gangrel_pri: (dragonlance)
Halfway through Dragons of the Hourglass Mage by Tracy Hickman and Margaret Weis now.

Really liking the Lost Chronicles trilogy. The first book pretty much covered the big gap between Autumn and Winter (you know, the whole how the Heroes actually found Thorbardin and the Hammer or Kharas...), the second book better explained how Laurana gat the Dragon Orb in Ice Wall not to mention how Kitiara wound up with Lord Soth.

So, in the new one, 3 chapters in, we find out who the mysterious help was that managed to get Gilthanas and Silvara out of Neraka after finding out where baby Draconians come from, get a better understanding of Raistlin's rather screwed up relationship with Fistadatlis... Oh yes, and we have Nuitari vs. Takhisis.

Anyway, I need to go find lunch, so I'm outtie.
gangrel_pri: (Cats and books)
List 15 books you've read that will always stick with you. They should be the first 15 you can recall in no more than 15 minutes. Tag however many friends you want, including *me*, because I'm interested in seeing what books you lot choose (and might try them myself if I like the title)

1) It by Stephen King (First really long book I ever read.)

2) Adolf Hitler by someone who;s name I don't recall (Read the biography in 3rd grade. It's what started my interest in WW II)

3) Frankenstein by Mary Shelley (A very inetersting book. much different than the movies.)

4) Flowers for Alegernon by Daniel Keyes (Read it for a class back in High School. Still sticks with me, since I sometimes feel a bit like Charley.)

5) Great Zeus and All His Children by someone who's name I don't recall (I love Greek mythos. This one was written with an adult audience in mind, so it was a bit less whitewashed than the children's book I wore out as a child.

6) The Vanishing Hitchhiker: American Urban Legends and Their Meanings by Jan Harold Brunvand Ph.D (One of the first books on modern folklore I ever read.)

7) Ethan of Athos by Lois McMasters Bujold (While soft sci-fi, this was one of the few books with gay themes I could get away with reading in High School.)

8) The Last Herald-Mage by Mercedes Lackey (Ok, it's a three book series, but the books are well written mind candy about a gay man and his talking horse.)

9) Dragon Lance Chornicles by Tracy Hickman and Margaret Weis (Again a trilogy, and extremely derivative of Tolkien. However, unlik Tolkien, there's no damn singing druid or 5 page descriptions of the social lives of trees.)

10) Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand (I hate this book, I hate Objectivism. However, the book still sticks with me even 15 years after reading it, and I still find myself arguing with her.)

11) Les Miserables by Victor Hugo (Read the book after seeing the musical. The book was freaking awesome. Plus the musical made more sense after reading it.)

12) And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie (I realize this book had at least 3 titles, but I read it under the listed title. Probably the BEST mystery I ever read.)

13) The Gumshoe, the Witch and the Virtual Corpse by Keith Hartman (Love this book and its sequal The Gumshoe Gorilla. Not only does it combine sci-fi with mystery, the overwhelming theme of how we've built walls around our subsections of society and allowed misundertsanding to fester into hatred is something I probablky undertsnad more than most. Plus the funny is with the author.)

14) Tales of the City by Arimistead Maupin (the 70's in San Francisco. What's not to love?)

15) Illium and Olympos by Dan Simmons (It's kind of one big book he cut in half. Odd books, with meta humans pretending to be gods and reinacting Homer's epic Iliad on Mars while humans left on Earth fight Shakespeareian villians. and mining robots from Jupiter that quote classical poetry.)

Honorable mentions:

Imajica by Clive Barker (Really opened my mind to alternate worlds.)

Metamorphoses by Ovid (Contains the stories of some of my favorite mythos.)
gangrel_pri: (Cats and books)
Before I post about hwy I'm convince God must be mad at me, I figured I'd post a few movie and book reviews.

We'll start with The Gay Bed and Breakfast of Terror. I forget how NetFlix even recommended this one, but I have to admit I found it amusing to no end whatsoever. The set up is kind of silly: 5 couples and a flame dame arrive at a supposedly gay-friendly B&B in the middle of nowhere. We have: The Drag Queen and Mr. Leather (headed to "The Blue Party", the sweater queens who've been dating 9 years and their flame dame (visiting a sick relative), The sugar daddy and his club kid baby (also headed to the blue party), the lesbian couple who are selling edible body paint (one of whom has a panic disorder), and the lesbian folk singer and her girlfriend who's mildly put off by the perkiness.

