, I'd choose it over the Kindle. I don't know of one.

Posted by: doug at October 19, 2014 11:19 AM (/NpR+)

96 95
@89 Galaxy Tab 2 runs Honeycomb; very old, very insecure. Kindle HD6
runs Sangria, based on Kit Kat. Kit Kat is more secure and efficient
than Honeycomb.



Galaxy Tab 4 7" with Kit Kat is $166. Kindle HD 6" is $99 (both 8 GB storage).



If I could buy a good quality 6" or 7" tablet with pure Kit Kit, I'd choose it over the Kindle. I don't know of one.

Posted by: doug at October 19, 2014 11:19 AM (/NpR+)

Galaxy Tab 2 runs Icecream.

Posted by: Vic at October 19, 2014 11:21 AM (T2V/1)

97 The books were "The Revolution From Rosinante", "Long Shot For Rosinante" and "The Pirates of Rosinante".......

I see that they are now available on Kindle and at quite a bargain price. Get them. Read them. You will be happy you did.
Posted by: Obnoxious A-Hole

I second that. I read those years ago, and they were funny and well written. Alexis Gilliland was a pen name (I think) for some former government bureaucrat who had retired and turned to writing. The books have a distinctly libertarian point of view.

Posted by: Bossy Conservative riding the comfy chair at October 19, 2014 11:22 AM (+1T7c)

98 @95 Forgot to say "at the $99 price" for 8 GB storage.

I really like the 16 GB Kindle HD 6 for $119 (with "special offers"). I don't know of anything competitive.

Posted by: doug at October 19, 2014 11:23 AM (/NpR+)

99 I second the recommendation for Alexis Gilliland's Rosinante series.

Posted by: Sinmi on the phone at October 19, 2014 11:25 AM (bjTxr)

100 If I could buy a good quality 6" or 7" tablet with pure Kit Kit, I'd choose it over the Kindle. I don't know of one.

What about the Nexus 7? Pure KitKat, and 16GB, not 8. You can run the Kindle app on it. I do on my Nexus, and it works great.

Posted by: OregonMuse at October 19, 2014 11:28 AM (yRdR4)

101 Oh, and 100.

100!

Posted by: OregonMuse at October 19, 2014 11:28 AM (yRdR4)

102 BOOKS THIS WEEK.

I just finished "The Golden Compass," by Philip Pullman. It's famous. There's a movie with a talking bear in it. Steampunk aesthetic. Cute little blond girl takes on the world. Magic, and machines, and good writing, and a pretty well-thought-out plot.

And I didn't like it.

Look, I know it's an anti-Narnia, and I love Narnia, so I'm the type of person you'd expect to hate this book. But I'm the type of reader who can take most any book and find something to like, even if its author's beliefs contradict mine entirely.

It's cold. The action is set in the Arctic, but it's the writing that leaves a chill in the air. It's a story all about the nature of the soul in a godless universe, but at the novel's heart, *soul* is in abeyance. As a fantasy, it runs right up the precipice of horror and hangs suspended there over the abyss, dripping sweat down into the black. Is that why I don't like it?

Not really, though that doesn't help things. No, it's that there's something hateful buried down inside the slick prose, something bleak enough that at first I conflated with the Arctic chill of the story's setting; but I finally decided that the Arctic chill is a symptom of the Pullman's mind-set as he set down to pen this work.

"His Dark Materials" is important, I suppose, and I'm glad I've read it. It's a quick enough read with a fun Victorian edginess that carried me through to the end of the book. But I just can't love it, in spite of all the great qualities the author brings to the table.

Posted by: Smallish Bees at October 19, 2014 11:32 AM (YPgXi)

103 This Model runs Jellybean. I am sure mine said
icecream. But in any case, I have never had a problem with hackers. But I
run with my WiFi encrypted and blocked. I run 99% of the time with the
WiFi on the Samsung OFF. I do not use it for internet stuff, only for
downloading books. Whe I have the book I kill the WiFi.



http://is.gd/cGY8zI


Posted by: Vic at October 19, 2014 11:32 AM (T2V/1)



Posted by: Vic at October 19, 2014 11:33 AM (T2V/1)

104 "What religion?"
"Skaskashism. I don't know if that's the formal title, but 'There is no God but God, and Skaskash is Its prophet.' That religion."
"That religion?" said Cantrell at last. "Jesus X. Christ! Is nothing sacred anymore?"
"We're working on it," said Corporate Susan.

Posted by: Anna Puma (+SmuD) at October 19, 2014 11:33 AM (mow7O)

105 @100 Thanks. My budget doesn't run to the Nexus or I'd own one! It has 323 ppi vs. 252 ppi on the Kindle More importantly, the Nexus has an IPS screen that is much better than the Kindle. The Nexus is superior in almost every other way.

