Posts Tagged With: literature

K.J. Charles – Jackdaw

34861586I miss A Charm of Magpies so much. So, of course, I went ahead and took the “Jackdaw” by K.J. Charles (ISBN13 9780995799059; 222p.; Goodreads), for it is set in the same world, has familiar characters, and the family of four that we love turns up too. And I loved it, I very much did. But now I miss them even more, dammit!

Jonah is the infamous windwalker thief, who worked for the bad guys in the final book of Charm of Magpies. He was blackmailed to help them capture Stephen Day, or his source of power – the Ring of the Magpie Lord, and Lucien Vaudrey, tho it is unlikely anyone knew that one didn’t work without the other. It worked as a trap for Stephen, and that’s all that mattered. That’s how Jonah made sure Ben, his beloved, lives.

Ben, due to his relation with the infamous windwalker thief, and their relationship, ended up in prison for a few months. Worse than the experience was his false belief, that Jonah used him, and then discarded of him. He walks out determined to settle the scores. Time for Jonah to taste the prison bread. As a practitioner he will have to be restrained, of course. As a windwalker, he’ll likely get hobbled. He’ll never walk, let alone fly… And the more Ben thinks of this, of that charming, smiling being, the time they spent together, the more he doubts his plan as fair. So he arranges to meet the man before hand. Next thing you know, they’re escaping justice together, over the rooftops, through the air!

This was a lovely book. Almost idyllic, tho nothing goes through butter. It reminded me how much I love Lucien and Stephen. For that alone I could give it all the points. But luckily, the story was good too, so it’s a 5 out of 5, for more fair and less biased reasons.

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Categories: 5-5, Alternative History Books, Books of Occult, Books: Fantasy, Books: LGBT, LGBTQ+ Books, M/M Literature, urban fantasy | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Hugh Howey – Shift [silo, 2]

shiftSo ominous the warnings, don’t dig, don’t search for the truth. Then the story gets told to the reader backwards, and I find myself rolling my eyes… “Shift” by Hugh Howey (Silo 2, Omnibus edition; ASIN B00B6Z6HI2; 520p.; GoodreadsGoodreads) was a challenge to read. I don’t have a good memory, and thus find it preferable to follow a plot, rather than try to remember several characters, and update their stories as they progress, or give prequels.

Story follows several characters. Some built the silos, back in the day. Others lived in those that fell first. Some survived the falls, others survived the truth. And each one has knowledge of something that could be groundbreaking, that could cause another silo, or all of them, to fall, riot. How was the world before, and what caused humanity’s retreat? Can they ever go back up, and could it be, that not all of the world is as devastated as this corner of the earth with buried silos is? Each one, in their own way, is prepared to go beyond these walls.

The book could really serve as a prequel with inserts of current event updates. There’s really little new to the now of it all, but a lot of backstories. Like Jimmy, the previously sole survivor of one of the fallen silos. Or Mission, who witnessed the start of the fall, and knew the culprits. Or Donald, who approved Lucas promotion, and spoke to Juliette, giving them grains of truth, without them knowing that he too, doing this, has rebelled.

Honestly, I find it a bit ridiculous with premonitions like “the truth will kill you, oh don’t go looking for the truth!” – it’s the same damn thing I keep getting in Nightrunner, and it makes my whole reading process lag. The truth is – nanotechnology. Great, that’s new and unique, unlike atomic bombs would be. But so what? I just can’t see why this kid, knowing his great great great great grandfather maybe helped doom humanity to live in a silo should beat himself over it. Strive to fix it, sure, but go crazy and run out, where the air itself is going to kill you due to the knowledge? 3 out of 5, no more. I’ll read the last one just to close it up. Story has and had potential, but having it, and using is – are two different things.

