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richardderus ninth thread of 2018

This is a continuation of the topic richardderus eighth thread of 2018.

This topic was continued by richardderus tenth thread of 2018.

75 Books Challenge for 2018

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Nov 8, 2018, 8:12pm Top

Young Man Reading, Octavian Smigeleschi (1892)

Edited: Dec 1, 2018, 5:17pm Top

If I ever meet this man, I am proposing marriage on the spot.

My 2018 Reviewing Goals

I'll shoot for 180 reviews written again this year. It was a doable target, but the reviews could be more exciting....

BookRiot's 2018 Read Harder "Challenge"

1. A book published posthumously
2. A book of true crime
3. A classic of genre fiction (i.e. mystery, sci fi/fantasy, romance)
4. A comic written and illustrated by the same person—My Brother's Husband reviewed below.
5. A book set in or about one of the five BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia,
India, China, or South Africa)
6. A book about nature Guns, Germs, and Steel
7. A western
8. A comic written or illustrated by a person of color
9. A book of colonial or postcolonial literature
10. A romance novel by or about a person of color
11. A children’s classic published before 1980
12. A celebrity memoir
13. An Oprah Book Club selection
14. A book of social science Everybody Lies
15. A one-sitting book Voodoo Planet
16. The first book in a new-to-you YA or middle grade series The Invisible Library
17. A sci fi novel with a female protagonist by a female author
18. A comic that isn’t published by Marvel, DC, or Image
19. A book of genre fiction in translation Still Waters
20. A book with a cover you hate
21. A mystery by a person of color or LGBTQ+ author Widdershins
22. An essay anthology
23. A book with a female protagonist over the age of 60
24. An assigned book you hated (or never finished)

My Reviews Are Here:
Reviews 1-25 are linked there.

Reviews 26-31 are linked here.

Reviews 32-39 are linked there.

Reviews 40-54 are linked over here.

Reviews 55-70 are linked over here.

Reviews 71-101 (I misnumbered) are linked over here.

102 Call Me by Your Name brings out my inner curmudgeon in post 24.

103 Band Sinister delighted and warmed me in post 32.

104 Endless Night is a last hurrah from the foundering Dame Agatha Christie in post 70.

105 Roog presents PKD's first story sold in post 145.

106 The Frog King isn't all that, I'm afraid, as Garth Greenwell's stuff simply never is, in post 168.

107 Day of Wrath ends the Taking Shield series is style in post 210.

108 Letters to Anyone and Everyone charmed me completely both words and artwork as I say in post 246.

109 The Word of Flesh and Soul returns me to the scary places of Lovecraftian horror in post 285.

110 What The Barrow May Send takes me back to the company of punk idol Danielle Cain, where I've longed to be, in post 302.

Edited: Nov 8, 2018, 8:14pm Top

Okay: Shoot.

Nov 8, 2018, 8:29pm Top

Bang!! Glad you're back. : )

Nov 8, 2018, 8:46pm Top

>4 Berly: Look who's first!

Nov 8, 2018, 8:48pm Top

>5 richardderus: Oh no! When did I grow a beard? *Rushes off to find a razor*

Nov 8, 2018, 8:53pm Top

I assumed you'd be mentally replacing the trophy with yourself, but hey whadda I know.

Nov 8, 2018, 8:58pm Top

Well, I'd take a kiss from you!

Nov 8, 2018, 9:02pm Top


just don't tell Rob k

Nov 8, 2018, 9:05pm Top


Nov 8, 2018, 9:12pm Top

I'm in! As the vicar said to the chorus girl.

Nov 8, 2018, 9:35pm Top

>10 Berly: Excellent.

>11 SomeGuyInVirginia: Heh. Being a vicar, one is in no doubt as to why.

Nov 8, 2018, 9:45pm Top

Always nice to see my friends expanding into new real estate. Happy New Thread!

Nov 8, 2018, 10:03pm Top

Happy new thread! :)

Nov 8, 2018, 10:23pm Top

Happy new thread, and welcome back to the fold!

Nov 8, 2018, 11:03pm Top

Happy new thread!

Nov 9, 2018, 8:32am Top

Nov 9, 2018, 9:07am Top

Adding my happy new thread wishes!

Nov 9, 2018, 9:43am Top

Happy new thread!

Nov 9, 2018, 9:54am Top

>17 karenmarie: What Karen said. Happy new one, BigDaddy!

Nov 9, 2018, 11:01am Top

Happy New Thread, R.D.! Love that topper. Snowing here...sighs.

Nov 9, 2018, 12:34pm Top

Happy new thread and welcome back (finally).

Edited: Nov 9, 2018, 12:52pm Top

Happy New Thread, Richard. Good to have you back!

Read any good sci-if lately? I’m loving those short Murderbot ones.

Nov 9, 2018, 2:22pm Top

102 Call Me by Your Name by Andre Aciman

Rating: 3.25* of five

Pretty sentences painting pretty pictures of pretty people cavorting about a pretty coastal area of a terminally pretty country.

Frankly, I got tired of it.

I gave it stars (plural) for its positive representation of male bisexuals. They are unicorns in a sea of bisexual womanhood in fiction as well as in non-fiction and all forms of popular culture. Since females are sexualized for the male gaze anyway, it goes unremarked that they represent a shockingly large fraction of always-inadequate bisexual representation. So bravo to Aciman for that.

The film, now. The film is 10 years newer than the book. The producers couldn't find gay or bisexual actors to be the leads? More straight men...one a married xian, forevermore...showing their range (double entendre unintentional) by....

You know what, I'm stopping there because considered as a film the thing is pretty, but tedious; that unbearably boring song y'all witter on about makes me want to gouge my eardrums out with a spork, and poor Chalamet is going to spend the rest of his life signing peaches. It is its own reward and punishment. Enjoy as you see fit. I'm going full Voltaire on this: Once a philosopher; twice a pervert.

Nov 9, 2018, 4:08pm Top

Lovely to see you back, Richard. *smooches*

Nov 9, 2018, 4:22pm Top

Happy new thread Richard dear friend.

Nov 9, 2018, 6:07pm Top

Well it's about time you rode back into town.

Happy new thread! Love the topper.

Nov 9, 2018, 7:29pm Top

Happy new thread, Richard dear!
Nice painting at the top :-)

Nov 9, 2018, 10:02pm Top

Hey, ho, good to see you posting here again, Richard.

Nov 10, 2018, 7:48am Top

>24 richardderus: Ah, it's lovely to see a Richard review. Intelligence and snark. *smooch*

Nov 10, 2018, 8:09am Top

Happy new one, Rdear. Have a wonderful weekend.

Nov 10, 2018, 9:15am Top

103 Band Sinister by KJ Charles

I read this delightful fluff in a sitting. (A lying, to be more precise.) I'm pretty sure I was expecting the chuckles I got, but not the lesson in how to make explicit consent offered by the debauchee to the debaucher so well-integrated and even steamy. I've always contended that the largest sex organ is the brain, so really all it took was a bit of imaginative effort to make consent part of seduction and foreplay. Author Charles did this deftly, erotically, and satisfyingly.

I liked Guy, our virginal debauchee, more and more as time went by. He annoyed me to no end at first. I think he was expected to. His deep devotion to his younger sister was disarmingly sweet, so he wasn't one of those characters one wants to smack in the occiput with a niblick, but he did try my not-legendary (lack of) patience to its uttermost extent.

Rookwood the debaucher is, not to put too fine a point on it, too good to be true. Beautiful, rich, thoughtful...*sigh*repine* (Speaking of rePineing, have y'all piped Chris Pine's lovely genitalia in Outlaw King? If not, get thee hence to Netflix! I suppose he had lines and stuff, but ya couldn't prove it by me.) So, Rookwood. Yes. Lovely man, his past is very deftly integrated into his present-day actions, as is Guy's; this being a KJ Charles book, that is unsurprising. She just does that. Part of the service. So why mention it? Because it's both satisfying and anachronistic for men to reveal their hurts and scars to...anyone, really...and Rookwood is an aristocrat, so his upbringing is simply not going to include emotional honesty. How Author Charles side-steps that issue is one of my great pleasures taken from this story.

Lord Corvin and John Raven, well, window dressing has never looked so good. Heh. Read the Society of Gentlemen books, y'all. Read KJ Charles. This is escapism done well.

Nov 10, 2018, 9:18am Top

>13 mahsdad: Thanks, Jeff, it's a sad thing that it took four months but...well...there are Reasons.

>14 figsfromthistle: Thanks ever so, me hearty! (Wait...isn't it Talk Like A Pirate month still?)

>15 jessibud2: Hi Shelley! It's good to see you. Cold and windy here, which I'll take over y'all's snowy-ness. Not quite ready to haul out the boots.

Nov 10, 2018, 9:21am Top

>16 quondame: Thank you, Susan! Good to see you here.

>17 karenmarie: Ha! The proverbial Snoopy dance! *smooch*

>18 katiekrug: Thanks, your Kickassness. Hoping you and the Wayne are warm enough in this Arctic blast.

Nov 10, 2018, 9:27am Top

>33 richardderus: - I'm with you there. I recently bought new boots. They remain in the box, still. I am hoping not to have to remove them from their home any time soon. Some parts of the province woke up to snow today. So far, my lawn remains *not white*, covered in leaves and brown grass. Which is fine by me!

I did break out the mittens, though. And snow tires will be put on the car on Tuesday (couldn't get an appointment any sooner than that).

Nov 10, 2018, 9:29am Top

>19 drneutron: Thanks, Fearless Leader!

>20 Crazymamie: Mamie! Darling!! I was afraid you'd forgotten I existed. *teardrop* And now, here you are, not a minute too soon.

>21 msf59: Snow in early November...not unheard of, but it does make me fear that the Old Farmer's Almanac is correct and we're in for a cold, cold winter. Yuck.

Nov 10, 2018, 9:33am Top

>22 humouress: Hi Nina! Our chatter about wintertime must be risible to your equator-dwelling self. *smooch*

>23 jnwelch: Hey there, Joe, I had reason to quote your grandpa on Facebook today re: 45. I am more and more sad that his words are still relevant, and downright wretched that no one in public life has risen in his footsteps.

>24 richardderus: My goddesses! Such a wonderful review, so trenchant, nay tendentious! The phrasing, the vocabulary...nonpareil!

Oh yeah. It's mine. Never mind.

Nov 10, 2018, 9:35am Top

>25 MickyFine: Hi there Micky! Must come by yours to see what's what. *smooch*

>26 johnsimpson: Thank you, John! I hope you and yours are all well.

>27 SuziQoregon: Hiya, Juli...ain't that a gorgeous image? I love pictures of men reading (I would, wouldn't I?) but that one is special. The painter's work is all a lot like that, luminous colors and sentimental scenes, but it works.

Nov 10, 2018, 9:40am Top

>28 FAMeulstee: Thank you, my dear Anita. I'm surprised at your praise for the artwork, given your strong grounding in modern art!

