Oct
20
2014
0

Book of the Week: Bitter Seeds.

Actually, the recommendation is for all three books in Ian Tregellis’s Milkweed Triptych (Bitter Seeds is merely the first of the three), but the series is not yet in omnibus form.  The series is very much alternate history horror (Second World War era), with definite elements of unapologetic cosmic horror. I enjoyed all three books in the series, for given values of ‘enjoyed;’ horrible place to visit, and danged certain that I’d never want to live there, but the locale has its charms.  Again, for given values of ‘charmed’ and all that.

 

Adieu, Quatermass and the Pit: Five Million Years to Earth (BFI Film Classics).  Your time will come!  Soon.  Soon.

Oct
12
2014
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Book of the week: ‘Quatermass and the Pit: Five Million Years to Earth.’

Mind you, I have not actually read Quatermass and the Pit: Five Million Years to Earth (BFI Film Classics) yet, solely because it’s not out yet (it’s on the Wish List). But Kim Newman is always a safe bet, particularly when it comes to writing on movies. Besides, some day I hope to have publishers send me these things preemptively in the hope of scoring reviews.

And so, adieu to This Kind of War: The Classic Military History of the Korean War.

Moe Lane

PS: The spelling is actually correct, at least from the British point of view.

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Oct
05
2014
3

Book of the Week: ‘This Kind of War,’

Gotta actually do this on a regular basis, now: I got people paying for it.  Anyway: this week’s choice is This Kind of War: The Classic Military History of the Korean War… which I am actually only about a third of the way through, but it really is a classic of its kind, and well worth recommending.  My dad was in Korea, and he didn’t like to talk about it; I am starting to really understand why.

And so, we say adieu to the brief visitation of Lord of Light.

Sep
30
2014
10

Book of the Week: Lord of Light (We hit a Patreon goal!).

Patreon link here: they need buttons, frankly.  Anyway: time to bring back Book of the Week as a regular feature.  I’ll do it every Sunday, so that I can remember it easily, but we’ll begin with one for the rest of the week: Lord of Light.  I mentioned it, like, five years ago, but it really is one of the best science fiction novels of the 1960s, and maybe the best one that Roger Zelazny ever wrote. It’s kind of about Hinduism (explicitly), kind of about Buddhism (explicitly), and kind of about how Enlightenment can take you over even when you don’t want it too; but it’s mostly just good. It’s so good, in fact, that I don’t know if anybody’s ever really tried to top it.

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Jun
16
2013
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Book of the Week: The Drawing of the Dark.

This pick was inspired by various beer-related comments here: The Drawing of the Dark is a Secret Magical History (involving the Siege of Vienna, Western chivalric mythology, and beer) which first demonstrated that Tim Powers is really, really good at creating esoteric and mystical explanations for historical events that make perfect sense at the time; disbelief is not so much suspended in one of Powers’ works as it is chained to the floor to keep it from smashing through the ceiling and out of one’s life completely.

[pause]

Basically, it’s just that it’s never a bad idea to go read a Tim Powers novel. (more…)

Mar
29
2013
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Book of the Week: Interior Desecrations.

Largely because if you buy Interior Desecrations: Hideous Homes from the Horrible ’70s via that link you’re rewarding James Lileks, and not Buzzfeed’s rip-off of the rip-off of James Lileks*. Some people have no class.

So long, Space Eldritch. It was a good run, huh?

Moe Lane

*Excuse me: ‘alleged.’

Nov
14
2012
1

Book of the Week: Space Eldritch.

I mentioned Space Eldritch a couple of days ago, and I’ve since read it.  It’s very nice, very nice: not explicitly HP Lovecraft, mostly – but it does combine cosmic terror with cosmic vistas (that’s Pretentious for ‘horror in space’) pretty well, and the writers are all pretty good.  I liked Howard Tayler’s story best… but only by a bit; and he has a bit of of an unfair advantage, given that Howard’s the guy who does Schlock Mercenary.  It’s only on the Kindle; check it out.

And so, good-bye to The Hobbit DEAR GOD WHEN WILL THE MOVIE COME OUT I CANNOT WAIT FOR MUCH LONGER IT IS MY PRECCCCCCIOUUUUSSSSSSSS

Sep
23
2012
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Book of the Week: “The Hobbit.”

Just started my kids on the The Hobbit; the youngest is ignoring, and the eldest was trying to… but I caught him being a little interested in it tonight. Just a bit.

A somewhat short tenure for The Last Days of Pompeii: Decadence, Apocalypse, Resurrection, but I suspect that Victoria will forgive me.

Sep
08
2012
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Book of the Week: The Last Days of Pompeii: Decadence, Apocalypse, Resurrection.

I know, I know: The Last Days of Pompeii: Decadence, Apocalypse, Resurrection is not my usual fare, but it was written by an old friend and colleague of mine and there’s going to be a lot of art involving erupting volcanoes in it.  I figure that this is close enough to ‘post-apocalyptic’ for me to get something out of it. Besides, I do have some genuine inclinations towards culture.

We say good-bye to The Black Opera. Which, of course, doesn’t go quietly off the stage…

Aug
09
2012
2

Book of the Week: The Black Opera.

I think that Mary Gentle is as bemused as I am that she had to call The Black Opera ‘alternate history;’ it is, technically, but it’s not alternate history in the current style.  It’s alternate history because it’s a book about early 19th century Italian opera, with a plot that have could come out of early 19th century Italian opera, which means that history is pretty much folded, spindled and mutilated to make room for the music.  Need magic to work?  No problem!  It’d be convenient if Napoleon didn’t lose at Waterloo? Sure, hey, the librettist can do something with that!  Will it be necessary to take southern Italy and… whoops!  Gotta watch for those spoilers.

Seriously, it’s a fun, very melodramatic book; and I plan to hand a copy off to a friend of mine who is genuinely knowledgeable of opera.  I expect either it’ll be well received, or else it’ll be thrown across the room.  Possibly both: opera’s like that.

And so, adieu to Redshirts: A Novel with Three Codas.  Which was also fun, and melodramatic.  Well, sort of melodramatic.

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Jul
13
2012
1

Book of the Week: Redshirts.

I was able to pick up Redshirts: A Novel with Three Codas – all hail scrounged change jars, not to mention change counting machines that will issue you full-credit slips for Amazon – on the Kindle, and let me tell you: damn, that was a good read.  Intensely meta, and maybe the codas were the best part – but Scalzi hit this one out of the park.  Pick it up.

And that will replace Tigana. Which is also a great book, of course.

Moe Lane

Mar
14
2012
1

Book of the Week: Tigana.

Tigana was written by Guy Gavriel Kay, and I’m not going to beat around the bush, here: Kay is one of my favorite authors, and Tigana is one of the best damn books he’s ever written.  It’s low-to-mid-level fantasy based around the late medieval/early Renaissance Italian city-state period, and manages to be extremely evocative of the time period without exploiting it.  Check it out.

Yup, short reign for The Collected Works of Edgar Rice Burroughs.  Trying to keep these a little fresher. (more…)

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