Friday, January 23, 2015

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

This smells like bat barf!*

 As it's the start of a new year, it's also time for a new reading list.
 I know I said previously that I was going to try not to read as much Star Trek literature this year, and that this first book post has no less than three Star Trek novels, but there shouldn't be any more until the Summer when David R George III's new novel is released.
 Oh, except for Takedown (by John Jackson Miller) which should be delivered to my Kindle on the 27th of this month.

1. The Missing (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine), by the ever wonderful Una McCormack

 Una McCormack can do no wrong! She is my favourite 'Trek author at the moment, having penned my very favourite Star Trek novels; The Never Ending Sacrifice, Brinkmanship, and The Crimson Shadow.
 The Missing is a long-awaited Deep Space Nine novel set aboard the new station (ghastly design, by the way), and a civilian science vessel, the Athene Donald. Along with the regular crew, it reintroduces characters from Brinkmanship, and the prickly Doctor Katherine Pulaski (Beverly Crusher's contentious 2nd season replacement in Star Trek: The Next Generation). 
 I loved the style of writing (especially the bits where McCormack lets the readers' imaginations fill in the blanks, and the almost complete lack of technobabble), the Captain's Log introductions, the Athene Donald (let's have more novels set aboard this marvellous ship), and the really quite tense and baffling, but also warm, Cardassian/Romulan storyline. More, please, Una! 

2. Articles of the Federation, by Keith R. A. DeCandido

 This is not a new book, but it is a new book for me. It was first published in 2005, and was one of the more unusual Star Trek novels that wasn't linked to any particular TV series, and didn't "star" any of the main casts.
 I don't know why I didn't read it at the time? It may have been because I wasn't (and am still not) interested in politics, be they real or fictional (although aren't most politics fictional?). This novel, however, was a delight to read, even though it was about the politics, politicians and press of the United Federation of Planets! Plus, I love the character of Nanietta Bacco, President of the UFP.

3. First Among Sequels, by Jasper Fforde

 This is the fifth of the Thursday Next series, and just as good as the previous four. With its various plot threads meandering along, seemingly unrelated but nonetheless engaging, until they intertwine in an "Oh, yes! Why didn't I see this coming?" moment near the very end.
 In this novel, Thursday has to deal with falling readership, the threat of reality TV-style books, the end of time (seemingly brought about by the inaction of her lazy, sullen, teenage son), and her two BookWorld counterparts, Thursday1-4 and Thursday5.

4. Calvin & Hobbes, by Bill Watterson

 It was dear Mago who reminded me that it had been a while since I'd read any Calvin & Hobbes, so I thought I'd start from the beginning and see how far I get.
 This is the first book - a collection of the comic strips from 1985 to 1986.
* Post title from page 10 (strip from November 28 1985)

5. Synthesis (Star Trek: Titan), by James Swallow

 Again, this is a new book for me, but one that was published back in 2009.
 Unlike with Articles of the Federation, I know full well why I didn't read this book at the time: The slut on the cover with Riker!
 Now, having read the book, I know she's not a slut and Riker's marriage to Deanna Troi is as safe as houses. Ahhh... 

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Hair Raising Tales From The Future

 All that talk of time-travel over at MJ's reminded me of this:

Click for big-hair!

 I "appropriated" it on one of our jaunts to the future. I must say, I was surprised that the old rag was back in publication in the 24th century. It was with a stack of other magazines on a table in the departure lounge of the Temporal Traffic Control Tower I was waiting in for clearance to return to the 21st century. I was so fascinated with the article about the once fashionable Betazoid practice of caging small animals in elaborate wigs, that I couldn't put it down and it somehow managed to accompany me back here.

 Speaking of Betazoids, Deanna Troi's head-in-a-replicator styling trick isn't something I would recommend. Mr Mot's top ten tips are far more palatable. Except number eight...

 Ooh, and Janice Rand's basket-weave 'do is easier to accomplish than one might think!


Wednesday, January 14, 2015

HobNobbing with the stars

 Urg. A morning of manual labour at The Parents' constructing a flat-pack desk from IKEA wasn't quite what I had in mind for my day off. Luckily, I had another appointment this afternoon, so I left the desk slap-bang in the middle of their living room (and the various bits of some matching storage units on wheels - Micke I think it's called?) and made my escape.
  Within the hour, I had arrived at Alfred Centuri's for afternoon tea. Betty Stromgren was already parked in the Queen Anne wing-back with a rather large glass of sherry, and just as Alfred was letting me in, Anne Tarés and Allan de Baran turned up together. Now, this was rather unusual as Anne's place is most definitely not on the way to Alfred's from the de Baran residence. After some blunt-force questionning from the half-cut Betty Stromgren, the - rather spurious to my thinking - reason for de Baran's wild detour was that Major Arthur Canis was supposed to pick Ms Tarés up, but he was detained at the Sol-Sirius border as the daft old coot had forgotten his Passport! 

 Anyway, after we'd subdued Betty with another half pint of Alfred's best cooking sherry, we set to with tea and a packet of HobNobs!

Sunday, January 11, 2015

What Would Bridget Jones's Houseboy Do?

 I need to find some new non-Star Trek books to read otherwise I'm in danger of boring you all with too much Trek.

  Any suggestions?


Thursday, January 08, 2015

"To Do" list

 Well, we're still here. Beaky hasn't managed to off us yet.
  And nor shall he! We're on our guard...
 Quite. Anyway, we've just got time to post a quick "to do" list and have a flick around your blogs before turning to matters of differing importance.
  Yes. Much as we'd like to lose yet more hours on this infernal Demon Box-
We've spent most of the day buggering around on Memory Beta!
  Shush, you! I was talking. Now, where was I?
Time wasting...
  Hmmph! Oh yes: Spending time at the Computron. Or trying not to. Or, at least, trying to spend constructive time at it. The point being-
If anyone actually gets around to the point, that is...
 The point being, if we make a list of things to do and share it with you lot, we might actually get around to doing the things on the list!
 So, without further ado, here is the list:

• Rearrange the Coven. After all, it's perfectly obvious that certain members aren't pulling their weight.
• Clear our desk. It looks like a red-tape & paperwork bomb has gone off on it! 
 Yes, it's not exactly conducive to sitting down and working at it.
• Darn socks (if anyone knows a good spell for this, please let me know!). 
• Finish the family tree for Svaathor.
• Write up our latest adventure from over the Cusp.
• Pick up some more de-nymphing solution.
• Oh, and find something to get rid of unicorns. There's one taken up residence in the shed and, as I'm sure you all know, they are stubbornly resistant to magic, so I can't take the easy way out.

Thursday, January 01, 2015

New year, old fear


Mr and Mrs Beaky

Specifically, Beaky III and his wife. Remember that I told you about the rearing of their monstrous progeny in the holly tree? Well, I did.
 No you didn't. I've just been scouring our dusty archives and can find no such declaration.
I could have sworn I did. Beaky is not something that one tends to forget.
 Well, look for yourself, then!
Sigh... Fine. So I didn't. I meant to, though. Anyway:

The Beakys and a couple of their minions

They are alive. Alive!
 Plus, they've only gone and got themselves some Starlings to act as minions.
We're doomed. Doomed!
 Oh, stop being so dramatic.
For those of you who are blissfully unaware of Beaky, you can learn more here, here, here and here.
Or just click on the Familiar label.