What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby Lupine » Tue Jul 21, 2015 3:17 pm

^Perhaps, but I did feel rather sorry for her. Edmond gets to go off with a nubile slave girl who's also a princess, while Mercedes gets to sit alone getting occasional letters from her son.
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby blablover5 » Tue Jul 21, 2015 3:43 pm

But then she'd be with someone who spent the past 30+ years plotting her husband's end, tried to kill her son. That doesn't seem a happy ending either.
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby Lupine » Tue Jul 21, 2015 5:41 pm

^Good point.
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby RJDiogenes » Tue Jul 21, 2015 10:17 pm

All's not well that ends badly. :no:
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby RJDiogenes » Mon Jul 27, 2015 10:20 pm

Apparently Jack McDevitt churned out another Alex Benedict novel while I wasn't looking. I sent away for it today.
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby Lupine » Tue Aug 25, 2015 2:24 pm

^Hope it's good. I should read more of his.

Meanwhile, I ordered Sundiver by David Brin and it showed up yesterday and I started reading it.
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby RJDiogenes » Tue Aug 25, 2015 9:55 pm

I haven't started the new McDevitt yet. It took me forever to finish Guards! Guards!, since I've been managing to write more lately. And now I've started blab's new book, so it might be a while before I get to it.

Sundiver is part of the Uplift Series. I always meant to read that, but never got around to it.
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby Lupine » Tue Aug 25, 2015 10:20 pm

^Yeah I've heard about the Uplift series for years, but like you, never got around to reading them.

Till now...
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby RJDiogenes » Wed Aug 26, 2015 10:04 pm

I'm anxious to hear how good it is.

Meanwhile, I'm about 12% of the way through the new Dwarves In Space.
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby RJDiogenes » Fri Sep 04, 2015 9:45 pm

I am now a bit more than halfway through.... :book:
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby Lupine » Mon Sep 07, 2015 3:09 pm

I finished Sundiver by David Brin. It’s the first book of the “Uplift” series, though it is self-contained and there are no cliffhangers here. Brin runs with the premise that sentient life seems to be evolutionarily impossible and always has a beneficiary who Uplifts them. At the point of contact humanity had already done this with Chimps and Dolphins, but has no obvious Ancestrals. Did humans evolve independently or are our benefactors in hiding?
Interestingly the plot almost completely avoids these questions as it focuses on Jacob Demwa, who usually works with the Uplift of Dolphins, is asked to come to Mercury and observe the Sundiver project there. The character is recovering from the loss of his wife and has some, lets say, unusual psychological issues. The story at this point does drag a little as Brin introduces characters, the discovery of life living in the corona of the sun, and the Sundiver project. I was concerned at this point that the book would be interesting, but rather ponderous.
But the story picks up with the sudden death of a Chimp researcher that appears to be the result of murder. I did correctly guess the guilty party early on, but Brin throws enough red herrings in to keep the plot interesting.
The only part that disappointed me was that, when it comes to whether humans evolved independently or not, no one in the story points out that someone had to be the first. It’s an obvious question that I’m surprised Brin didn’t go into or at least have one of his characters discuss. But the murder mystery and the wonder exploration make up for the occasional lapse of internal logic.
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby RJDiogenes » Mon Sep 07, 2015 7:24 pm

That's interesting. Obviously sentient life can't be evolutionarily impossible if it exists, even if only once. Unless the aliens all believe in the Garden of Eden. :lol:

Can't they all trace themselves back to a benefactor, or is that information lost in the mists of time?

Living things in the solar corona reminds me of Clarke's "Out Of The Sun."

And, meanwhile, I am a little more than three quarters of the way through Dwarves In Space 4.
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby Lupine » Mon Sep 07, 2015 7:52 pm

RJDiogenes wrote:Can't they all trace themselves back to a benefactor, or is that information lost in the mists of time?

It seems to be lost, though there are legends of a group they call the Progenitors.

Living things in the solar corona reminds me of Clarke's "Out Of The Sun."

Might be where he got the idea. :lol: I'll have to read that one.
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby RJDiogenes » Tue Sep 08, 2015 9:32 pm

He probably delves into that in the rest of the series. Odd thing to ignore at the outset, though.

"Out Of The Sun" is a short story, and it's available in his mega-anthology The Collected Stories of Arthur C Clarke (among others, but if you're going to buy a Clarke anthology, might as well go for the biggie).
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby jgc » Fri Sep 11, 2015 10:07 pm

My DVD fairy has added books to the list. I just started reading Heinlein's Friday.
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby RJDiogenes » Fri Sep 11, 2015 10:30 pm

Groovy. I'm about to start re-reading it myself, as soon as I read Lupy's chapter and scotty's new book.

