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Evolution isn't working fast enough. More dumbasses need to be shot.

Month

May 2015

The Many Deaths of Joe Buckley

My review of The Many Deaths of Joe Buckley

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Who is the mysterious Joe Buckley, and why does he meet so many unfortunate ends in various Baen books?

Joe Buckley is simultaneously a real person and an unlucky figment of numerous Baen authors’ imaginations. He’s been drowned, shot, stabbed, turned into a werewolf, eaten by a shark, and put through a snow blower and had his atomized remains spewed into the air, just to name a few. He’s been spindled, folded, mutilated, blown up, and autopsied.

Now for the first time we have compiled the many instances of Buckley meeting a bad end, with introductions by the dastardly authors–and one artist–who did him in. Find out who killed him first and why, and how the tradition grew. With bonus material: “The Buckley Alphabet” by Sarah Hoyt’s Dinerzens, and a filk song, “The Twelve Days of Battle” (to the tune of The Twelve Days of Christmas).

All proceeds from this collection will support two charities near and dear to our hearts, both founded, supported, and run by Baen readers: Operation Baen Bulk, which sends books, ereaders, and other supplies to our men and women in uniform, and ReadAssist, which allows disabled readers free access to Baen ebooks.


4 Stars

A beautiful little collection of snippets from various Baen stories and authors all starring the glorious and magnificent gruesome death of Joe Buckley. Quite funny, and it was very informative reading the introductions by the various authors. There were a couple of snippets that could have had more context provided, but most were quite clear.

The eBook was formatted well with no obvious spelling/grammar errors. Proceeds went to a couple of charities that barflies operate, so good cause justifies minor purchase.

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Women have always been in SF/F

A nice article and a bit of a review of what sounds like an interesting book. The idea that women are just now getting into and/or being recognized in SF/F has always been a ludicrous notion (I’ve linked about the topic before), this just expands on it with hard data. Yes, women were/are underrepresented compared to the population, but then again women are overrepresented in the urban fantasy/romance category. People have different tastes and interests.

From the post:

Davin examined every issue of every science fiction and fantasy magazine published in the US between 1926 and 1965, looking for women writers.  First he limited himself to magazines that were devoted to either science fiction or fantasy (and admits there were women who published science fiction and fantasy in general fiction magazines that aren’t included in his count).  Second, he only counted authors who could be verified as female.  Any author with a gender neutral byline or who used initials who couldn’t be verified as female weren’t included.

Davin goes into detail in his chapters, describing and/or quoting some of the authors at length.  He also conveniently provides tables and summary figures in Appendices.  From 1926-1949, 65 female authors published 288 stories in 20 magazines (i.e., all of the genre magazines of the period),  From 1950-1960 another 138 female authors joined the field, for a total of 203 women writers who together published a total of 922 stories.

Read the whole thing here: http://adventuresfantastic.com/the-women-other-women-dont-see/

The Earth Is All That Lasts

My review of the The Earth Is All That Lasts by Catherine Wells

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Welcome to the North American continent after a series of catastrophes, including famine, plague and floods, have destroyed almost all of humanity.
Descendants of the survivors (those who stayed) have created a tribal society in the depopulated American West which lives side by side with an enclave of scientists.

But unknown to all, a spaceship is coming: one with humans on board who care little for the new tribal customs and ways of life. Financed by an influential family settled away from Earth, Homeward Bound is an exploratory ship sent back to see what has become of the home planet, and how best it can be used to further the aims of certain vested interests.


Continue reading “The Earth Is All That Lasts”

Rescue Party

My review of the short story Rescue Party by Arthur C. Clarke

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A ship of advanced star-faring races rushes to Earth to save us, only to discover an empty planet.


4 Stars

Someone over at Baen’s Bar was asking about this story so I decided to look it up and read it. Quite good. It was paced well, and I liked the premise of a galactic alien civilization coming to the rescue of Earth, only to find out we’re no longer there nor in need of rescuing. I think it pairs well with the later Pots by C. J. Cherryh, though obviously set in different story universes. I also like the idea of a being that can spread itself across the galaxy yet still simultaneously communicate with all of it’s individual parts if it wishes. Clarke has always been one of my favorite authors, and this story is no disappointment.