>29 laytonwoman3rd: Thanks, Linda3rd, I've got to find your thread and see what's new.

>30 karenmarie: *smooch* You always know just what to say.

>31 Ameise1: Barbara my dear lady! I am thrilled to see you. How's your injury treating you, fully healed yet?

Nov 10, 2018, 9:43am Top

>35 jessibud2: Yep. Gloves out, boots can wait. I'm not a fan of ice, though snow and cold are peachy keen by me. As to them tires:

Nov 10, 2018, 9:50am Top

>40 richardderus: I just talked to my brother, who drives a tanker full of propane gas back and forth over poorly maintained roads in Northeastern PA---he says he came upon exactly such scenes yesterday afternoon making his last trip from supply terminal to company headquarters...I could worry a lot about him if I let myself. He allowed as how, even after doing this many many years, this kind of thing makes him "half-scared".

Nov 10, 2018, 10:00am Top

>39 richardderus: Unfortunately, not fully healed. The last three weeks I worked 43% and the next three weeks I'm working 64%. I hope that I'm able to work full time before christmas.

Nov 10, 2018, 10:18am Top

>39 richardderus: I do like looking at a handsome man, Richard!

In the last years I am gaining more appriciation for (some) older art. I really liked the works of Hieronymus Bosch we saw in 2016, and this self portrait of Albrecht Dürer, made in 1500, was one of the highlights when we visited Munich last spring.

Nov 10, 2018, 10:35am Top

>41 laytonwoman3rd: ...!!...
I'm white-knuckled just thinking about it. Scary thought, that one.

>42 Ameise1: I'm so sorry that's the case, Barbara, it is so unpleasant to be down on capability. I'll get a giant "be well" whammy together for you.

>43 FAMeulstee: Most sensible of you, Anita. Most. That Durer self-portrait has always struck me as a strange one, his hair down and in a dressing gown seems so...intimate. This is how his lover would see him, not the usual sort of stoical manly-man thing I'd expect to see from that time in world history. Makes it all the more intriguing.

Nov 10, 2018, 10:44am Top

So good to see you back Richard and I hope that this time there are no more "reasons" to take you away again. Take care of yourself. *smooch*

Nov 10, 2018, 10:47am Top

>45 calm: Hi calm! How are you? I can't predict reasons but I can predict that life will move down unpredictable channels...and a hearty *smooch* right back!

Nov 10, 2018, 10:55am Top

>46 richardderus: Good days and bad days, you know:)

I'm on LT most days ... not that anyone would really know as I'm still lurking more than posting.

Nov 10, 2018, 11:24am Top

>47 calm: The beauty of the internet is it's there when you need to talk and there when you need to lurk. I am endlessly grateful that I live in a time where this glorious tool is available to me. I'd go bonkers as an old-fashioned shut-in.

Nov 10, 2018, 11:36am Top

This is great! So cool to have you back on LT, Richard. We’ll happily help keep you from going bonkers. How about a Charles Dickens discussion group? Whaddya say? *ducks*

Nov 10, 2018, 12:17pm Top

>49 jnwelch: ...as the idea of a Chuckles the Dick discussion group sinks in...

Nov 10, 2018, 12:56pm Top

>40 richardderus: - Priceless!!! LOL! (not to mention, true! There are still people in this city of mine - probably country - who have seasonal amnesia when it comes to winter weather driving).

Nov 10, 2018, 4:49pm Top

*smooch* Lovely to have you back!

Nov 10, 2018, 5:10pm Top

Happy new thread and welcome back Richard!

Nov 10, 2018, 5:20pm Top

>51 jessibud2: It's just flat strange, isn't it. A transplant like me would *never* forget the tire change out of terror at getting caught in a dogpile like that!

>52 ronincats: Thanks, Roni, I'm glad you're here.

>53 swynn: Hi Steve, and thank you most kindly.

Edited: Nov 10, 2018, 6:15pm Top

>54 richardderus: - Well, if I am honest, I think *strange* isn't exactly the right descriptor. *Stupid* might be more accurate....;-)

Nov 10, 2018, 6:25pm Top

Drive-by *smooch*

I'll be back to posting regularly when I'm home and have a keyboard again instead of fighting my phone to avoid typos but wanted to say hi!

Nov 10, 2018, 6:29pm Top

>55 jessibud2: That's what I was thinking, but one daren't say such things out loud to a resident of the same zone as the stupids. So frequently leads to miffs and sulks.

>56 bell7: Hi Mary! I saw that you allowed Debbi and Joe the pleasure of your company. Now they number among your fans! *smooch*

Nov 10, 2018, 7:28pm Top

>57 richardderus: - You are so polite, I could almost mistake you for a Canuck! ;-) We may be polite, but we speak truth....

Nov 10, 2018, 8:11pm Top

>58 jessibud2: Which is why I am so *gob*smacked* that Ontario elected that...that...45esque buffoon as Premier. Or whatever it is y'all call state-wide leaders. I mean province-wide...hell, this polite thing is just too darned hard! What. Happened. There. Please reassure me it was Russian election meddling.

Nov 10, 2018, 8:21pm Top

>59 richardderus: - Well, rest assured, I did not vote for baby trump (Ford) as our current Premier. I would never vote Conservative in any case, but most especially not with him on the ballot! He comes from an ignorant and toxic family (you may have heard of his late brother, our former deranged mayor, Rob Ford) and I was as horrified and disgusted by his win as you good guys were by trump's, in 2016. Ick, barf, yuck, etc. But this past week, he and his government have been hit with a few scandals which I am taking perverse pleasure in watching, as he squirms and bumbles through them. I think he does model himself after trump, heaven help us, and there are similarities: family money, big mouth, not too much intelligence, and no moral or ethical centre whatsoever. Sigh. I hope I am gone before the so-called sane world implodes. As it surely will...

Nov 10, 2018, 8:34pm Top

>57 richardderus: wow, my "fans" makes me feel so famous ;) I did indeed meet Joe today (Debbi was understandably spending the short visit with her aunt and did not make it to lunch, but I'm holding out hope we'll meet sometime in the future) and we had a delightful time. You are, you'll remember, the first LTer I met in person. It's been fun to plan meetups ever since :D

Nov 10, 2018, 8:59pm Top

Book nook porn!

Nov 10, 2018, 9:04pm Top

>60 jessibud2: I want to vacate the premises before the nightmare reaches epic proportions as well. Luckily, I am statistically likely to do so. Twenty more years...just twenty more years....

>61 bell7: I hadn't realized that was your first meetup! That birthday party was a hoot. *smooch* for your bravery in continuing to venture forth after meeting the crew of crazies out that day.

Nov 10, 2018, 10:01pm Top


Nov 11, 2018, 8:34am Top

>62 richardderus: I miss the book porn.

Happy Sunday, RD! Good review of Call Me by Your Name. I did not read the book, but did enjoy the film. Did you see it?

Nov 11, 2018, 9:01am Top

>65 msf59: Hi Mark! Yep, saw the film, not a big fan. I found it tedious, too much pretty and too many "look! LOOK!! Mens all smoochy *tsk*" moments. Of course they can't be together. Elio's too young. So it's safe, straight people, the men won't end up all happy and stuff.

Edited: Nov 11, 2018, 10:00am Top

'Morning, RD!

Influenced by a very dear person (you'll know who), I've become very aware of negative portrayals of LGBTQI folks on TV and in books. I want to see happy and healthy relationships in in roughly the same ratio as straight relationships are portrayed. Unfortunately, that rarely happens. One show that I have started disliking because of the female lead but adore watching because the male lead and his husband have such a wonderful relationship is Instinct. Not perfect, with ups and downs and misunderstandings and etc., but fundamentally right and happy.

Nov 11, 2018, 10:23am Top

>67 karenmarie: You have a QUILTBAGger friend?! No!! I am miffed, nay I am wounded, that I never knew this! :-P

Yes, Instinct gets it right. The men are so exactly suited to each other. *snap*growl*smooch*coo* in the same sentence! I love their dialogue. It's not so hard, folks, it really isn't...what challenges all couples is how to navigate another soul's complex map of hills and dales and rocky outcroppings while tending one's own knitting.

Nov 11, 2018, 10:28am Top


Nov 11, 2018, 10:42am Top

104 Endless Night by Agatha Christie

Rating: 4* of five

I am always sad when I think of this book. Dame Agatha was already in decline due to dementia when, in six short weeks, she flowered this novel. It is the last true Christie tale in the sense that it demonstrates her strengths more clearly than her diminishing powers would ever allow again. That is why I give it four stars.

The story is unremarkable, and in lesser hands would be a tedious oft-told tale. But stop a moment when you feel your eyes start to roll and hold this thought: One of mystery fiction's greats (like her work or not, she was indeed a great writer) wrote this, her last lucid writing, before sliding down a slope we all hope we'll never see up close.

Join The Guardian's group read if you have never read this tale before. It is an experience best shared with fellow Agathans.

Nov 11, 2018, 12:22pm Top

I read an article a while back about Dame Agatha's diminishing use of a variety of words and phrases in the later decades of her writing and how this 'textual analysis' indicates signs of Alzheimer's. Of course Alzheimer's is one specific form of dementia and she was never diagnosed with it. This may even be the article I read. Study claims Agatha Christie had Alzheimer's

Nov 11, 2018, 12:41pm Top

>71 karenmarie: She certainly had dementia of some sort, and I don't know if the article differentiates accurately among the kinds of dementia. But it is really, really obvious that she was losing a step by the time Elephants Can Remember came out. It's a bad novel. Full of plot holes and character inconsistencies. I love Ariadne Oliver, and even Poirot, but this outing could've been left out altogether.

Nov 11, 2018, 1:52pm Top

I agree. I have pretty much every book she wrote, and I've re-read many of them, but don't think I've re-read ECR. I'm grateful that she wrote the last Poirot Curtain and the last Miss Marple Sleeping Murder in the 1940s, otherwise, with diminished capacity later on might have made a hash out of them.

Nov 11, 2018, 11:53pm Top

I lived and worked in Washington DC a few...hmm, decades ago. That city (and its surrounding area) is famous for its incompetence with snow - with several good reasons (mostly to do with people moving in and out on a regular basis), but still. There were a few times when I, in my Honda Accord hatchback, was asked to come in to work an extra shift, because no one else dared drive in on the black ice that formed on the bridges all too often. I recall one time when I drove in on black ice, and saw three SUVs clearly spun off the roads at three different spots - one on a bridge, and they were just lucky the railing held. No, didn't change tires - just drove sensibly and very carefully, as opposed to assuming that four-wheel-drive meant they could speed normally...

Nov 12, 2018, 12:14am Top

When we went up to the mountains two weeks ago, I saw these at a store in Julian and of course HAD to think of you.

