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review SPOILER ALERT! 2018-03-13 06:17
Reading Anniversaries: First in a Series & Singles – March Edition

 

Originally published at midureads.wordpress.com on March 12, 2018.

 

2017

 

15195

 

The Complete Maus by Art Spiegelman

Find my review here

 

 

 

25667918

 

 

Binti by Nnedi Okorafor

Review here

 

16029965

 

Coraline by Neil Gaiman

 My review

 

 

234225

 

Dune by Frank Herbert

FirstSecondThird, and Fourth parts.

 

 

2892446

 

All Flesh Is Grass by Clifford D. Simak

The review

 

 

2016

 

668473

 

The Chameleon’s Shadow by Minette Walters

I love reading books by this author because they portray human interaction in all its forms. They bring out what most of us would prefer that it remained hidden the darkest corners of her hearts. The stories show how people are capable of kindness in the unlikeliest of situations. But they also show what we’d do when we think no one is watching. With issues like the mistreatment of transgenderschild rape, and oppression of women, these stories hit you like a sledgehammer. You realize there is nothing fictional about her fiction. This story is no different. It deals with the fragmentation of a person’s psyche after returning home from a war. War breaks something inside you, no matter which side you are on.

 

 

2015

 

6567017

 

Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green

Really fun book!

 

 

47510

 

The Tough Guide to Fantasyland by Diana Wynne Jones

I don’t remember much about this one but the fact that it makes fun of everything that has become cliché in epic fantasy.

 

 

2013

 

 

4137

 

Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris

Sedaris books are funny af.

 

 

2012

 

12993240

 

How Gods Bleed by Shane Porteous

An old review:

 

Loved this book!
the book is about people belonging to a city that is the first line of defense for humans. If the werewolves ever tried to take over the human empire, this would be where the first battle would take place. Naturally, the people living in such a place have to be extraordinary-always alert and ready to defend. Add to that a king who would do anything to ensure his people’s survival and warriors who worship him. Could it be more awesome?Yes, it can. The king not only wants to win every war, he also plans to make the werewolves fear him and his warriors. The tricks and maneuvers that the king uses to instill fear in the werewolves are just.. wow! Then there is Cada Varl- the coolest immortal you’ll ever read about. He’s the best and yet he never gloats but just goes on being his rockin’ self! And of course, the 6 Helluvan warriors (poor 7th best warrior) were just that..one helluva adventure!

 

 

13417545

 

Zombie Killa by Jason Z. Christie

I got this book for free from Making Connections to read and review:
I started the book and almost gave up right then. Not only did it start slow-but then Shaun of the Dead did too-it also had a lot of jargon and big nerdy words that I couldn’t get at all. And the first mention of Router wasn’t all that, either. Then the book picked up its pace and proved me wrong. Zombies, Pirates, Ninjas, Nerds, Smart-mouthed women..the story had everything! And it was exactly the right length. The humor was just my type and despite some (okay, many) references that I didn’t get, I loved it! Zombie fans, you just can’t miss this one!

Oh, I almost forgot “F**k you, High-C!”

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text 2017-06-22 15:31
Roll number something - 33: Tomorrowland
Way Station (A Collier Nucleus Science Fiction Classics) - Clifford D. Simak

 

 Thank you Debbie's Spurts for sending me to my next square.

 

This was an interesting read about a guy on earth who was contacted by an alien and asked to run a stopover on earth for aliens wanting to travel through Earth's section of the galaxy.

 

 

       

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review 2017-05-08 02:32
Plot to burn but with hollow characters
Time and Again F-239 - Clifford D. Simak

I've been a fan of science fiction for as long as I can remember. Some of the first books I read were science fiction novels, and I've never stopped reading them. It wasn't until recently, though, that I began breaking out of my comfort zone in science fiction and reading novels that I might not normally have picked up. It's proven a real education in the genre, and one that helps me to appreciate how much it has changed.

 

Reading Clifford Simak's Time and Again has highlighted one of the most dramatic differences that exist between science fiction novels today and those of the genre's "golden age," which is the centrality of plot. Simak's novel has plot to burn. Set in the 80th century, it imagines a future in which mankind (and given the near-total absence of women from the book that really is the best word for it) dominates the stars. Yet the vastness of the galaxy means that their presence is thin, necessarily supplemented by both robots and "androids," or synthetic humans. Asher Sutton, a government agent dispatched to one of the few systems unpenetrated by humans, suddenly reappears after having been lost for twenty years. Only this improbable circumstance is met with one of his own, as his boss is alerted to his arrival by a time traveler with urgent advice: that Asher Sutton must be killed.

 

All of this, which might take up several chapters of a novel today, is presented to the reader in the first four pages. And Simak doesn't let up, as the reader is presented with a series of mysterious individuals, unexpected events, and hidden agendas that would nowadays populate a career-defining series for some authors, yet Simak wraps up in a little more than 250 pages. The sheer force of developments is enough to entertain the reader as they are propelled through each successive twist and turn. Such is the pace, though, that something gets lost in the rush -- namely, character development. Every single one of the characters comes across as a faceless agent for some greater power in the book, with that power ultimately boiling down to Simak himself. Even his central character, Asher Sutton, seems driven more by an impulse imprinted onto him rather than something that was explicable by who he was or any change as a result of his experiences over the course of the book. It makes for a contrast with how so much SF is written today, yet the narrative force often leaves little time to contemplate the emptiness of the characters involved. For some today it may be a criticism, yet it seems not to have bothered Simak a jot in providing an entertaining and even thought-provoking adventure for his readers.

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text 2017-05-07 17:47
Reading progress update: I've read 76 out of 256 pages.
Time and Again F-239 - Clifford D. Simak

I love reading golden-age science fiction. Part of it is the nostalgia factor; it was a big chunk of the science fiction I remember reading when I was growing up. Part of it is the amusement factor at reading what people at one time thought the future would be like and marveling at how dated it is (would anybody today write a novel set milennia in the future in which men were the only ones in charge and people read newspapers and smoked cigarettes?). But perhaps the biggest part of it is their style; they were written in a much more direct way than novels are today, with little prefatory world-building and character development. Simak's book is definitely representative of the type; he's already burned through enough plot to fill two or three even longer present-day novels, and I'm not even a third of the way through it.

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text 2017-04-08 11:30
Book Haul
The Steerswoman (The Steerswoman Series) - Rosemary Kirstein
Parable of the Sower - Octavia E. Butler
City - David W. Wixon,Clifford D. Simak
The Art of Racing in the Rain - Garth Stein
Memory of Water: A Novel - Emmi Itäranta
Dream London - Tony Ballantyne
Someday, Someday, Maybe - Lauren Graham
Roter Drache In Aspik: Das Fantasy Kochbuch - Sascha Storz

Remember when I told you about my last book haul? Yes, the one that made Lina so happy? Now you'll finally get to know the titles. :D

For the convenience of our international community I have chosen the English editions where available (one of the books I have actually bought in English).

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend!

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