I was just trying to see if anyone was using the current or previous generation of Kindle HD for reading and whether they were happy with it.

The review I read said that the 6" was OK for reading, except that brightness control was manual.

I think the 6" size is better for one-handed reading than the 7".

Posted by: doug at October 19, 2014 11:39 AM (/NpR+)

106 Time to retire to the porch rocker

Posted by: Vic at October 19, 2014 11:40 AM (T2V/1)

107 What have I used as I slogged through turgid prose and balky scenes for NaNoWriMo? Before I crossed the finish line one year with 53k words, Open Office. But once I got the coupon, pretty much only use Scrivener because of its nifty little things.

Posted by: Anna Puma (+SmuD) at October 19, 2014 11:41 AM (mow7O)

108
92 Anna - I tried NaNoWriMo last year - it screwed up my writing so I don't plan on it again. Slow and steady is my race, along with 'too dumb to quit'. I've managed to put out two books in the last year, have one non-fiction nearly ready, another novel started, and blog on cross country and running in the Inland Pacific Northwestto the tune of about 3000-5000 words a week.
NaNoWriMo is great for getting people moving who need a kick in the seat or like artificial deadlines. Me, I'm a grinder, so a one-month sprint isn't going to fly. I aim at yearly totals (I should hit about 500,000 total words this year) but I mix it up depending on what I want to accomplish next.

Posted by: Long Running Fool at October 19, 2014 11:42 AM (77WNv)

109 Oh, and to actually take part in the conversation:

NaNoWriMo is coming. IT'S COMING. And winter. Winter is also coming.

Posted by: Smallish Bees at October 19, 2014 11:43 AM (YPgXi)

110 Read the first seven Odd Thomas books which are available as a package deal and thoroughly enjoyed them. As is my wont I have purchased the books written by roonz/ettes. My bank account curses you all.

Posted by: GGE of the Moron Horde, NC Chapter at October 19, 2014 11:44 AM (6fyGz)

111 Come on GGE, 99 cents is not that bad... just think you helped buy the boots for my Halloween costume with that 35 cent royalty....

Posted by: Anna Puma (+SmuD) at October 19, 2014 11:47 AM (mow7O)

112 Re: "Obama: The Greatest President in the History of Everything." It gets great reviews on Amazon and is only $1.99. I've found Fleming to be very uneven; sometimes brilliant, sometimes almost sophomoric.

The Kindle sample is pretty good. I bought it.

Throw out the five-star reviews and read the four-star reviews. Some of the one-star reviews are hilarious.

Posted by: doug at October 19, 2014 11:50 AM (/NpR+)

113 I think the 6" size is better for one-handed reading than the 7".

You're probably right about that, but I find I prefer the larger screen size, as these old eyes can't take the tiny fonts any more. Oh, I know I can easily embiggen the font, but I don't want to have to flip pages every few seconds.

Posted by: OregonMuse at October 19, 2014 11:50 AM (yRdR4)

114 I've found Fleming to be very uneven; sometimes brilliant, sometimes almost sophomoric.

Yeah, I've been reading Fleming's stuff over at imao.us for some years now, and I'd say that's a pretty accurate assessment.

Posted by: OregonMuse at October 19, 2014 11:53 AM (yRdR4)

115 just think you helped buy the boots for my Halloween costume with that 35 cent royalty....

Posted by: Anna Puma (+SmuD) at October 19, 2014 11:47 AM (mow7O)



*recalls Halloween costume ideas by Anna Puma*


Money well spent.

Posted by: GGE of the Moron Horde, NC Chapter at October 19, 2014 11:54 AM (6fyGz)

116 I wanted to enjoy "Obama: Best President in the History of Everything" better than I actually did. Fleming's work is often brilliant in short form, so I suppose he's still working on how to translate that into longer stuff.

Posted by: Smallish Bees at October 19, 2014 11:55 AM (YPgXi)

117 Off to replenish the household supplies. It's a good thing I got back when I did, these poor boys would have starved to death. Later roonz and roonettez, fear no evil!

Posted by: GGE of the Moron Horde, NC Chapter at October 19, 2014 11:56 AM (6fyGz)

118 Come on GGE, 99 cents is not that bad... just think you helped buy the boots for my Halloween costume with that 35 cent royalty....
Posted by: Anna Puma (+SmuD) at October 19, 2014 11:47 AM (mow7O)
---------
And speaking of, do you have a backup plan for a costume if the other is stuck in LaoGai limbo?

