nimrodiel: (Default)
2017-07-18 07:51 am
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Book Review: The Rakehells of Heaven by John Boyde

Because of this box of older science fiction I was introduced to author John Boyd. I have had the chance to read several of his books now. I like his writing style. It's a little pulpy, sometimes a little silly, and he portrays some very interesting issues using satire and comparison through the sci-fi setting.

Rear cover synopsis:
"John Adams and Kevin O'Hara are graduates of North Dakota's great Mandan Space Academy. Both trained to be conquistadors of space, explorers in the age of interstellar imperialism, Adams and O'Hara are as different as any two space scouts could possibly be. Now, together, they are sent to explore a distant world called Harlech. The Harlechians are unclassified aliens; relations with their women are strictly forbidden by the Interplanetary Colonial Authority. Adams is willing to play by the rules--but whoever made those rules hadn't counted on the lusty Red O'Hara, rakehell of heaven ... From the Adams-O'Hara probe, only John Adams returns."

----------------------------

This book wasn't one of his better ones. The premise is that two humans are sent into space and make first contact with an alien culture. However, when Red O'Hara and John Adams land on a planet that has a society based on academic learning and pleasure without war, crime, or poverty. The citizens of Harlech live underground to escape the terrible static electricity storms that occasionally cover the surface. Their society is made up of "Universities" rather than cities. After making contact O'Hara and Adams learn the native tongue and request to teach about Earth customs and religions during the academic terms of the University that they have landed near.

The Space Exploration team has a series of rules that are supposed to guide their conduct, We see both men slipping loose from these constraints and becoming more and more familiar with the local Halrachians, most noticeably the women.

I feel like this book didn't age well, and compared to the other books I have read by this author it is much more abstract than the two books that precede it (it is the third in a space exploration trilogy). However, John Boyd's prose is as ever enjoyable and almost lyrical to read.
nimrodiel: (book-ish)
2017-07-05 01:15 pm

Book Review: The Tale of One Bad Rat by Bryan Talbot

cover The Tale of One Bad Rat
Title: The Tale of One Bad Rat
Author: Bryan Talbot
Publisher: Dark Horse Books
Publication date: 1995

Helen Potter is a runaway following the steps of Beatrix Potter whom she holds an affinity to because of sharing both first and surnames. Her troubles with being touched by males and her sexuality combined with the mental stigma and shame she feels as a survivor of incest has her constantly on the move and leery of trusting anyone.

Her traveling companion starts off as a pet rat saved from a school biology lab. As she travels north her reliance on the rat as a companion becomes more prevalent after a tragedy drives her to continue North. Helen finds her way to the Lake Land District, home of Beatrix Potters house Hill Top. Helen finds friends in the owners of the Herdwick Arms pub who help her after she collapses in the rear of the building, and who offer her safety in a job, a place to sleep, and eventually in support in facing her parents.

This is a tough story to read. The subject material is uncomfortable, and you can see the research and the pain and suffering that the author conveys in the subject. He quotes Miriam Saphira from The Sexual Abuse of Children "The first step towards prevention and to provision of supportive services for the girls who've been abused is bringing abuse into the open... Incest is not taboo. It seems that talking about incest is the real taboo."

This was such a moving little story about finding the strength to stand up to the person abusing you and finding your strength as a person despite the mental stigmas that plague your thoughts and opinions of who you are. The artwork in this book is absolutely stunning. I don't know that I would have picked this up on my own, though it is the story driven type of graphic novel I adore. This was shared with me by bookcrosser HI77 I'm sad I wasn't able to fit it into my manga and graphic novel book box. I'll have to think on a place to share this book with the world.
nimrodiel: (Default)
2017-06-21 08:29 pm

books and manga

Anyone who knows me knows that I am an active member of bookcrossing.com. I read alot of books and don't necessarily have space to keep them all. So I add in bookcrossing BCID labels to those books I want to pass on and then either hand them off to people I think will enjoy them or leave them places for other people to pick up and read.

I'm lucky as my part of the suburb I live in and the neighboring part of Chicago has many little free libraries to drop books off in, and I do on a fairly regular basis. This is both good and bad as I tend to pick up at least one book for every three books I drop off.

I also won a RABCK sweeps (random act of book crossing kindness) with a manga and graphic novel theme at the end of 2016 and ended up with a bunch of manga and graphic novels which I have been reading over the last few months. Some have been good such as Ceres: Celestial Legend, Bleach, The Kurasagi Corpse Delivery Service, and Bitch Planet vol 1 and Monstress volume 1 of which I have plans on purchasing volume 2 of each when they come out.