The B&B is run by Helen and her daughter Luella. We find out early on that Helen is all about redeeming gay folks for Christ, usually by murder. Luella, a sort of closet lesbian, makes minced meat muffins. Complete with jewelry from previous guests baked in.

As all 5 couples start showing signs of relationship strain, we also find out about Manfred. By far the best revelation about Manfred is that he's "the bastard son of 100 Republican convention delegates". We also get the absolutely hysterical pairing of the drag queen (in full drag by the halfway point) with the lesbian folk singer (a rather naive girl who's in a Deitrich in Morocco tuxedo for the second half.)

While the acting is pretty bad and the gore is kind of low (lots of blood, but no really graphic stuff), the movie remains cheaply amusing. [livejournal.com profile] booboobob would love it.

I just finished re-reading Maskerade by Terry Pratchett. This remains probably my favorite of his Discworld series. Agnes Nitt (AKA Perdita X. Dream) goes to Ankh-Morpork to sing in the opera. Granny Weatherwax and Nanny Ogg end up following her and getting involved in the search for the ghost of the opera.

Also finished Gods Behaving Badly by Marie Phillips. The premise revolves around the Olympian pantheon living in London rather anonymously. Aphrodite plays a prank on Apollo similar to the story of Daphne (makes him fall in love with someone nonreciprocating) which winds up with an Orphic adventure in the underworld to save the overworld. while much of the plot is a re-hash of other books about gods in the modern world, it remains fun, easy reading.

Am now in the middle of Ghost Radio by Leopoldo Gout. while I'm enjoying it so far, the narrative is kind of confusing since it keeps witching from first person (Joaquin), first person (Alondra), and third person omniscient. Joaquin is the host of a Mexican/Hispanic radio show along the lines of Coast to Coast. (More focused on the supernatural and ghosts than UFOs and Bigfoot though.) However, as the book progesses, he's getting drawn more and more into his own paranormal issues. Based on the foreshadowing, I ssume our antagonist will end up being one of the Aztec gods. Still fun to read.

Any rate, I allegedly get Milk tomorrow, which should be interesting, since I generally hate Sean Penn.
gangrel_pri: (Cats and books)
Destroyermen: Into the Storm by Taylor Anderson.

I think this came to my attention on a Sci-Fi list the library sends out monthly. It caught my attention based on two plot keywords: parallel reality and World War II. We start with World War I era destroyers USS Walker and USS Mahan on the run from the Japanese in the Pacific. Trying to make it to Bali for a safe port, both ships try to evade the Japanese pursuit by steering into a major squall. When the storm clears, they find a Pacific Ocean teaming with hybrid alligator/shark things that eat pretty much anyone who's fallen overboard from either Us ship and the torpedoed Japanese ship that emerged with them.

While the island of Bali is still there, dinosaurs now roam where civilization once stood. The Mahan and the Walker get separated, with Mahan heading towards Australia. We follow Walker and her crew as they encounter a pitched navel battle between The People (also known as Lemurians or cat-monkeys) and the Grik, (Evolved lizard sapiens). Walker joins the battle on the side of the Lemurians.

And so it begins. While the ensemble cast gets a bit unwieldy, the plot is really enjoyable, and it's fun to figure out if the Grik are more like the Nazis or Japanese in their treatment of POWs.

The Man with the Golden Torc by Simon R. Green

For those who've read Green's Nightside series, the tone here is about the same, only our Hero (Edward Drood) is kind of like a cross between Merlin and James Bond.

For those who haven't, the books is a first person narrative of Edward Drood, who more or less has the job of saving the world along with the rest of his family. Of course, the mundane world knows nothing of it.

As the book starts, Edward tells us of his family birthright, a golden circlet around his neck that magically covers his body in golden armor. Said armor provides invulnerability, super strength, and near-invisibility. His family, the Droods, have been protecting the world for untold eons with both supertech and magic. (Thus why we have Edward driving a Bond car with guns and EMP pulses while casting spells right and left.)

