September 1st, 2013

Dead Dog Cat

(no subject)

Yesterday, while awaiting my beloved, I finished reading Of Dice and Men: The Story of Dungeons & Dragons and the People Who Play It, recently released in hardcover. I found that it hit me surprisingly deeply in my emotions. I've been involved in the game from very early in its history, and I've met many of the people he discusses in the book. Over the years, I've run out of time to play, but I remember clearly many of the feelings he describes. Let's say that this book touched me.

Book 156: The World House by Guy Adams

Book 156: The World House (The World House #1) .
Author: Guy Adams, 2010.
Genre: Horror. Fantasy/Science Fiction. Time Travel. Surreal. Strange!
Other Details: Paperback. 416 pages.

There is a box. Inside that box is a door. Beyond that door is a house. In some rooms forests grow. In some, prisoners wait. At the top of the house, a prisoner sits behind a locked door waiting for a key to turn. The day that happens, the world will end... - synopsis from Angry Robot website.

I first heard of this novel earlier this year in the whatwasthatbook community when I successfully identified it thanks to some Google savvy with keywords. I was intrigued by the provided description to get hold of the book via the library.

Overall it was a very surreal novel that I felt started off well and then sagged somewhat in the middle before redeeming itself in the final chapters. I found myself a little bored by the relentless dangers faced by those whisked away into the World House and felt it very reminiscent of the Doctor Who episode, The God Complex (not one of my favourites), as well as for some weird reason 'Jumanji' though this is certainly not a novel aimed at younger readers given the level of violence and strong language. I also found the characters hard to relate to, especially after one that I found very interesting met a sudden end.

So I was feeling a bit 'meh' about it and thought that I probably wouldn't bother with Book 2 until I hit those final chapters and after that I knew I really needed to find out what happens next and how the situation resolves. So now am waiting for a reserve to come through on Restoration (The World House #2).

Books 157-158: The Blinded Man and The Flesh Tailor

Book 157: The Blinded Man (Intercrime #1).
Author: Arne Dahl, 1998. Translated from the Swedish by Tiina Nunnally, 2011.
Genre: Crime Thriller. Police Procedural. Nordic Noir.
Other Details: Paperback. 448 pages.

Sweden's elite are under attack. Two rich and powerful men have been murdered, and in the face of mounting panic - and media hysteria - a task force has been created to catch the killer. To his surprise, Detective Paul Hjelm, currently under investigation for misconduct after shooting a man who took the staff of an immigration office hostage, is summoned to join the new team. But the killer has left no clues, even removing the bullets from the crime scenes, and Hjelm and his new teammates face a daunting challenge if they are to uncover the connection between the victims and catch the murderer before he kills again. - synopsis from UK publisher's website.

Unusually for Scandinavian crime fiction this was published in the US a year ahead of its UK publication under its original Swedish title: Misterioso, a title that I actually felt worked better than The Blinded Man once its relevance to the plot is made apparent.

I got very caught up in the BBC 4 showing of the Swedish TV adaptation of this series of crime thrillers. Reading the source material I thought it was quite a faithful adaptation from novel to small screen though the gender of lead police detective was changed. Even though I was familiar with the plot there were plenty of added details in the longer treatment of the novel. I found it a highly engaging read in which the case unfolded elegantly clue by clue. I can hardly wait to read the next book recently translated into English and hope that others in the series, 10 to date, follow in due course.

Book 158: The Flesh Tailor (Wesley Peterson #14).
Author: Kate Ellis, 2010.
Genre: Crime Thriller. Police Procedural. Historical Mystery.
Other Details: Large Print Hardback. 413 pages.

When Dr James Dalcott is shot dead in his cottage it looks very much like an execution. And as DI Wesley Peterson begins piecing together the victim's life, he finds that the well-liked country doctor had been harbouring strange and dramatic family secrets. Meanwhile archaeologist Neil Watson has discovered a number of skeletons at nearby Tailors Court that bear marks of dissection and might be linked to tales of body-snatching by a rogue physician in the sixteenth century. But when Neil finds the bones of a child buried with a 1930s coin, the investigation takes a sinister turn. - synopsis from author's website.

Although I certainly enjoyed this instalment it didn't grab my attention as much as the last few of the series have done. It felt a little flat in comparison and I'm not really certain why; maybe the plot was a little too twisty or I just felt that Wesley and Co weren't quite on form during this outing? Hopefully the next one will bounce back.

Ramble and Book I'm reading....

I know that this is a 50 book challenge community.... But I set my standards a little higher. I hope that's all right, if it's not Mods delete this.
Right now I'm starting a Book called "Shadow Highlander" By Donna Grant. So far it seems pretty good. But we shall see. The plot bunny in all the "Dark Sword" Books are all good, so I'm hoping the same thing for this book. I love the story line and how it's going to grow into a whole different series... But you guys don't need to know that, sorry I ramble.
Here is where I'm at, at my book count.
72 / 120 books. 60% done!
plot bunny hunter

August 2013 Reading

August 2013 Reading:

33. Off Keck Lane, by Mona Simpson (176 pages)
This is not the traditional narrative that people are used to, with rising and falling action. Instead this narrative moves in an infinite circle, the characters moving around each other in the changing landscape of Middle America. Inspiring novel.

34. Furies of Calderon: Codex Alera 1, by Jim Butcher (504 pages)
I found this quite a bit more gritty than I expected, but I loved the characters, and their stories immediately gripped me. I look forward to reading the next one.

35. Academ's Fury: Codex Alera 2, by Jim Butcher (704 pages)
Certain quiet threads are making themselves more apparent in this book, with hints at the future and true identities of certain characters. I love the world-building in this series, and how each character is complex and human, with their own secrets (sometimes kept even from themselves) and flaws.

August pages: 1,384

Pages to date: 10,583

Progress: 35/50

August 2013 Comics/Manga Reading:

240. Boys Over Flowers: Volume 25, by Yoko Kamio (184 pages)
241. Descendants of Darkness: Volume 5, by Yoko Matsushita (200 pages)
242. Bleach: Volume 19, by Tite Kubo (216 pages)
243. Fables: Volume 15, by Bill Willingham (256 pages)
244. Ceres: Volume 4, by Yuu Watase (192 pages)
245. xxxHolic: Volume 5, by Clamp (176 pages)
246. xxxHolic: Volume 6, by Clamp (192 pages)
247. Case Closed: Volume 17, by Gosho Aoyama (192 pages)
248. The Voices of a Distant Star, by Mizu Sahara (229 pages)
249. Cinderella: Volume 1, by Chris Roberson (144 pages)
250. Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon: Volume 9, by Naoko Takeuchi (258 pages)
251. The Wallflower: Volume 9, by Tomoko Hayakawa (176 pages)
252. Nana: Volume 15, by Ai Yazawa (200 pages)
253. Boys Over Flowers: Volume 26, by Yoko Kamio (192 pages)
254. Boys Over Flowers: Volume 27, by Yoko Kamio (192 pages)
255. Boys Over Flowers: Volume 28, by Yoko Kamio (216 pages)
256. Jack of Fables: Volume 7, by Bill Willingham (128 pages)
257. Kimi ni Todoke: Volume 17, by Karuho Shiina (176 pages)
258. Black Butler: Volume 14, by Yana Toboso (192 pages)

August pages: 3,711

Pages to date: 51,173

Progress: 258/350