Monthly Archives: October 2009

Books acquired October 2009

Mark and Method: New Approaches in Biblical Studies by Janice Capel Anderson The Origin of Species by Charles Darwin From Genocide to Continental War: The Congolese Conflict and the Crisis of Contemporary Africa by Gerard Prunier Sudan: The Bradt Travel … Continue reading

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October Books

Non-fiction: 6 (YTD 80) Fiction (non-sf): 4 (YTD 52) SF (non-Who): 7 (YTD 79) Doctor Who: 4 (YTD 60) 6 (YTD 60/301) by women (Brontë, Gentle, Kingsolver, Hurston, Jenkins, Mosse) 1 (YTD 14/301) by PoC (Hurston) Total page count ~8,200 … Continue reading

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October Books 20) Elizabeth the Great, by Elizabeth Jenkins

I have to say this is one of the more interesting biographies of Elizabeth I that I have read. Jenkins makes a good argument that Elizabeth’s determination to remain unmarried stemmed not just from the abuse she suffered in her … Continue reading

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October Books 19) Doctor Who – Slipback

There is a minor character in this novel who is an unsuccessful author: When Horace’s book was finally published, it was viciously attacked by the critics. This was sad, as no-one had been able to disprove anything he had written. … Continue reading

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October Books 18) Wuthering Heights, by Emily Brontë

I have to say that I don’t quite get Wuthering Heights. Yes, I suppose the destructive psychological relationship between Heathcliff and the elder Cathy is rather grimly fascinating, as is a train crash; but that takes up only the second … Continue reading

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Unread books from 2005

Back in late 2005, I entered all the books on our shelves into LibraryThing, and tagged 133 of them as “unread”, ie hoping that I would read them some day. Well, that day has arrived; I have read 122 of … Continue reading

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October Books 17) White Crow, by Mary Gentle

A few years ago, shortly before I began bookblogging, I read and totally loved Mary Gentle’s Ash. More recently, I was rather disappointed with her 1610. I’m afraid that White Crow was more towards the 1610 end of the scale. … Continue reading

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Films of 1959

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Delightful….

…to see that the registrar in tomorrow’s SJA episode is played by Zienia Merton, who was Ping-Cho in the 1964 Doctor Who story Marco Polo. I think this must give her the record for greatest elapsed time between her earliest … Continue reading

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October Books 16) In Cold Blood, by Truman Capote

I don’t read much true crime, though I am as fascinated as anyone by the story of human wickedness. This seemed to me a particularly good (and early) example of the genre, with Capote following events through the stories of … Continue reading

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Why Facebook sucks

gareth_rees: Why I hate FaceBook Gareth explains (quite rightly) why Facebook "seriously sucks for serious discussion. Seriously." (tags: facebook internet)

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This Month’s Who from Big Finish

Time to write up the two October releases from Big Finish – a Companion Chronicle with Lalla Ward reprising Romana II, and a new Five/Nyssa story set in the village of Stockbridge and partly in the twelfth century. I had … Continue reading

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Who’s On What

I have been pondering the amount of material on each Doctor available in the Whoniverse, considering TV, audio and novels/novellas (I’m not quite sure how to tabulate comics and short story collections). Time on TV This is uncontroversial. The order … Continue reading

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The North Down conundrum

North Down is a peculiar parliamentary constituency even by Northern Ireland’s rather odd standards. It is currently (since 2005) the only seat held by the Ulster Unionist Party, in the shape of Lady Sylvia Hermon; from 1995 to 2001 it … Continue reading

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Gibbon VIII

reading_gibbon: Chapter VIII: Of the state of Persia after the restoration of the monarchy by Artaxerxes there are some remarkable instances, in which Zoroaster lays aside the prophet, assumes the legislator, and discovers a liberal concern for private and public … Continue reading

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October Books 15) The Corrections, by Jonathan Franzen

Long and tedious book about the disastrous Christmas celebrations of an elderly couple and their three adult children. Was probably meant to be funny in places, but I did not laugh.

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October Books 12-14) Three Fifth Doctor novels

October Books 12) King of Terror, by Keith Topping I am relieved to report that King of Terror is the best Doctor Who book I have read by Keith Topping. This is faint praise, because I really did not like … Continue reading

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A note to the author (and editors) of the book I am reading

The word “indigent” does not mean “native species”, it means “poor”. You were thinking of “indigenous”.

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Health whine

I got my jabs for my Africa trip eleven days ago, and they warned me at the hospital that I might suffer a reaction from the yellow fever one within five to ten days. Sure enough, I was groggy all … Continue reading

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Isaiah Berlin

Oh dear…

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Reassured

The place I will be staying in the first week of November is visible on Google Earth, with photographs, at 4°50’25” N, 31°37’5″ E – reassuring to see what it looks like, though I guess the photos won’t convey the … Continue reading

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Steampunk and Doctor Who

I am thinking about which Doctor Who stories fit into the steampunk sub-genre – indeed, some of them are elderly enough to have helped inspire it. Come to think of it, the whole concept of the programme, in which the … Continue reading

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Movie news

BBC NEWS | Europe | Movie star plays Georgian leader Andy Garcia to play Saakashvili in big-budget Holywood movie about last year’s war filmed in Tbilisi. Meanwhile Emir Kusturica will be in South Ossetia, directing a film taking the other … Continue reading

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October Books 11) The Meaning of Tingo, by Adam Jacot de Boinot

The author is a researcher for the Stephen Fry quiz show QI, and the book basically reads like an extended set of QI rounds about funny words in foreign languages, all mildly amusing. I spotted one spelling error – the … Continue reading

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I doubt if she will see this, but

Happy 80th Birthday, Ursula Le Guin! And thank you for everything!

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Stephen Fry and Poland; and Communism

Poles, Politeness and Politics in the age of Twitter – The New Adventures of Stephen Fry Stephen Fry apologises to Poland and has interesting thoughts on Twitter and democracy (tags: internet) What was communism? | open Democracy News Analysis (tags: … Continue reading

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October Books 10) The Dissolution of the Religious Orders in Ireland under Henry VIII, by Brendan Br

I knew Brendan Bradshaw, genial and intellectual priest and historian, while I was a student at Cambridge – indeed, I asked him to marry me, but unfortunately he wasn’t available on the day. (I will wait while you unscramble that … Continue reading

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The Langbehn-Pond tragedy

Ask Nicola: trembling with rage Woman denied the right to comfort her dying partner because they were a same-sex couple (tags: sexandsexualityandgender ushealth)

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October Books 9) To Your Scattered Bodies Go, by Philip José Farmer

I am always a bit nervous about returning to books I enjoyed when I was much younger. Will the magic survive? I had fond memories of Farmer’s four-part Riverboat series, despite the very unsatisfactory ending, and the peculiarly anal accuracy … Continue reading

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EU telecoms package?

I haven’t been following this issue lately, so was a bit alarmed to see a tweet from Sophie in’t Veld MEP, saying that while the Liberal in the European Parliament will oppose the “three strikes” law cutting off access to … Continue reading

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