Geekery of all stripes

  • Harrow the Ninth

    Rating: 4 out of 5 This is a book where, upon finishing it, I immediately ran to the internet to read reviews in an attempt to have someone explain the plot to me. I think I got maybe 60% of it on my first read through. I could definitely do with reading it again, though I won’t (my to-read pile is enormous) now that I have at least somewhat more of an idea what’s going on.

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  • Digger: The Complete Omnibus

    Rating: 5 out of 5 I just finished re-reading the whole series for maybe the third or fourth time. I read it as it was originally being published as a webcomic, I bought the individual books when they came out and re-read it then, and now once more. It’s a series that I love so much I don’t want to re-read it too many times and “wear it out”. Yes, the elevator pitch includes oracular slugs, dead gods, deer-headed men, elephant-headed semi-god statues, skin-painting hyenas, trolls, young hags and child demons.

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  • AWS IoT Dash Button Doorbell

    This post is woefully late, as Amazon has stopped selling these button to the general public, but on the other hand, better late than never? For those not in the know, Amazon sold little buttons, co-branded with Tide, Trojan(!), and toilet paper, that you would set next to wherever it was you used that product, and when you were running low you could just push the button and it would automatically order a refill.

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  • Stray Dog

    Rating: 3.0 out of 5.0 Stray Dog is the most sweat-drenched movie I’ve ever seen, and that includes Body Heat. I know having “the city” as a character is a cliche but in this case, it’s the heat wave that’s wracking Tokyo. Every moment until the climax, the tension ratchets higher as Toshiro Mifune as Detective Murakami searches for his stolen gun. And that brings up the elephant in the room.

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  • The Time Ships

    Rating: 1 out of 5 Normally a fan of Baxter but I could not get into this book at all. I read The Time Machine just before and had a hard time making it through that (a novella!) so maybe that should have been a clue that I’m either not in the right frame of mind or I’m just not the target audience. DNF. This review on Goodreads

  • Decision at Thunder Rift

    Rating: 3 out of 5 I have a hard time hating on this book, even if it’s not very good. It doesn’t claim to be great literature, and it could have been a lot worse in terms on sexism and colonialism. Big mechs get blown up real good. If that’s what you’re looking for, this will fill that role. This review on Goodreads

  • This Is How You Lose the Time War

    Rating: 5 out of 5 Stunning, achingly beautiful, it made me want to fall in love and burn the universe to the ground. Part epistolary, part epic poem (in tone, if not form). Frankly a tour de force, a master class in language and the rhythm of speech. This review on Goodreads

  • The Blue Sword

    Rating: 3 out of 5 Hrrm. I’m going to say that this would have been rated higher, before I started was old enough to start thinking about things like “Is hand-wavy magic really a good reason for a grown man to kidnap a teenage girl?” and “Boy, this fictional culture certainly does seem to be drawing heavily on that of the Afghan people, it sure would suck this turned into a White Savior narrative.

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  • A Wizard’s Guide to Defensive Baking

    Rating: 5 out of 5 What can I say? If you love T. Kingfisher/Ursula Vernon, this is more of that. Expect a heroine who isn’t classically attractive, but who is funny, and kind, and stubborn, and just all around awesome. Add in darker bits than a “traditional” kids book and an ending that will make you cry, and I just described 80%+ of her works. And as long as she keeps writing them, I’ll keep buying them on release day and loving them.

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  • Peace Talks

    Rating: 1 out of 5 I slogged my way through to chapter 22 - 62%, according to iBooks, but I just couldn’t bring myself to finish. Dresden spends roughly half of his time wishing he could sex up all the women in his life, spending an inordinate amount of time in particular on women that he knew as kids, and how weird is it that they used to be little girls?

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