Posted by: All Hail Eris at October 19, 2014 12:01 PM (QBm1P)

119 Maybe it's just me but reading between the lines it sounds like Barbara A. Thompson is a gym teacher.

"Those who can't do, teach. Those who can't teach, teach gym."
Woody Allen

Posted by: Epobirs at October 19, 2014 12:15 PM (IdCqF)

120 Fair warning, GGE, I stole that redheaded-girl-in-autumn picture from your blog and it will one day be decorating a book thread, it's too late for this year, so probably next autumn.

Posted by: OregonMuse at October 19, 2014 12:19 PM (yRdR4)

121 Backup plan? What is this strange concept you speak of? We are Morons!



Which could make trick or treating a bit chilly....

Posted by: Anna Puma (+SmuD) at October 19, 2014 12:19 PM (mow7O)

122 That would be a very "zen" costume.

Posted by: All Hail Eris at October 19, 2014 12:31 PM (QBm1P)

123 102 Not really, though that doesn't help things. No, it's that there's something hateful buried down inside the slick prose, something bleak enough that at first I conflated with the Arctic chill of the story's setting; but I finally decided that the Arctic chill is a symptom of the Pullman's mind-set as he set down to pen this work.

I can't tell for sure whether you just read the first book, Golden Compass, or the whole trilogy, but if it's just the first, it's probably best that you stopped when you did. I read the whole trilogy some time ago, not at all conscious of its origins or intent as the anti-Narnia, and I mostly enjoyed it a lot -- until I got toward the end, and realized "wait, this whole trilogy has just been a setup for this writer's immature hostility towards Christianity?" It was very disappointing, that a writer of such strong talent was so driven by what seemed to be unresolved teenage resentments -- that in an important way, he was not yet a grown-up.

Posted by: Splunge at October 19, 2014 12:41 PM (qyomX)

124 Just finished reading through, again, Both of Larry Correia's Monster Hunter and Hard Magic series. Now working on a second run-through of David Weber's Honor Harrington series. I intend to read everything - main line, spinoffs, and short stories - in Honorverse order as per the list on this page: http://honorverse.wikia.com/wiki/Honorverse_novels

David weaves major plot points throughout all the books, so reading them this way shouldn't give me a WTF? moment reading just the main line stories like it did last time.

Posted by: Buck Farack, Gentleman Adventurer at October 19, 2014 12:44 PM (Mc1BP)

125 #35

The extended version also has some dates and references changed to make it less anachronistic but King screwed up some stuff. Like the one hit wonder rocker's mother still being a Sinatra fan as a teenager instead of Elvis or somebody more appropriate to the updated era in which she was a teen.

Of course, it's been so long since that version it is still pretty anachronistic for young readers who cannot remember the 80s.

Posted by: Epobirs at October 19, 2014 12:48 PM (IdCqF)

126 #71
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexis_A._Gilliland

He wrote some fantasy too and was also known as a cartoonist.

Posted by: Epobirs at October 19, 2014 12:55 PM (IdCqF)

127 #57

The Lone Ranger and The Green Hornet originated at the same radio station with writers and performers in common. So they truly have the same parentage.

Posted by: Epobirs at October 19, 2014 01:00 PM (IdCqF)

128 Almost done with "Blood Sisters: The Women Behind the War of the Roses" by Sarah Gristwood. Good compilation of the lives of the mothers, wives, sisters, aunts, etc. of all the main players in that bloody conflict... The author does a fine job of untangling the complicated family relationships and loyalties. The most interesting figure is HenryVll's mother, Margaret Beaufort. Tiny girl married and pregnant at age 12. Widow and mother at age 13. Survives the changing political climate and lives to see her son take the crown.

Posted by: Tuna at October 19, 2014 01:04 PM (hpWy+)

129 Reading Stephen King is like eating a whole bag of potato chips at one sitting...you enjoy it at first, but when you are done you feel kind of sick.

It is ironic, because the man is quite good as a writer from a strictly technical perspective and has churned out enough pages almost to have his own wing in the Library of Congress, but his really good work amounts to just three of his shortest books, a couple of short stories, and one or two isolated chapters in some of his more bloated opuses.

Normally I keep every book I buy, but I saved a lot of shelf space when I decided to give away most of my Stephen King and all of my later David Weber. Never regretted it for a minute.

Posted by: CQD at October 19, 2014 01:06 PM (eCKON)

130 I started reading James Ellroy's Perfidia, and then I quit reading it about 180 pages in. Too frenetic, too many voices and all of them unpleasant. I'm not sure whether Ellroy's writing has changed or my reading has changed, but I will not be finishing this book, which I got from the library, fortunately.

Posted by: huerfano at October 19, 2014 01:53 PM (bAGA/)

131 Slowly going through "I Am Pilgrim," which was a Moron recommendation a few weeks back. Don't get me wrong. It's good, but full of detail. Fascinating look at the twisted route a Saudi-born kid (seems like he was modeled on Ayman al-Zawahiri) takes to become a jihadi hell-bent on America's destruction.

