Monthly Archives: December 2015

2015 books poll

The traditional poll of books I read this year; inconsistency in numbers with my previous post is largely due to omertà over the Clarke process. If you like you can advise me what to read in 2016 as well.

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My books of 2015

I read 290 books this year, precisely one less than last year's 291. However 24 of these were dives into the first 50 pages of Clarke nominees that I knew were unlikely to win or be shortlisted. My total pagecount … Continue reading

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December Books

Non-fiction: 2 (Year end 47) When I Was a Child I Read Books, by Marilynne Robinson Rave and Let Die: The SF and Fantasy of 2014, by Adam Roberts Poetry: 1 (Year end 1) The Whole and Rain-Domed Universe, by … Continue reading

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Thursday reading

Current Watership Down, by Richard Adams The Philosopher Kings, by Jo Walton Last books finished Hark, A Vagrant!, by Kate Beaton Helliconia Summer, by Brian Aldiss The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage: The (Mostly) True Story of the First … Continue reading

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Links I found interesting for 31-12-2015

Brilliant illustrations bring this 1976 Soviet edition of ‘The Hobbit’ to life Wow.(tags: sf ) Jo Walton @BluejoWalton on slates Repudiation of slates in all their forms(tags: sf sadpuppies ) Reconciling with Puppies Steve Davidson explains the difficulties.(tags: sf sadpuppies … Continue reading

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Linkspam – problem with @delicious

Sorry for the recent spate of odd linkspam posts. My usual bookmark site, Delicious.com, isn’t working properly, and I am probably going to move over to Pinboard. In the interim links will be a bit chaotic.

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Links I found interesting for 31-12-2015

Log In – The New York Times America’s Empty Embassies Ex-Veep Walter Mondale writes.(tags: ) Donald Trump was for the Clintons before he was against them – POLITICO Donald Trump was for the Clintons before he was against them Times … Continue reading

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Links I found interesting for 30-12-2015

Frank Cottrell Boyce: Five things to learn from the Moomins | Books | The Guardian Frank Cottrell Boyce: Five things to learn from the Moomins Hooray!(tags: sf finland ) (404) http://www.salon.com/2015/12/28/behind_the_ronald_reagan_myth_no_one_had_ever_entered_the_white_house_so_grossly_ill_informed_2/ Behind the Ronald Reagan myth: “No one had ever … Continue reading

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Links I found interesting for 29-12-2015

Links I found interesting for 28-12-2015 – From the Heart of Europe Links I found interesting for 28-12-2015(tags: ) 13 bad habits you should break in 2016 to be more productive | Business News | News | The Independent 13 … Continue reading

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Links I found interesting for 30-12-2015

Donald Trump was for the Clintons before he was against them Times change.(tags: uspolitics ) In memoriam Edward Hugh Damn.(tags: death )

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My year on Livejournal

I've had a significant uptick in Livejournal activity this year. I'm not sure if this is because some people are returning to it who had left, or because I'm posting more interesting material; the biggest factor is certainly that the … Continue reading

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What should I read in 2016?

As ever, I found your votes very helpful in leading me to interesting reading in 2015, and I would once again very much appreciate your advice on what books to read next, by filling in this poll. This is not … Continue reading

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The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage, by Sydney Padua

Back in the summer of 1991 I was finishing up my M Phil in Cambridge, and dropped in one day on my supervisor, who at the time was the curator of the Whipple museum of the history of science. He … Continue reading

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Hark, A Vagrant!, by Kate Beaton

A collection of Canadian comics artist Beaton’s pieces, mainly from her website, mainly on literature. I love the Brontë sisters piece that opens the collection and have linked to it before; I must admit some of the other material didn’t … Continue reading

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My year on Facebook

My top Facebook post for the year was a decent screenshot that I managed to take when playing back the BBC election coverage the following morning: Posted by Nicholas Whyte on Friday, 8 May 2015 It got the most likes … Continue reading

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My year on Twitter, by @nwbrux

Since my last roundup on 29 December last yer, I have emitted 4,011 tweets (up from 3,337) and gained 778 followers, taking me to 3,172 from 2,394, including a net gain of 45 on election night (8 May). By far … Continue reading