Nov 12, 2018, 10:24am Top

>73 karenmarie: :)

>74 jjmcgaffey: I am not a driver any more, Jennifer, but when I was I spent a lot of thought on how not to end up in ditches or on shoulders of roads with little to no traffic. I saw it as self-preservation.

>75 ronincats: Oh WOW Roni!! Those are terrific.

Nov 12, 2018, 10:33am Top

>63 richardderus: yup, my very first and well worth the trip (though now I'm seasoned enough I would take an extra day or two off and stay at a hotel overnight)

Nov 12, 2018, 10:41am Top

>77 bell7: That was amazing to me, leave and get right back on the road...and getting lost to boot...well, there it is, you're just the best possible.

Nov 12, 2018, 10:42am Top

Good Morning, Richard! Hope you have a wonderful week :)

Nov 12, 2018, 10:42am Top

>79 figsfromthistle: Right back at'cha. It's off to a sun-washed start, so there's that.

Nov 12, 2018, 10:45am Top

>78 richardderus: it's not a real road trip for me if I don't get lost at least once 😂 thankfully you were gracious enough with a late night phone call to get me back on my way. Now my phone had GPS and a battery that lasts so it wouldn't be quite the same.

Nov 12, 2018, 10:49am Top

Technology amazes me and I am intensely grateful for its many, many improvements. Like battery life and GPS and cars that pretty much always work. I'll take this over 1970 any day!

Jennifer Warnes sang it best.

Nov 12, 2018, 11:11am Top

>68 richardderus: Have you read Less by Andrew Sean Greer? I finished it last night and was really moved by it.

I'm just glad that most Queer lit has evolved to where the stories don't end in suicide.

Nov 12, 2018, 11:39am Top

Hi RD! *smooches* from central NC.

>83 SomeGuyInVirginia: I second Less if you haven't read it. You probably have, of course, and posted everywhere else except here on LT.... Larry - glad you were moved by it. So was I.

Nov 12, 2018, 12:11pm Top

>83 SomeGuyInVirginia:, >84 karenmarie: Yup, read it. I was mildly happier after reading it than I was before...but with time it's simply evaporated from my mind. That's not a great sign for deathlessness. But YAY for QUILTBAG lit that isn't all about loss and death! (Although I still have a sneaking affection for Nocturnes for the King of Naples and it lacks any type, kind, or sort of happy ending.)

Nov 12, 2018, 1:28pm Top

How to raise the best possible child.

Nov 12, 2018, 2:14pm Top

What have you done to his eyes!!!

Nov 12, 2018, 2:28pm Top

>87 SomeGuyInVirginia: Heh. Nothing, Rosemary...he has his Father's eyes.

Nov 12, 2018, 3:29pm Top

Most children get traumatized by something or another, so why not an octopus crib? Or is it a cthulhu crib?

Nov 12, 2018, 3:31pm Top

>89 karenmarie: Tentacular, though not necessarily either octopodian or Cthulhuesque.

Nov 12, 2018, 10:01pm Top

*whistle*frantic arm-wave*

Nov 12, 2018, 11:22pm Top

>37 richardderus: Hi Richard.

Nov 13, 2018, 12:59am Top

Drive-by smooches!

Nov 13, 2018, 6:56am Top

>91 richardderus: Amen!!

Morning, RD! Despite plenty of sunshine today, it may not even crack 30. WTH? How about giving us a chance to acclimate?

Do you get a chance to get out and walk much?

Nov 13, 2018, 7:02am Top

'Morning, RD!

I hope you have a tentacular day.

Nov 13, 2018, 8:44am Top

>92 humouress: Why, Scarlett! *blush*

>93 Berly: *wave* Howdy do, buckaroo, happy to see you

Nov 13, 2018, 8:45am Top

>94 msf59: Hi Mark! I'll be out and about today, the rainy day, of course. I was trundling along the boardwalk yesterday. It was pleasant.

>95 karenmarie: I've been craving calamari all week. I wonder why?

Nov 13, 2018, 9:01am Top

Think the visual is, umm, underwhelming? Imagine the yarn is WOOL.

Torquemada herself couldn't have been crueler.

Nov 13, 2018, 9:08am Top

Wow, that's just making *me* itchy...

Nov 13, 2018, 9:39am Top

Let's see the overwhelming image sans-culottes.

Nov 13, 2018, 9:50am Top

Hey, buddy. I just met Mary, bell7, in western MA, and she told me about her fun meetup with you and others. What a lovely woman she is.

I may have missed it, but have you been watching the new Dr. Who with Jodie Whitaker? We're loving it. We get a kick out of how she and David Tennant acted together in Broadchurch - they were both terrific.

Edited: Nov 13, 2018, 10:08am Top

>99 drneutron: I know right?!

>100 karenmarie: ...suddenly my entire opinion changes...

>101 jnwelch: Hi Joe! That was a fun birthday, and Mary's visit was great. I'm glad you had the chance to meet up with her.

The Thirteenth Doctor is being done wrong by her network. The acting is fine, but I feel as though they buried her in companions I don't care about, plus they're giving her a shorter-by-half season, and then no more stories until 2020! It's not a great way to treat a fine actor.

Nov 13, 2018, 10:24am Top

We've been watching The Thirteenth Doctor. Love her outfit, by the way. But you're right - lots of companions and much hysteria. I'll take your word about the shorter season. I particularly liked the moments early in her new body where she was trying to settle in and remember things. I also liked that she was happily surprised that she was female this time around.

Nov 13, 2018, 11:24am Top

The showrunners are not doing a very good job of selling her to the fans. That moment is a great one, I agree, but the fact is they've diluted the Doctor by giving us all the sidekicks to learn about, and they've done no serials just standalones. I disliked Capaldi's Doctor and now I'm not liking the direction the showrunners are going with a bunch of standalones that don't invest us in the future stories.

Plus they canceled Christmas. No special this year...the "couldn't think of any ideas"! Yeesh.

Nov 13, 2018, 4:19pm Top

>86 richardderus: Mmmmm.....I dunno 'bout that....

>98 richardderus: Mmmm....I dunno 'bout THAT either....wait...yes I do. Nnnnuhhht-uh.

Nov 13, 2018, 8:21pm Top

>105 laytonwoman3rd: Hmm so no on Cthulhuing an infant? Hmm

But those...those...things are execrable.

Nov 14, 2018, 7:48am Top

'Morning, RD!

Bill and I watched Demons of the Punjab last night, the sixth in the new Doctor's adventures. Bill liked it more than I did.

Nov 14, 2018, 9:40am Top

Yeeeaaahhh, kinda not-so-much on that'un. I didn't like Rosa, either. Brits really don't do the South any better than Murrikinz duz Brits.

Nov 14, 2018, 10:32am Top

I like the new Doctor Who's, they've gone back to the original remit of being both educational and entertaining. The first Doctor also had multiple companions. So it is a step back from the recent Doctor incarnations and there are the usual teething problems of adjusting to the new cast but I'm happy with the way things are developing.

Nov 15, 2018, 11:29am Top

>109 calm: I'm not sure your compatriots share your opinion, based on the ratings I've seen. Down there with the Capaldi era, way off the Matt Smith numbers. I wonder how much longer the BBC will allow that to continue.

Nov 15, 2018, 12:11pm Top

Sweet Thursday, RD. It began snowing again here, in the A.M. It did not amount to much, but it is still ridiculous. Glad I am home, done with my appointments and errands and looking forward to plenty of book time.

Nov 15, 2018, 12:20pm Top

Perfect book weather! It's cold and windy here with snow for lucky inlanders. I am thoroughly thrilled. I went to the library to drop a couple overdues and pick up some fresh meat, so to speak, and was the only person on the sidewalks of Long Beach with a happy smile.


Nov 16, 2018, 2:43am Top

De-lurking... mainly just to say hi :)

I'm in agreement re the new Dr. Like her, not sure about the stories. Hubby however (who is a massive Dr Who geek) is more of Calm's opinion - it's a step back to the earlier Drs. But then we end up arguing about times having moved on...

Oh and re Christmas - they have moved it (grrr) but there will be a special airing on 1 Jan 19 instead.

Nov 16, 2018, 7:49am Top

Hi Bekka! I don't know Herr Chibnall, obv, but I know this: Moving the Christmas Special to New Years because "we're out of ideas" is snort-inducingly absurd. You're out of ideas. The writers of Doctor Who are Out Of Ideas for *CHRISTMAS*SPECIALS*

Oh dear, oh dear, and they've left the keys with these folk.

Nov 16, 2018, 7:59am Top

'Morning, RD! I liked what I wrote above in >95 karenmarie: and will repeat it - I hope you have a tentacular day.

Are you reading something exciting?

Nov 16, 2018, 8:11am Top


Nov 16, 2018, 8:24am Top

>115 karenmarie: Morning, Horrible, I'm having a tentacular day indeed...it's blowin' a gale out there and the octopodes are wrapping all eight arms around the street lights to avoid visiting Connecticut.

I really enjoyed Cold Earth and am just too upset to focus positive attention on Fault Lines which is a shame because Author Rajan's work could, if heeded *snort*, prevent the global war we're sliding towards.

>116 katiekrug: Howdy do, buckaroo, hope you're not as windswept as we are.

Nov 16, 2018, 8:35am Top

Nope, not much wind here. Of course, I don't have fancy oceanfront real estate like *some* people.... xx

Nov 16, 2018, 8:59am Top

Yes, that ocean effect is a real, living, breathing thing alrighty all right. I'm always happy to have wind in place of the occasional dead, dead, dead calms because stagnant air is my nightmare. Austin and Los Gatos both had calms that like to made me insane. Wind! Lots of wind!!

Ocean-scented smooches right back.

Nov 16, 2018, 11:49am Top

Yay, Richard is back! :D
Yes, I'm late to the party/ new thread... yet another long absence. Too many things going on and my most comfortable LT device, my work PC, is under surveillance, internet activity is being monitored now.

Don't know if I ever read that Christie, German titles are quite different. Will check. I'm trying to watch "Call me by your name" (chiamami col tuo nome) on Sky, but something doesn't sit well with me. Too much focus on the pretty summer landscapes maybe? I feel they always do that when they're not all comfortable with a "risky" plot, but want to win awards, so they smooth it down with long quiet landscape scenes. I might try the book at some point.

Wishing you a lovely weekend!

Nov 16, 2018, 12:25pm Top

>120 Deern: Welcome, Nathalie! I'm sorry about the internet surveillance at work. Stinks to have your best access policed.

I think Scherz is the only German company to bring it out, and that was almost 40 years ago, as Mord nach Maß. The book description:
Es beginnt wie ein Märchen - die Geschichte von Mike Rogers, der auszieht, um das Glück zu erobern, und den selbst die böse Fee nicht das Fürchten lehren kann. Und es geht weiter wie im Märchen - seine Wünsche werden doppelt erfüllt, kaum daß er sie ausgesprochen hat. Er gewinnt die schöne, reiche Braut, er baut sich mit ihr ein Traumhaus, und sie leben glücklich und zufrieden - bis zum bitteren Erwachen. Denn Märchen gibt es nun einmal nur in Büchern...

