knarthex

So What Have you Read Lately? And other favorite books!

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Just finished Bernard Cornwell's Sharpe's Prey. It feels very much like Cornwell was looking for any gap in Sharpe's history into which he could cram a novel, since money is good. (I don't have an inherent problem with this, btw.)

 

The history was very interesting; Cornwell does good research and tells the history well. The character moments were a bit rote, not least because this is the book before Sharpe's Rifles, so anyone who started with the first book written will probably know a fair bit about how it has to end.

 

If you're a Cornwell or Sharpe fan, I'd recommend it. If not, I'd recommend starting the series elsewhere. And I would very much recommend reading the series if you like historical military fiction. It's among the best around.

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I read "The Skill of Our Hands" which is a sequel to "The Incrementalists" by Steven Brust and Skylar White. 

 

General premise is that there is a group that contains the memories of all of history, and can sometimes use that knowledge to nudge events going on to be better than they otherwise would be. Each member is still constrained by being human though, personality flaws and all. 

 

It is a different sort of book than I usually read, but Steven Brust is amazing so I gave those books a whirl. They're odd but enjoyable. 

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Just started reading Destroyermen #11 Blood in the Water. It's a series about an out of date WW2 US destroyer that gets sucked into an alternate Earth along with a Japanese cruiser they are fighting. The 2 main species on this new earth are small tyrannosaurs (bad guys) and giant lemurs (good guys). Many battles and many books but it's held my interest for quite a long time.

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I started reading Fear Familiar by Carolyn Haines... stopped about two pages in.

 

I have no idea whether it is a good book or not, I just know that I will enjoy it more reading it aloud to Megan - one of the characters is meant to be read aloud, in a Humphrey Bogart voice.... (The cat, schweetheart.)

 

***

 

Not the only book I have stopped reading early in, intending to come back - I started reading Slanted Jack by Mark Van Name when I was really in a mood for military science fiction.

 

The main character is a mercenary, with his own APC, and nanites lacing his blood - capable of incredible martial feats...

 

But the book itself is a caper - about him being part of a two man con game.... (Read it later - and it was a really fun book - just not military science fiction....) There are other books in the series that are military science fiction, just not that one. 

 

The Auld Grump

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Finally read the last four parts of the Serpent's Skull AP after starting it last year. Kind of a drag through most of it. Too focused on a location and doing the same thing over and over.

 

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Nice collection of stories centered around characters in West Virginia.

 

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Sutter's second novel following Salim, an "atheist" turned inquisition in the service of the goddess of death. An improvement in quality of writing over the first book; Sutter obviously had been growing as a writer between efforts, which is nice to see.

 

The premise is interesting enough: Souls are going missing. Salim must discover the where and why. In typical Pathfinder fashion, perhaps, the scenery along the way is better defined than the action. Locations and characters receive a lot of attention, but the investigation unfortunately stumbles along from spot to spot until the conclusion is reached in rather inorganic fashion.

 

Too long. Episodic. But I enjoyed it well enough. I enjoy reading Salim's dialogue in the voice of the desert warrior dude from the Mummy movies (aka the gigolo from Deuce Bigelow).

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