Categories: 3-5, Apocaliptic Books, Books: Everything, Sci-Fi Books, urban fantasy | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

George R.R. Martin – A Storm of Swords [#3]

AStormofSwords Is there a thing harder than reviewing a book in public, with so many characters there telling the stories from their points of view? But since I did finish third book in A Song of Fire and Ice, George R.R. MartinA Storm of Swords“, I will have to try, I guess.
Seven Kingdoms are torn to shreds by nearly Seven Kings. Nearly. One of them is the young Stark, King In The North, Robb. Young warlord may be new to war, but he’s winning a battle after a battle and even captures the infamous and yet famous Kingslayer, Oathbreaker! Jamie Lannister! Half his host wants him dead. The other half wants to send him back to Tywin Lannister in hopes to get a brother, a sister, a cousin returned. One of such people in wish of trade is Robb’s own mother. Yet, she can only hope for her son to do the right thing. Else he’d have to forgive her for many a thing. Yet no problems end with extra guards by the Kingslayer’s door. And many begin when young Robb returns from one of his battles married. Married to a wrong woman.
Far in the North by the Wall, the Nights Watch is in dismay and terror. Ravens fly, begging every king or king-to-be out there for aid, any aid at all. For Wildlings are fleeing the North, with King Beyond the Wall leading them, with the great Horn of Winter that is said to be able to tear the Wall down. And if that happens – whole Realm will be at the mercy of the Wildlings and Freefolk. And worse – at the mercy of the Others. For the days grow colder one after the other, and cold brings Death. When the dead walk – no one is safe and walls and swords mean nothing.
Mother of Dragons is still far away from Westeros and the Seven Kingdoms, yet her aim is the same. She must claim her Iron Throne, for it is by right hers. Yet her dragons are small, and she requires and army that she yet doesn’t have. All that before she enters that Realm of theirs, the Realm her father ruled and which is now ruled by a Boy King, Joffrey Baratheon, son of the Usurper. But how can all that be done if she cannot feel safe among her own? Betrayal is closer that in seems and she grows aware of it as days go by. Something will have to be done if she wishes to keep her life and claim her throne. Even if it’ll mean tearing her own heart out. Afteral, it’s her Children she must think of now. And she has more than three, ever since she freed the slaves…
And in short some more. Tyrion is alive, not well, but alive and still determined as he is. A prospect of marriage is in sight for him, a good marriage. Doesn’t mean it’ll be happy, but there’s this meager glimmer in his heart that it might, eventually… Jon Snow finally found his place under the sun. Doesn’t mean he’ll be allowed to keep it. Yet this question was left for another book. Little Bran went out to find the Three-Eyed Crow. Doing so he learned how to run! Arya is alive too. Her little prayer of names is getting shorter and shorter. Valar Morghulis.
The character development is so great and unbelievable in this book that I admit, I  enjoyed it from first chapter to the last, even if I cannot say the same of other two books before this. It’s brilliant. Many a death happened, many of them are painful and hard, but just as many were actually long awaited. Without a doubt I will give this book 5 out of 5. And remember: The Winter is Coming.

Categories: Books of Supernaturals, Books: Everything | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

New bookshelf made by the stupid goblins

Two days ago I received a new bookshelf for myself, for many the books that I own were being stacked into skyscrapers on the floor or on top of the cabinets, wardrobes and the old bookshelf.

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  The one above, shaped like a little staircase is the new one. And dare I say – I believe it was made by evil little goblins. Why is that? For the shelves aren’t tall enough for any decent book! I mean, I can fit the soft covers of pocket size, but many soft covers don’t fit there anyways, like not a single Bartimaeus book (J. Stroud) fits, many of my Dracula books don’t fit, even when they are in small formats! Who?? WHY and WHO would make bookshelves where 80% of the books that one can buy – DON’T FIT?!

  Don’t get me wrong. I’m grateful for it, I picked out many smallest books from the general shelf and placed it in there, but it’s still very uncomfortable. Most books fit just barely, therefor I still can’t figure a way of how to pull them out easily, when I can’t put my finger on anything else but it’s flat back. And some books, as you see, I just placed on their “bellies”, to lay there, for I have an OCD when it comes to books and I can’t keep same “type” of the books in different shelfs. Like, if it’s books of Dracula – they must be in one place. Other vampire books – in another place, but all together, and so on.