After the initial assignment (killing a demon baby in a sealed hospice), Edward is recalled to the family estate. This being Simon R. Green, Edward is a rougeish black sheep in the family, so his return is not a comfortable one. The Matriarch who runs the family business ends up recruiting Edward to return a sacred object to Stonehenge under strict secrecy. Seems there's a traitor in the family selling information out to anyone and everyone. Thus why the outsider is back... hopefully he can ferret out the rat.

Quite readable, even if it does seem like reading Nightside in a different setting.

ARRGH!

Nov. 14th, 2008 02:55 am
gangrel_pri: (jigglypuff)
I hate insomnia.

Doesn't help I got my copy of The Phoenix Endangered by Mercedes Lackey and James Mallory from the library yesterday.

Can't help but wonder if Misty took a class on Islam and/or the Middle East recently. This series and her Joust series both seem to involve desert societies that seem to closely resemble either Bedouins or Upper and Lower Egypt.
gangrel_pri: (Black mage)
Is Stephanie Meyer's Twilight near as bad as I hear? I mean, I know it's caught on with some folks, but the one synopsis I read of it had me wondering. Kind of wondering if this isn't another Eragon...

I have a hold on book one, but it'll be a while before a copy becomes available. Basically looking for a general synopsis and what other books it compares to right now.
gangrel_pri: (more cthulhu)
It's a bit small, but here's the original picture.



I am also officially embarrassed. Went to the grocery and the post office earlier. And the library, but that's s different story... Among other things, I found a Molly Ivans book I've never heard of, which should make me laugh for a while.

Anyway, I've been dealing with a dairy craving for several days now, and I went in search of more string cheese. Well, unfortunately, they were out of the individual tubes, which meant trying to find the cheapest package. Problem being that ended up being the Sargento Light string cheese. Which wasn't the real problem. The real problem is that Miley Cyrus was plastered all over the packaging. which meant walking around feeling like everyone in the store was staring at me until I buried them under some apple cinnamon bagels. which reminds me, I should go get some butter. And I'm also proud/disappointed in myself for resisting the temptation to blow $7.50 on The Monster Squad. It's kind of like The Goonies, a movie I LOVED like crack as a kid, but I have a feeling would let me down as an adult.

All of which leads to the question of hitting McDonald's Redbox and renting something tonight. Mainly since they close the Hollywood Video by my house and Blockbuster is a pain in the ass to get to from here.

Anyway, I apologize for being so posty the past few days. having stable internet must just be making me giddy.
gangrel_pri: (Default)
Xposted in [livejournal.com profile] booktards, but reposted here for those of you who like the series and don't read [livejournal.com profile] booktards.

No real spoilers, but cut anyway )
gangrel_pri: (Default)
Been putting this off due to time constraints.

1) Look at the list and bold those you have read.
2) Italicize those you started but did not finish.
3) Underline the books you LOVE.
4) Reprint this list in your own LJ so we can try and track down these people who've read 6 and force books upon them
space saving cut )

Wee!

May. 3rd, 2008 01:12 pm
gangrel_pri: (emojesus)
Finished Waking Brigid over lunch at Long John's. Bless his heart, the author even managed to add some Welsh pagans into the mix by the end of it. Very well written and amusing A++++. *cough*

Seriously, though. It was a good yarn and a good majority of his magical theory was in agreement with most of what I've read and/or understand. His conclusions, however, would make an Evangelical have a heart attack, and probably get a good Catholic reprimanded at the very least. Among other things, his assertation that religion is a creation of man to explain and define things we can't explain tends to piss some people off. You know, the folks who claim religion is man's attempt to reach G-d, but Christianity is G-d's attempt to reach man. Or his very Hindu assertation that G-d has many facets through which we can understand G-d.

Really though, I enjoyed it.
gangrel_pri: (Default)
Since I know I have a few bibliophiles reading this...

One of my random library picks has turned out better than expected. Waking Brigid mixes so many genres that I was expecting the literary equivalent of John's last atempt at gumbo, but I instead find it a delicate quiche. (Yes, I should never write reviews while hungry.)