For me, I say don't break anything trying to get Call Me by Your Name into your head. Not really worth your trouble.

*smooch* Thanks for visiting.

Nov 16, 2018, 1:54pm Top

Happy Friday!!! :)

Nov 16, 2018, 1:56pm Top

Hi Anita, how are you today? It's a windy day here so still too cold for me to want to venture to the library where I have some pick-ups and a drop-off.

Nov 17, 2018, 10:23am Top

>123 richardderus: Boo hiss for a windy day! I went to the library last week with an elderly relative of mine and found out that there is a limit to how many books you can check out of a library! Go figure!

Nov 17, 2018, 11:30am Top

>124 figsfromthistle: A limit! Wow. I'm in a densely populated county with a preponderance of rich people, so there aren't many limitations placed on our library uses.

Nov 17, 2018, 2:31pm Top

>119 richardderus: Both Frank and I are also lovers of sea and wind, Richard. Sadly we don't live near the coast now. We got our seaside fix in September, when we went to Vlissingen for a few days. Plenty of salty wind there :-)

Nov 17, 2018, 3:40pm Top

>126 FAMeulstee: I am beyond lucky to be here. I can't imagine how very different my experience of disability would be if I was stuck in a place I hated, or even just didn't care one way or another about.

Nov 17, 2018, 5:31pm Top

Hallo, RD!

One of my best living experiences was when I rented a 1920s-era one-bedroom beach cottage in Redondo Beach one block from the Redondo pier from 1974-1977. It cost a fortune - $180/month. It was one of 12, 3 rows of 4, mine was 1st row, last in the back. I loved living there. I've got pics somewhere, but haven't scanned then in yet.

Nov 18, 2018, 12:27am Top

hi Richard. I'm making the rounds, thought I'd stop by and say hello.
That crib in >86 richardderus: cracked me up. Or gave me chills. Or both.

I'm reading Lincoln in the Bardo. P and I are hunkered down in our basement for the weekend while a guy refinishes our wood floors upstairs. Monday we fly to NC/TN for Thanksgiving with my sister, aunt, cousins.

I hope you are well and warm.

Nov 18, 2018, 7:06am Top

We have some sort of limit set in the system, but we sometimes override it for some people.

Nov 18, 2018, 8:55am Top

>129 EBT1002: Hi Ellen! Have a wonderful Turkey Day with P and your sis. It's a lovely time to go to NC/TN, isn't it? I'm achy as all get out and blessing the existence of room heaters. That translates to "perfectly well, thanks for asking." *smooch*

>130 thornton37814: That makes sense, the override bit I mean, but I don't really comprehend the reasoning behind the limit ab initio.

Nov 18, 2018, 10:09am Top

Morning, RD. Happy Sunday. I have some chores to attend to today but I plan on getting plenty of book time in too, especially since my Bears don't play until tonight. No bird strolls though...the weather is crappy.

Enjoy your day.

Nov 18, 2018, 10:14am Top

It's a sucky Sunday here as well. I'm snuggled in, though, and have a cornbread crockpotting away for my later delectation. Hot buttered cornbread and butternut squash "chili" are my meals for today, probably to be shared with my YGC though that's not certain. Depends on my blasted roommate's presence or absence. I'm hoping for the latter.

Nov 18, 2018, 11:54am Top

Butternut squash chili? *eyebrow* One wishes for a recipe...

Nov 18, 2018, 12:19pm Top

I used this one, substituting butter for avocado oil and using the grocery store's pre-chopped carrot/celery/onion mix. I did not alter the garlic, 1T puree, because the YGC and I both love oniony/garlicky flavors.

The only thing not frozen/canned that I use, since I have no kitchen, is cilantro. All other ingredients are frozen in polybags, prepped by the store, or canned. And my instant pot is The Bomb! The crockpot has cornbread cooking...2 boxes Jiffy corn muffin mix, milk not water, added 1T chili powder, and used extra-large eggs...and just waiting to know when YGC will arrive to press "cook" on the instant pot.

Nov 18, 2018, 12:20pm Top

Oh, and the reason I mention the garlic alteration is simply that Stop'n'Shop's polybagged green peppers include onions so there's a lot more onion in my prep than in theirs.

Nov 18, 2018, 1:17pm Top

Mmmmm.....sounds wonderful. I don't have an Instant Pot, but I'm adventurous. I will try a stovetop or slow cooker version of this one of these days. However, there will be no soapweed cilantro in mine.

Nov 18, 2018, 1:21pm Top

A good crockpot adaptation is to use canned pigeon/field peas with their liquid. I can't find canned black-eyed peas locally. Also up the water/stock to 2 cups and cook for 2-1/2 hours on high. I find that the frozen veg fare just fine, but the fresh ones tend to moosh up. I don't know what saute would do to the fresh veg...probably that'd make the product just peachy-keen, I suppose.

Nov 18, 2018, 2:53pm Top

>119 richardderus: You want wind? Come see me!!! Autumn/winter in the English channel on top of a hill ;)

>138 richardderus: WTF! Canned pigeon? That is a thing????? How - I mean is it boned? I use a lot of pigeon, but canned pigeon??????

Nov 18, 2018, 3:06pm Top

>139 BekkaJo: Canned pigeon PEAS

Canned field peas

Canned black-eyed peas

All Southern-cooking staples. I admit I got a HUGE chuckle out of the idea of canned pigeon!

Edited: Nov 18, 2018, 5:13pm Top

Nature-morte, 1958
Olivier Debré (1920-1999, Paris)

A new-to-me abstract artist whose work I must now absorb.

Nov 18, 2018, 5:21pm Top

Figure Yellow, 1960
Yes, the English word "yellow" was chosen by the artist.

Nov 18, 2018, 5:34pm Top

" I admit I got a HUGE chuckle out of the idea of canned pigeon!"
I believe there was an episode of All Creatures Great and Small in which there was canned pigeon (or squab, or quail, or something) that had gone off, and caused no end of embarrassment and bother to those who had indulged.

Nov 18, 2018, 6:17pm Top

>143 laytonwoman3rd: Ew! I don't remember that from the show, but that's no surprise since it's been 30 years or so since I've watched any of them.

Nov 18, 2018, 7:56pm Top

Roog by Philip K. Dick

Rating: 4.25* of five

Poor Boris the Dog, those damned Roogs make fun of him and his humans ignore him and all he's trying to do is tell the Roogs to stay away!

I love perspective-shifting stories and this one's a dilly. What would garbage collectors look like to a dog if not thieves and brigands? Invading their sovereign dogly territory, taking away all that yummy garbage, doing it despite the shouted warnings to cease and desist! Bah, I say, hiss and boo on suchlike goins-on, and stupid the human who fails to heed his Guardian's warnings.

The Roogs are out there. Be sure of that. Don't blame Boris when they...well...YOU know.

This was PKD's first story sale. It's a fun way to ease into the Author Dick-universe. Nothing is quite what it seems...the garbage men, the dog's barking and personality change, none of it...and the warnings you don't heed will make a difference when you've forgotten what they even were. Unjustly neglected early PKD that can be found if one puts in a teensy bit of effort.

Nov 18, 2018, 8:00pm Top

Ooh, the cornbread and butternut squash "chili", sound delicious. Perfect for a sucky day.

I had a great day with the books. Now, it is time for some football.

Nov 18, 2018, 8:05pm Top

>146 msf59: It met with the YGC's heartiest approval: He ate every single morsel, even scraping the instant pot liner. Looked a wee bit forlorn when he realized that was it, so I let him finish up the cornbread too.

I remind myself that he's not yet 25, and can eat like this without gaining an ounce for that reason; it doesn't help, I'm still homicidally envious.

Nov 18, 2018, 8:32pm Top

Hello my Octopillian friend!! Happy Sunday to you. I love Phillip Dick. How unfair that his early works are neglected. I will help you fix that.

Nov 18, 2018, 9:07pm Top

>148 Berly: Well, lookee here, it's the Berly-boo Train chuffing through! *smooch* I think PKD's youngest daughter, Isa, will be using his earlier short stuff to make more episodes of Electric Dreams next year. I sure hope so. Oh, and if you haven't, during the hols would be a terrific time to take in the first 10 episodes on Prime....

Nov 18, 2018, 9:11pm Top

>131 richardderus: I think the limits were initially set to prevent too much loss or to prevent a student from checking out all the books on one subject just in case others were researching something similar. I really think we need to remove them, but I'm not the one making the call. We are going to be reviewing all the policies soon and adjusting some things. Perhaps the limit is one thing that will be either upped or removed.

Nov 18, 2018, 9:13pm Top

>150 thornton37814: Oh! I get that as a rationale for a limit. Makes sense, people being what they are *smallish sneer* and students being the competitive brats that they are.

Nov 19, 2018, 12:14am Top

>149 richardderus: Excellent suggestion for holiday viewing!

Nov 19, 2018, 1:55am Top

When I was a kid, there was a limit on books for a child's card. Generous limit, for most people - 15 or 20 books, as I recall. For me, that was less than a week's reading, and I generally got to the library once a week - very annoying. I was very pleased to get a Teen (Youth?) card, which had no limits (or at least, none I hit. Which means effectively none).

Nov 19, 2018, 5:47am Top

>140 richardderus: *swoons with relief*

Our library is mean (We are a small place I guess). 8 on a child's card, 12 on an adult.

Nov 19, 2018, 6:58am Top

I am glad to hear your YGC enjoyed the meal yesterday. He isn't quite 25 yet? You old rascal you...

Nov 19, 2018, 7:45am Top

'Morning, RD, and happy Monday to you!

Not enough caffeine consumed to add to that, but it's heartfelt.

Nov 19, 2018, 8:57am Top

Morning, Richard. I like that Olivier Debré abstract art up there. It also shows up better on a computer screen than I would've expected.

I have read that PKD Roog story somewhere, and now you've made me want to go back and re-read it. Boris!

More episodes of Electric Dreams?! Fingers crossed.

Nov 19, 2018, 10:05am Top

>152 Berly: Oh my yes, the grimness and absence of hope in PKD's stories make them perfect for family holidays! Everyone can relate to misery and sadness around this special time of year, no?

>153 jjmcgaffey: I got into the worst trouble of my school years when I tried to check out all 50 middle-reader books about the states. The librarians were *OUT*RAGED* and gave me what-for, called my mother who gave me what-for, and banned me from the library for the rest of the semester.

>154 BekkaJo: I suspect it's a practical, resource-limited place's response to properly serving their population. After all, what are there, 5000-6000 people in the Channel Islands? *batbatbat*

Edited: Nov 19, 2018, 10:09am Top

>158 richardderus: HA! And grrrr... we have 100k people on my island I'll have you know - which is terrifying given our size!

