Archive for the ‘Friday Fragments’ Category

FF: Modesty and More

April 19, 2019

The Novel Is Peeking Out At The Top

Until recently, it was more common to see a novel series adapted or expanded into graphic novels rather than the other way around.  Modesty Blaise anticipated the trend.  Interestingly, both were written by Peter O’Donnell, rather than one being farmed out to someone else as is common today.

I’ve featured a cover from a collection of the newspaper strips here because, frankly, the novel had a trashy cover that misrepresents the novel entirely.

Oh…  And if you miss the usual pet portrait, go to the end for a photo of our cat Ogapoge taken about a year ago…

For those of you just discovering this part of my blog, the Friday Fragments lists what I’ve read over the past week.  Most of the time I don’t include details of either short fiction (unless part of a book-length collection) or magazines.

The Fragments are not meant to be a recommendation list.  If you’re interested in a not-at-all-inclusive recommendation list, you can look on my website under Neat Stuff.

Once again, this is not a book review column.  It’s just a list with, maybe, a bit of description or a few opinions tossed in.

Recently Completed:

Swordheart by T. Kingfisher (aka Ursual Vernon).  One review called this a screwball comedy with serious undertones.  That’s a good description.  Laugh out loud sometimes, edge of the seat at others.

In Progress:

In An Absent Dream: Wayward Children 4 by Seanan McGuire.  Audiobook.

Modesty Blaise by Peter O’Donnell.  Novel.  Re-read, but it’s been a long time.

Fruits Basket by Natsuki Takaya, this week volumes 6-11.  Manga.  Re-read.  The story is moving from slice of life, romantic comedy into something far darker and outre.

Also:

Writing, writing, writing….

Ogapoge Amid Towels

Advertisements

FF: Curl Up With A Book

April 12, 2019

Kel In Cute Company

This week I’ve really wanted to curl up with a good book.  Although I haven’t indulged as much as I’d like, I’ve at least had some good choices when I do.

For those of you just discovering this part of my blog, the Friday Fragments lists what I’ve read over the past week.  Most of the time I don’t include details of either short fiction (unless part of a book-length collection) or magazines.

The Fragments are not meant to be a recommendation list.  If you’re interested in a not-at-all-inclusive recommendation list, you can look on my website under Neat Stuff.

Once again, this is not a book review column.  It’s just a list with, maybe, a bit of description or a few opinions tossed in.

Recently Completed:

Blackfish City by Sam J. Miller.  Creative dystopian setting.  Interesting characters.  Not recommended for those who don’t like multiple points of view or a plot that takes a while to come together, but if you can, it’s worth the journey.

Our Oriental Heritage: The Story of Civilization by Will Durant.  Audiobook.  I very much enjoyed, although the final section on Japan, speculating what might happen as Japan was showing a need to compete for Asian markets for surplus goods, as well as for raw materials, was rather creepy given that it was written in 1934 and called some future events all too well.

In Progress:

Swordheart by T. Kingfisher (aka Ursual Vernon).  One review called this a screwball comedy with serious undertones.  Thus far, I can’t disagree.  I’m enjoying.

In An Absent Dream: Wayward Children 4 by Seanan McGuire.  Audiobook.  Just starting.

Fruits Basket by Natsuki Takaya, volumes 1-5.  Manga.  Re-read.  The story is moving from slice of life, romantic comedy into something far darker and outre.

Also:

Coincidence is weird.  I decided to re-read Fruits Basket because I like to read something familiar before bed.  (That way I don’t start worrying or stay up too late reading!)  I just happened upon a notice that a new Fruits Basket anime started broadcasting in this month.

FF: Completed!

April 5, 2019

Under The Kindle Tree, Ziggy Eats

This past week I finished off a bunch of books…

For those of you just discovering this part of my blog, the Friday Fragments lists what I’ve read over the past week.  Most of the time I don’t include details of either short fiction (unless part of a book-length collection) or magazines.

The Fragments are not meant to be a recommendation list.  If you’re interested in a not-at-all-inclusive recommendation list, you can look on my website under Neat Stuff.

Once again, this is not a book review column.  It’s just a list with, maybe, a bit of description or a few opinions tossed in.

Recently Completed:

The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly Barnhill.  Style reminded me of Patricia McKillip.  I’m still thinking about this one, but I’d probably read something else by this author.

Peasprout Chen: Future Legend of Sword and Skate by Henry Lien.  The title makes this book sound a lot lighter weight than it is.  SF with some serious politics.

Aru Shah and the End of Time by Rohani Chokshi.  Part of the new Rick Riordan Presents line, and seems to take “let’s imitate Rick Riordan” a little too seriously.  Structure and even major plotpoints are highly derivative.  Uses Hindu myth eclectically.

In Progress:

Blackfish City by Sam J. Miller.  Creative dystopian setting.  Interesting characters.  Not recommended for those who don’t like multiple points of view or a plot that takes a while to come together, but if you can, it’s worth the journey.

Our Oriental Heritage: The Story of Civilization by Will Durant.  Audiobook.  Into Japan, currently on non-fiction.

