General · reading · science fiction · Teaser Tuesdays

Teaser Tuesday: The Left Hand of Darkness

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Books And A Beat.

teaser

Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

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Yes, indeed the people in it are androgynous, but that doesn’t mean that I’m predicting that in a millennium or so well all be androgynous, or announcing that I think we damned well ought to be androgynous. I’m merely observing, in the peculiar, devious, and thought-experimental manner proper to science fiction, that if you look at us at certain odd times of day in certain weathers, we already are.. I am not predicting, or prescribing. I am describing. I am describing certain aspects of psychological reality in the novelist’s way, which is by inviting elaborately circumstantial lies. 

– from the Introduction in the Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula Le Guin

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

General · science fiction

Real Water in the Holodeck?

I was watching Star Trek: The Next Generation. In the first episode there is a boy (the Dr’s son) who goes into the holodeck, falls into a pool of water, and when he exits the room, he is still wet.

How does that work?

He should be dry, I think. It’s a bit odd for the halodeck to have real water.

 

flash friday · General · Short Story · Writing

Friday Flash: First Day

This is my first Friday flash in months! Months and months and months! It is exactly 304 words, which is alright.

The baby grinned toothlessly into the camera. Its little fingers gripped the bare mattress.

Than it plopped its butt onto the bed and the blue blanket balanced atop its head slid down until the baby was completely covered, from the top of its bald skull to its bite-size toes.

The baby shrieked, whether in joy or distress, I couldn’t tell. I didn’t know enough about babies. But I knew what I was going to do next. It sure was loud. Nice, healthy lungs on this child. Maybe it knew this was the first day of its new life and it was celebrating with noise.

I turned off the camera and looked across the room at its mother. She looked like she was trying to scream louder than her baby. The bright pink ball gag kept her silent, though. Mostly silent. Tiny sounds still came made it through.

So annoying. Maybe I needed to cut off her tongue. But then she wouldn’t be able to scream when I wanted to hear her. Hmm.

The sweet sounds she would make later were worth a little irritation now, I decided.

“Come to Aunt Rosie,” I told the baby. “You know you love me.”

I reached forward and yanked the blanket off the baby. The baby was startled into silence, looked at me with big blue eyes and scrambled forward on hands and knees.

My sister said the baby was a boy, but how could anyone know? The baby wasn’t old enough to decide on a gender. And I would keep it alive until it did.

For now, its mother would do. She would last until this little one grew up enough for me to decide what to do with it.

Tomorrow was soon enough to take another picture. I would keep a collection as it grew up.

General · reading · Teaser Tuesdays

Teaser Tuesday: Daring by Elliott James

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Books And A Beat.

teaser

 

Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
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Ever seen those movies where an actor or actress gets their body hair by waxing? The attendant just rips off a patch with this sudden sharp tearing sound and holds up a fur-covered adhesive strip while the person on screen gasps and whimpers? When I thought about Sig, it felt like my heart had just gotten waxed.

– Daring by Elliott James

General · reading

Lines You Don’t Forget: The Traitor Baru Cormorant

traitor-baruSometimes books have lines you don’t ever forgot, even if you never finish the book.

I haven’t finished The Traitor Baru Cormorant by Seth Dickinson. But I read this line days and days ago and I find myself thinking of it at odd moments.

“You. None of these men have husbands. They hate husbands.” She lowered her forehead to his. “He’s gone, Solit. I looked—I looked so long—”

When this happened, it was because of the class on Scientific Society and Incrasticism that Baru could only think to ask: “Was Salm my real father? Or was he only a sodomite?”

It shows just deeply she has absorbed the culture and values of the colonizers, and just how easy that is to do, all without her parents realizing. Or hold her back in anyway.

It is just really astonishing.

The first chapter is here: http://www.tor.com/2015/05/26/excerpt-the-traitor-baru-cormorant-seth-dickinson/

The line is here in this excerpt above. Do you have the same reaction to it that I do?

General

Quote Makes me Laugh, Perhaps Inappropriately

I just saw this on Twitter:

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It strikes me as insanely funny for some reason, perhaps inappropriately.

That writers flagellating themselves in their dairies (to be published years later, no doubt) could have any literature value.

But I haven’t read the whole article.

 

fantasy · General · reading · science fiction

Best Reads of 2015

My favorite (new) reads of 2015 are as follows, in no particular order. I didn’t read that much this year – I didn’t have time. But it was still hard to whittle it down to a manageable least. I read a lot of AMAZING books this year. I usually pick just five, but it is so hard. I read a total of 49 books this year.

Two are non-fiction, which is higher than usual, as I don’t read a lot of non-fiction. And one is a classic. So the following is the top ten list:

  1. Ancillary Sword by Ann Leckie
  2. Fairs’ Point by  Melissa Scott
  3. Undercity by Catherine Asaro
  4. The Emperor’s Blades by Brian Staveley
  5. Stories of the Raksura, Vol 2, by Martha Wells
  6. Uprooted by Naomi Novik
  7. Consider the Fork: A History of How We Cook and Eat, by Bee Wilson
  8. Through the Language Glass: Why the World Looks Different in Other Languages by Guy Deutscher
  9. The Color Purple by  Alice Walker
  10. Skyborn by David Dalgish

I have whittled it down to top 5. Like so:

1) Skyborn by David Dalgish    

Skyborn was pretty amazing. People fly and have powers and living on floating islands. There are rules for making war and the description of training of a soldier is very good. Almost the whole story, in fact. Floating all around all the personal angst/difficulty of that are hints of an explosive political situation. I loved it.

2) The Emperor’s Blades by Brian Staveley 

I thought this book was going to a typical grimdark and violent and bloody, with lots of people dying and betrayal. And it is all that. I am not a fan of grimdark, but this one is really good.

3) Ancillary Sword by Ann Leckie

I was of two minds of putting this in the top 5. It didn’t blow me away like the first one, but it was still good. If I wasn’t comparing it to the first, it wouldn’t have come up wanting and I wouldn’t have thought twice about putting it here. So here it is.

4) Stories of the Raksura, Vol 2, by Martha Wells

Vol 2 wasn’t as good as Vol 1, but still great and still worth many rereads. It is a collection of stories and it explores the world in more depth.

5) Uprooted by Naomi Novik

This was amazing. It is a like a gritty fairy tale and I would love to see a movie made out of this. I think Disney would do good with this one.

 

Best books of 2014: https://storytreasury.wordpress.com/2014/12/29/best-books-of-2014/

Best books of 2013: https://storytreasury.wordpress.com/2013/12/28/best-reads-of-2013/

Best books of 2012: https://storytreasury.wordpress.com/2012/12/26/best-reads-of-2012/