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review 2018-11-25 01:48
Hikaru no Go (manga, vol. 19) story by Yumi Hotta, art by Takeshi Obata, supervised by Yukari Umezawa (5 Dan), translated by Naoko Amemiya
Hikaru no Go: One Step Forward!, Vol. 19 - Yumi Hotta,Takeshi Obata

Hikaru plays against other Shodan, even though he's far stronger than they are, and we're repeatedly reminded that everyone has to start at this point and work their way up. In his free time, Hikaru analyzes his and Akira's games with Akira. Akira is now playing against higher ranked players, and Hikaru wishes he could too. Hikaru's first higher ranked opponent is

Gokiso 7 Dan, who he beats. Hikaru finally learns about the Japan-China-Korea Junior Cup...and that Akira is already part of the team and won't need to try out. The volume ends with Hikaru doing a rematch against Kadowaki while Isumi is playing against Kuwabara.

(spoiler show)


This volume felt a bit scattered and lacking compared to some of the past ones. Even the short story volume worked better for me. The best parts were Hikaru buying himself a fan like Sai's (I was a little surprised that no one poked fun at him for what would have appeared to others like a sudden new affectation) and Hikaru and Akira arguing over Go. I could imagine them continuing to argue like that after having spent decades as friends and rivals.

 

(Original review posted on A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions.)

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review 2018-10-26 20:55
High Gauss EM Field: "Dragon's Egg" by Robert L. Forward
Dragon's Egg (Del Rey Impact) - Robert L. Forward


(Original Review, 1991)


I just got around to reading DRAGON'S EGG. It is probably one of the best hard science fiction novels I've ever read. I thought the human characterization was weak in places (not enough introspection, lack of diversity of characters), but clearly Bob knows about the scientific establishment! Actually, I thought that the alien characters were better drawn.

[2018 EDIT: This review was written at the time as I was running my own personal BBS server. Much of the language of this and other reviews written in 1980 reflect a very particular kind of language: what I call now in retrospect a “BBS language”.]

 

 

If you're into stuff like this, you can read the full review.

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review 2018-09-15 02:23
FROM CLIPPED WINGS TO SOARING WITH THE EAGLES
Best Foot Forward - Colin Hodgkinson

"BEST FOOT FORWARD" is Colin Hodgkinson's story of the long struggle he waged after surviving an air crash while in training with the Fleet Air Arm in May 1939 -- and sustaining life-altering injuries that would have humbled a lesser person --- to resume as normal a life as possible. As part of this process, Hodgkinson --- with the great Royal Air Force (RAF) fighter ace and Wing Leader Douglas Bader (who, despite having similar life-altering injuries, was able to resume flying with the RAF upon the outbreak of war in September 1939) as a prime example and inspiration --- was given the opportunity to resume flight training with the Fleet Air Arm. 

Subsequently, Hodgkinson was able to wrangle a transfer to the RAF, where he successfully completed a rigorous flight training program, and was assigned to a frontline fighter squadron late in 1942. 

Hodgkinson would fly the redoubtable Supermarine Spitfire in combat over Europe through most of 1943, manage to shoot down 2 enemy fighters in aerial combat, and survive a stint as a prisoner of war before being repatriated to the UK in late 1944. This book is essentially a recapitulation of Hodgkinson's life from a childhood in the English countryside to the early postwar years. It has both a forthrightness and eloquence which makes for rewarding reading.

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review 2018-02-06 01:18
Moving Forward Sideways Like a Crab - Sh... Moving Forward Sideways Like a Crab - Shani Mootoo

For more reviews, check out my blog:Craft-Cycle

I received a copy of this book through Goodreads in exchange for an honest review.

I didn't really know anything about the book going into it. The summary on the back cover sounded interesting enough. Once I started reading, I was really confused. The back cover says Jonathan's parents split up, then his mother vanishes and later transitions into a man. So reading this, I assumed Jonathan was raised by his father. It took forever for me to figure out he was raised by a lesbian couple who then separated (one of whom transitions into a man). The summary wasn't wrong, but was rather vague. The family dynamics were very unclear and confusing to start. Even I, as someone who comes from a "non-traditional" family had to reread sections to figure it all out. It was such an easy fix, it seemed silly to start out so vaguely. 

