Rachel Poli’s novella, The Scribe, is now available on Wattpad. Check out this post from her blog for details.
Revenger by Alastair Reynolds
It has been sometime since I’ve been both surprised and sucked into a space opera. I was surprised because I felt this tale starts rather slowly, but builds momentum rapidly. I wasn’t prepared to like it after the first few pages. Then, I started to enjoy and, more importantly, emphasize, with the characters. There are more than a few twists that add to the enjoyment.
The Ness sisters are interesting heroines, but I found myself rooting for their robot.
Without handing out spoilers, I can say the novel takes place millions of years in the future, where humanity had gone through more than a dozen civilizations. Each one has peaked, then failed, and we’re left with tantalizing glimpses of technology from each.
Alastair Reynolds has written many good books, but I think this is one of his best. I’m looking forward to a sequel.
I’ll give it five out of five stars.
Yoga Toolkit by Rica Lewis is an honest and slightly irreverant introduction to Yoga. It is sub-titled “A Beginner’s Guide to Finding Magic & Momentum on the Mat”.
There are no drawings or photographs of impossibly flexible people tangled in tendon-snapping poses.
Instead, we find simple explanations of basic concepts and some great advice. For example:
“So here’s the truth: If you discover you are good at yoga, check your posture.”
Imperfections are to be found in all things and my primary complaint about this book is that she gives wonderful advice and hints at so many interesting paths, that the book is too short. Like any good work, she leaves us wanting more.
Thank you, Rica!
A friend who has made a name for herself writing erotic literature, recently started a dystopian science fiction trilogy. Naturally, I had to give it a try and I’m very glad I did.
“The Great Turning” by Lesli Richardson, is not your usual post-apocalyptic tale. With a background of the world devastated by a major meteor strike, families, friends, and lovers, fight killers on both two legs and four.
It isn’t often that gay, lesbian, and poly scenes are part of a rousing good military science fiction yarn. In case you’re wondering, this is by no means erotica with ray guns. It features a very well-crafted world and believable characters.
While this is the first in a trilogy, it works quite well as a stand-alone tale. I’ll give it five out of five stars.
I’m looking forward to the next novel in this series.
Genre: post-apocalyptic, sci-fi, futuristic, dystopian, GLBTQ, MMF (not erotic)
Rachel Poli is a blogger I’ve been following for some time now. She’s a fine writer and I wanted to thank her for a recent post. In it, she challenged other writers to create a story using a first line she supplied. The line is… “The doorbell rang at one-o’clock in the morning.”
It seemed like a fun little project, so I spent about an hour on a short tale. You can read it here.
Take a moment to read some of her stuff. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
Every once in a while, I trip over a new tool that I just cannot do without. Such is the case for the Pigma Brush series from Sakura Color Products of Japan.
I was sorting through some felt-tip markers in the fine art section of a local A.C. Moore store when I found a small display of these pens.
What caught my attention was the fact that although the tip is similar to an ultra-fine point indelible marker, it is very flexible. The darn thing really does handle like a very fine brush!
So far, my usage has been to fill in extremely thin cracks and seams on folded cardstock. It is very easy to handle and got in places my previous markers didn’t. I’m sure that with a bit of experimentation, I’ll find more uses for this handy tool. Hhmm… Industrial age graphiti anyone?
Both the store display and Sakura’s website show these features:
• Archival quality ink – chemically stable, waterproof, and fade resistant
• No smears, feathers, or bleed-through on most papers
• Thorough ink delivery to the sides and tip of the flexible brush
• Individual pens available, and in a 6 – color set, and 8 – color set
You can read more at: http://www.sakuraofamerica.com/pen-brush
Be sure to check out the short video clip on their entire line.
Like most of us, I’ve lost things stored on my computer from time to time. This has made me more than a bit obsessive about backing up stuff I consider critical.
I also know that the average life of most electronics is about five years. Few hard disk drives give a three year warranty while most only give a year.
With that in mind, I’ve developed a strategy that works in conjunction with cloud storage to minimize the chance of a catastrophic loss of data.
Every couple of years or so, I purchase a new hard disk drive (HDD) for about a hundred dollars. I will unplug both of the HHDs in my tower, connect the new HDD, and install the latest version of my favorite Operating System (OS), Kubuntu.
Which brings us to this… I was very happy to get my new 3Tb HDD in the mail and immediately installed and format the drive with the latest Long-Term-Support version of Kubuntu, 16.04.
Worked with 16.04 for three days and must say, I’m terribly disappointed.
It appears as if the primary focus of the Plasma development team was to make an OS for a tablet, not a desktop. The overall look and feel is crude to say the least. Icons looks like they were created for a 1980s game system and several features have been removed.
I’m afraid Kubuntu 16.04 may well turn out to be Canonical’s answer to Windows8.
In the meantime, Kubuntu 14.04 will be supported until 2019. I’m hoping they get it right for the 18.04 LTS release. If not, I’ll probably recommend some of flavors, such as Ubuntu or Linux Mint.
As always, this is only my opinion and your mileage may vary. I’d love to hear of your experiences with other Operating Systems.