Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Personal Security People And A Whole Lot More: Also, David Weber Falls Off Flat World!

Do Unto Others… by Michael Z. Williamson caught me a little off guard. I have not given much thought to personal body guards and the work they do. Picking up Do Unto Others… was a page turning surprise.  I considered giving it up but kept with it to landing on the mining planet Govannon.  Here the author has created a great potential view of the future of mining in space and the extremes of environment likely to be encountered. The story is very much in the vein of Robert A. Heinlein’s body of work and the characters are, to put it lightly, diverse. The center protagonist is the young college graduate heiress to the hands down wealthiest family in the known universe. The machinations of intra-family skulduggery frame the security details work to keep young Caron alive and the family business moving forward. Williamson has co-authored with John Ringo and knows Space Opera and how to deliver. The tech detailing of the living and mining environs and the detail of the explosives and how they are used is very interesting,down right fun. Military SF fans will like where this books takes them too.

I am just finishing David Weber’s Out of the dark and am blown away.  Once again something harkening back to the master R. A. Heinlein with a story of Alien invasion and what humans do when half the population of Earth is destroyed before even presenting themselves and suggesting we submit to their superiority and do their bidding. The story moves around the globe to different groups trying to survive and deal with the invaders.  Weber delivers a delightful analysis of the human psyche and how we might react. The psyche of the invaders and the hegemony from which they come from are so plausible as to make me tremble with tremors of fear and joy of who I am (we are). I am a big fan of David Weber and his Honor Harrington stories and the Safehold Series, two of my favorites.
Ye Gads! Yikes! What is going on here?
I just hit the last chapter of Out of the Dark,
had to get up and go to work.
My mind is REELING!
I think I'll take an early break and finish this Sudden Weird.
Whew! Shocking, just shocking.
Given David Weber is writing it, I'll look forward to the next in this, if it's going to be a series, series.  It will be okay, he'll do it differently and do it better. I think I can, I think I can....
No spoilers here, read it and weep, read it and howl,
read it and jump for joy, read it and do as you wish.

Steve Earle is ringing in my ears.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Thank You, Thank You Readers!

I am so amazed and so pleased.
Thursday October 14th this blog with just my library home page
touting it, hit 1,000 visits.   Wow! I started on December 11, 2009.
A special thanks to those of you visiting from all over the world.
Of course, most of my visitors are folks from the
Campbell County Library community,
but I also have visitors all over the world.
There have been more than ten hits from
Indonesia, Portugal, Ukraine,South Korea,
Spain, Japan, Russia, Canada and Italy.
We live in interesting times and we are very connected.
I'd love to hear from some of you,
how you got here, and why you return.
Just click on the email link if you don't want to post publicly.
Thanks to All of You!
Knowing you are out there and reading this ramble is encouraging.
Regards,
Richard

Saturday, October 9, 2010

William Gibson Walks In The Tallest Cotton I Grow

I have loved William Gibson from the get go (Necromancer, 1984).  I didn't even blink with his move from cyberpunk to the present day dystopia stories. For those of you who also read him, his newest, Zero History, is his third installment centered around marketing and all that it entails and more.  The first book in the Bigend Trilogy, Pattern Recognition, I have mentioned before and will undoubtedly mention again (easily on my top reads ever list). Whew! What a read. Book two, Spook Country, will delight as well. Gibson's view of our current, recent past and our soon to be world, is enough to strike me dumb, numb and confounded. His vocabulary constantly pleases and challenges me. His knowledge of the fashion  industry and fashionista are a delight to learn. All the while spinning and spinning and spinning an outrageous and compelling story of viral marketing and what the industry and clientele will do to be players in their world. Gibson's personal fashion choice, in a word, durable. My kind of guy. The protagonists are always telling the story from a point of view you want to be watching from. The reader gets to feel quite clever while reading William Gibson.

I just finished the latest two installments of David Drake's RNC (Leary/Mundy) Series. Books 7, Into the Stormy Red Sky and book 8, What Distant Deeps. Book 8 may be my absolute favorite of the series and I'm thinking it's about time the two got them selves figured out. One can hardly imagine what kind of progeny they could conceive and unleash on the universe. Space Opera could become more than it already is. Frightening!

 William C. Dietz' second book in his Empire Duology arrived at the library.
Bones of Empire is just what I expected of it.
Fast furious space opera with a predictable outcome.
But, what fun!
I left the real world behind for a short while and was happy to do so.

I sorry to not be listening to music available at the library,
but I just can't leave Ryan Adam's early work with
his alt-country band Whiskytown alone.
The lyrics from the title cut of the CD Faithless Street
haunts me on a regular basis.
"If angels are messengers from God,
please send one down to me.
If angels are messengers from God,
I wrote a letter he should read.
Been living on faithless street all by myself..."

If you haven't noticed I am over fond of
Ryan Adams music, lyrics and phrasing.
Come to think of it, his phrasing is
right up there with Elvis Costello.
Remember this stuff is just my opinion.
If phrasing interests you, Elvis Costello is the World Champion.
Proof of the Costello pudding is to listen to
his singing on Painted From Memory,
with Burt Bacharach stroking the ivories.
All the songs are the "light" pop tunes Bacharach penned.
What come out of Elvis's mouth are deep,
brooding, emotional, content laden songs.
I had no idea Burt's music was that meaningful.
Sometimes it's all in the phrasing.
Just remember, this is an opinion,
your thoughts on the matter are much more meaningful.
Just an aside, but, Imperial Bedroom by Costello is
my favorite. The whole CD feels like listening to the
confessions of a bad boy all but unaware
of the coming change.

Regards,
Richard