Tag Archives: bookblog 2022

No-Nonsense Guide to Global Media, by Peter Steven

Second paragraph of third chapter: Now the BBC and CNN have a direct competitor and a news organisation clearly without a Western bias. It is available to viewers in most countries – though not in the US and Canada, where … Continue reading

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The Happier Dead, by Ivo Stourton; Queen of the States, by Josephine Saxton

Two more from my swiftly dwindling pile of unread books acquired in 2015. The second paragraph of the third chapter of The Happier Dead, by Ivo Stourton, is: “Did the kids get off to school alright?” Dystopian detective story of … Continue reading

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June books

Non-fiction 9 (YTD 54)Dangerous Visions and New Worlds: Radical Science Fiction, 1950 to 1985, eds. Andrew Nette and Iain McIntyreThe Right to Sex: Feminism in the Twenty-First Century, by Amia SrinivasanTrue Believer: The Rise and Fall of Stan Lee, by … Continue reading

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The HAVOC Files, Volume 4, ed. Shaun Russell

Second paragraph of third story (“United in Blood”, by Mark Jones): Lethbridge-Stewart approached the bar and held out a hand to his old friend. ‘Bill Cunningham! It’s good to see you too,’ he said, as he grasped the other’s hand … Continue reading

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Slumdog Millionaire; and Q&A, by Vikas Swarup

Slumdog Millionaire won the Oscar for Best Picture of 2008 and seven others, Best Director (Danny Boyle), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Cinematography, Best Film Editing, Best Original Score and Best Sound Editing. The other films up for Best Picture were The Curious … Continue reading

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The Right to Sex: Feminism in the Twenty-First Century, by Amia Srinivasan

Second paragraph of third chapter: In the hours between murdering three men in his apartment and driving to Alpha Phi, Rodger went to Starbucks, ordered coffee, and uploaded a video, “Elliot Rodger’s Retribution,” to his YouTube channel. He also emailed … Continue reading

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Directed by Douglas Camfield, by Michael Seely

Second paragraph of third chapter: They worked on the seventh floor of Lime Grove, assigned to different film editors. This was the same building where Alfred Hitchcock made The Thirty Nine Steps twenty years before when it was the Gaumont … Continue reading

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Mythos, by Stephen Fry

Second paragraph of third chapter: Something else began too — what shall we call it? Personality? Drama? Individuality? Character, with all its flaws and failings, fashions and passions, schemes and dreams. Meaning began, you might say. The seeding of Gaia … Continue reading

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A Modern Utopia, by H. G. Wells

Second paragraph of third chapter: Now in the first place, a state so vast and complex as this world Utopia, and with so migratory a people, will need some handy symbol to check the distribution of services and commodities. Almost … Continue reading

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Ender’s Game, by Orson Scott Card

Second paragraph of third chapter: ‘I know. She can undo it all, from the start. He won’t want to leave her.’ When I first read this in December 2001, I wrote: Ender’s Game is a vivid and disturbing book. The … Continue reading

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Mort, by Terry Pratchett

Second paragraph of third section (as you know, Bob, very few of Pratchett’s Discworld novels are divided into chapters): Mort was interested in lots of things. Why people’s teeth fitted together so neatly, for example. He’d given that one a … Continue reading

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Demons and Dreams: Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror v. 1, eds. Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling

The third thing in the main text of the book is actually “DX”, a poem by Joe Haldeman. The second verse (or equivalent; it’s rather free-form in format) is: You dig a holeand cover it withlogs I got hold of … Continue reading

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Flicker, by Theodore Roszak

Second paragraph of third chapter: Before long, I was asking myself how a tiny, hole-in-the-wall operation like The Classic could possibly require so much work. What with repairing, replacing, purchasing, cleaning) Polishing, picking up and delivering, my unpaid labor was … Continue reading

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The Halls of Narrow Water: A family history, by Bill Hall

Second paragraph of third section of main narrative: On arrival in Ireland, William Hall is believed to have been involved in mining at Red Bay near Carrickfergus  in Co. Antrim and to have died there in 1640.  There were other … Continue reading

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Marco Polo, by Dene October (and John Lucarotti)

Next in the sequence of Black Archive books about Doctor Who. In this case I had actually listened to the audio reconstruction again quite recently, so I didn’t repeat that for this blog post, just reading the novelisation again as … Continue reading