Nov 19, 2018, 10:13am Top

>155 msf59: I am, in actual fact, robbing the cradle. To be completely fair, he climbed out of said cradle and pursued me. I didn't and don't understand why, exactly, but I am no fool and accept the gifts as they're offered!

I enjoy how much he loves to eat and comment on the food I make him.

>156 karenmarie: Hi there Horrible! I'm caffeinating slowly today, I slept in and only now feeling less muzzy and out of focus. On the gloomy side out there, but I can stay in and ignore it until tomorrow.

>157 jnwelch: Oh, we'll get more because Ammy renewed the series; PKD's ouevre is heavy with stories, so let's hope they start a bit earlier and try to make "Roog."

A Google Images search for Debré is a treasure trove. The thing that makes most of the paintings so intriguing to me is the deep textural effects he used. I can imagine the physical reality of the paintings is impressive, but even as pixels it's that visual chewiness that most comes across as the colors do their seductive come-on work.

Nov 19, 2018, 10:16am Top

>159 BekkaJo: Really! Well I swaNEE! Go know from this many people living on 300 acres.

Seriously, though, that is a much larger population than I'd've predicted could be supported on an island that small.

Nov 19, 2018, 1:52pm Top

>141 richardderus: >142 richardderus: Thanks for sharing the Olivier Debré paintings, Richard.
A quick search led me to more of his works. We might visit the museum in Tours, France one day, to see some of his works.

Nov 19, 2018, 2:55pm Top

>162 FAMeulstee: Oh I am bright chartreuse with jealousy! I would LOVE to see them in person! The closest one to me, I think, is in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, or ~1000 miles/1700km away.

Nov 19, 2018, 3:26pm Top

>142 richardderus:

I love the giant banana, the bird, and the tiny banana!
(Art History major here.)

Nov 19, 2018, 3:48pm Top

>164 m.belljackson: The birdnana painting gets my seal of approval too.

Is Olivier Debré better known than I think? I'm first encountering his work, so I don't know how widespread admiration or opprobrium for his work is.

Nov 19, 2018, 5:25pm Top

>165 richardderus:

Nor I, having never heard of Olivier Debre' until this welcome Yellow.

A SEARCH turned up a lot of varied information, including many in French.

As well that your Birdnana is YES, located at the Milwaukee Public Museum,
around 60 miles from my little country home.
If I was still up for a long drive, I'd definitely head over to see it.

Mark drives nearby for birding and meet-ups...maybe he will be inspired by the little bird...

Nov 19, 2018, 6:53pm Top

>162 FAMeulstee:, >166 m.belljackson: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OT2wnN5uYfE

A 12-minute piece on the CCCOD in Tours...I enjoyed the first 3-4 minutes the most as they give detailed close-ups of the paintings. I was fascinated to learn of his connection to Norway! The arts center in Tours is doubtless a worthy project but found a somewhat blasé audience in me.

Nov 19, 2018, 7:53pm Top

106 The Frog King by Garth Greenwell

Real Rating: 3.75* of five

Like Greenwell's autobionovel, What Belongs to You, this is a series of lovely words and phrases that, in the end, doesn't amount to all that much. I wasn't hugely impressed the first time I read the author's prettified reality, though I repeat that the lines and phrases are just as lovely and euphonious as anyone could wish. This time was once too often. I was immune to the import of the words. I had disconnected in the middle of the story, a passage of surpassing tenderness that felt more like an inventory-taking checklist; then came the ending, weirdly placed after the superfluous and anticlimactic coming-to-reality moment. I expect others will like it more than I did, and the read is free.

My favorite line:
They could make a whole life, I thought, surprised to think it, these moments that filled me up with sweetness, that had changed the texture of existence for me. I had never thought anything like it before.

Nov 19, 2018, 8:58pm Top

For my post-lottery-win bedroom:

Nov 19, 2018, 11:10pm Top

Lovely lamp, Richard! And I'm glad your taste buds and artistic appreciation are both still 100%!

Nov 19, 2018, 11:30pm Top

>170 ronincats: Hi Roni, yep I'm still me. Older, wider, slower permaybehaps, but me.

Nov 20, 2018, 12:12am Top

Nov 20, 2018, 7:59am Top

Hi Berly-boo, sending hugs westward...it's got to be nicer there than here today, gloom and rain and 50°...wait, I've just described Portland! Never mind.


Nov 20, 2018, 8:34am Top

Good Morning RichardDear and best wishes for a tentacular Tuesday, inspired by >169 richardderus: ...which would give me the heebie-jeebies. I'm so glad that it would have a welcoming home with you instead.

What's the first thing you'd do if you won the lottery?

Nov 20, 2018, 8:52am Top

>174 karenmarie: Decide to whom I'd give it. I don't need much except books and food and maintenance meds, all of which I have; no amount of money will cure my condition, there aren't any up-and-coming treatments that don't merely refine what's currently available, so what use is a great mountain of money to me?

Nov 20, 2018, 9:19am Top

>175 richardderus: Yup. Only keep what you need. The first things I'd do is call our financial guy and our accountant. After that, we have a few more financial obligations than you do, which I'd immediately pay off and then set aside money for Jenna and us to boost our retirement. With what's left I'd find ways to give money away in my county to people in need. Discretely, perhaps even anonymously.

Nov 20, 2018, 10:23am Top

Well thought out. I'd refine the idea by suggesting not claiming the prize until you had incorporated a 501(c)3 charity, you as CEO Bill as President at salaries commensurate with the assets and signing bonuses of {amount of debt to clear}. Then assign the jackpot to the charity.

Nov 21, 2018, 12:51am Top

I'll take the money! I need more bookshelves. And more rooms in which to put the bookshelves. And then I'll be able to go out and buy more books.

>154 BekkaJo: 8 books on a child's card and 12 on an adult's is considered mean? I think the last time I used a library card to check physical books out of a library, the limit was 8 for adults. Which, to be fair, was about as much as I could read within the borrowing time limit - and if there were one or two extra, I could always sneak them onto one of my kids' cards.

Nov 21, 2018, 2:33am Top

>178 humouress: LOL - I know, I know. It's not so bad now the kids have outgrown the picture book stage. But I've still half-inched hubby's card for emergencies - my son in particular always ends up loads. And loads.

Lottery... oh I'll take it please! Pay off the mortgage. Quit the job. Fund literacy schemes in UK and on island. And spend time helping out in primary schools with literacy issues. Sigh...

Edited: Nov 21, 2018, 6:04am Top

Love the Debré paintings. Tours.... hm, it's been a long while. Maybe time for a visit?

Can't stop thinking of that chili and corn bread combo - thanks for the recipe link, will buy the remaining ingredients today and probably cook it tonight or tomorrow.

Big(!) lottery win: buy one of "those old villas with a park" around, move to the floor with the winter garden (I'll have a reading corner there). Have bookshelves built in and fill them all.
Let the other 1-2 appartments to younger people, maybe a family whose kids would play in the park. Something like a co-housing project. Oh yes - quit job of course. (you're reading correctly, monitoring office admin - you'd quit as well I'm sure! Who wouldn't unless they're already doing their dream job??). Find sth more fulfilling, preferably to do with literature and language.

Do some long-distance train travelling. Just learned there's a weekly line Nizza - Moscow that stops in Bolzano! That's on my bucket list for both directions. It stops also in Vienna and Warzsaw. Just thinking of all those books you could read between stops! See as much as possible of Italy, and have some LT meetups elsewhere I don't have to fly to.
What happy Wednesday thoughts... :)

Nov 21, 2018, 8:04am Top

Ye gawds I'm late! I haven't caffeinated or eaten and I'm due for pickup in an hour to be ported to the eye doc! Must go ablute myself post-haste and shall return in the afternoon (after the events of the day).

Nov 21, 2018, 8:36am Top

I'll check back after you've returned from the eye doctor. In the meantime, ablute! caffeinate! consume rolled, hulled oat grains!

Nov 21, 2018, 9:22am Top

>169 richardderus: Gawddammit! WANT! I'm trying to kick my whimsy habit, RD dear. This is not yelping.

>140 richardderus: It's a crime that they're not known simple as 'El Jibaritos'. Which I'll be saying for the rest of the day.

Nov 21, 2018, 4:24pm Top

My Young Gentleman Caller, now winging his way to Canada for his annual winter sports vacation, left me a surprise package. He'll be gone until 26 Dec, so felt his absence might be easier on me with some books.

How did he know, I wonder.

Captain Alatriste
All Our Worldly Goods
The Book of Fathers
The Great Halifax Explosion
Curse of the Narrows

Nov 21, 2018, 8:15pm Top

>178 humouress: Hi Nina! So I'm guessing you'd like your name to be in the hat on the Glorious Day of Nevernever. *wets pencil with tongue*

>179 BekkaJo: ...another country heard from...

>180 Deern: Those are some lovely plans, Nathalie, especially the train to Moscow! *sigh* I wish I could still travel.

Nov 21, 2018, 8:18pm Top

>182 karenmarie: Back, rested, headache mostly gone, and YGC's stock up another 400 points (see >184 richardderus:)

>183 SomeGuyInVirginia: *there there, pat pat* This too shall pass, Angel Flower. I know how it is to covet frivolous unnecessary GOTTAHAVEITNOWNOWNOW items.

It's almost as much fun to say "El Jibarito" as it is to say "Mueller indictments," isn't it.

Nov 21, 2018, 8:31pm Top

Okay, just the other day I was saying to P that I want us to find a can of Crowder peas. I think they are in the same general category as field peas, black-eyed peas, and Pigeon peas. And I love them. End of story.

I would love to be saying "Mueller indictments" more frequently in the coming weeks and months. I have to tip my hat to Schiff for giving McConnell a bit of his mind. You want judges? Get out of the way of the investigation. Of course, I still predict that it will come to naught but someone has got to start standing up to these a**holes!!

In the meantime....

Oh, and I'm reading Mistress of the Art of Death and quite enjoying it.

Nov 21, 2018, 8:46pm Top

>187 EBT1002: I look forward to trilling, warbling, yodeling, crooning, and just plain *shouting* "Mueller indictments" all during 2019.

My favorite brand of crowder peas is The Allens, available at Kroger.

Nov 21, 2018, 10:05pm Top

The 10-episode third season of The Last Kingdom is on Netflix now!! W00t!

The season will cover the events of The Burning Land and Death of Kings. At this rate, there will be six seasons! Double w00t!! Of course, that means those of us with Netflix accounts (internationally, now, as the Beeb has declined to participate in the show anymore...because "Netflix makes this stuff too expensive for us" when Netflix was offering to foot most of the bill and let them broadcast the thing!) need to watch it.

*pointed stare*

Like, ALL of us. All the bibliophiles who relish good story-telling and good film adaptations thereof, that is; I assume anyone who comes here meets that description. Hm?

Nov 21, 2018, 10:09pm Top

Hi RD! I am not familiar with "The Last Kingdom". The books or series. I have also heard good things about the Netflix, British series, "Bodyguard". It sounds really good. Have you seen it?