Anyway, I'm about halfway through. We're in Savannah, Georgia, during the Reconstruction. (Fun fact. Savannah was spared by Sherman on his way to the Atlantic.) We have Brigid, who grew up in Ireland. Brigid has The Sight, and had started training it with her Aunt went the potatoes stopped growing. So, the local priest, in an attempt to stomp out village paganism, sends her off to convent school.

Fast forward a bit. Brigid is now in Savannah, working as a nurse attached to the convent. (There are all kinds of references to treating the boys in grey who came in wounded.) A prominent cotton factor dies under mysterious circumstances. Namely, something rams his head into the wall in a locked room. Said thing also melts the edges of a silver crucifix.

This wakes up Brigid's memories of her aunt... And also gets the attention of a Floridian monk who's part of a secret order of Roman Catholic Mages.

So, as of now, we have Brigid and her Celtic roots, the Priest Ceremonial Magician, and a bunch of ex slaves practicing voudoun combating a very German bad guy who's a Satanist summoning demons.

The fact this all works out and remain engaging is a feat of skill. Seriously. See if your library has it and enjoy.
gangrel_pri: (abstinence)
Ok, finally finished with the Roman Empire and starting into European History from Charlemagne to the Union.

Problem I'm having is a few things that got mentioned but never really explained. And I have no idea where to even start looking for some of these things.

For instance, when discussing the formation of the "orthodox" church, he discussed how many of the barbarians converted to Arian Christianity rather than Orthodox Christianity (This was before the Great Schism, so it was still all one Catholic Church.) Based on the arguement being over Christ being homioousios (of a like, but not identical substance-Arian) vs Christ being homooousios(of the exact same substance-Orthodox, as decided at the Council of Nicea)... Is this the same arguement the Eastern Church was facing when debating Hypostasis vs Monophysitism? AKA, is it an arguement over the idea of Christ being wholly human and wholly divine at the same time vs the idea of the divine absorbing the humanity over time? (I'm probably asking in the wrong place here, given most of my readers are either Jewish or Pagan of some form.)

Let's see...

There was also a law against castrating slaves for profit. And I'm trying to figure out how the hell you make a profit off a eunuch. I mean, do you cook the testes and feed them to Andrew Zimmern or something?

I also found a reference to how the Old School Pagans blamed the Christians for the sacking of Rome, inspiring Augustine to write something called The City of God. Can anyone give me a brief overview here? Wading through a treatise on early Christian thought doesn't really appeal to me. (Can you tell I grew up Protestant? Presbyterian Confirmation class Church history tended to gloss over everything until the Protestant Reformation; even then we spent about 2 minutes on Martin Luther and Henry VIII. Hell, even High School Western Civ didn't spend a hell of a lot of time on the fall.)

I did find and request a few books at the library on subjects the current book raised curiousity about, so with any luck they'll arrive sooner or later.

And on another suject entirely, John's taking a nap, so I'm babysitting the shop right now. I really wish we could figure a way to branch out this business so he's not doing 80% of his business between September 15 and November 1.
gangrel_pri: (Default)
Got up early and mailed my state and federal tax returns, as well as books to GA, IA, and MI.

Mind you, I came home and found I have to mail another book, but since they waited so long to conform, they can wait until Monday to get mailed, since I ain't getting up early again tomorrow to head back up to the PO.

A search on paperbackswap.com has revealed a complete set of a D&D series I used to swear only one complete set of existed. so, I'm saving credits to get order the full set now, assuming more of my wishlist doesn't pop up.

Been having fun reading Butcher's Captain's Fury, Book 4 of his Codex Alera. Only probelm being it's taken me a while to remember who the hell all these people are; it's been a while since I read the last 3. Still easier to keep track of than Greorge R. R. Martin or Robert Jordan's casts of thousands.

I find it odd eye candy is out in summer clothes when it's 45 degrees today.

Any rate, I need to poop, so I'm outta here.

*Mutter*

Aug. 12th, 2007 01:30 am
gangrel_pri: (Default)
I find myself wondering why The Losers By David Eddings was in the Fantasy section. 3/4 of the way through, and so far it's been normal people with normal occurences. Kind of dull, actually. Like Rear Window without a murder.

