A hart wrenching story of a boy and his father trying to survive in a postapocaliptic world. And this time it looks like a real apocalipse is upon the world. Everything is dead but a handful of people, most of them more beasts than men. McCarthy has an uncanny ability to describe suffering in a way that you almost feel it. It is a good but a very, very sad story.
An excellent read that introduces reader into the creepy world of psychopaths and more importantly research into what exactly is a nature of psychopathy. I cannot stress enough how approachable and interesting this book is. For a topic so disturbing, it has a remarkably light and entertaining, even funny tone. I think the author perhaps overindulges into describing his feelings and thoughts but what it looses in concrete it makes up in strength of the message. Yes, there are psychopaths among as and there is preciously little we can do to change them. On the other hand the psychiatry itself comes out as a science filled with traps. Well, the brain is a complicated thing indeed. I would recommend this book to anyone. It is a real page turner and the subject is fascinating. Perhaps a little bit light on the content but fantastically well written and moving. I cannot wait to read some more works by Jon Ronson.
A very entertaining military sci-fi. I was throughly sucked in into this continuation of the Empres's Own story. Great battles, a fantastic motif of representatives of advanced civilization teaching the less developed Mardukans new, deadly, technologies and more. It is not a book with in-depth characters or gripping dialogue. But if you like military stories, old fashioned martial ideals of camaraderie and role of military as a guard against barbarianism, then my friend - you are for a treat!
“Jennifer Morgue” is a loose follow up to the “Atrocity Archive” by Charlie Stross. The main protagonist, Bob Howard, is working for the “Laundry”. A British intelligence branch countering the occult and paranormal threats to the Crown (of mainly a tentacular origin). I loved the first book and I enjoyed this one. The story is entertaining, although it is a pastiche of James Bond flicks and as such it made me less immersed in the story. That is problem with me I guess – I like to believe that the story I read could happen and here I feel too much like author is blinking to me - “See how cleverly I play with the conventions?”. On the other hand, I admire the way Stross handles Cthulhu mythos – especially magic. As I am an avid Cthulhu roleplaying Game Master I am more than happy to steal his ideas of how magic works and what can be achieved with it. “Jennifer Morgue” has interesting cast of characters, some romance and all around Open-source geekines. A perfect mix. My biggest gripe with the story comes from the fact that the author uses first person, present tense narration – the same as in his short story collection “Accelerando”. For some reason I find this type of narration harder to read than your typical third person, past tense. Over time I got used to this but the reading was a bit of a chore. Overall a worthy read, particularly if you are interested in thrillers, Lovecraft and British sense of humor.
Not as breathtaking as Titan by the same author, but interesting nevertheless. Humanity brings doom upon itself by bringing a nano-technological grey goo from the Moon that slowly devours the Earth. This is a sad story where there is a very little hope. The first part is especially poignant - destruction of Edinburgh, misery and human stupidity. The interesting thing in Baxter's books is that his characters are full of flaws - not really typical heroes of SF but very much humans troubled by issues. The book is full of technical details regarding space exploration and geology. Large info-dumps are perhaps a nuisance to some but I enjoy them and Baxter certainly makes the subject interesting. Some issues I had with the book: one particular character behaves in a very unbelievable way - I am taking about a teenager rascal turn into Space Religion Guru, secondly I feel that whole shtick in the end with main character convincing US to give him a nuke, no question asked - that rises some doubts - I understand that it was necessary for a big surprise in the end but still.In the end - not my favorite Hard SF but certainly memorable. I think I will further my interest into Mr. Baxter's works.
This book landed in my lap due to interview with the author that I listened to in Groks Science Podcast. I found it interesting and since I want to widen my education and learn something that I can use in GMing roleplaying games (notably Trail of Cthulhu) - I decided to give it a shot. It is a short book dealing with the subject in a rather dry but entertaining manner. I like the fact that it mixes description of history of archeology, descriptions of working procedure and such matters with personal observations on academic world, Egypt and life of scientist in this rather small and competitive field. Although it is not something that will teach you a great deal about Egyptology or history - it will definitely pique your interest in this subject - so much more interesting that clichés from Indiana Jones movies.
Ted Chiang is the best short stories author in recent years. All the stories in the collection are intellectually stimulating, raise interesting questions. They deal with science and philosophy as well as human drama. A definitive must read!
A short, excellent story dealing with an issue of sapience - what it really means to think? Surprisingly, it does not feel dated although it was published almost fifty years ago. It is not gloomy and dark but rather optimistic. It is also an entertaining court drama and interesting look at the possible interstellar society based on libertarian ideas. Definitively a worthy read especially if you have few hours to kill. It can be downloaded from Gutenberg project so do not hesitate.
An interesting story, inspiring for RPG. For some reason it proved a bit hard for me to follow. Although interesting, my eyes were glazing over after few pages. I guess it because English is not my native language. Still, I am glad that I read this classic.