Nov 21, 2018, 10:43pm Top

I like Richard Madden as an actor, so I follow him around. I saw the first episode of the series and the YGC made me *swear* we'd watch the rest together. (He seems to think I'm *too* interested in Madden.) So provisionally I like it, assuming it doesn't fall apart as time goes by.

Occupied, a Norwegian series about Russia invading and occupying their country, was another political show that I found on Netflix; people who don't want to read a TV show don't like it, but the readers give it an upgethumbing.

Nov 21, 2018, 10:57pm Top

>190 msf59: and >191 richardderus: - I watched 'Bodyguard' and it does fall apart in the second half. I was angry at it by the end.

Nov 21, 2018, 11:32pm Top

>192 katiekrug: Drat! I'm disappointed but forearmed.

Nov 22, 2018, 8:15am Top

'Morning, RD! Happy Thanksgiving, even if it is YGC-less. Books are a not-unreasonable fall back position, so to speak. *smile*

Nov 22, 2018, 8:20am Top

>194 karenmarie: Hey Horrible! At least today brought one lovely thing: Old Stuff will be out at a Turkey Day feed all day! Wheeeee silence and solitaire-less-ness plus a crockpot full of sausage and dressing plus new books I didn't have to travel to get...how can ya beat that?!

*smooch* eat hearty.

Assuming I get access to YGC's oiven, I'm going to try this brussels sprouts variation before the fresh season ends. Pears not apples, bacon, dried cranberries, toasted pecans. *drool*

Nov 22, 2018, 8:24am Top

Silence, books, good food. You've got it made today, my dear.

Jenna and Bill are both up, so it's time to start the last-minute stuff for our total-of-6-at-table T-day. I love Thanksgiving and am always happy when we wave as the last car trundles up the drive 9-ish.

Edited: Nov 22, 2018, 9:00am Top

>195 richardderus: That looks amazing!

Happy Thanksgiving, RD! It has been really nice seeing you back on the threads. You never fail to put a smile on my face.

I posted a mini-review of my latest Rash collection. What a terrific book. And, I discovered that I have Burning Bright saved on my Kindle. Yah!!

Nov 22, 2018, 9:31am Top

...so there's that going for me...

Nov 22, 2018, 9:38am Top

>197 msf59: I'm very glad that Ron Rash has made a believer of you, Mark, and hope that Burning Bright will thrill you as much as this one did.

Nov 22, 2018, 12:00pm Top

Happy Turkle Dee, my friend!

Edited: Nov 22, 2018, 12:10pm Top

>186 richardderus: >187 EBT1002:

Check out the Alt-Lit ORANGE...https://www.librarything.com/topic/297680...
thread for some fun variations on the Mueller indictments.

Nov 22, 2018, 12:34pm Top

>200 SomeGuyInVirginia: You-uns too, Larry!

>201 m.belljackson: That's...it's...wow.

Nov 22, 2018, 12:55pm Top

>189 richardderus: It is NOT fair, Richard!
We watched the first two seasons at the BBC and have no Netflix :'(

>191 richardderus: *drool* Richard Madden was so good looking in The Last Kingdom!

Nov 22, 2018, 1:11pm Top

>203 FAMeulstee: Oh dear...well...um...hey, how 'bout that Howard Hodgkin guy!

But it was Alexander Dreymon in The Last Kingdom:

Nov 22, 2018, 1:19pm Top

>204 richardderus: Mixing up actors, indeed ^ that is the guy I ment!

NOT mixing up painters, Hodgkin made some beautiful paintings!
(searching the internet now, where I can see Hodgkin paintings, ah I don't have to leave the country for Hodgkin: museum De Pont in Tilburg)

Nov 22, 2018, 1:54pm Top

>205 FAMeulstee: Lucky you! I would have to leave the country to see any Hodgkin work. The closest pieces are in Connecticut, which is in America. (I live in New York, which {like Texas} is only nominally part of Trumpmerica.)

Nov 23, 2018, 8:08am Top

'Morning, RD! *smooches* from your own Madame TVT Horrible

Nov 23, 2018, 9:29am Top

>207 karenmarie: *yawn*stretch* Oy. Stiff and sore from the c-o-l-d outside but warm and toasty thanks to electricity. Getting old is weird.

Happy Leftovers Day! I need to manufacture some happiness. (Still not caffeinated adequately.)

Nov 23, 2018, 12:10pm Top

I wish I could greet the day with the same enthusiasm Parker does. He wakes me up every morning at 5:30am and always seems suspiciously pleased with himself. I've gotten to the point where I substitute coffee for caffeine tablets because I don't have to wait 10 damn minutes for it to brew. Take two on an empty stomach, pow! I'm up.

Edited: Nov 23, 2018, 5:19pm Top

107 Day of Wrath by Anna Butler

Rating: 5* of five

This is it. The last time we'll see Bennet and Flynn in a Taking Shield story.

I pause here for sad and lonely reflection.

The journey of the series has been a good, satisfying one, and I am deeply glad that I followed it. Bennet's growth as a man and an officer has been steady. He's gained enormous insight into his past and uses it, as one should, to guide his steps into the future. He's been separated from his true love by circumstances beyond his control...any military family will recognize this reality...and has fought his hardest to return to his heart's home.

It is to Author Butler's great credit that she doesn't make the fight trivial by making it easy. She doesn't allow for any la-di-da fantasy of victorious sweetness, either. The Bennet who comes out of this book is a man who has lost and struggled and lost some more, so he's got his feet in the one place we all need to place them in the end: on rock bottom. Bennet has finally found his ground and he plants himself on the first really firm footing he's ever had.

He is not alone. All the characters we've come to love end up with their feet firmly planted. Some of them plant a lot more than their feet...Author Butler isn't afraid to swing the Grim Reaper's scythe. I was most vocally disgruntled about this, and was told by the lady herself that stories make demands that must be met so belt up and quit bellyaching. (I paraphrase. Barely.)

Bennet's life aboard the Gyrfalcon wasn't ever easy, and the return to the ship he's required to make by political events he can barely bring himself to tolerate is really a precisely calculated torture. Flynn is still there...his rigid, judgmental younger sister and his freewheeling younger brother are there...his starchy, duty-loving father is Captain. Not one of these things is calculated to make the uneasy political reality of Bennet's return comfy. Add in Flynn's whopper of a fuck-up of not-Bennet relationship partners and, well, this short reunion the two lovebirds are due to enjoy might just be more trouble than it's worth.

No. Never that for either man. They are each other's lobster, as Phoebe Buffay called Ross and Rachel on Friends all those decades ago. They're the true loves whose path seems never to be smooth, but Flynn really plants his size-13s in his mouth this time. When you get there, you'll know. So the problems ratchet up, the resolutions aren't obvious, and the politics that Flynn doesn't understand while Bennet plays them become orders of magnitude more difficult to navigate.

And then the real fun begins.

Trouble doesn't get bigger than this. Battlestar Galactica-sized big. It's in this moment of pure hell that Bennet crystallizes his priorities and acts on them for the first time in his life. It's a perfect moment, a small and intimate moment, and it's got huge implications for the future.

I don't know how else to say this except "this series deserves your attention and eyeblinks." Wait...yes I do:


Nov 23, 2018, 1:24pm Top

>209 SomeGuyInVirginia: But...but...coffee! Not simply caffeine, coffee! How does one live, I mean really, *why* does one live, without the rich, enfolding aroma and taste of coffee? I to understanding am not, Sir Larry.

Nov 23, 2018, 8:55pm Top

Earth as seen from the Hubble Space Telescope.

Nov 24, 2018, 7:29am Top

>212 richardderus: Mother Earth is so beautiful!

Nov 24, 2018, 8:20am Top


Which of the new books from YGC will you tackle first/next?

Nov 24, 2018, 9:56am Top

>213 FAMeulstee: Agreed! I've found more of these images and really am mesmerized.

>214 karenmarie: Captain Alatriste...started, but there are so many library books I need to finish first. *smooch*

Nov 24, 2018, 11:07am Top

>212 richardderus: absolutely stunning.

Nov 24, 2018, 11:23am Top

Nov 24, 2018, 11:37am Top

>212 richardderus: >217 richardderus: These are stunning!

Happy Saturday, RD. I went on my bird stroll, now I am waiting for my son to arise, to help me hang the outside Christmas lights. A big winter storm coming tomorrow and I want to get 'er done.

Nov 24, 2018, 12:16pm Top

>217 richardderus: Keep them coming, Richard!

Nov 24, 2018, 12:30pm Top

>201 m.belljackson: >202 richardderus:

Thank you!

If your day is dreary as Wisconsin's, try the You-tube 3 minute THE MIGHTY QUINN for a soul revival.

Edited: Nov 24, 2018, 2:57pm Top

>212 richardderus: >217 richardderus: Wow! Made me breathless. But surely the clouds are exaggerated? Or is that humankind’s contribution?

Nov 24, 2018, 5:15pm Top

>221 humouress: yeah, my thought too. They’re fantastic, but the atmosphere is a pretty thin band around the Earth. Sorry to be a spoiler... 😀

Nov 24, 2018, 5:38pm Top

>218 msf59:, >219 FAMeulstee: Aren't they gorgeous?! Such drama.

>220 m.belljackson: Oh no oh no oh no not THAT earworm!!!

>221 humouress:, >222 drneutron: I have no idea, though someone told me these were Hubble images of the earth. I don't see how that is possible, but no matter...they're spectacular images!

Nov 24, 2018, 9:50pm Top

Hey, there, neighbor-to-be! I just responded to your post on my thread.

Nov 25, 2018, 3:07am Top

>212 richardderus: wow! This is incredible.

>141 richardderus: love that art.

Here is some art for you in the form of a meme:

Nov 25, 2018, 3:14am Top

Love all the earth images there! And I'll have a Scotch on the rocks, please. : )

Happy Sunday. Smooch.

Nov 25, 2018, 4:32am Top

>224 Storeetllr: Hi Mary! Glad to have you here. I've done my shopping, thanks for that. Can't wait to see you in 2019!

>225 LovingLit: Oh yes please, I'll have one of those. Yes. Mmm hmmm.

>226 Berly: Fight ya for Sam.


Nov 25, 2018, 10:03am Top

I'm looking forward to it! How far is Nyack from you, do you know offhand?

Nov 25, 2018, 10:38am Top

I'm on Long Island's South Shore, so it's about 2 hours away by train, either half or double that by car depending on traffic.

Nov 25, 2018, 1:24pm Top

Happy Sunday, Richard. I have been busy with chores, as we clean and get some of the Christmas decorations up, or at least ready to go, before our trip.

I am getting reading in too, and with my Bears not playing today, it opens things up a bit.

I hope you are enjoying your day.

Nov 25, 2018, 2:28pm Top

>230 msf59: Thanks, Mark! It's been pretty pleasant. Cold, so I'm indoors, and quiet just like I like it.