Also:

Looking for something either familiar or lighter to read before bed.  I’m considering re-reading one of my favorite manga: Fruits Basket.  Tohru’s encounters with a very strange group based around the characters of the Chinese zodiac isn’t exactly “light” (she starts out orphaned and homeless) but it’s very warm.

FF: Fragmented Fragments

March 29, 2019

But How Would A Neon Fish Taste?

I’m wrapping up my Nebula Award reading and will probably be doing so right up to Sunday when I’ll vote at the last minute!

For those of you just discovering this part of my blog, the Friday Fragments lists what I’ve read over the past week.  Most of the time I don’t include details of either short fiction (unless part of a book-length collection) or magazines.

The Fragments are not meant to be a recommendation list.  If you’re interested in a not-at-all-inclusive recommendation list, you can look on my website under Neat Stuff.

Once again, this is not a book review column.  It’s just a list with, maybe, a bit of description or a few opinions tossed in.

Recently Completed:

Nothing longer than short fiction!

In Progress:

The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly Barnhill.  Before bed.

Our Oriental Heritage: The Story of Civilization by Will Durant.  Audiobook.  Finished  China with a look at was then (1935) the contemporary nation in transition.  Fascinating.

Also:

Not too much…

FF: A Little Less

March 15, 2019

Kel Fell Over and Went Thud

Life was a little less fraught this week, so I did a lot of writing.  But I did read, too, and it was good for the soul.

For those of you just discovering this part of my blog, the Friday Fragments lists what I’ve read over the past week.  Most of the time I don’t include details of either short fiction (unless part of a book-length collection) or magazines.

The Fragments are not meant to be a recommendation list.  If you’re interested in a not-at-all-inclusive recommendation list, you can look on my website under Neat Stuff.

Once again, this is not a book review column.  It’s just a list with, maybe, a bit of description or a few opinions tossed in.

Recently Completed:

Snuff by Terry Pratchett.  Re-read.  I think I read this when it came out, and haven’t since, so it’s almost like a “new” book.  Sam Vimes may be my favorite Discworld character.

In Progress:

Thud by Terry Pratchett.  Re-read.  I had forgotten just how brilliant this one is.

Our Oriental Heritage: The Story of Civilization by Will Durant.  Audiobook.  Now into China.

Also:

I’m plowing through the Nebula nominated works.  Yeah.  Some people do vote for friends or for a cause, but some of us actually read the works and try to vote with the works only in mind.

I won’t necessarily list all of this reading because if something doesn’t grab me, I won’t finish it.

FF: Fraught

March 8, 2019

Kel In A Basket With Pratchett

This week has been fraught with sick pets, breaking plumbing, and enough minor mishaps to make me wonder just which imp of the perverse we have caught the attention of…  When I get a moment, I do read, but moments have been few and far between.

For those of you just discovering this part of my blog, the Friday Fragments lists what I’ve read over the past week.  Most of the time I don’t include details of either short fiction (unless part of a book-length collection) or magazines.

The Fragments are not meant to be a recommendation list.  If you’re interested in a not-at-all-inclusive recommendation list, you can look on my website under Neat Stuff.

Once again, this is not a book review column.  It’s just a list with, maybe, a bit of description or a few opinions tossed in.

Recently Completed:

The Truth by Terry Pratchett.  Re-read.  Enjoyed.

In Progress:

Snuff by Terry Pratchett.  Re-read.  I think I read this when it came out, and haven’t since, so it’s almost like a “new” book.  Sam Vimes may be my favorite Discworld character.

Our Oriental Heritage: The Story of Civilization by Will Durant.  Audiobook.  Now into China.

Also:

The new Smithsonian, which seems to be getting slimmer and slimmer.<

/p>

FF: Finding Time

March 1, 2019

Kel Asks, “What Is Truth?”

Reading is taking something of a backseat to writing.  However, since I’ve learned I write better when I am making time to read, I’m cheerfully finding time.

For those of you just discovering this part of my blog, the Friday Fragments lists what I’ve read over the past week.  Most of the time I don’t include details of either short fiction (unless part of a book-length collection) or magazines.

The Fragments are not meant to be a recommendation list.  If you’re interested in a not-at-all-inclusive recommendation list, you can look on my website under Neat Stuff.

Once again, this is not a book review column.  It’s just a list with, maybe, a bit of description or a few opinions tossed in.

Recently Completed:

Making Money by Terry Pratchett.  Re-read.  Very much enjoyed.

Tales From The Nine Worlds by Rick Riordan.  Audiobook.  Short stories set in the “Magnus Chase” world.  Amusing, but mostly lacking the emotional punch of the novels.  Each story had a different reader to go with the different POV characters, a mostly successful element.  Possibly the best element was the framing device.

In Progress:

Our Oriental Heritage: The Story of Civilization by Will Durant.  Audiobook.  We finished India with the – at the time the book was written – contemporary figure of Mahatma Gandhi.  Fascinating additional element.