 

This is the only story I’ve read out of this compilation to date. I’m looking forward to reading the rest.

Brady suspended

According to this, Tom Brady is being suspended for four games in reference to ‘deflate gate’. I find this surprising because the NFL never really showed Brady was actually involved. They said he ‘was more likely than not’ to be knowledgeable of it happening, which is a pretty low standard of evidence for a four game suspension. Personally, I think the team perpetrated this, not just a couple of low level functionaries. Their fumble stats over the last few years have been extraordinary, well below everyone else in the league. I don’t think that happens without a concerted effort by team leaders.

Midnight In Death

My review of Midnight In Death

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The number-one New York Times bestselling In Death series explodes with intrigue, passion, and suspense. Now, Nora Roberts, writing as J.D. Robb, propels you into the darkest night of Lieutenant Eve Dallas’s life–when a killer comes to call…
Eve’s name has made a Christmas list, but it’s not for being naughty or nice. It’s for putting a serial killer behind bars. Now the escaped madman has her in his sights. With her husband, Roarke, at her side, Eve must stop the man from exacting his bloody vengeance–or die trying…


Continue reading “Midnight In Death”

Bee: The Princess of the Dwarfs

My review of Bee: The Princess of the Dwarfs

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When her true love is abducted by mysterious creatures, a girl must summon the strength to save him

From the moment they met as young children, Bee and George have been bound together by a deep love. But when George goes off on a quest to a forbidden lake, home to dangerous water nymphs, it is up to Bee to rescue him. On her adventure she meets Loc, the king of the dwarfs, who proves to be more kind and generous than the humans she knows. Even as he showers her with riches in an attempt to make her stay, Bee never loses sight of her purpose: finding George. She will do anything to get him back.

A fairy tale for all ages, Bee: The Princess of the Dwarfs is a classic that has delighted children and adults alike for more than a century with its ebullient characters and wondrous worlds.


2 Stars

I had trouble getting into this book. The base story was fine, it was the way it was written that bothered me. I’ve run into this problem with other stories written around the same time period. The flow of words simply doesn’t strike me as quite right, it brings me out of the story. The sentences seem choppy at times, and the paragraphs seem to run on endlessly occasionally. It’s a short book, more like a novella or short novel, but it still took me a week to read instead of just a single day.

The story of Honey Bee and George, held in their separate worlds and educated in their discrete ways during their youth, was fine. I would have preferred it be paced better. Bee and King Loc are the only characters remotely fleshed out.

The eBook was formatted well with only one noticeable spelling mistake.

It’s About Ethics In Revolution

My review of Kameron Hurley’s It’s About Ethics In Revolution

https://archive.is/CwNUN

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How to survive in a culture of stereotypes, racist and sexist categories and threats of dehumanizing acts.


2 Stars

I’m not sure if she meant it to be satire against SJWs, I think not. But, as satire it’s mildly amusing. If she meant it as some sort of protest against the Sad Puppies/Rabid Puppies, which is what I think she was going for, she seems to have failed in her understanding of what is going on. The corporate culture with it’s approved themes and old boys network seems to be her attempt at coloring the Puppies with a racist/misogynistic brush. Taddeous Ik is apparently supposed to represent Vox Day, if I’m reading it right.

What she fails to grasp is that the Puppies are the ones fighting against the idea of approved themes and the Hugo gatekeepers (like the Nielsen Haydens and David Gerrold) are the old boys network attempting to keep control of the message.

The actual writing seems a little stilted to me. It’s like she was still in junior high trying too hard to impress her teacher with her grasp of the way the world works.

Take two, they’re small

Cultures grow and evolve. Those that don’t anymore typically become extinct soon thereafter. And when it comes to those people who want to play up their victimhood? Well, all I say is that more people need to be told to Fuck Off! When I was growing up my uncle had a Bronco with a bumper sticker of a guy flipping the bird with both hands. The text said “Take two, they’re small”.
http://thefederalist.com/2015/05/07/cultural-appropriation-is-culture/

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