The Encounter Log

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All of the Hugo-nominated short fiction except "The Tear", because I forgot it wasn't available online and couldn't remember where I'd downloaded the Hugo voters' packet to at the last minute: Despite defending the Hugo process elsewhere, I have to admit the novella and novelette categories do seem kind of weak this year. Of the four novellas I read, I think I lean most toward "True Names", which has moved Cory Doctorow from my list of Writers to Avoid Absolutely to Writers I Can Stand Only If They're Collaborating. I think I voted "Shoggoths in Bloom" first for Best Novelette, and prefer No Award to "Pride and Prometheus"-- sure, they're both pastiches, but the critical difference for me is that the former really added something, and the latter is pure fanfic based on works I'm not that into. The short stories were better, and my top pick was "Exhalation", followed closely by "26 Monkeys, Also the Abyss".

Elfquest: The Rebels online: Yes, when I wasn't looking, they posted the entirety of Elfquest on, so now I can finally get acquainted with parts of the saga that were previously only glimpsed briefly in comic book stores. And, well, this one wasn't really worth the huge wait. Primarily, I think, because we hardly see the elves. But the next section I'm planning to go through is Jink...

Starship Troopers by Robert Heinlein: It's a rare book where the physics still holds up after fifty years, only for the book to be done in instead by horribly outdated social science.

The Interior Life by Katharine Blake: Well, I know the author, so there's really nothing objective I can say about this other than it's a fantasy, and, um, it's on paper and contains words.

Schlock Mercenary: The Scrapyard of Insufferable Arrogance by Howard Tayler: I didn't mean to, but I've been trying to hold down the book purchases what with the economy and all, and it was sitting right there in the living room... Actually, I think there were parts I really enjoyed, but they're blotted out by the cringe-inducing memory of getting about two-thirds of the way through and realizing that the only dark-skinned characters I had seen so far were the pair of genetically modified ape-men. I'm sure he didn't mean it that way, but still.

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