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Book Blog

October 25, 2015

Yukikaze (Review)

his one originated off some beautiful (but confusing) anime I’d viewed. Having just read All you need is Kill (which I only now realize I haven’t reviewed yet), I noticed on their website that two Yukikaze books were available. Okay, so I’d enjoyed Kill so much (Japanese scifi) that I figured I’d pick them up. Enough about me. Yukikaze  is about our world, fifteen minutes into the future. A strange hyperspace portal appears over Antarctica and out of it comes the JAM. We’ve only seen their fighters and bombers, never figured out who they were or what they are. The […]
October 18, 2015

And all the Earth is a Grave (Review)

ute little story this time, out of the 40’s or 50’s, again, a Gutenberg find. It’s a little scifi story about a tiny mistake in, of all things, a coffin factory. Seems that a computer slipped a bit and suddenly their stodgy production orders are boosted. The marketing director, seeing what’s coming (and finding all sorts of money in his department because of the glitch) blasts an advertising campaign out, creating a marketing feedback loop where demand fuels supply fuels demand fuels supply and so on. It’s a humorous look at super marketing (something I did in my own Early […]
October 11, 2015

After London; or, Wild England (Review)

o back we go into the past (to a book written in the 1880’s) about a future (say, 2100 or so), another one of these casually fun penny-dreadfuls, back from when science fiction was trying to figure where we were going with steam and chrome and a whole lot of Victorian virtue. The author, Mr. Jefferies, begins by describing the plants and animals and how they are coming back. Fields are vanishing. Roads are slowly being erased. In the silos, the grain rots are is devoured by plagues of rats. Everything is unwinding. Finally, we are given various hints as […]
October 6, 2015

The Wise Man’s Fear (Review)

ou can use it as a doorjamb. Or to block the wheel of your car while jacking it up. If you drop it off a three story building, you’d kill someone with it. It’s 1200 pages long. And it’s the latest of the KingKiller Chronicle. Day two. Bring it on! Once more we follow the adventures of young Kvothe, as narrated by old (well, middle-aged, but under the gloom of fate) Kvothe. For those who didn’t read my review of The Name of the Wind, it’s the story of an exceptional lad who is a consummate jack-of-all-trades. Possessing skills in […]
October 4, 2015

Flashman (Review)

‘ve mentioned the Flashman series elsewhere, but I wanted to read the initial book over again (I’m about to loan it out to a literary friend and want to make sure I can talk about it correctly). Anyway, what the hell is this thing, anyway? Harry Flashman is a character from the old novel Tom Brown’s Schooldays, a windy old moralistic piece. The villain, the bully Flashman, really gave the work its shine (what a name, so classic!). And Fraser, the author, picks up Harry’s life from the moment he’s tossed out of school (recounting in his diary that he […]
September 27, 2015

Learned Optimism (Review)

mentioned in Dog Ear how I wasn’t going to review this. I then decided, what the hey, a book’s a book, right? This kinda came to light in a recent rough patch in the relationship (like YOU don’t have them). I mentioned that I have problems with a depression (and how to tell if your’s are extreme – they certainly feel extreme, don’t they?). So the book was pushed on me. I swallowed it like I would caster oil. Ugh. Just dry medical studies, cases proving the good doctor’s point, and little inter-psychology battles he faced. At first I didn’t […]
September 20, 2015

Hiero’s Journey (Review)

his one takes me back to my days in college. Back then, the world was certain to end in massive atomic warfare. And the world would grow from it, different and mutated. And the mutations would be quick, varied, and exotic. Yeah, that was our thought, anyway, before we had The Road to show us what it would really be like. Still, it was like opening the box for Gamma World again and rolling up an RPG character who was a two inch tiger with psyonic powers, this sense of a crazy post-holocaust world. Hiero is a priest in what […]
September 13, 2015

End of the Beginning (Review)

‘ve read this before. It’s Bookish Vu. A huge carrier force blasts it’s opponents on the approach to the Hawaiian islands. Pearl Harbor get’s flattened. A landing is made on the north side of the main island. The defenders do what they can to stop it but are largely swept away, in part because of their enemies’ air superiority. Then the last of the desperate fighting, the blood, the tears, all that. Where was that? Oh yeah – Days of Infamy, the first book to this two-parter. Then, it was the Japanese turn. So our cast of characters from the […]
September 6, 2015

Great Pirate Stories (Review)

kay, less a review, more of a social rant. Pirates. Co’mon. What is this suburban fascination with pirates? How many Baldwin Park Freds do you see driving around with pirate decals (usually skulls and over-ornate crap) pasted over their Tahoe rear windows? Really? Like, so, you live in suburbia and have a green lawn and a good job and house payments, but it if wasn’t for all that, you’d be cannonading a Spanish Port? Really? So clearly you desire the blood of innocence running down your elbows, and your pockets stuffed full of church gold? That you’d rape children and […]
August 23, 2015

Casino Royale (Review)

think I read Ian Fleming back when I was a teen, Dr. No I’d guess. So it’s not that I don’t like him – I’m just not a spy thriller guy (as my review list HERE will illustrate – few spy books). Still, they can be fun and a nice diversion to the ruts all readers fall into. Casino Royale is early Bond, before all the super-agent crap and gizmos and stuff. He’s just a guy, see, and while brave, he is quite human (a plus to the story). Bond has been sent to the gambling halls of this picturesque […]