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  #271  
Old 01-17-2020, 01:34 PM
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Ghel Ghel is offline
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I finished the first book in the Technomage series and on to the second.
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  #272  
Old 01-17-2020, 06:49 PM
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I have started reading The Caves of Steel by Isaac Asimov.
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  #273  
Old 01-17-2020, 09:03 PM
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I have started reading The Caves of Steel by Isaac Asimov.
I think that might be one of the few Asimov books I've never read ...
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  #274  
Old 01-18-2020, 02:56 AM
Kazim Kazim is offline
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I'm rereading "The Tower of Kartage" by Thomas Knapp for the umpthet time
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  #275  
Old 01-19-2020, 01:10 PM
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AnaKhouri AnaKhouri is offline
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The first books completed in 2020 were The Last Wish and Boy, Snow, Bird. Rather disappointed by that one as I usually like Helen Oyeyemi's work but in this one the characters felt flat.

Currently reading Sword of Destiny (2nd chronological Witcher book) and Cabal by Clive Barker.
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  #276  
Old 02-08-2020, 06:36 AM
Pixelated Pixelated is offline
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Nearly finished a far-more-interesting-book-than-I-thought-it-would-be titled kira-kira, by Cynthia Kadohata. I'm pretty sure it's officially a YA book, but nonetheless I've found myself reluctant to put it down.

The narrator is Katie and her older sister is Lynn (a baby brother, Sam, makes his appearance about midway through the book). They are the children of Japanese immigrants ("kira-kira" is Japanese for "glittering") and at the start of the book they live in small-town Iowa. Katie's father owns a shop, but it's a grocery store with a lot of Japanese foods in it ... and there are few if any other Japanese families in the area.

The shop fails and the family moves to a small town (Chesterfield) in Georgia, where Katie's parents both take jobs in the local chicken-processing plant. Eventually they obtain a mortgage and buy a small house.

Then Lynn becomes ill. It comes and goes, but each time it returns it drags her further down. Katie is initially told it's anemia, but eventually learns that it is, in fact, lymphoma.

Woven into the story are friends, neighbours, and relatives who live in Chesterfield, including the children's uncle (the father's brother) who has studied hard to qualify as a land surveyor (he also works in the chicken processing plant, in the hatchery). At one point Katie asks her aunt, "When is Uncle Katsuhisa going to quit his job at the hatchery and become a land surveyor?" Her aunt looks at her and says sadly, "Sweetheart, nobody in Georgia is going to hire a Japanese man to be a land surveyor."

One of Katie's friends is the daughter of a woman who's part of a group trying to unionize the workers. Katie's mother wants nothing to do with it. She sees unionizing as lack of loyalty to the man who's paying their wages -- but oddly, she doesn't forbid Katie from hanging around with the daughter.

I'm at a point in the book now where their parents are working almost nonstop, trying to cover Lynn's spiralling medical bills and their mortgage. Sometimes one or both don't even come home (the chicken processing plant has areas where the workers can shower and sleep). Lynn is at the point many chronically ill people get to, when they make demands, one after the other, and which often contradict each other ("I want a glass of milk." "No, I want water! I don't want milk!") Much as she has always loved her sister, Katie doesn't entirely understand what's happening. She often wants to get away from Lynn but feels guilty doing so.

I have no idea whether any part of this is autobiographical, or whether it's 100% fiction, but as I said earlier, it's a far, far better and more complex book than I had thought it would be.
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  #277  
Old 02-08-2020, 05:50 PM
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I finished Caves of Steel, then read the sequel The Naked Sun. I am now reading The Stars Like Dust, all by Isaac Asimov.
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  #278  
Old 02-08-2020, 08:49 PM
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I feel the need to better understand some of the choices made by my new deep South neighbors, so I picked up Confederates in the Attic by Tony Horwitz at the library.
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  #279  
Old 02-10-2020, 08:07 AM
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Quote:
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Then there is the series which starts with The Utterly Uninteresting and Unadventurous Tales of Fred, the Vampire Accountant. Also, really interesting characters and a fun time.
I've just finished the (current) last book in Drew Hayes' "Fred" series, which started with "The Utterly Uninteresting and Unadventurous Tales of Fred, the Vampire Accountant". I had to wait until I had some Amazon vouchers saved up, since it's not on Kindle Unlimited. I've got to say, I heartily endorse this series as well. The characters are engaging, and you want to learn more about them. There are definite character arcs as the characters change and grow; if you read book 1 and jumped straight to book 6 you wouldn't believe it, but if you follow the series you see how each evolution in the characters came about.

I also love the world-building; it's a well thought-out world which explains how fantasy and horror creatures can live side by side with humans without being noticed, and the consequences when a few rare humans do notice.

I admit, I also rather liked the fact that the protagonist is a self-confessed coward and an accountant who loves his job.
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  #280  
Old 02-16-2020, 10:02 PM
Ceir Ceir is offline
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Just polished off the first Sandman Slim novel, by Richard Kayden. Pretty good - granted, it's a cheap action movie of a book, but I like cheap action movies. Very pulp-y, I hadn't even thought of the question 'what if Harry Dresden was Dirty Harry'.

Also picked up Usagi Yojimbo vol.8, been looking forward to that one. I'm caught up on the compilations again!
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