Once I got over that bump, I was ready for the book to get good. Unfortunately, that never happened. "Moving forward sideways like a crab" is the beautiful idea of telling a story from a roundabout way, focusing on all of the surrounding details. This is a great concept, but makes for a very drawn out and dull read. 

At one point, Sydney states, "of course one wants relief after suspense, and I must admit that in a life like mine, there seems to be constant suspense and little relief, even now" (187). This pretty much sums up the book. There is so much buildup and it really doesn't lead anywhere. Nothing amazing or profound happens. By the end, the layout is pretty predictable. It ends right about where you expect it to, with little actually occurring. Yes, there is some emotional stuff and relationship stuff, but it was pretty boring. 

Also, Jonathan himself was a very irritating character. I couldn't get over how whiny, self-centered, and petty he was. I just kept wanting to slap him and shout, "It's not that big of a deal! Chill out!" He seemed so overdramatic all the time.

There were also moments that felt unrealistic. At one point, some of Sydney's friends visit the house. Jonathan overreacts (big surprise) and starts freaking out, babbling on in the narrative, comparing it to a circus and saying other transphobic things. Then he passes out, one of the visitors is nice to him, and he magically is not transphobic anymore. I'm glad he changed, but it came about so suddenly and awkwardly that it didn't feel real. 

Boring book. I bumped it up to 2-stars, because I think it had an interesting idea, but horrible execution. 

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review 2017-10-23 10:00
Review: Hooked on a Witch (Keepers of the Veil #4) by Zoe Forward
Hooked On A Witch - Zoe Forward

 

 

Pleiades witch Shannon Randolph has been framed for a theft she didn't do. She has one week to return a stolen relic to the god it belongs or she'll be executed. What's worse? Evil magic-wielding wackos are coming out of the woodwork after her to get it. But the biggest danger is Merck. This sexy, dangerous witch-hunter who understands all forms of magic might be her only hope. Enlisting his help may require she be a very naughty witch.

The moment Shannon strolls back into Jason Merck's life he's in trouble. There's something about the witch he can't resist, but he must. The witch hunter can't fall for the witch.

 

 

 

Hooked on a Witch is a spectacular addition to the Keepers of the Veil series, it has everything one needs to be able to hop dimensions and fight evil.

 

 

The romance between Shannon and Merck is a see saw of emotional upheaval that is complicated by family, friends secrets and most of all bad guys coming out of the woodwork. Both are strong characters that readers can not only relate to but really become involved in the drama of their lives. Merck has a sexy mysterious, secret wielding vibe going on that shows readers how hot he is but also how vulnerable making a definite book boyfriend.

 

 

Thrills and chills keep readers on the edge of their seat as we get to the suspense and boy is there a lot of that going on because the romance itself is full of it, especially with all of its ups and downs and the story has villains everywhere, a few secrets, a lot of magical action, and quite a few gods, goddesses and other powerful beings involved which also means that the story is full of action and surprising twists.

 

 

Secondary characters play strong supportive roles that help make this story one to remember but if you haven’t read the first books in the series them I strongly recommend that you do because this one picks up where Playing the Witch’s Game lets off and although the story gives readers enough information to keep up if you haven’t read the previous books, I feel that readers just wouldn’t get the whole effect and full understanding of just what is happening in this world full of Greek mythology. 

 

I thoroughly enjoyed reading Hooked on a Witch and I can’t wait to read the next Pleiades witches book and find out where Zoe Forward takes the series next.

 

 

 

Hooked on a Witch is the 4th book in the Keepers of the Veil series.

 

Hooked on a Witch is available at:

Amazon   Kobo   B&N   iBooks      

 

Zoe Forward can be found at:

Website   Goodreads   Facebook   Twitter

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