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Best Novel Hugo, 2022

As before, just noting that I have read them all, without specifying my preferences. A Desolation Called Peace, by Arkady Martine (Three months ago, even if she’d somehow reached this exalted position in the Ministry, complete with her own tiny … Continue reading

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Terrorism In Asymmetric Conflict: Ideological and Structural Aspects, by Ekaterina A. Stepanova

Second paragraph of third chapter: Much has been written about the ‘sharp’ rise of ‘religious terrorism’ during the last decades of the 20th century and about its growing internationalization and international impact. However, to back this thesis most analysts choose … Continue reading

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Signs and Symbols Around the World, by Elizabeth S. Helfman

Second paragraph of third chapter: Hieroglyphic writing included many signs that can be called pictographs. They are simplified pictures of things, some of them quite recognizable. But hieroglyphic writing was not picture writing in the same sense as American Indian … Continue reading

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The Impossible Planet / The Satan Pit, by Simon Bucher-Jones (and Matt Jones)

Next in the excellent Black Archive line of short books about individual Doctor Who stories, this looks at a two-parter from Series 2 of New Who, a story where the Tenth Doctor and Rose are stranded on a planet orbiting … Continue reading

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The Island of Missing Trees, by Elif Shafak; and a brief note on the Green Line in Nicosia

Second paragraph of third chapter: The heat had started in the small hours of the morning, swiftly building up. Around ten o’clock, it had fully erupted into being, just after Turks and Greeks on each side of the Green Line … Continue reading

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I am the Master, by Peter Anghelides et al

Second paragraph of third story (“Missy’s Magical Mystery Mission”, by Jacqueline Rayner): And so Daphne (‘Mrs N’ to her clients, although she wasn’t married), scrubbed Tivone of Enfis’s bathroom, steam-cleaned his oubliette and de-crumbed his toaster, hoping all the while … Continue reading

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The Pilgrimage of Egeria

Books read: The Pilgrimage of S. Silvia of Aquitania to the Holy Places (circa 385 A.D.), trans. John H. Bernard, with an appendix by Sir Charles William Wilson. Online here.The Pilgrimage of Etheria, trans. M. L. McClure and C. L. … Continue reading

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May books

Non-fiction 16 (YTD 45)Carnival of Monsters, by Ian PotterThursday’s Child, by Maralyn RittenourPigs Might Fly: The Inside Story of Pink Floyd, by Mark BlakeQueens of the Crusades, by Alison WeirA Norman Legacy, by Sally Harpur O’DowdTower, by Nigel JonesThe Pilgrimage … Continue reading

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Stardust: film and novel

Stardust won the 2008 Hugo for Best Dramatic Presentation, Long Form, beating the first season of Heroes, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Enchanted and The Golden Compass. It was way ahead at nominations stage and while it … Continue reading

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Tower, by Nigel Jones

Second paragraph of third chapter: Blatantly ignoring the sacred rule of holy sanctuary, Henry [II] had Hubert [de Burgh] dragged from a chapel in Brentwood, Essex, where he had taken refuge. The fallen nobleman was placed on a ‘miserable jade’ … Continue reading

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A Norman Legacy, by Sally Harpur O’Dowd

Second paragraph of third chapter: There is a record of King John of England staying with Balthazar [Whyte] at Ballymorran Castle, one of the homes of the Whyte family, in July 1210 on his second expedition to Ireland. Sally is … Continue reading

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The Sun is Open (and Type Face), by Gail McConnell

Third page: I like to track the winners of the Christopher Ewart-Biggs Memorial Prize because of my own past association with it, and was really interested to see that earlier this month it went to a book of poetry, The … Continue reading

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Queens of the Crusades, by Alison Weir

Second paragraph of third chapter: His [Henry II’s] father, Geoffrey, Count of Anjou, was a vassal of the King of France and had been nicknamed ‘Plantagenet’ after the sprig of broom — Planta genista — that he wore in his … Continue reading

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Unofficial Doctor Who Annual 1987, ed. Mark Worgan

Second paragraph of third section (“Rogues: The Battling Time Lords”, by Rob Levy): While planning Season 8, producer Barry Letts and script editor Terrance Dicks decided to give Jon Pertwee’s third Doctor his own proper archenemy. Using the Sherlock Holmes/Professor … Continue reading

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Pigs Might Fly: The Inside Story of Pink Floyd, by Mark Blake

Second paragraph of third chapter: The year of 1966 would be a causal one for rock music and popular culture as a whole. The Beatles released Revolver – an album filled with exotic sounds that reflected the group’s LSD experiences … Continue reading

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