The Truth by Terry Pratchett.  Re-read.  This one moves me back in the Discworld timeline from the books I have been reading, but belongs to what I think of as the “Pratchett moves the Discworld out of the Fantasy Middle Ages” arc, so sort of fits.

Also:

I’ve been writing fairly steadily, so not much additional reading.

FF: Collaborative Reading

February 21, 2019

Persephone Makes Money Under the Table

This week I read the entirety of the first issue of DreamForge Magazine.  Now Jim is reading it, and we’re having a lot of fun discussing the stories.  I think of this as collaborative reading or at least a reading group of two.  I also very much enjoy seeing comments on what you’re reading.  Often it influences what I start looking for to read next.

For those of you just discovering this part of my blog, the Friday Fragments lists what I’ve read over the past week.  Most of the time I don’t include details of either short fiction (unless part of a book-length collection) or magazines.

The Fragments are not meant to be a recommendation list.  If you’re interested in a not-at-all-inclusive recommendation list, you can look on my website under Neat Stuff.

Once again, this is not a book review column.  It’s just a list with, maybe, a bit of description or a few opinions tossed in.

Recently Completed:

Going Postal by Terry Pratchett.  Before bed.  This is one I enjoyed much more on a second reading than I did on a first!

In Progress:

Making Money by Terry Pratchett.  Re-read.  Before bed.

Our Oriental Heritage: The Story of Civilization by Will Durant.  Audio.  We’re now to music and art in India.  This book was written in the mid-1930’s, before George Harrison of the Beatles made sure everyone knew what a sitar sounded like.

Also:

Reading a combination of short fiction from various sources and almost, almost catching up on my magazines!

FF: It Was a Good Week

February 15, 2019

Kel Stole My Bedtime Read!

This was really a good week for reading.  I wanted to read a T. Kingfisher book that didn’t have a kid as a protagonist, and wasn’t disappointed.  I also found that the Cleese autobiography went from side-rippingly funny to poignantly thoughtful.

For those of you just discovering this part of my blog, the Friday Fragments lists what I’ve read over the past week.  Most of the time I don’t include details of either short fiction (unless part of a book-length collection) or magazines.

The Fragments are not meant to be a recommendation list.  If you’re interested in a not-at-all-inclusive recommendation list, you can look on my website under Neat Stuff.

Once again, this is not a book review column.  It’s just a list with, maybe, a bit of description or a few opinions tossed in.

Recently Completed:

The Clockwork Boys by T. Kingfisher.   Not steampunk, despite the title.  Closer to sword and sorcery with the “sorcery” replaced by demons and ancient technology.  Complex multi-level characterization, a touch of romance, and dry humor make this unlikely tale work beautifully.

The Wonder Engine by T. Kingfisher.  Part two of the story begun in The Clockwork Boys.  Satisfying if bittersweet conclusion.  I really like that there are consequences.  And gnoles.  I liked the gnoles a lot.

So, Anyway… by John Cleese.  Audiobook, read by the author.  Intensely detailed, sometimes very funny autobiography focusing on Cleese’s formative years.  Don’t read this if you’re hoping for a lot about Monty Python.  Do read if you are interested in the complex journey of John Cleese.

In Progress:

Going Postal by Terry Pratchett.  Before bed.  Generates weird dreams and a strong desire for bacon sandwiches.

Our Oriental Heritage: The Story of Civilization by Will Durant.  Audio.  Doing medicine in India.  Some amazing things here.

Also:

This week I should finally see the first issue of DreamForge: Tales of Hope in the Universe.  It will definitely move to the top of my TBR pile!

FF: Singularly Mixed Up

February 8, 2019

This Cover IS Representative

My current reading is a mixture of fiction and non-fiction, with more new to me material than I have been perusing of late.  The mandatory pet picture will appear at the end, since I couldn’t get one of them to digitize and merge with the cover of Summer in Orcus.

For those of you just discovering this part of my blog, the Friday Fragments lists what I’ve read over the past week.  Most of the time I don’t include details of either short fiction (unless part of a book-length collection) or magazines.

The Fragments are not meant to be a recommendation list.  If you’re interested in a not-at-all-inclusive recommendation list, you can look on my website under Neat Stuff.

Once again, this is not a book review column.  It’s just a list with, maybe, a bit of description or a few opinions tossed in.

Recently Completed:

Maskerade by Terry Pratchett.  Re-read.

Summer in Orcus by T. Kingfisher.  A quirky portal fantasy with a varied cast and an unusual quest.

In Progress:

The Clockwork Boys by T. Kingfisher.  Despite the title, I have been assured that this is not steampunk.   It may become my new pre-bedtime read.

So, Anyway… by John Cleese.  Audiobook, read by the author.  Intensely detailed, sometimes very funny autobiography focusing on Cleese’s formative years.  I find myself wondering if I remember this much about early teachers and jobs…

Our Oriental Heritage: The Story of Civilization by Will Durant.  Audio.  We’re touring the complex cultural heritage of India.

Also:

Sampling a heap of National Geographic magazines that lay fallow.

The Late Pryderi With Ruby the Tiger