/sigh

Jul. 29th, 2007 09:58 pm
gangrel_pri: (Default)
Ok, finished The Mallorean (David Eddings) and Michael Tolliver Lives! (Armistead Maupin) today.

The latter made me cry a lot. And I almost forgave Mary Ann for being such a bitch in the last book. It was a lot like getting a postcard from old friends, catching up on how times have changed. I still am not happy about his tendancy to kill off characters between books, since it really doesn't give a chance for the reader to mourn the death. This was one one the reasons Signifigant Others bothered me so much. I would have felt better had John died during the book rather than a few years prior to the start.

Still, it was good to see Mouse and Anna Madrigal again.

EDIT:

Ugh, just realized Michael Tolliver Lives! was the last book I had out of the library. I have 2 on the hold shelf, but the library doesn't open before I have to be at work.

Which means I can read one of my Shadowrun novels or try to get into Christopher Rice's A Density of Souls. Most of the rest of my library is too fresh in my memory to read atm.
gangrel_pri: (hobbes)
So, I finished re-reading The Dark Tower VII: The Dark Tower at work tonight.

I still don't like the very ending, but it didn't piss me off as much as it did the first time. But, reareading the series (Except Wizard and Glass) really was interesting. Mind you, I had to look up the concordance to figure out a few references (I still can't figure out what the Connecticut story was)...That and I really should re-read a few books that are part of the mythos, mainly because I missed stuff.

Anyway, I also caught a few outside references I missed the last time. Like Stuttering Bill, the robot in Empathica (also the nickname of the main character in It), and a reference to a robotic "House Elf" named Dobby. (Bad enough he had exploding sneetches in the last 3 books. Wonder if J K Rowling sued, or if she just enjoyed the publicity.)

Actually, the funny part is realizing how similar the hype is between The Dark Tower and Harry Potter. Both are 7 book series, both have faced endless speculation on how they would end...(I recall a lot of folks being convinced Roland would meet Steven King in the top room of the tower. Much like people predicting Harry's death or loss of power in Deathly Hallows.) Chances are, the speculation for Hallows is just as far off as it was for The Dark tower.

Potpourri

May. 15th, 2007 06:05 pm
gangrel_pri: (dragonlance)
Ok, a few things.

My schedule changed again, thanks to Old racist Warren quitting on 2 days notice. Now I get tuesday and Wednesday off, and am back to opening sunday and Monday. Good, because I get mo' overtime. Bad, because it means I have to be up around 6 Am on Mondays again.

Going to Lebanon tonight to help a friend with his haunted house painting. (It doesn't open until Halloween, but he's trying to get intricate designs done.)

Also, a few random thoughts after spending a lot of time wandering the stacks at the library...

1) Why do Fantasy Heroines all look like Tawnie Kitane in Whitesnake's "Here I Go Again" video? I know most of my het friends rubbed more than a few out to her, and G-d alone knows she had more coochie-coochie than Charo...but still... could be worse, at least the obsession with Julie Strain seems to be abating.

2) Speaking of fantasy novel covers, why do all male heroes sport Joe Dirt mullets? For that matter, why are any secondary magician male characters portrayed as either buffer than Guv Swarzenegger or look a lot like Clay Akin-for-some-cock?

3) While I'll admit to being hooked on a few, what's up with the trend of publishing "Supernatural Detective" novels? and why di they all eventually decend into porn? Laurell K. Hamilton is the worst of the latter, but the Hollows series by Kim Harrison is getting there. I mean, Rachel had a 5 page sex scene with Kisten, right after about 3 pages of lesbian foreplay with Ivy. She does, however, still manage to keep a plot going between the sex scenes.

4) I wish Tanya Huff would get more erotic in the Smoke series to counterbalance all the females getting vampire sex.

Ugh, need to put the now soaking laundry in the dryer of DOOM!
gangrel_pri: (Default)
This one courtesy of [livejournal.com profile] baeritone...

1. Total number of books I've owned:

Um, Higher than I could probably count.

