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Another relatively short list this year. I have a smartphone now and I tend to read blogs or downloaded fanfic on it more than real ebooks. I should try to do something about that. I have been listening to a lot of short fiction via the Escape Pod podcase, which I recommed for daily commutes.

The poll is late this year because I spent the week between Christmas and new year working of my first (and likely only) fanvid. That also probably cost me a book or two for 2013, since I often try to finish up books-in-progress before the new year. My only real resolution this year is to get more and more regular sleep, but I'm going to try to read more, too.

Here is the poll )
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Feb. 19th, 2007 12:59 pm

Books 6-8

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I didn't like Imperium by Robert Harris as much as his other books. The first half, about Cicero's early legal career was more interesting than the second half, which I think ended too early.

Warchild by Karin Lowachee reminded me of early C.J. Cherryh, before she got so long winded that a whole novel covered less than 24 hours. I think there are two more in this series that I will have to track down.

Keeper by Greg Rucka was a decent thriller that kept my pro-choice hackles raised throughout.
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Feb. 2nd, 2007 12:37 pm

Books 3-5

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I read Sorcery and Cecelia six years ago and didn't realize there were sequels until I saw the third book, The Mislaid Magician, in a bookstore last month. I got the second book, The Grand Tour, from the library. It was perhaps not as good as the first and I was acutely aware of both class issues (these girls have money for a year abroad, personal maids, etc) and technology issues (I had never thought about how cold and uncomfortable carriage travel could be. Overall, a fun book. The third is already on request at the library.

I just finished reading The Tale of Despereaux to my daughters. A good tale, although I found the author's interjections a bit tedious after a while. I think they are making a movie of this, so I'm glad we read the book first.

The first half of Steel Drivin' Man - John Henry - The untold story of an American Legend by Scott Reynolds Nelson was fascinating. It described how he tracked down who John Henry really was and the roll of the steam drill in his death. It was a historical mystery with lots of interesting tidbits thrown in. The second half was a bit drier and described the evolution of the folksong and it's roll in different communities, but there were still interesting details. The sad thing is, writing this more than a week after finishing the book, I can remember enjoying it, but not many of these interesting tidbits. But, hey! There was a Superman tie-in: John Henry as a proto-man-of-steel in early comics and John Henry Steel in Adventures of Superman #500.
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The guy who runs the bad astronomy website posted a link to someone else's flash movie showing the so-called Face on Mars as seen with more recent probes. It is really cool.

While I'm on the topic, he blogged about another film which shows how the full moon changes its appearance over the year due to the slight non-circularity of it's orbit and some wobbling around it's axis.


On a non-science note, I finished book 2 for the year: Voices by Ursula K. Le Guin. This was a young adult novel, a sequel to Gifts which had more of a fantasy element (paranormal abilities). This one was more anthropological. Le Guin has yet to write anything that I prefer to my old favorites of hers (The Left Hand of Darkness and The Tombs of Atuan) but this was a good story.
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I read exactly 50 books last year, if you include the 3 audio books I listened to while at the gym. I hope to read at least as many this year, partially by cutting back on web surfing.

My first book of 2007 is The Last of Her Kind by by Sigrid Nunez.

I forget where on the web I saw this book recommended. It might even have been here on my friends list. I enjoyed reading this book tremendously. I think one reason is that, while I was too young to really be aware of the political activism in the late 60's and early 70's, let alone participate, I find it fascinating to read about things that happened while I was growing up. This book is incredibly rich and has a wonderfully strong narrative voice. I highly recommend it.
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