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Links I found interesting for 28-12-2015

Tributes paid to Belfast Telegraph Political Editor Liam Clarke following sudden death Sad news of one of Belfast’s leading journalists.(tags: northernireland death ) Liam Clarke: The fear of a slow, lingering death blights life now Foreseeing his own end.(tags: northernireland … Continue reading

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Circe’s Cup, by Clare Carroll

Running through my list of books read this year, I realised I’d missed this one which I read in January. It’s a collection of essays on culture and politics in early modern Ireland – more looking at the period immediately … Continue reading

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The Whole and Rain-Domed Universe, by Colette Bryce

Earlier this year I attended the presentation of the 24th Christopher Ewart-Biggs Memorial Prize in the Irish Embassy in London. The prize itself was won by Charles Townshend for his The Republic: the fight for Irish independence 1918-1923, but the … Continue reading

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Links I found interesting for 27-12-2015

2015: The Best Year in History for the Average Human Being It’s not all bad news.(tags: economics war ) Give, if You Know What’s Good for You Being nice does you no harm at all.(tags: psychology ) The political aftermath … Continue reading

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BSFA awards – nominations signal boost

The 2015 BSFA Awards (awarded at next year's Eastercon, Mancunicon in Manchester) have taken an innovative step. Individual BSFA members and Eastercon members can nominate anything in each of the four categories up to 31 December; these nominations collectively will … Continue reading

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Four Doctor Who novels

I've fallen a bit behind with bookblogging again, so here's the start of an attempt to catch up before the end of the month/year. For the last few years, I've gradually and systematically working through the published Doctor Who novels; … Continue reading

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Links I found interesting for 26-12-2015

“Nicholas was…” Neil Gaiman’s short story, illustrated by Chris Riddell(tags: sf christmas ) Fixion A Christmas gift for physicists: the particle that fixes everything.(tags: science funny ) Where To Say ‘Merry Christmas’ vs. ‘Happy Holidays’ @fivethirtyeight maps it out.(tags: uspolitics … Continue reading

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The Oxford Book of Christmas Stories, ed. Dennis Pepper

A gift from a few years back which conveniently worked its way to the top of one of my lists this month. A lot of good short (mostly very short) Christmas-related stories and extracts from longer works (eg Pickwick Papers, … Continue reading

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Christmas dinner

Starter: Figs and Prosciutto 10 figs 20 small cubes of blue cheese prosciutto (thinly sliced, cut in half lengthwise) Cut the figs in half and place a piece of blue cheese on each fig half. Fasten a piece of prosciutto … Continue reading

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Thursday reading

Current Helliconia Summer, by Brian Aldiss Last books finished Short Fiction Eligible for the 1941 Retro-Hugos Vol 5, ed. von Dimpleheimer The Last Man, by Alfred Noyes The Oxford Book of Christmas Stories, ed. Dennis Pepper Doctor Who: Big Bang … Continue reading

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#RetroHugos1941 The Last Man (aka No Other Man) by Alfred Noyes

I know, I thought I’d wrapped up my Retro Hugo reading, but then over on File 770, Kyra alerted me to this interesting novel, in which almost all of humanity is destroyed by a Doomsday Weapon at the very beginning, … Continue reading

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Links I found interesting for 24-12-2015

Will the Republican Party Survive the 2016 Election? First of two great @TheAtlantic pieces: @DavidFrum looks right.(tags: uspolitics ) America Is Becoming More Liberal Second of two great @TheAtlantic pieces: @PeterBeinart looks left.(tags: uspolitics ) The Tatooine Cycle Star Wars … Continue reading

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Links I found interesting for 23-12-2015

The long, incredibly tortuous, and fascinating process of creating a Chinese font Amazing!(tags: alphabets China ) US bars British Muslim family from holiday trip of a lifetime How to win hearts and minds.(tags: uspolitics ) The best and worst of … Continue reading

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#RetroHugos1941 My 1941 Retro Hugo nominations in the fiction categories

I feel I've done my due diligence by the Retro Hugos for 1941 as never before. I read the Asimov/Greenberg edited collection of 1940 stories, and the relevant stories from Heinlein's The Past Through Tomorrow and Sturgeon's The Ultimate Egoist

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