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  Charlaine Harris book of short Sookie Stackhouse stories lays with Dracula books, for it has a firm story on Dracula, plus – I don’t yet own whole collection of Sookie Stackhouse in paper books, therefor I don’t yet feel the strong need to place them together. Next is yet unread book by Dacre Stoker “Dracula the Undead”, the so said “Official sequel”. Then there’s C.C. Humphreys “Vlad: The Last Confession”, which is my personal favorite historical novel on Vlad the Impaler. Then there’s three Kim Newman books – Anno Dracula. I don’t yet have the fourth “Johnny Alucard” and I feel little need for it, because of what happened in the third book “Dracula Cha Cha Cha”. I also own three copies of Bram Stoker’s “Dracula”, English one is not in the shelf, but you can see two prints of Lithuanian, that’d be yellow and black small books on their “bellies”, right above Elizabeth Kostova’s “The Historian”, which is great and lame at the same time, somehow. Above it all there’s Viktor Pelevin “Empire V”. Now, one could say it’s not a book on Dracula and one would be correct. The reason I did put it there is because Dracula is quoted there. Oh, and in case you haven’t noticed, I didn’t yet sort out the “warlord Draculea” from “vampire Dracula”, but someday I guess I will. The light purplish one is Karen Essex book “Dracula in Love”, a book that starts sucking REAL bad midway, if you’re classy-vampire type, and if Twilight made you go “ew, fairy-vamp”. The whole myth of why and how Dracula came to be is screwed up real bad. And the fact that author claims that she did research on it is even worse. She claims she “wrote this thing” then “checked it and it came to be true!” so in a way – she guessed this and that right and was happy of how paranormal Dracula came to be in her very own life. Pardon me but bloody hell, no, no. As a romance book, tho, it is good. As a book on Dracula – it’s horrible. So if you are the type of a reader who can just switch off “nah, imma just take it as some whole different story with same names” – then you will probably like it, for it isn’t bad, truly. It’s just my part that loves Vlad Dracula so much as someone who once was reality – that part of me was raging. Still, good romance if Mina was, say, Christine, and Dracula was, say, Joseph.

  The very top black book there is on graveyards, not related to Dracula in any way, but I liked it a lot, so I figured it may sit there.

  To those who think such book placement is dangerous – you’re damn right it is. But skyscrapers made of books are worse. They used to regularly fall down (I felt like that old man from J. Stroud’s Bartiameu’s book “Ptolemy’s Gate”, who got buried under the books regularly and needed Kitty’s saving), sometimes even hurting me or smashing things below, dusting everything and even damaging themselves. So I’d rather have this than that. Plus, books dust up less when they’re in shelves too.

  Getting back to Dracula – no, those aren’t the only books on him I’ve read. It’s just that many I don’t own yet. And some were by all means too book even laid on their “bellies”, like encyclopedia on wars, which I bought mainly for the letter “D” (it turned out to be a good book for starters, too little info for more advanced people tho).

Categories: About Msg2TheMing, Books: Everything, Vlad Dracula III | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Some are mad, some are lazy

Well, at least I’ve been reading, right? I’m too lazy to even watch True Blood new series come out, that’s why I kept silent on mondays. But here I am. Decided to just go ahead and force my self to write something, because that still makes more sense than not writing at all.

First of all, through the silence time I finished four more books, one of them being a short story collection by Edgar Allan Poe, and those stories are: 1.  The Fall of the House Usher (a great, very short story); 2. The Murders in the Rue Morgue (not bad piece of detective); 3. A Descent into the Maelstrom (not so good, about a man descending into a whirlpool and surviving it); 4. The Pit and the Pendulum (also, not so good, about a man tortured by inquisition and saved at the last minute); 5. The Gold Bug (a very fine story of pirate treasures); 6. The Spectacles (a very funny story of a short-sighted man); 7. The Purloined Letter (also, not bad piece of a detective, but less good in compare to Rue Morgue); 8. The Cask of Amontillado (the carnival description was the best part, that sums it up); 9. Hop-Frog (a rather scary story, not a bad one, if short and thus not a really good one either).

I knew Poe best as a vampire from Kim Newman‘s work “Anno Dracula 2: Bloody Red Baron“, and there he was superb. And now I can say I’m not disappointed, he is good at what he does. He explains his stories a lot, through narrator telling the story, but not a sentence is boring, everything seems to fit into places really well and in the end it’s a light and good read.

