Author Archives: natalieinne

About natalieinne

A reader of many books.

The First Confirmed Case of Non-Corporeal Recursion: Patient Anita R. by Benjamin C. Kinney

This is the next short story in the Event Horizon 2017 collection of short stories highlighting authors who are eligible for the 2017 Campbell award for best new writer.

Published: June, 2016 in Strange Horizons (you can read it or listen to it at that link)

Genre: ghost story

Setting: near Chicago, present day, moving thirty years into the future

Summary: Our narrator, Anita, is a ghost stuck in the basement of her house repeating the last argument she had with her husband, Luis, before she died. Whenever she tries to leave and enters sun or moonlight, she vanishes. Anita tries to converse with the people who discover her, but she can only speak in sentences she said near her death. Only one person, Malati, tries to talk to Anita and discover how her ghost form works.

Final thoughts: An interesting story. We see the progression of Anita’s awareness of herself as a ghost and her attempts to communicate. Eventually, she’s able to make a sort of connection with Malati and she decides to help her stay with her girlfriend by proving her existence to the scientific community.

Title comes from: It actually makes more sense once you finish the story. The person referred to in the title is the narrator of the story.

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What I Will Be Reading #33: Mr. Curiosity’s Edition

It’s Mr. Curiosity’s time to add some books to the reading list. He got some great suggestions from a GeekMom summer reading list. The list is organized by age group, with an emphasis on middle grade and up. We got quite a few suggestions from the list, including:

Geekerella: A Fangirl Fairy Tale by Ashley Poston. This is a modern retelling of  Cinderalla, with a strong side of geekiness.

 

Norse Mythologyby Neil Gaimen. This was a no brainer. Both kids are loving Rick Riordan’s Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard series, so this was a no-brainer. Miss Adventure wants to read this as well, although I might need to read it first to make sure it won’t scare her. It is a modern retelling of the Norse saga.

 

31 Days of Wonder by Tom Winter. I’m not sure what drew Mr. Curiosity to this book. It sounds like a good relationship story, more in the realistic fiction side of things.

 

The final book from this list is The Berlin Project by Gregory Benford. This is an alternate history book set during WWII. The basic premise of the book is the atomic bomb was ready for the D-Day invasion, and how would things have changed.

 

One last book to add from a different source: We Have No Idea: A Guide to the Unknown Universe by Jorge Chan and Daniel Whiteson. I became aware of this book by reading their webcomic, PhDComics. It looked like the book would be in the same vein as xkcd’s book, What If?. The authors discuss all the parts of the universe scientists still don’t have a complete explanation for, and provide our current best hypothesis. Plus there are lots of illustrations and amusing comics to keep you wading through the science.

And those are the new books for Mr. Curiosity, although I’ll probably end up reading several of them as well. Any others that a geeky 14-year old boy would enjoy? Tell me in the comments!

If you’re interested in purchasing the book, you can click on the cover image or title to follow an Amazon affiliate link to the book and thanks for supporting my blog!

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The Road by Cormac McCarthy

I read this back when it came out in 2006. It made a lot of critic’s “Best of 2006” lists, which put it on my radar. Plus, I’ve read his Border Trilogy and liked his sparse writing style. I decided to give it a try.

Published: 2006

Genre: post-apocalyptic fiction

Length: 287 pages

Setting: near future, it felt like California but it was definitely in the U.S. Continue reading

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Mort by Terry Pratchett

The Discworld books are pretty short, so I finished Equal Rites and still had a week of vacation left. On to the next Discworld book. Mort is the fourth book in the series, and the first book in the Death subseries. It’s also one of the BBC’s The Big Read books.

Published: 1987

Genre: fantasy

Length: 243 pages

Setting: various locations in Discworld Continue reading

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Equal Rites by Terry Pratchett

I read this book on vacation. While on vacation, I typically just bring my Kindle to read from. I managed to get an electronic version of all the Discworld novels before we left on vacation. They are perfect vacation reading – amusing, not too long, well written, and I don’t have to worry about “will this be any good”? This is the third book written in the Discworld series and the first of the Witches subseries.

Published: 1987

Genre: fantasy

Length: 228 pages

Setting: Discworld, mostly the Ramtop Mountains and the city of Ankh-Morpork Continue reading

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Natural Born Alien by Will Swardstrom

This is the next short story in the Event Horizon 2017 collection of short stories highlighting authors who are eligible for the 2017 Campbell award for best new writer.

Published: 2017 in Tales from the Canyons of the Damned: Omnibus No. 3

Genre: science fiction alien short story

Setting: the U.S. in the not-too-distant future

Summary: Robunthiquipalthinatchyyl Walters is an alien running for President of the United States. Since he was born in the United States (and has a FOI for the video of his birth to prove it), he is legally allowed to run, even if he isn’t a human. Obviously, Walters isn’t your typically candidate and he makes a couple of statements that seem likely to tank his bid to become President (like agreeing that a woman should have the right to an abortion and the right to kill any mate that doesn’t please her, or that health care is important because the human body is tastier when they are healthy). However, his supporters just explain away these faux pas and continue to maintain Walters is the best candidate for the job.

Final thoughts: At first I was wondering if the parallels to Donald Trump and his bid for President were intentional or not. When I got to the part about building a wall around the whole world and making the Zitorians trying to gain a foothold in this country pay for it, I knew it totally intentional. Swardstrom just took Trump and turned him to 11 to create his alien candidate. Personally, it takes a lot of imagination to make someone even crazier than Trump and still be believable, but Swarstrom manages it. For example, Walters actually eats his opponents who cause too many problems instead of just belittling them on Twitter. The description of how Walters can run for President when he isn’t even human was an interesting one. Overall, a story for the political times. I’m not sure it will age well, but it’s amusing for now.

Title comes from: It describes how Walters gained citizenship within the U.S., with alien referring to being from a different world, not just a different country.

If you’re interested in purchasing the book, you can click on the cover image or title to follow an Amazon affiliate link to the book and thanks for supporting my blog!

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Joss Whedon by Candace Havens

I am a big fan of Joss Whedon and his projects. When I read this, Joss had only produced Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, and Firefly. He’s only improved his project record since, most recently Avengers: Age of Ultron.

Subtitle: The Genius Behind Buffy

Published: 2003

Genre: biography

Length: 162 pages Continue reading

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