I finished Dwarves In Space 4 last night. All the DIS books have been very different from each other, and this one is no exception. It's a Sci-Fi version of the family saga, and it takes a surprisingly dark turn at the end. It also features another major development in the lives of the characters, and an amusing B-plot on the ship. There was one thing that I was unclear about, and I will have to ask blab.
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby emma glitch » Fri Sep 11, 2015 11:35 pm

The Friday audiobook has a great reader. I was searching something at audible.com and discovered that Felicia Day has a memoir and wow, isn't she an energetic reader! In my cart. :D
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby RJDiogenes » Sat Sep 12, 2015 7:07 pm

Ah, I love Felicia Day. I wish she would do more TV. She probably won't be doing any more Supernatural.
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby blablover5 » Sat Sep 12, 2015 9:10 pm

RJDiogenes wrote:Groovy. I'm about to start re-reading it myself, as soon as I read Lupy's chapter and scotty's new book.

I finished Dwarves In Space 4 last night. All the DIS books have been very different from each other, and this one is no exception. It's a Sci-Fi version of the family saga, and it takes a surprisingly dark turn at the end. It also features another major development in the lives of the characters, and an amusing B-plot on the ship. There was one thing that I was unclear about, and I will have to ask blab.


Is it the Brena thing? Because I need to figure out if I jam that plot thread in or just yank it out.
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby RJDiogenes » Sat Sep 12, 2015 11:25 pm

Yes, exactly. I'm in the process of writing an email and I'll get it off to you tomorrow, but that's essentially it. I can't imagine her being part of the crew again after that, but it sounded like both she and Taliesin would be back.
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby RJDiogenes » Sun Sep 13, 2015 9:05 pm

Email sent!

I'm about twenty pages into scotty's book. I have some thoughts on the new taxonomy, which may change as I continue reading. A couple of things I disagree with, but there's also a few interesting things that I hadn't thought of.

I've also started a re-read of Friday before I get into the new Jack McDevitt book.
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby Lupine » Sat Sep 26, 2015 7:17 pm

The Engines of God by Jack McDevitt showed up finally. I only ordered it weeks ago. I'll start reading it later today.
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby RJDiogenes » Sat Sep 26, 2015 7:24 pm

^^ Ohh, nice. :yes: I think that's the only older one that I haven't read.

I took a break from the new McDevitt for a Friday re-read, and now I'm taking a break from Friday to read a history of Marvel Comics that I picked up the other day-- it's mesmerizing and amazing, but also a bit sad and disillusioning.
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby Lupine » Mon Oct 12, 2015 8:35 pm

I finally finished The Engines of God by Jack McDevitt. This is one of the Pricilla Hutchins series and probably not a good place to start. Of the McDevitt novels I’ve read this is my least favorite. The novel starts off strong with a believable vision of the near future (it takes place some 200 years in the future). But upon moving on to the terraforming of Quraqua the story starts to become uneven in both tone and flow. I found this section rather depressing as Quraqua is described as a world with complex life and ruins from an extinct civilization- both are which will be destroyed in the terraforming. And there seems to be little resistance to it and the powers-that-be go so far as to threaten the lives of the researchers studying the ancient inhabitants- and some of the researchers are actually killed in the process.
The story picks up again when the plot moves to the discovery of the homeworld of a group of ancient aliens known as the Monument Makers, who left anomalous artifacts scattered across space- including inside the solar system on Saturn’s moon Iapetus. McDevitt lays out a plethora of mysteries on the newly discovered world and the ruined space station still in orbit. But the story again strays as the landing party on the world are attacked by crab-like entities who seem to be intelligent to some extent.
That was the starting point for that annoyed me with the novel. Several mysteries are laid out, including right at the climax, but few are really answered satisfactorily. Published in 1994 this looks to be one of McDevitt’s earlier works and its obvious he’s still honing his craft. But I still would have liked a bit more resolution to the events that play out.
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Re: What Are You Reading: The Sequel!

Postby RJDiogenes » Tue Oct 13, 2015 9:26 pm

Hmm, I don't think I knew that was a Priscilla Hutchins novel. I'll have to read it next. He actually does that from time to time, setting up mysteries that aren't resolved until a future novel. It was the same with the Omega Clouds.

So I finished the book on the history of Marvel Comics (and it's mind-blowing how many millions of dollars were put into the hands of idiot executives who cared nothing for comics and nearly brought the company to ruin on several occasions), then went back to Coming Home by McDevitt, but now I'm taking another break to read The Alluring Art of Margaret Brundage, a Pulp artist (the first woman Pulp artist), who I've long admired. Not only does it give some good biographical information on her, but it also gives an interesting looking into the Chicago Renaissance, and the artistic and intellectual underground of the 20s and 30s. It's kind of sad to think that there was a liberal movement far more open-minded than anything around today, nearly a hundred years later.
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