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  The next book I finished was “Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness” by Susannah Cahalan. This book should be spread world wide and find a place in every medical school library, for if not the best thing you could read – still the extremely important thing you could read. Especially if you’re a medic. Pretty much, to sum it up, story is a very short biography written by S. Cahalan, a great journalist. And maybe I’m putting this wrong, it’s not exactly HER biography. It’s biography of the illness she had and – thank your and her gods / god – she got cured. It takes not only extreme skill and mind of a doctor to go from “well, she’s schizophrenic, send her to mental hospital, ciao.“, to “lets just see this, just in case, it could be…“. Naturally it takes a hellish amount of money too and you can’t be certain you’ll get better, or worse – even survive it. So what the hell did she get? She got something anyone could get and anyone could be misdiagnosed and sent off without a proper treatment. She was lucky or she was blessed,  you choose, and go read this book. The further the word of this spreads, the better for all. Oh and to answer what did she get, I’ll just put it in the easiest words possible – her body attacked her own brain. Yea, that happens!

The third book I finished was “I am Legend” by Richard Matheson. Let me just say that every movie I saw based on this book in compare to it – sucks hard. The book is brilliant, purely amazing horror-survival, with good and proper vampire lore to admire, with apocalypses without the zombies, but with those more threatening, with minds of their own, with ability to unite against one last enemy… The further you get into this book, the less you wish to close it. It’s a one-day read, if that, even if you are a slow reader as I am. And it’s just so strange, this book was written in 1954, what, barely a little more than half a century after Bram Stoker put out his “Dracula” for public, and yet books differ like day and night. It’s amazing and I loved it.

And the last, fourth book I read and finished is “Pocket atlas of Women” by a polish authoress Sylwia Chutnik. Now that was a true brain wreck, I’ll tell you. At first you’re just horrified. Sarcasm and satirical darkness is flowing from every page, overwhelming. It’s degrading, terrifying and pitiful. But the further you go, the more you see. All four heroines (even the male (gay) one) are called Maria’s (Mary’s, with the man called Marion, which is equivalent of same name in male form), and each one of them has their own crosses to bear. The question is – will they bear it? Some can’t stand it, it’s too hard, too weighty if I may say so, and they just can’t see any way to improve their being, thus the last resort is The End of it all. The other one might choose to lay down under her cross and just wait death with it on top of her. The next one might just pick it all up and go on. While the fourth will fight the very need to bear it. What for? Who said you must?

This very last story, when the fight of the last little woman began, I figured why my brain has been blinking all this time, reading. It reminded me of Salinger‘s “Catcher in the Rye“. You’re boiling inside, you want to scream, cry, yell and roar. But you can’t. And your face is calm. For even if you did – nobody would give a damn, no one would care, no one would understand. No, they might even get angry for disturbing their peaceful obedient lives, the firm order they’re used to. So you pretend to be a mute. No, you don’t even pretend, you BECOME a mute, for there’s just nothing you can tell them. What, will they believe you if you’ll say you had no dreams that night? Will they care if you say school/work was fine? And if they will – do they genuinely care in the first place, or just find it in their duty list to ask and pretend they care?

And that’s why I liked this book. It could be “Pocket atlas of a Human“, for gender specification seemed rather useless to me. But then again, I guess if a man rebels – it’s less surprising than to see a woman burn down a building, right? Still. We ought to remember that no matter what, we’re all humans.

Going further from that, I’m reading probably the last thing I could find of Charlaine Harris on Sookie Stackhouse, which is her short stories collection book, barely 200 pages long, called “A Touch of Dead“. So far so good. Reading very first story on how Claudette died, eldest of the fae triplets (with brother Claude and sister Claudine). More interesting for me were the authoress’s introduction to all the stories. One is called “Dracula Night” or something similar, and it claims that Eric Northman celebrates Dracula’s birthday every year, for he’s his hero! Eric, you just gained a fat approval point from me. We’ll see how it goes tho.

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  Some time around I finished one long-time-made-beads pair of earrings and am rather proud of them. Called them “hanged gold“, for the little loop I made on top of the earring. Other than that I did clean my jewelry box (imagine, I have one. Altho you are probably not surprised, for you probably think you know who or what I am, right?), and finally, after a whole year, I found the keys from my safe-box. I thought I lost them forever, thou in the back of my brain I knew I put them somewhere where it seemed quite safe to put them.

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  At the moment I’m trying to finish Da Vinci’s Demons series and am still watching True Blood. But there’s a whole line of things I must watch for this or that reason and thing is, I kinda miss watching Anime, but because of all the series (many of them being worthless), I just have no time to spare. Oh, and naturally, I’m now a proud owner of many Steam games, like Legendary Edition of Skyrim, and Ultimate Edition of Dragon Age: Origins, and four games of Assassin’s Creed (the first one with Altair and the three of Ezio’s). Time is scarce!

