The Encounter Log

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The Reality Dysfunction, The Neutronium Alchemist, and The Naked God by Peter F. Hamilton: Space opera, spy thriller, zombie horror, war novel, it's all that and several kitchen sinks more. It has been an achievement to marvel at that the author was able to keep track of all the plots and characters and tie up all the loose ends, but one starts thinking that there is a certain length beyond which no book is worth it.

A Fisherman of the Inland Sea by Ursula K. Le Guin: I still don't think the complications of courtship on O have been sufficiently explored, but I don't care right now, I loved the churten stories. I feel like the little kids in "The Shobies' Story". Another story!!

The Star Diaries by Stanislaw Lem: Finally got my hands on this and I was not disappointed. A nice mix of styles and tones. Apparently not a complete translation of the original Polish version, but comes with a helpful afterword to let you know exactly what you need to track down elsewhere.

The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World 2008 by Bob Sehlinger with Len Testa: I get their Disneyland guide every couple years, but this is my first time with the WDW one. Same format, mixing extensive research, authors' opinions, and reader comments-- in fact, some of the exact same reader comments, now edited to appear to be about Disney World instead of Disneyland. Hmm.

Your Movie Sucks by Roger Ebert: A second compilation of his reviews of bad movies, with what may be the most perfect book cover in the history of publishing. Mr. Ebert was born to appear on this cover. Oh, the book is good, too.

With the Lightnings by David Drake: I live with one of his biggest fans, but the time has come to admit that I am never going to wholeheartedly enjoy a David Drake novel. Especially not this one, with its weak plotting (for instance, practically every dilemma solved by the alleged hero's manservant just happening to know the right person in the grey market) and its sense of humor that would not be out of place in Abu Ghraib.

Stellvia episodes 1-16: This has been described as "Harry Potter in space", but the only real similarity is there's a school in it. It really is the natural heir to the spirit of Tom Corbett, Space Cadet.

Noein episodes 10-23: The pace is picking up, the pieces are falling into place, and only a few crucial questions remain, the biggest one being: Will Sci-Fi Channel stop pre-empting this series long enough for us to see the end?

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