November 30th, 2008


Dust by Elizabeth Bear

Dust (Jacob's Ladder, Book 1) Dust by Elizabeth Bear

GoodReads summary: On a broken ship orbiting a doomed sun, dwellers have grown complacent with their aging metal world. But when a serving girl frees a captive noblewoman, the old order is about to change....

Ariane, Princess of the House of Rule, was known to be fiercely cold-blooded. But severing an angel’s wings on the battlefield—even after she had surrendered—proved her completely without honor. Captive, the angel Perceval waits for Ariane not only to finish her off—but to devour her very memories and mind. Surely her gruesome death will cause war between the houses—exactly as Ariane desires. But Ariane’s plan may yet be opposed, for Perceval at once recognizes the young servant charged with her care.

Rien is the lost child: her sister. Soon they will escape, hoping to stop the impending war and save both their houses. But it is a perilous journey through the crumbling hulk of a dying ship, and they do not pass unnoticed. Because at the hub of their turning world waits Jacob Dust, all that remains of God, following the vapor wisp of the angel. And he knows they will meet very soon.

My review

Rating: 2 of 5 stars

This book is the first in a trilogy; the remaining two books have not, yet, been published.

I was really rather disappointed with Dust; it showed such promise.

The problem: I think the author was unable to flesh out her definitions of the world, the types of beings, and their relationships to each other. There were/are just too many unanswered questions.

There are so many examples, I won' bother you with all of them.

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View all my reviews.
glass laterns

Abarat: Days of Magic, Nights of War by Clive Barker

"I dreamed I spoke in another's language,
I dreamed I lived in another's skin,
I dreamed I was my own beloved,
I dreamed I was a tiger's kin.

I dreamed that Eden lived inside me,
And when I breathed a garden came,
I dreamed I knew all of Creation,
I dreamed I knew the Creator's name.

I dreamed--and this dream was the finest--
That all I dreamed was real and true,
And we would live in joy forever,
You in me, and me in you."

— Clive Barker (Abarat, Book 2: Days of Magic, Nights of War)

So begins the journey of Candy Quackenbush in Abarat, Book 2: Days of Magic, Nights of War. The beginning is has a slow build-up. I almost am inclined to think that Barker wasn't sure if this was going to be the last book in the Abarat series or not when he began writing this story. Once things get rolling, it's a hard book to set down. The reader delves deeper into Candy's history and lineage, uncovering secrets and connections hidden in the first book. Also, the reader becomes better acquainted with Abarat and the twenty-five islands of The Hours. A must read for any fan of the series or anyone looking to get lost in a magical world where anything is possible.


Duke, Haven, Audrey


Hello! This is my first post *I think* to this community. I'm looking for some book recommendations. I've got 12 pages left in Ian McEwan's Atonement and I am in desperate need of new books to read.

Unfortunately, I have no idea who or what exactly I'm looking for. I know I want to read a book where I get attached to the characters, and at the end feel like I've accomplished something, if you know what I mean.

Some criteria: I don't like fantasy much, to some extent I do, just not vampires and werewolves and stuff. I'm not looking for scary or politically correct/incorrectness. Also, I'd like something with an entirely different style of writing than McEwan's. ^_^

Any recommendations are highly highly appreciated!!! Thank you!
  • devi42

Growing up with Anne

It’s Christmas and though I can’t actually read in English yet, that hasn’t stopped my family. I had turned five earlier that month and five is old enough for Anne. I unwrap the presents – books 1-3 from my parents and books 4-6 from my aunt and uncle. Each set comes in its own little box with a serious looking redhead on the front.

In my room, the books get a place of honor in the bookcase-style headboard of my bed. One set goes on the far right and one set goes on the far left – no matter which side I sleep on, I can see Anne. I wait for the day when I’m old enough to read them… even though I don’t really know what they’re about (it will be two years before Kevin Sullivan releases the famed mini-series).

We go on trips to neighbouring PEI where we visit Green Gables and Rainbow Valley. At Green Gables, I explain to a nice tour guide that I have the books. She tells me that I have something very special. I nod; then, in a guilt-ridden whisper, I admit that I haven’t actually been able to read them yet. She pats my head and tells me that it’s all right, that I’ll read them when I’m ready.

There is never a question of my not reading the books. In Canada, we start them young.
  • devi42

Holiday Meme....

Why is it that no one ever gets trampled by a crowd of shoppers at a bookstore? Not that I want anyone to get trampled, but wouldn't it be lovely if people were stampeding for books instead of flat screen televisions and Wii Fits? (as a side note, J.D. Rhoades wrote an interesting post over at Murderati on using the holidays to try and prop up the publishing industry)

So, I present to you this meme:

What books have you asked for this holiday season and which books are you planning on giving?
  • devi42

The most important reading of all...

The reading we do as children may be more serious than any reading we'll ever do again. Books for children and young people are unashamedly prescriptive: They're written, at least in part, to teach us what the world is like, how people are, and how we should behave--as my colleague Megan Kelso (The Squirrel Mother) puts it, "How to be a human being."

- from the article "When Books Could Change Your Life" by Tim Kreider

Little Women

I'm reading Little Women for the first time for a book club. ... Let's just say I've trudged my way through 10 chapters. Everyone else seems to be enjoying it except for my sister who hates the book. I've done a little research and it seems like i'm the only one who doesn't like the book.

I'm not trying to start an argument, just trying to see if anyone agrees or can state why they love the book so much.
Kitty: Angry Calico

Barlow, Toby: Sharp Teeth

Sharp Teeth
Writer: Toby Barlow
Genre: Fiction
Pages: 308

The premise: it's poetry, an epic verse poem if you will, telling the story of the competing packs of werewolves in L.A. It's a horror story, in that the werewolves aren't anything at all like we see on the UF shelves, and it's a love story, but nothing like you see in paranormal romance. Everyone is at risk of getting devoured by a competing wolf pack, and unfortunately for dogcatcher Anthony, he's stuck in the middle, all because the girl he loves is a werewolf and he doesn't even know it. And, of course, because he's a DOGCATCHER, of all things.

My Rating

Must Have: but oh so close to being on the "keeper shelf." I'm no poetry expert, so I can't rate how well Barlow does his verse, but I can say he mixes beauty and readability with a fantastic, expert touch. I would've avoided this book, despite my werewolf fetish, because of the form its told (verse), but that would've been a shame and a mistake. It takes no time to get used to the beauty and rhythm of this book, and the story is complex and engaging, as is the writing itself. Werewolf fans, this is a must. I remember when I was at SHU, there was a panel of editors and agents talking about what they'd like to see in the market, and one of them said she'd like to see something rise up as the "definitive werewolf novel" like Anne Rice's Interview with the Vampire is the definitive book (well her series really) on vamps. I really, really think that Barlow's Sharp Teeth would've been exactly what she was looking for. This book is not to be missed.

The full review, which includes some major spoilers, may be found in my journal. As always, comments and discussion are most welcome. :)


Happy Reading! :)