Nov 25, 2018, 3:01pm Top

>229 richardderus: Well, not down the street but certainly closer than I am now! I look forward to meeting you in the new year!

Nov 25, 2018, 3:18pm Top

>232 Storeetllr: I cross my still-crossable parts that we'll manage to do it soonish...like, post-snow?

Nov 25, 2018, 6:27pm Top

What, like May? lol I have a feeling this is going to be a super snowy winter. I hope I'm wrong, but it's been a colder autumn this year than the past five here in Colorado, and we've had two snowfalls so far - which is about what we had the entire last winter.

Nov 25, 2018, 6:45pm Top

Oh dear, that's exactly what the Old Farmer's Almanac said. I was hoping that if I ignored it, it wouldn't come true. *sigh*

Nov 26, 2018, 7:32am Top

'Morning, RD!

>212 richardderus: and >217 richardderus: Beautiful.

NOAA says 50-60% chance it will be wetter in my neck of the woods this winter, which probably means snow and ice. For me that means more excuses to stay indoors and read.

Nov 26, 2018, 7:53am Top

>236 karenmarie: coffee first brain after

Edited: Nov 26, 2018, 8:46am Top

This morning Twitter gifted me with Brian Harig's beautiful panorama of aspen trees in Colorado. I was instantly cheered and soothed, so maybe you will be as well.

Nov 26, 2018, 8:37am Top

>227 richardderus: You do remember that I am a black belt, right? : )

>238 richardderus: LOVE that!

Nov 26, 2018, 8:47am Top

>239 Berly: Yes, but *I* am old and sneaky and permaybehaps a bit more...motivated...than you are.

Just sayin'

Nov 26, 2018, 8:56am Top

That's only because you've already had some coffee. And I haven't...yet...

Nov 26, 2018, 9:38am Top

Bring it, lady.

Nov 26, 2018, 10:03am Top

I win.

Nov 26, 2018, 10:20am Top

Nov 26, 2018, 10:22am Top


Nov 26, 2018, 3:48pm Top

108 Letters to Anyone and Everyone by Toon Tellegen

Rating: 5* of five

I wonder if your sense of wonder is getting enough exercise. Have you believed two impossible things before noon? Have you made a note to be grateful to the table you sit down to eat in front of, quite probably without ever so much as saying a quiet "thank you, dear table"? I'm betting you haven't. After all, the squirrel...a most loving and patient friend to the elephant and even the bear...had never said his thank-yous to the table.

Oh, and the elephant! The elephant visits the squirrel in his house up the beech tree. It's no surprise that the elephant breaks all the squirrel's furniture before falling out of the tree on the way home. Clumsy, clumsy elephant, who simply doesn't have any sense of balance. I suppose it's no wonder that the snail, to whom the elephant wrote a letter asking for the pleasure of a dance atop the snail's roof, said it wasn't a great idea. But what's an elephant to do when the only thing left to do is build a raft and go to sea?

The sea appears to have taught the elephant how to balance. At least, that's what the squirrel thinks when missing the dear old elephant during a quiet moment amid the squirrel's next birthday celebration.

And the bear! What a trencherman...trencherbear, I suppose...and the nerve that appetite on legs has! The bear writes to all the animals and asks them if they would please celebrate all their birthdays at once so they can all have cakes which the bear (politely) tells them are really bear food!

But no one minds because that's what the bear always does and is always, always polite about it. So all those visits the bear pays are friendly ones.

These charming short poems masquerading as tales are designed to give the young reader a sense of the magic that the world can't exactly refuse to them yet. The adult reading the poems to the youngest readers who could reasonably be expected to follow them, say six or so, has plenty of opportunities to bring the lessons to life. The lessons aren't necessarily part of the tale. That's such a great idea. Don't tell the kid about selfishness and loneliness and losing someone you love. The animals are doing the learning. The boy who cried wolf? Grim and violent and old hat. Here, the cricket learns about telling the truth by writing a letter saying "The cricket is not here" while chirping madly! Of course that would confuse people.

But the cricket needs to learn another lesson, it seems, since learning the word "not" was accomplished by stealing that word from the letter the elephant wrote. The one that said, "You will not fall," that the elephant was going to read from the top of the beech tree! I don't need to tell you what happened, do I.

I loved the time I spent in this world where all letters are answered by return wind, and all the animals and tables and letters that received the letters were excited to get them and write return letters. The wind always delivers the letters...sometimes huge huge stacks of letters, just ask the ant!...to just the right person. The concepts are ideal for younger readers and the execution, both text and art, is ideal for post-magical thinkers of eight or so to experience as solo reads. There are enough vocabulary words to keep adults involved but the gentle, charming world need cause them no anxiety. Here is a safe space to turn loose of the still-forming mind and soul.

Anita, you have my smiling thanks and deep gratitude for introducing me to this lovely world.

Nov 26, 2018, 4:34pm Top

>246 richardderus: What a great review, Richard!
I like the illustrations of your edition.

I don't know how many of Tellegens books are available in English, I am sure you will like them all.

Nov 26, 2018, 4:50pm Top

>247 FAMeulstee: Thank you most kindly, Anita, and again thanks for introducing me to Tellegen's work. Four of them in this loose series are available from Boxer Books.

Nov 26, 2018, 4:59pm Top

>248 richardderus: There are many more in Dutch. I hope my favorite will be translated one day. "The curing of the Cricket" is so brilliant about depression.

Nov 26, 2018, 5:03pm Top

>246 richardderus: - Awwww....

Nov 26, 2018, 5:10pm Top

>249 FAMeulstee: I hope it will come out in English!

>250 katiekrug: I warned you! You can't say I didn't warn you! Now quick sticks, possum, get that insulin shot in you.

Nov 26, 2018, 7:08pm Top

Nov 26, 2018, 7:10pm Top

I believe someone was following me around...

Nov 26, 2018, 7:12pm Top

>252 Berly: Oh good! I think you'll appreciate the mellowness of the author's voice, Kimmers. *smooch*

Nov 26, 2018, 7:15pm Top

>250 katiekrug: Or, as my MIL always says "SUGAR Diabeetus"

Nov 26, 2018, 7:36pm Top

>255 laytonwoman3rd: ...as opposed to what, amino acid diabetes? Like "tuna fish" (not tuna mammal?) a puzzling construction.

Nov 26, 2018, 9:58pm Top

>256 richardderus: I know, right?

Nov 26, 2018, 11:47pm Top

>246 richardderus: How lovely! It sits firmly (yes, paper copy) in my amazon basket, waiting for the next big order

Nov 27, 2018, 12:40am Top

>242 richardderus: Now Richard; is that any way to treat a lady?

Nov 27, 2018, 1:11am Top

>257 laytonwoman3rd: Oh my yes!

>258 Deern: It must be a paper copy! The loveliness that is the teensy little artworks would be ill used by an ereader. I know you'll enjoy those beautiful drawings. I hope you'll be swept up in the mail-wind, as well.

>259 humouress: ...lady...? Oh, you mean Kimmers. Shyeah.

Nov 27, 2018, 1:30am Top

>259 humouress: Thank you!

>260 richardderus: Wounded to the core.

Nov 27, 2018, 7:05am Top

>253 richardderus: I can relate...

Morning, RD! At least there is no more snow coming this week, YAH!, but it will be chilly. I can dress for that. Enjoy your day, my friend.

Nov 27, 2018, 8:26am Top

Hallo, RD!

I've heard people here in central NC just call diabetes "sugar" or "the sugar".

Nov 27, 2018, 9:21am Top

>261 Berly: *there there, pat pat*

>262 msf59: Cold is doable, snowy windy cold turns into ice and that is the Devil's Own.

>263 karenmarie: Yeeesss, that is a normal phrase among...um...the, uh, underserved by the education system.

Nov 27, 2018, 11:35am Top

Wow. Such a lot I missed. Set out to find your not-starred thread, and I've just skimmed through the whole thing. Canned pigeon. Strangers on a Train—I much preferred the Highsmith version. Letters to Anyone and Everyone, which sounds like a gift for our Olivia. Oh, and the weather...and the smooching. :-)

Nov 27, 2018, 11:57am Top

Yeah, Bill, it stays busy around here. Happy to see you and hope you'll come visit again soon.

Olivia will love the book, I betcha, and there are three more after it if it's a real hit!

Nov 27, 2018, 1:00pm Top

Happy Tuesday, Richard! Hope all is well xo

Nov 27, 2018, 1:07pm Top

Thank you, my dear Chelle, it's a lovely, blustery day and I can stay indoors and read. I'll call that perfection. *smooch*

Nov 27, 2018, 1:35pm Top

>212 richardderus:, >217 richardderus:, >237 richardderus: So beautiful! Thanks for posting those.

>253 richardderus: "LOVE"

Enjoy your blustery, lovely reading today my friend.

Nov 27, 2018, 3:00pm Top

>269 jnwelch: *startle* Oh! Heh, I didn't hear you come in, I was slurping up The Dreaming Stars. It's the second of Tim Pratt's SF series featuring galaxy-gobbling aliens, lying alien minions (they're called "the Liars" so that's no editorial), and a lesbian space pirate with a bad case on a 500-year-old woman.

Nov 28, 2018, 9:55am Top

*grabby hands*

Nov 28, 2018, 10:47am Top

>271 richardderus: - Snerk. Same.

Nov 28, 2018, 11:56am Top

Don't Let My Past Be Your Future: A Call to Arms by Harry Leslie Smith

Harry Leslie Smith, 1923-2018

He died this morning, 28 November 2018, after a struggle with pneumonia. Please watch the video linked above. Your votes in 2020 will set the course for the entire rest of your life, no matter how old you are. #IStandWithHarry

Please, you stand with him as well. Buy his book, read it, and realize that many, many lives like Harry's were shortened by indiffierence and greed, what we're passively allowing to take place today.

Nov 28, 2018, 11:57am Top

>272 katiekrug: I would swear I've never met your parents, yet somehow I seem to have fathered you.

Edited: Nov 28, 2018, 11:56pm Top

"My life is your history and we should keep it that way". That's what I've been thinking often lately - the first half of the 1900s is something we cannot undo or think away, so we should use it to learn from it and to never repeat. By looking at how terrible things can turn out, did turn out in the past, we should be able - very easily - to do better. Just don't repeat old patterns. So why are we repeating them? When did the idea of solidarity get lost?

On that note, my little idyllic, ever conservative "land" (autonomous region) is just starting a government with the Lega in the coalition for the first time. They could have gone with the Greens (who are conservative here as well and the only party really uniting Germans and Italians). After all the pain they went through in the 1920s and on with Mussolini they shouldn't have even talked to the Lega who gets many votes from the new fascists and isn't a friend of the autonomy (they stole "Italy first" from Trump whom they adore). I fear we're in for bad times.

