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review 2017-07-24 15:09
What Geekery is This?
Geek Actually: WTF (Season 1 Episode 1) - Rachel Stuhler,Melissa Blue,Cecilia Tan,Cathy Yardley

So I thought this serial was cute, but would say that for based on page count I would say this was a little high. I am also going to wait until all the serials for episode one are issued and just buy the whole volume. I am not a big fan of serials since I don't like cliffhanger endings. Heck I hate cliffhanger endings in trilogies too.

"WTF Geek Actually 1.1" goes into a group of friends who stay in touch via messaging (Michelle, Aditi, Taneesha, and Christina). All of these women are in what I guess we could call geek professions, but I think Aditi (sci-fi writer I think) and Michelle (editor at sci-fi publication) are a bit of a stretch. Taneesha is a video game programmer trying to break into the good old boy's network at her job. And Christina is adrift and gets hit on grossly by men while just trying to play Pokemon Go.

I have to say that due to this episode's length, I did not feel like it would be fair to criticize some things I would have in a full length novel. I got to say though, that I was more interested in Taneesha, Christina, and Michelle's stories and hard passed on Aditi's story. I don't know what is going on with Aditi and I found myself not caring. I thought the author just wrote that to shock readers a bit. I was more bored with the sex scenes we got to read about.

I think I empathized the most with Tanesesha because I can't imagine being a woman programmer. The crap she had to take and the crap you know is coming her way looks like it's very interesting story wise.

I hope that Yardley does more with Michelle in the next one. She didn't do much besides try to coax Aditi to write and ignore her husband. Speaking of the husbands, I think that Yardley has to give them some life. They both felt very flat to me throughout this story.

Cheers for geek women everywhere.

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review 2017-07-24 09:52
I don't think I'll be watching this movie
High-Rise - J.G. Ballard

I was trying to explain what this was about to mom on WA, alienation, communication through violence, descent to barbarism. She said "Ah, sounds like Dogville". I left about a third in on that movie, and I don't think I'll be watching this one. It sounds like I did not like this, and, well, uncomfortable as it is, I though it bloody amazing. It's just that the madness that slowly creeps in, and has you partially numbed by the time the heavy stuff crashes in, would not have time to come to full effect in the span of movie time, and would make the impact of violence unbearable.

I realize what I'm saying is creepy as fuck, just as I was aware reading that while the characters are slowly inured to the rising wilderness, the reader is inured to the rising level of brutality. And you kind of welcome it, because you wouldn't be able to cope with it otherwise. I found, about 30 pages from the end, that I had felt more of an impact by the bottle throwing (that first act of violence perpetuated) than what was going on by the last third. Familiarity breeds contempt and repetition indifference.

Yeah... creepy as fuck.

Also, the first third or so was masterfully disquieting. In the context of that first line, which, for the unwary and squeamish, is:


Later, as he sat on his balcony eating the dog, Dr Robert Laing reflected on the unusual events that had taken place within this huge apartment building during the previous three months.


every little war waged inside a big building takes an ominous shade. I lived in a building much like the one in this book for three years while a student. It was waaay outside of my money-bracket (hell, my parents money-bracket) but the old land-lady let me share her apartment for peanuts so she could have some company. I can tell you all the petty disputes and territoriality are true to life. Though they usually don't get this bloody (except for suicides. Those were an issue on Friday evenings).

Lastly, the symmetry. 3 for each, then 2 for each, then 1 for each (though he kinda cheated at the end), and one for what's left. I don't quite get what was going on with that clean-up at the end, though. End of settling pains?

That's that for my horror roll. I think I'll pick some regency romance next.

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review 2017-07-22 21:00
British and Zanny in Space
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams

I would call this sci-fi on mushrooms. Funny, but very weird.

On a side note: I've never been afraid of rats, but I might reconsider.

 

 

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text 2017-07-22 16:56
Reading progress update: I've read 100%.
Geek Actually: WTF (Season 1 Episode 1) - Rachel Stuhler,Melissa Blue,Cecilia Tan,Cathy Yardley

Hmm I liked some characters and feel ambivalent about one. Interesting premise, but I'm not a serial reader. I rather just buy the whole book or get a volume. I don't like anything ending on a cliffhanger like this one did. Oh absolutely loved the character of Taneesha.

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text 2017-04-28 01:22
WTF? New Shelves
Winter's Tale - Mark Helprin

I've decided to add some new shelf tags to my blog. 

 

Firstly, inspired by "Lincoln in the Bardo," (which I have not yet read) I'm going to add a shelf called "What the Heck," or, "WTF?" This shelf will be dedicated to books whose premise, or plot, or characters are weird enough for me to say, "What the heck did I just read?" And that's usually a good thing.

 

Top of the list: Mark Helprin's "Winter's Tale." Also on the list (or soon to be): Nabokov's "Pale Fire" - perhaps the ultimate WTF novel. Probably some stuff by my beloveds Chabon and McEwan. You get where I'm going here.

 

"Winter's Tale" also reminds me of another tag that's important to my literary life and needs to be added: "New York Stories." I've only visited the city once (what a trip), but it's held a huge place in my reader's imagination throughout my life. I need to remember to tag my New York Stories as I read them. 

 

-cg

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