I am planning a manga and graphic novel bookbox and have filled a box with 40 or so titles that I either have received from other bookcrossing members or are titles I have from various comic book bento subscription boxes that are not books I would reread or even read. The idea is this will get mailed to the people participating and they take books out and replace them and eventually I get a box back in the mail with (hopefully) new manga/graphic novels. It should be fun.

I want to try and start writing reviews of the books I read again for my neglected blog over on blogger. I may crosspost those over here as well.

My reading goal for the summer is to read down the TBR pile and get some of these books passed on or added to my keeper shelves.
nimrodiel: (book-ish)
2017-01-16 07:47 am

Musings on hair color

I think it says a lot about our society and how youth obsessed we can be when people are reacting to my hair so interestingly. I started going grey in my early twenties. Ith wasn't noticeable because I was dying my hair a lot at the time. Black, red, purple, bleached out blond. My hair was all sorts of colors.

When I started to develop chemical sensitivities I stopped dying my hair. I let it go back to my natural color which is brown with red and blonde highlights. Over the past twelve years my hair has gone more grey but as long as I wore it pulled into a bun or ponytail it isn't noticeably grey. As my hair is long, the grey blends in and as grey tends to turn brassy it just made the ends of my hair look dishwater blonde.

Recently I have noticed more grey hair. And, it is shimmery silver rather than dull grey or white. I've embraced it as I love how the strands look against the darker brown of my roots. I started using a shampoo for grey, blonde, and bleached hair once a month and I have to get used to the smell as it is more fragrances than my normal shampoo and I am combing it through to the ends of my hair which I normally don't.

I have been amazed at people's reactions to my hair changing. Perhaps it's because most people assume I'm ten years younger than I actually am. Perhaps it's because so many women cover their grey but I have been astonished at the reactions I have gotten from you should dye your hair (I will do what I want to do thank you very much), to it looks so shimmery, to is that your natural hair color (no really I paid a salon to put in silver streaks).

I find myself stopping by the hair color aisle every now and again as I would love to color my hair autumn leaf red again. But I don't want to risk the hives and other symptoms that my chemical sensitivities bring about. Hives on the scalp are a pain to deal with.
nimrodiel: (book-ish)
2017-01-02 10:25 pm

In other news...

In November I attended a teacher training on including nature in the classroom. One of the things we did was build a small worm box. It has been sitting on my counter since then getting food scraps and paper added to it. The other day I took the plastic container out of the cardboard sleeve it sits in and saw lots of itty baby red wriggler worms crawling along the sides.

Baby worms are pretty interesting to look at. They are a translucent white with a little red in them from their blood. There must have been an egg ball close to the wall of the container as there were lots of little squigglies. If not, I might not have even known there were baby worms until they matured as these are so teeny tiny.

I almost wish we were discussing worms this week instead of three weeks from now.
nimrodiel: (Default)
2016-11-11 11:56 am

Way 256 you know your cat loves you

You watch them walk to your shoes and leave you a gift of a piece of dry kibble inside one of the pair.
nimrodiel: (Default)
2015-09-03 10:53 am

Bike riding woes

Why is it I haven't had a flat tire in over two years but the last month I have had four? Late to class today because I hit a pothole and popped the brand new inner tube I had put in yesterday after hitting a pothole on Tuesday and blowing out my last patch.
nimrodiel: (Default)
2012-05-31 04:54 pm
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(no subject)

Well, my dr seems to think the rash might be fifth disease.

Another weird childhood illness I never had.

If this is the cause, I am looking at 1-3 weeks of rash and itching...

Posted via LiveJournal app for iPhone.

nimrodiel: (Default)
2012-05-30 06:43 am
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(no subject)

I thought the weird allergic reactions to stuff were behind me.

I spent the 4 days of the holiday weekend battling fever, joint pain and fatigue. Yesterday I had to go to the emergency care clinic for a rash on my arms and legs (which also turned out to be on my back and torso).

The ruling there? 50% it's most likely contact dermatitis. I have unscented oatmeal soap and prescription strength skin cream.

But, because of the fever and joint pain it might be lyme disease or rocky mountain spotted fever (both tick born). So I'm under orders to get blood work done.

Meanwhile,y hands and feet ache, my skin is sensitive to touch, and I feel bruised all over.


Grrr!


