Saturday, 30 January 2010

You remember me!

Ah, hello. Fancy seeing you here! Sorry we haven't been about much in the last few days - We caught the plague again. Not a particularly virulent variety, but just enough to keep us off work and firmly ensconced on the sofa watching the first (and best) season of Heroes.
And now you're here, you're just in time for a books-read-this-year-so-far post. Ha!

We must do better than last year's feeble attempt to read more than the year before. We came sadly short of the heady heights of 23 books read back in 2008, only managing to read 14. But, this year will be different. This year we will astound and amaze you all, not only with the amount of non-Star trek books we will read, but also - well, I haven't thought of a "but also" yet, but I'm sure something will crop up.
Anyway, to start things off, here are the first four books-read-this-year:

1. Star Trek Vanguard: Precipice, by David Mack

I'm saving myself the bother of writing this one up as I know you just don't care. I will say this, however: David Mack is one of the finest writers of our time (in my opinion, of course), and continues to make reading about the lives of those caught up in the contininuing events related to Starbase 47, aka Vanguard Station, a pleasure.

2. Nation, by Terry Pratchett

I took me a little while to get into this book because I was of the opinion "if it ain't broke, don't fix it", i.e. This isn't a Discworld book, so why should I bother. Well, I'm glad I stuck with it as it's a terrific story.
Without wanting to spoil the story for anyone who wants to read it, here is the author's note:
This might look like a book set in the Pacific Ocean. Nothing could be further from the truth!!!!!* It is in fact set in a parallel universe, a phenomenon known only to physicists and anyone who has ever watched any episode of any sf series, anywhere. Different things happened, some people lived at different times, some bits of history have been changed, some things are made up out of real pieces (like the beer and the last five minutes of the Sweet Judy**) and so on. But the Great Pelagic Ocean is its own place.
Oddly enough, though, after the book was finished I learned that the Society Islands in the Pacific were named after the Royal Society in London by the famous Captain Cook, because it had sponsored the first British scientific survey of the islands. Sometimes it's hard to make things up . . .

* All exclamation marks were provided by The Author. They are not my own addition.
** A sailing ship wrecked upon the island of Nation by a tidal wave.

3. Grinny, by Nicholas Fisk

This book scared me silly when I first read it as a child and it's still creepy and disturbing today. It centres around a family whose Great Aunt Emma (or Grinny, as she's nicknamed by the daughter) turns up out of the blue to stay with them. The thing is, the mother and father have no clue who she is until GAE says the phrase "You remember me!", and then it's as if a recognition switched is flipped. The two children Tim and Beth, and their friend Mac, quickly discover Grinny's horrifying secret and set about ridding their family of Grinny in the hope of saving the world.

4. Stardust, By Neil Gaiman

Now, this was not the amazing read that I thought it would be. Don't get me wrong, it's very good (especially as it doesn't feature Ricky 'I'm an irritating unfunny twat' Gervais, like the film version did), and a very easy read, but just not on par with the film's grander scale of character, marvel and enjoyment. I also didn't find it very involving.

Well, that's it for January. I hoping to read at least another four books in February, but we'll see how well that goes nearer the time, eh?


  1. Nothing could be further from the truth!!!!!

    Finally! Someone who uses more exclamation marks than me!!!

    wv: groppo
    Grinny's husband

  2. Arrrgh! My eye!! You poked it with all those exclamation marks!!!

  3. I've stalled. Still haven't started my next book.

    Although I'm preparing to watch my third Ryan Reynolds movie of today.

  4. Vanguard almost piqued my interest when it first started, but I just don't want to commit to a whole series of books that I feel I have to read. So I didn't bother.

    As for Grinny: Tim and his friend Mac? Apple Mac? Why yes - together we can save the world! (Beth can just look pretty)

  5. That's a lot of books you've read. The Star Trek one and the Pleagic Ocean one sound interesting. I believe the Society Islands are also known as French Polynesia (Tahiti archipelago). I'd like to visit there someday--Vanguard, Pleagic, Tahiti; they all sound good, so long as they're no Borgs trying to assimilate me while I'm drinking a cocktail.

    I'm currently thumbing through an art history book--I like the pretty pictures of art and architecture.

    I've learning the difference between Gothic vs Romanesque architecture and the wonders of the geodesic dome.

  6. 'Petra: Ooh, which movies have you watched? And which was the best for gratuitous Ryan nakedness?

    Tim: The good thing about the Vanguard series is that there're only three authors (so far), and they're all brilliant. So, if you do give the first one a go, the rest are equally well written and engaging, so they shouldn't ever feel like a chore to read.

    Oh, and: Damn you! When I next read Grinny, I'll be substituting you and a crappy Apple product for the characters. Bugger.

    Eros: Thankfully, Borg don't meet the dress code for such exotic holiday destinations, so you shouldn't be bothered.

    Although, I'd be careful when you're in any geodesic domes as the Borg are known to hang around them - They like the perfection.

  7. It was Wolverine, The Proposal and Blade Trinity.

    I think the best nakedness was in The Proposal. Because it was full on nakedness.

    Blade Trinity had the added bonus of Dominic Purcell and Wolverine had Hugh Jackman.


Tickle my fancy, why don't you?