2. The last book I bought:

Dead With Walking by Kim Harrison

3. The last book I read:

Sanctuary by Mercedes Lackey. Which I thought would be the end of the series, but I guess she's got a fourth book coming out in the same world. It's an amusing read, since she based the series on Upper and Lower Egypt before they became one nation, but all three books have a few allegories to modern times hiding within. Still beats the living shit out of Marion Zimmer Bradley, who skips the allegory and goes straight to bashing men, Christians, anyone who pissed her off, etc. Or worse, MZB's The Fall of Atlantis, where not only does Atlantis not sink by the end, but the plot is so dull I used it as an insomnia cure.

4. Five books that mean a lot to me:

The Midnight Club by Christopher Pike- One of the best YA novels ever written.

Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaimen. I agree with Clive Barker, who's blurb was on the cover of my first copy. "The Apocalypse has never been funnier." For those of you who are already fans, rumours abound Robin Williams will be Aziraphale in the movie version.

Imagica by Clive Barker. The best thing he's ever written. Period.

The Chronicles of Narnia by CS Lewis. I loved 'em as a kid, and I like them as an adult now that I can pointedly ignore the Xtian undertones. (Hey, I was oblivious about them until the end of The Last Battle.)

Dragonlance Chronicles by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman Yeah, they ripped off Tolkien, but they also didn't spend 18 pages describing Ents, nor was there an annoying druid who liked to sing and tell stories.

5. Tag five people and request they put this in their journals:

[livejournal.com profile] mzwyndi, [livejournal.com profile] primavera, [livejournal.com profile] lotussilverfire, [livejournal.com profile] avahgdu, [livejournal.com profile] spookshow1313
gangrel_pri: (Default)
You're stuck inside Fahrenheit 451, which book do you want to be?
Lady Chetterley's Lover by DH Lawrence.

Have you ever had a crush on a fictional character?
I joke about it often enough, but my first literary crush was Joe Hardy of the Hardy Boys mystery stories. Never saw the TV show, so no, it wasn't that guy.

The last book you bought is:
Uh...Paladin of Souls by Lois McMasters Bujold. With the exception of Ethan of Athos her sci-fi isn't my fave, but her fantasy is excellent.

The last book you read:
The Curse of Chalion by Lois McMasters Bujold. An old fave.

What are you currently reading?
The Prison R. Patrick Gates. Supermarket horror at it's finest.

Five books you would take to a deserted island.
1. Exit to Eden by Anne Rice for the lonely nights
2. Good Omens by Neil Gaimen and Terry Pratchett for the bad days
3. The Midnight Club by Christopher Pike for days I needed a pick me up
4. The Stand: Uncut and Unedited by Steven King for days I need something that will take forever to read
5. All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque. I have yet to find a better cure for insomnia.

Who are you going to pass this stick to (3 persons) and why?
My entire friends list, in hopes some of them will share.
gangrel_pri: (Default)
Which means being quick for the sake of politeness.

Had a wonderful Thanksgiving in the company of close friends, namely [livejournal.com profile] taocub, The Bear, and Wolf. Did me a world of good to spend a holiday far far away from my family. Trust me on this. Holidays with mom and Lisa and Richard usually end with me ready to start killing folks.

Still odd being in Fairborn again after so long. It used to be my Israel, now it feels more like I'm Adam, coming back to the Garden of Eden. Someplace forbidden,a home that isn't anymore. It drives me nuts, since I still remember all the things I did to live here again a few years back. Maybe the poets were right....you can't go home again.

Went and saw Timeline tonight after a rather disappointing dinner at what may well be the last Denny's left in Ohio. Kind of sad, since Gay Denny's is where I spent many a night recovering from the excesses of too much alcohol and asphixiation by gay men wearing too much CK1. The movie itself wasn't bad, just had to keep remembering that it was based on Crichton. In oither words, leave reality at the door, and don't expect anything to be explained. Also, predictability of survivorship among the characters.

Currently re-reading Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaimen's Good Omens, which I've been wanting to re-read for a while, particularly since [livejournal.com profile] sandradelete keeps mentioning it.

It's raining again. I hate rain. It could at least snow for the sake of form. I mean, it is almost winter....

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