Edit: just bought the book

Nov 29, 2018, 12:01am Top

>275 Deern: Well the demagogues learned that they can rise to power when people feel threatened. They are pretty sure they will be able to avoid the fall of those they imitate, because they, of course, are smarter.

Nov 29, 2018, 12:15am Top

They have an incredible sense of where they can instill fear and have no issue at all with telling big lies. Italy isn't nationalist at all, so they made them fear "for our children". The Lega's "Italy first" really means "your child/family first before all the foreigners". You couldn't get Italians with "the loss of our culture" the way that works, sadly, again in Germany and elsewhere. I went to an election speech of the 5 Stelle last year and my mind felt twisted and kind of poisoned afterwards. Everything they said sounded good and honest, but something was wrong.

Anyway, (((((Richard))))): I think your post, the video, the book, were the last little push I needed. I've been considering it for a while, all this year, and I must get at least a little politically active. Signing petitions isn't enough. Thank you!

Nov 29, 2018, 8:54am Top

>275 Deern: Oh dear, Nathalie, the Lega Nord isn't a party I'd like to see in power for very long, but I fear it's inevitable at this world-moment. Change is coming and that always scares the stupid.

>276 quondame: And if the threat is existential and amorphous, like this post-singularity one is, they fall back on "they're coming to take your {insert culturally appropriate item} and WE will stop them!"

The hoi polloi fall for it every time.

>277 Deern: *smooch* I live to serve.

Nov 29, 2018, 1:50pm Top

Nov 29, 2018, 2:53pm Top

>279 SuziQoregon: Ain't that a hoot? And so *me*.

Nov 29, 2018, 3:19pm Top

>274 richardderus: - Heh. My parents were Goldwater conservatives who met while working at National Review. I think I might be a changeling...

Nov 29, 2018, 3:21pm Top

>281 katiekrug: My parents thought Goldwater was a dangerous liberal. I *know* I'm a changeling.

Nov 29, 2018, 3:24pm Top


As I thought about where I donated money on Giving Tuesday, I realized I had become the kind of person I used to hear my parents disparage during my childhood. Planned Parenthood, the ACLU.... quelle horreur!

Nov 29, 2018, 3:26pm Top

This made me howl. I would *totally* never do such a thing, but Mr. Bean can get away with it.

Nov 29, 2018, 4:31pm Top

109 The Word of Flesh and Soul by Ruthanna Emrys

Rating: 4.5* of five

Another dash into the burning house of Lovecraftian Mythos writing with one of the women who set it alight. Well-crafted novelette of a woman learning her place. And it isn't where she's been told it was, either.

I found the usual Emrys-ness, the side-eye to form, in evidence here. Also refreshing is Emrys's absence of interest in her male characters. They are a set of quirks and attitudes, just like most female characters in SF/F/H by men.

The Force is strong in this one. Read her work. It will beguile you, or you are not worthy of it.

Edited: Nov 30, 2018, 2:22am Top

>284 richardderus: Of course you wouldn't, Richard dear. We believe you.

Nov 30, 2018, 8:00am Top

>286 humouress: Thank you, dear Nina.

Nov 30, 2018, 8:55am Top

>284 richardderus: Ha! Smooth.

>270 richardderus: OK, you got me. I wishlisted the first one, The Wrong Stars.

Nov 30, 2018, 1:10pm Top

>288 jnwelch: Heh, yep...that's Mr. Bean, smoooooooth.

Was it the bad case of lovin' the 500-year-old woman that started your engine?
The Book Riot newsletter had something in it y'all need to know about: A create-your-own-book-nook sweepstakes!

Nov 30, 2018, 1:56pm Top


Nov 30, 2018, 2:07pm Top

Yes, Old?

Nov 30, 2018, 3:27pm Top

>250 katiekrug: *guffaw*

Mister Bean is a favourite in this house. He is so good :):):)

Edited: Nov 30, 2018, 3:46pm Top

I was an intern at DDB Needham Worldwide, in the media buying department. The head was widely feared but I liked her (and feared her). We had a working lunch where she was passing out the food. She pulled a container from this sack and said, 'I dunno, I think it's bean soup.' There's only one damn thing to say to that. I replied, 'I don't care what it's bean, what is it now?!' She pauses, everybody in the room holds their breath. She looks like someone just, maybe, farted. The she burst out laughing. I was very relieved.

Nov 30, 2018, 4:07pm Top

>292 LovingLit: I agree, Mr. Bean always made me laugh out loud. Surprised to see you out and about...oh wait, it's Saturday there! Never mind.

>293 SomeGuyInVirginia: The fart look was probably the desperate attempt to hold in a laugh. Doesn't do to humanize one's self when one's rep as an orc is at stake!

Nov 30, 2018, 5:12pm Top

>289 richardderus: Your whole description of The Dreaming Stars got me, and then when I looked on Amazon, reviewers talked about the first one as being a fun, lighthearted and funny space opera. How can I resist that?

Thanks for the link - I entered. That's my kind of sweepstakes!

Edited: Nov 30, 2018, 10:20pm Top

Okay, I've put the first Tim Pratt space opera on my For Later list in the library catalog and entered the sweepstakes. I've been hearing a lot good about Ruthanna Emrys but hadn't followed up because I'm not really into Lovecraftian horror. The library has Winter Tide and Deep Roots.

You are a dangerous man.

And the tooth is cracked--it will be a major operation. :-(

Nov 30, 2018, 8:02pm Top

>295 jnwelch:, >296 ronincats: Whee!! I'm a success at last! I got both the Satanic Book Warblers in one day!

>296 ronincats: Oh no, Roni, that's horrible news. I'm sorry. I'll whammy an easy operation for you.

Nov 30, 2018, 10:03pm Top

>296 ronincats: You might want to check your Deep Roots touchstone. I'm not much for Lovecraftian pre 2000, but just as vampires and werewolves took over from dragons in the 90s, the last 10+ years has seen so much of the older gods that some of it is quite good and much is entertaining. BTW - took over is more what I see on the covers of the F&SF New Books at the library and I could easily be a decade and a half off, what with no memory at all.

Don't swallow a crown! I didn't but it was a close run thing, what with no feeling in my mouth or tongue.

Nov 30, 2018, 10:21pm Top

>297 richardderus: Hope so!
>298 quondame: Fixed it, Susan. Thanks!

Dec 1, 2018, 2:49pm Top

>294 richardderus: I do get out from time to time. ;)
Mainly when I am avoiding thesis writing, or celebrating having written a good sentence.

>296 ronincats: cracked tooth! *flees in terror*
Good luck, that type of talk horrifies me so I will leave it to the experts to comfort and support you.

Dec 1, 2018, 4:35pm Top

Where is the Thread Police when you need them? ;-)

Dec 1, 2018, 5:11pm Top

110 What the Barrow May Send by Margaret Killjoy

Rating: 4* of five

You don't know how good an author's work is until you realize, when reading their new work, that you've missed these characters, this world, this skewed vision of life. That's what happened to me when I finally got around to reading Author Killjoy's latest tale of Danielle Cain and her band of merry pranksters (and now is the moment I say to the spoilerphobic that this next bit is a HUGE HONKING SPOILER for The Lamb Will Slaughter the Lion, which see):




...okay, are the spoilerphobes gone? Good. Here's the moment I came home:

A demon killed those police officers, sir. It wasn’t us. They probably shouldn’t have pulled guns out around a bloodred, three-antlered deer with obvious supernatural agility, so whose fault was it really.

That's just effin' awesome. I can't even with Killjoy!

I'm sure I don't need to tell you that the following lines made my evil, withered soul batten like a leech on an artery:

Sometimes I think I let myself become addicted to coffee not because I liked it, not because caffeine did me any favors, but because it takes the urge of a physical addiction to provide any kind of upside to getting out of bed in the morning.

*oooo aaah* Killjoy speaks my mother(fuckin) tongue!

But the story. Yes, the story, the story, one must always serve the story. I found the events of this outing with Danielle and company a little bit on the rushed side, that is, until I realized we're in the same continuum as the last story and the data we need is all going to be relevant one day soon. I liked the new people the group met; I found the Montana setting used more as a form of social shorthand than a background character the way Freedom, Iowa, was in the last book. That it was effective I grant you, since it wasn't until a scene taking pace in Glacier National Park came and went without my so much as smelling a pine tree before I noticed it fully. Prior to that, I had a niggling sense of something not quite full about my cup of story. I understand how little room there is in under 200pp for the author to go hog wild with scenery and such-like. I'd've liked just a bit more, though.

The supernatural elements, the raising of the dead and concomitant magjicqkal spooky do's, the visuals and olfactories that go with, were here in plenty! I was deeply interested in The Killjoy Take on the omnipresent and worn-thinner-than-gossamer zombie trope. I must say it was a relief not to hate it. I was down with the whole idea, the way it's managed, and the fascinating departure from the more...meaty...tone that most fictioneers use in the wake of The Walking Dead.

Most of all, though, I love these stories because Danielle is a great character. She's a traveler, she does not put down roots but instead epiphytically sucks nourishment from the heavy air of mystery and magjicqk that surrounds her and, I think, likely always has. I find her love for another person realistic and well-realized. She doesn't go into frothing fits of adoration but she sure as hell notices when Brynn, her love object from last book, pays a little too much attention to someone new. Yet she's not possessive, really, she doesn't do the victim's-rights polka all over Brynn. After all this is a character who thinks:

There’s never enough air or something once you barricade the doors. There’re always too many people, both inside and outside, when you barricade the doors.

Yes. I concur, and like Author Killjoy, I don't limit my sense of being suffocated to my own personal body, but to everyone everywhere.

Should you read these novellas? If you come in with the spirit of adventure and of acceptance for difference that Author Killjoy does. Yes, The Other is demonized...when The Other is an actual demon, or the slave of one. It's the **intent** that Author Killjoy uses to brand The Other. Their appearance, their state of lifedeath, none of that matters so long as one isn't attempting Livingism by radical means of forcing an unconsulted, non-consenting Other to be alive!

You know what I wish more than anything? I wish Margaret Killjoy would get inspired and write some *good* Social Justice Warrior stories of Doctor Who, that's what. The tedious, lumpen things Chibnall and company are turning out, well, just not that good I'm afraid. This book is *good* woke supernatural bloody scary fiction. Find you way to the UK, Margaret Killjoy, just don't forget about Danielle and Scooby-group of Doom! (Would Vulture like that one, or Danielle?)

Dec 1, 2018, 5:24pm Top

>298 quondame: Excellent advice re: crowns, Susan.

>299 ronincats: *smooch*

>300 LovingLit: I swaNEE! It's Megan the Marvelous Kiwi Doctorate-haver! (Of course you will, no false modesty, it's unbecoming.)

>301 FAMeulstee: I **HAD** to get to review number 110! HAD. TO. Open fer bidness over there now.

Dec 2, 2018, 3:04am Top

This topic was continued by richardderus tenth thread of 2018.

Group: 75 Books Challenge for 2018

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