May
04
2016
0

Book of the Week: The Crash of Empire (Imperial Stars 3).

I got reminded of The Crash of Empire (Imperial Stars, Book 3) via comments in another post: the book (edited by Jerry Pournelle and John Carr) is a collection of short stories and essays about, unsurprisingly, wars and empires. There’s some pretty good stories from the 1950s Campbell era in here, so check it out.

And so, adieu to Hallow Mass.

Apr
27
2016
2

Book of the Week: “Hallow Mass.”

An old friend of mine sent over a preview copy of JP Mac’s Hallow Mass to read: I’m in the process of finishing it up now.  Basically: imagine how modern progressive academia would likely respond to an absolutely-real Cthulhu Mythos and you’ll have an idea of how the book goes. It’s coming out in a few days on Kindle; check it out.

And so, adieu to The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu: And Their Race to Save the World’s Most Precious Manuscripts.

Apr
17
2016
2

Book of the Week: “The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu.” …SOLD!

Never underestimate the power of a good book title: you call something “The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu: And Their Race to Save the World’s Most Precious Manuscripts,” you will have my respectful attention. And then when you write a Wall Street Journal article about Abdel Kader Haidara, mild-mannered Hero Librarian and book-smuggler… yeah. I’ll pre-order that. For great justice.

(H/T: @Gormogons) (more…)

Apr
11
2016
3

Book of the Week: “The Monster At The End of This Book.”

…My oldest kid loves The Monster At The End of This Book. Especially when I do my lovable, furry old Grover voice. So anybody who doesn’t like it can kiss my… :ahem:. I have chosen the book that I have chosen.

And so, adieu to League of Dragons.

Apr
09
2016
6

Book of the Week: League of Dragons.

I want, and do not want Naomi Novik’s League of Dragons to come out.  I want it to come out because it is a Temeraire novel (which is to say, a military historical novel about dragons in Napoleonic-era England and the British aerial corps that takes them to war); but I do not want it to come out because then the series will be finished.  Patrick O’Brian had this problem himself, as I recall.  Patrick O’Brian would have also loved this series.

And so, adieu to Flashman and the Mountain of Light.  I also think that George MacDonald Fraser would have enjoyed this series, but a good deal more gruffly.

Mar
22
2016
7

Book of the Week: “A Mountain Walked: Great Tales of the Cthulhu Mythos.”

A Mountain Walked: Great Tales of the Cthulhu Mythos is a collection of short stories collected and edited by S.T. Joshi. …OK, I have had my issues with Joshi, from time to time. He doesn’t have issues with me, because he has no idea who I am and probably wouldn’t care if he did.  But I will forgive the guy much for finding Robert Barbour Johnson’s old NYC subway Mythos-flavored story “Far Below.” Worth the five bucks right there.  I mean, I want to go around to all the people I know who write Cthulhu RPGs and say “Look at this! LOOK AT THIS. Somebody was doing in the 1940s what we’re all trying to do now! What else did this guy write?”

And so, adieu to The Final Reflection.

Mar
16
2016
7

Book of the Week: ‘The Final Reflection.’

Damn, but I miss John M. Ford. He was one of those annoyingly casually brilliant writers who could produce good work on a moment’s notice, and without apparent effort. This week’s BotW is no exception:  The Final Reflection was, prior to the Next Generation stuff, considered pretty much the definitive Star Trek book on Klingons – but, more importantly: it’s a totally legitimate science fiction novel.  Dude was simply incapable of writing poorly.   (more…)

Mar
10
2016
3

Book of the Week: The Gunslinger.

How is it that Stephen King’s The Gunslinger wasn’t already done by now?  While I personally think that maybe The Dark Tower ran out of steam eventually, the first one was brilliant.  Western, magic, myth-making… good, tasty, and not bloated beyond all belief. Can’t wait to see it on the big screen.

And so, adieu to American Gods.

Mar
02
2016
7

Book of the Week: American Gods.

How did I miss making American Gods Book of the Week? It’s a great book! Any week!  Maybe I just assumed that you all read it already?  Anyway, if you haven’t read it it’s a book that assumes that all gods are real if you believe in them, and stay real even after you stop believing in them.  …It’s an excellent example of a Neil Gaiman novel, in other words.  You know how those go.

And so, adieu to The Last Centurion.

 

Feb
26
2016
1

Book of the Week: The Last Centurion.

As per the comments section… I really don’t understand why The Last Centurion hasn’t been done already: I’ve read it several times.  Basically, imagine a future with a combination mini Ice Age and a really, really, really bad flu epidemic.  Then toss a bunch of American troops in the middle of the collapsing Middle East who are trying to get out of there.  Now have John Ringo write it, as only a right-of-center dude who knows that he’s selling the book to Baen can do.  That’s this book.

And so, adieu to For Love of Mother-Not.

Feb
18
2016
7

Book of the Week: ‘For Love of Mother-Not.’

This is kind of supposed to be an encouragement to me: For Love of Mother-Not is the first book in Alan Dean Foster’s Pip and Flinx series of alien world exploration adventure, and I should reread the whole thing to catch up before I go get the last book in the series.  It’s a good series. I’ve always like the central idea of Foster’s Humanx Commonwealth (short version: giant alien bugs! …Hey, these guys are pretty chill. We should hang out).  I should get caught up with it.

And so, adieu to Live Free or Die. (more…)

Feb
14
2016
4

I just junked a ‘Book of the Week’ post.

I’ll be honest: it’s been a bad week for reading books for me. Although I’ve spent a few days rereading Norman Spinrad’s intensely insane The Iron Dream (which is written as if it was a lurid and somewhat alarming 1950s American novel written by longtime artist and pulp SF novelist Adolph Hitler*). It’s an interesting book on the meta-narrative level, and I plan to do a critique of Spinrad’s message once I’ve finished with the intensely lurid prose – but Book of the Week it ain’t.

Moe Lane

*In that timeline, he emigrated.  As I said: intensely insane.

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