Posted via LiveJournal app for iPhone.

nimrodiel: (doodle)
2010-12-02 06:10 am
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Some things that make me happy

•I managed to find the Tazo holiday tea Joy that I love and couldn't find last year. Seriosly, if my tea cabinet were not packed full I would buy ten more tins for the rest of the year.

•How have I never heard Neko Case before this? I'm loving the old NPR coverage of the Newport Folk Fest.

•A 2 lb bag of sourdough pretzel bites is a lot of pretzels.

•Yay! Sprite green is in stores again!

•I can use the library wifi from the metro station as I wait for my bus to school. Rock!

• Am I doomed to never find comfortable headphones?

Posted via LiveJournal app for iPhone.

nimrodiel: (Default)
2007-12-31 10:42 am

(no subject)

My books read list and book ramblings are all public posts, The little bit that I post here still outside of that is friends only. So, if You are new reading and want to be added by me let me know how you found this journal and who you are in the comments and I will add you if I feel like it.
nimrodiel: (book-ish)
2006-06-23 04:33 pm
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Books read week of 23 June 2006

1. The Bellmaker by Brian Jacques
2. Tales of a Hollywood Gossip-Queen by Mary Kennedy (ARC)
3. Living Well with Back Pain by Robert B. Winter, MD, Marilyn Bach, PhD and the Twin CitiesSpine Center (ARC)
4. Assasination Vacation by Sarah Vowell
nimrodiel: (book-ish)
2006-06-16 01:33 pm
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(no subject)

Another two week entry. Should be bacl on track next week.

Books read week of 9 June 2006

1. The Ninth Life of Louis Drax by Liz Jenson
2 Fat Girl: A True Story by Judith Moore
3. Back in Texas by Roxanne Rustand

Books read the week of 16 June 2006

1. Warrior's Song by Janis Reams Hudson
2. Julie and Julia: 365 days, 524 recipies and one tiny apartment kitchen by Julie Powell (audiobook)
3. Young Warriors edited by Tamora Pierce
nimrodiel: (book-ish)
2006-06-08 10:35 am
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Books read weeks of 26 May and 5 June 2006

Due to a Memorial Day road trip and just being busy I forgot to post these weeks entries on time.

Week of 25 May 2006

1. About the Man by Sheryl Woods
2. A Dirty Job by Christopher Moore
3. The Pregnancy Test by Susan Gable
4. A Bone in the Throat by Anthony Bourdane

Week of 5 June 2005

1. Bitten by Kelley Armstrong
2. Sirena by Donna Jo Napoli
3. Calahan's Key by Spider Robinson (audio book)
4. Deadly Games by Thom Racina
nimrodiel: (book-ish)
2006-05-12 11:01 am
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books read week of 12 May 2006

1. The Secret of the Pink Carnation by Lauren Willig
2. A Soldier's Quest by Lori Handeland
3. The Thin Pink Line by Lauren Baratz-Logstead
4. The Price of Pride by Donna MacGuigg (ARC) <- currently reading
nimrodiel: (book-ish)
2006-05-05 12:31 pm
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Books Read Week of 5 May 2006

1. The Obsidian Key by Eldon Thomas (ARC)- currently reading
2. Practical Demon Keeping by Christopher Moore - currently reading
3. The Book of the Lion by michael Cadnum (audiobook)
4. The Woman Who is Always Tan and Has a Flat Stomach (And Other Annoying People) by Lauren Allison and Lisa Perry (ARC)

This weeks post brings me up to 58 books read so far this year.

Crazy!
nimrodiel: (book-ish)
2006-05-01 01:04 pm
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Drawing a Blank by : Daniel Ehrenhaft

Drawing a Blank: Or How I tried to Solve a Mystery, End a Feud, and Land the Girl of My Dreams by : Daniel Ehrenhaft, Illustrated by Trevor Ristow
review )
nimrodiel: (book-ish)
2006-05-01 01:01 pm
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Books read week of 28 April 2006

1. Anasazi Boys by Neil Gaiman
2. Wanted: One Sexy Night by Judi McCoy
nimrodiel: (book-ish)
2006-04-28 12:04 pm
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Books Read week of 28 April 2006

1. Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman
2. Wanted: One Sexy Night by Judi McCoy
nimrodiel: (book-ish)
2006-04-21 12:48 pm
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books read week of 21 April 2006

1. Confessions of a Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella
2. On Mexican Time by
3. Half-Breed by Maria Campbell