Posted by: RushBabe at October 19, 2014 01:58 PM (gEuvX)

132 "126 #71
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexis_A._Gilliland

He wrote some fantasy too and was also known as a cartoonist.



Posted by: Epobirs at October 19, 2014 12:55 PM (IdCqF) "


Thanks. It is nice to know that he is still alive, although at 83, I guess he is not likely to be starting any new trilogies. Still, I think I will buy the other things he wrote. They are available as used books at Amazon.

Posted by: Obnoxious A-Hole at October 19, 2014 02:35 PM (PD6iL)

133 120
Didn't you mention you were reading " Cali's Children"? I picked it up and read it I one sitting. Absolutely loved the old admiral who showed the recalcitrant aliens who was the boss. That was one scary planet though.

Posted by: Tuna at October 19, 2014 02:37 PM (hpWy+)

134 133
0ops. "Kali's Children"

Posted by: Tuna at October 19, 2014 02:41 PM (hpWy+)

135 48
"Hard Luck Hank" is fun. Love old Hank. Also loved Delovoa, the three eyed crazy scientist.

Posted by: Tuna at October 19, 2014 02:46 PM (hpWy+)

136 The original troll?

BATTOLOGIST, n. [See Battology.] One that repeats the same thing in speaking or writing. [Little used.]
Webster's Dictionary, 1828

Posted by: Rob at October 19, 2014 03:42 PM (cIL9k)

137 I read "The Hot Zone" years ago when it first came out. Most horrifying nonfiction book I've ever read.

Most horrifying fiction book, of course, was Stephen King's "The Stand." The first few chapters, describing how the disease actually spreads, is very, VERY sobering.

SO, having had my consciousness raised by those two books, and not wanting to just sit around being terrified, I decided to take actual, practical, do-able steps -- and am now reading this easy-to-read, user-friendly, packed-with-diagrams basic manual that the CDC and WHO put together back in 1998: "Infection Control for Viral Haemorrhagic Fevers in the African Health Care Setting," i.e., for places with limited resources that may or may not have electricity and running water. In other words, very, very basic.

http://tinyurl.com/kbka2rx

If ebola really spreads, it could quickly overwhelm our hospitals, and if the pandemic combined with the resulting economic crash limits the ability of utility workers to even maintain the grid (or terrorists take advantage of our weakened state and take the opportunity to disable the grid), we could not only be looking at home care, but home care without electricity and running water.

I am currently reading this guide, and recommend it to anybody else who, like me, would rather be DOING something than just sitting around worrying and fretting. There are steps you can take right now to get prepared, and this guide will show you the kinds of supplies it might be wise to procure now and have on hand.

The motto that many of us have taken to heart is:
"Better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it."

Here once again is the link to the guide: http://tinyurl.com/kbka2rx

One caveat: This was published in 1998, and the strain of ebola we are dealing with now appears to be even nastier -- more infectious -- than the strain that was circulating back then. Just bear that in mind.

Posted by: Kathy from Kansas at October 19, 2014 03:52 PM (afLO3)

138 Thanks for that, Kathy. I'm reading it right now.

Posted by: All Hail Eris at October 19, 2014 04:20 PM (QBm1P)

139 DELIRAMENT, noun - A wandering of the mind; foolish fancy. Webster's Dictionary 1828
(Think, Delirium)

Posted by: Rob at October 19, 2014 04:46 PM (cIL9k)

140 Last one - I promise.

DEMANDRESS, noun - A female demandant. (one who demands)

Posted by: Rob at October 19, 2014 04:50 PM (cIL9k)

141 I picked it up and read it I one sitting. Absolutely loved the old admiral who showed the recalcitrant aliens who was the boss.

I know, right? That admiral was totally badass.

"I said, who's in charge here?"

"You are."

Posted by: OregonMuse at October 19, 2014 05:38 PM (yRdR4)

142 Splunge:

I had only read the first book of the "His Dark Materials" series. I don't think I'll read on.

Posted by: Smallish Bees at October 19, 2014 06:24 PM (VHiG6)

143 Hmm, quiet thread today. Nobody do much reading this last week?

Posted by: .87c at October 19, 2014 06:40 PM (AZtLb)

144 If anyone read Sarah Hoyt's first Darkship novel and thought it was just okay, her skill as an author has been steadily improving. Each book is better than the last.

I'm finishing up the very good "A Few Good Men" now and given the trend I'm looking forward to reading her newest novel "Witchfinder" which is the first novel of a new fantasy series.

Posted by: BornLib at October 20, 2014 07:07 AM (zpNwC)

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