Oh, okay, and lets not forget that suddenly I’m thrown into the world of Haruki Murakami, as I bought my very first book of his, which is “A Wild Sheep Chase“. Before I began reading it, I did what I usually do – I googled it. And found out that it’s third book out of four (trilogy + ), so naturally I went head over heels trying to get the first two, for I will just feel terrible with my stupid OCD, if I start from the middle AGAIN. For that happened before, quite a few times. And with the book club book, I ended up having three books in line, reading one paper book, and thus having that paper book of Murakami in line with e-books. That’s a messed up sentence, let me re-think that… I try my best to read as many paper books as I can, for I own a lot, and I just want to either get rid of some, or be able to visit library more often again without the pressure in my consciousness “hey, you have a ton of books home, what the hell are you doing??“. So as I have third book out of four in paper, I ended up requiring some kind of e-books of the first two, making third book unavailable to read right now. Hm. Doesn’t seem any clearer, so I’ll leave it at that, okay?

Alright, so for now that’ll be that. I’ll take pictures of the books I hunted down last month and filled my home library with AGAIN. Let me just say that it includes a very old copy of Sleepy Hollow (or is it “Headless Huntsman” afterall? )

Categories: About Msg2TheMing, Books: Everything, Creations, games, Vlad Dracula III | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Boil the blood

I promise it was not intentional for me to wait for next serie of True Blood to write a new entry. It just happened, because little else happened – to hot for anything to happen, to be honest. To. To. To.

So let’s start a few days back, when I was trying hard to fall asleep but couldn’t. Midsummer celebration was going on and I live not too far from lake, so I hear a lot of echoing on clear nights. This time I heard bells tolling. But in such true melody, that I can’t figure out what sort of instrument it could have been, for there’s no way they could have fit those big, this particular sound making bells anywhere out there. And sound was real clear, yet definitely sounding from somewhere really, really far away, as if muffled by something. And as the area I live in is rather forestry, I shall just presume that supernaturals were celebrating, werewolfs, fairies, other shit. Yep.

Last night it was the turn for my nose to be pleased. The Dew Celebration (it’s actually today, at 24th, but it was sunday yesterday, so I assume it was easier for people to gather) or “Saint John” if you’re a Christian (Dew Celebration is a pagan thing, we got deep roots as pagans, although we’re not the fierce barbarians who kicked crusaders arses anymore, there are still things that while christianised – are allowed to be as they were and no one ever frowns upon people jumping over bonfires, releasing flower girdles with wishes down the lake (last one to drown gets their wish first), and so on) . So the bonfire smell in the summer night air was rather pleasing.

And today, while it’s still barely even evening, I watched True Blood (S6E2). ( SPOILER ) Honestly, a lot of things annoy me. Especially people like those guys who confronted Sam about being a shifter – nobody EVER should tell someone else to fight or to hide. Nor should they take pictures from the bushes instead of helping you when you’re getting a beating. As for Bill – oh screw that part of the story. But honestly, doesn’t it feel like the last season to you? If Sookie uses her magic – she’s no longer a fae, no longer a mind reader according to series (according to books: 1) blood’s blood, you can’t spill out just some particular part of it, like ,you don’t want to be a fae, so you use up magic and puff, you’re no fae. 2) fairies don’t read minds. Demons do. Sookie had a sponsor who gave her the gift. Unrelated to fairies in any way at all.), and Bill seeing future and shit alike, gah. Books ain’t great, but series aren’t either. I’ll watch it, sure, from start to end. But I’m not pleased about the turns of events at all.

To add to that, I got 30 pages of last book of Sookie Stackhouse left. ( SPOILER ) If Ch. Harris wanted to push in a surprise, I’d say – make her stay with purple-eyed Quinn, the Weretiger. Because “got dumped by all vamps” made me yawn, for the road from there was clear, seeing why Erik decided what he decided about becoming a consort in some other state. Bill gone funny tho. With great pleasure he burst into Sookie’s home to rat out on Erik.

 

And this is how the serie ended. Second great ending song imo. vlcsnap-00010 vlcsnap-00001 vlcsnap-00002 vlcsnap-00003 vlcsnap-00004 vlcsnap-00005 vlcsnap-00006 vlcsnap-00007 vlcsnap-00008 vlcsnap-00009

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