Sunday, May 27, 2012

Nineteen Eighty-What?

Hey everybody. Sorry for yesterday. My alter ego is working on a top secret project, and he didn't really leave me any time to come over here and write up a little something for all of you out there. Any hoo, I'm here now, so let's get started.

I finished another novel this last week. I feel like I'm starting to read more than I ever did back in college. It really does equip you for a lifetime of education. Anyways, the book I finished this week was George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four. It wasn't exactly what I thought it was.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Moon Chess, Mothers, and a Misplaced Battleship

Welcome back for another Friday. Are you ready to receive a couple of stories for the weekend? Hope you are because you're getting them anyways. The first story is "All the Things the Moon Is Not" by Alexander Lumans. This week's story from an anthology is "Evidence in a Case of Abandonment: One Daughter's Personal Account" by M. Rickert. Lastly, the story from the past is "The Misplaced Battleship" by Harry Harrison. The stories this week are not quite as action-packed as the stories I usually pick, but they are just as good, if not better in their own rights. So, take a break and relax. It's the weekend. You might as well enjoy it.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Another Extraterrestrial

Shucks... I wasn't able to finish a book this week. Well, that's okay. I might have something better right now anyways. I got a visit from my brother, and as always, I felt it better to spend some time with him than all by myself, curled up with a book. So I watched a couple of movies with him. One of them I'll talk about tonight, and the other one I'll save for a rainy day.

What's the movie of the night then, you ask? And why might it be better than a book?
The movie of the night is Alien. To be honest, I don't know if it's necessarily better than a book, but many people feel that the movie is a good primer for Ridley Scott's upcoming film, Prometheus. I can't tell you how much of a primer it is without seeing the new movie, but it's still fun to go back and watch the classics anyways. This was my second time watching this movie, and I feel like I caught a lot that I didn't in my first viewing.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Centenarians, Soldiers, and Meteor Miners

Another Friday is here, and I hope you're all ready for the weekend. I have some action-packed stories for you today. The recent story published in a magazine is "Nightside on Callisto" by Linda Nagata. Next, the story from an anthology is "Jungle Walkers" by David Klecha and Tobias S. Buckell. Lastly, the story from over half a century ago is "Salvage in Space" by Jack Williamson. So, with no further ado, I'll move out of the way so that you can enjoy your stories.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Buyers and Sellers in Space, Part 2

Hey, sorry I forgot to leave a post here last night. I know I promised, but the day kind of got away from me. Let's see. Where were we now? The last time we were here, I was going on about The Space Merchants by Frederik Pohl and Cyril M. Kornbluth. I think I left off at the point where the action began in the book. That would be the assassination attempts on Mitch Courtenay's life. From there, it's a pretty fun read. But first, I think a little primer might be of service.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Buyers and Sellers in Space

I promised yesterday that I would have a post for today, and here is the first part of it (the latter part you will receive tomorrow). Earlier this week, I finished The Space Merchants by Frederik Pohl and Cyril M. Kornbluth. I will admit, it was a little difficult to get into, but I feel rewarded that I was able to finish the novel. It's a fun little story packed wit a bit of espionage and intrigue. More or less the stuff of secret agents than a science fiction story.

The Space Merchants is set in a not-so-distant future where the moon is beginning to become populated and Venus has begun to gain some hype for much of the same reason. In this future, the United States government has essentially been replaced by corporate America. Corporations hold seats in congress, and the President is a smug little man who often gets left out of the loop (I would kind of like to see what Pohl and Kornbluth have done with the judicial system).

I guess what took me so long to get into the story was the lack of action in the first quarter to half of the book. Not that there wasn't any. There just wasn't enough. Here's what happens. We meet our protagonist, star-classed copywriter Mitch Courtenay, shortly before he is given the reins for the Venus advertising project. Courtenay is a little reluctant, but realizes it will give him a large boost in his status. We also learn that he has a wife, or a wife-to-be, though she is beginning to think about leaving him. Much of the book is Mitch dwelling on her in one way or another.

After taking over the Venus project, things begin to heat up a little for Courtenay. Firstly, he meets with the first man to visit Venus. A short man, no taller than three feet and weighing no more than ninety pounds, who was selected only to travel to Venus for his size. He ends up being more trouble than he is worth for Mitch, though really not too much trouble at all. Around this time there are two assassination attempts on Courtenay's life. This is also just about where the action starts to pick up.

I think I'll leave it at that for tonight. Come back tomorrow for a little bit more of the story. I don't want to give away any spoilers, but I do want to be honest in letting you know where some of the fun parts of the story are.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

An Omnilingual Bound Oracle

Today is Saturday. Yesterday was Friday. What happened to the stories from yesterday? I promise I didn't forget. It's more like I was busy yesterday and passed out before I could finish them. So that means, today you'll be receiving the short story post, and tomorrow you will receive the post you should have got today. It'll be fun.

Enough with the chit-chat now. Here's what you should look forward to in this post. The more recent story is Frank Cavallo's "The Oracle of Ganymede". The story from an anthology is "Forever Bound" by Joe Haldeman. Last but not least is the classic story. This week it is H. Beam Piper's "Omnilingual". Sit back and enjoy these stories over your weekend.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Flashbacks and Flashforwards in the Era of World War II

I finished reading Kurt Vonnegut's Slaughterhouse-Five earlier this week, and thought I should share some of my thoughts on it with you guys. It's a fun little read, and it goes pretty fast. So sit tight and we'll get through this thing in a jiffy.

Friday, May 4, 2012

The Second Bittersweet Mess

Hi, and welcome to another Friday night. The stories tonight aren't quite as action-packed as they were last week, but I do have some good ones for you today. The recently published story I have to offer you is Maggie Clark's "The Bittersweet Here and Now". The story from an anthology is Stephen King's "The End of the Whole Mess", from Wastelands. And this week's classic is pretty awesome. It's "Second Variety" by none other than Philip K. Dick. So get yourselves cozy. You're all in for a treat.