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bedone Locked account

Joined 6 months, 3 weeks ago

Since infancy, my parents introduced me to the magic of storytelling, sparking a lifelong love affair with books. My literary heart beats strongest for Fantasy and Science Fiction, though I also find joy in exploring the realms of social sciences, history, and personal development.

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bedone's books

Ram V, Filipe Andrade: The Many Deaths of Laila Starr (Paperback, 2022, Boom! Studios) 4 stars

Humanity is on the verge of discovering immortality, which means the avatar of Death is …

Review of 'The Many Deaths of Laila Starr' on 'Goodreads'

4 stars

A baby is born, and when this child grows up he will discover the secret to immortality. The goddess of death is laid off and sent to Earth in a mortal body. She hopes that she can kill the child, or at least persuade him not to defeat death, so that she can get her old job back. In the process, she learns about the beauty of life.

Andy Weir: Project Hail Mary (Hardcover, 2021, Ballantine Books) 4 stars

Ryland Grace is the sole survivor on a desperate, last-chance mission--and if he fails, humanity …

Review of 'Project Hail Mary' on 'Goodreads'

3 stars

This was OK - not bad, but I expected it to be better. Part of the premise is that a scientist discovers a threat that will cause a climate disaster and destroy civilization as we know it. After that discovery, world governments come together, spare no expense, and allow some pretty severe actions to solve the problem. In light of recent world history, that seems unlikely to me.

Review of 'Beyond the Shade of the Mango Tree' on 'Goodreads'

3 stars

This boom includes stories from Dube's life interspersed with reflections on gospel principles. I expected it to be more of an autobiography. While it's not what I expected, it has some good stories and was a short, interesting read.

Paul Lockhart: A Mathematician's Lament (2009, Bellevue Literary Press) 4 stars

"A musician wakes from a terrible nightmare. In his dream he finds himself in a …

Review of "A Mathematician's Lament" on 'Goodreads'

4 stars

This book is in two parts. Part one, "Lamentations," argues that the way math is taught in school is all wrong. (One of the chapters in that section is called, "High School Geometry: Instrument of the Devil." It definitely reflected some of my feelings about Geometry when I was in high school.) Part two, "Exultations," sets out some ideas for how math should be taught.

I found myself agreeing with the author on some points and disagreeing with others. Agree or disagree though, his passion for the subject makes it an enjoyable read. I see that Lockheart has a couple of other books that try to teach math using the approach he suggests, and I'm curious to check those out.

John M. Ford: The dragon waiting (1983, Timescape Books, Distributed by Simon and Schuster) 4 stars

The year is 1478 the dawn of the Renaissance. The Wars of the Roses have …

Review of 'The dragon waiting' on 'Goodreads'

5 stars

The characterization in this book is great. The prose is also good. This is not a comedy by any means, but there are subtle puns and callbacks throughout. The Star Wars shoutout was a favorite for me (I won't spoil anything by saying where it was).

I've heard that some people don't like the way the story changes partway through the book. We spend several chapters meeting the characters and resolving some mysteries, and then it becomes all about who's going to become the next King of England. There are some aspects of this alternate history that could have been explored a lot more. I can understand these concerns, but they didn't bother me. I enjoyed the story and the way the pace picked up as it went along.

Dan Wells: Extreme Makeover: A Novel (2016, Tor Books) 3 stars

Review of 'Extreme Makeover: A Novel' on 'Goodreads'

4 stars

This was a good thriller. I wanted to keep reading to find out what would happen next. I thought the idea of making the cosmetics industry into villains was kind of unoriginal, but outside of the executives who are portrayed, 1Wells did a nice job of giving some good reasons for people to act the way they did.

Gene Wolfe: Calde of the Long Sun (Book of the Long Sun) (Paperback, 1995, Tor Science Fiction) 4 stars

Review of 'Calde of the Long Sun (Book of the Long Sun)' on 'Goodreads'

4 stars

This book is where it starts to get tough to keep going in the Long Sun series. The story takes some unexpected turns. There are some parts that just don't make sense on a first read. There are some parts that just aren't exciting.

But there's also some good stuff. The first chapter, with it's Garden of Eden imagery, sets up some ideas that will keep going through this series and the next. We learn some unsettling things about the gods worshipped in Viron, and it sheds more light on the state religion and what's going on in the world. And if nothing else, this book is required reading on the road to the Short Sun series, which many consider to be Wolfe's masterpiece.

Stephanie Hans, Kieron Gillen: Die, Volume 3 (Paperback, 2020, Image Comics) 4 stars

Review of 'Die, Volume 3' on 'Goodreads'

4 stars

One of the things I enjoy about Die is that it takes the trope of "game players magically transported to the world of the game" and looks at it through the eyes of players who are in their forties. These older characters see the world a little differently than your usual party of teenagers or young adults. They are worried about their kids, about health, about the way their life is turning out. They see the themes in their own stories and consider whether they want to play along or try to change.

The previous two volumes set up the premise and gave us a little backstory about the world of Die. This volume introduces some new mysteries and some twists to some of the worldbuilding. It digs deeper into some of the character motivations and introduces a few new influences to the story. I enjoyed it more than Volume …

Brian K. Vaughan, Fiona Staples: Saga, Volume 1 (Paperback, 2012, Image Comics) 4 stars

When two soldiers from opposite sides of a never-ending galactic war fall in love, they …

Review of 'Saga, Volume 1' on 'Goodreads'

1 star

I did not like this, and I don't understand why people make such a big deal about it.

This book has had a lot of hype for years. A lot of what I heard was by people who said, "I normally don't read comics, but Saga is great," or "I normally don't read SF, but Saga is great." Maybe that's the problem because what they praise as SO ORIGINAL was just not exciting to me. Two people from warring factions fall in love (snore). They have a baby who represents great hope for the future (snore). There are creatures who look like animals and spaceships made of trees and a babysitter who's like a ghost, and, and, and... look, that might seem groundbreaking and exciting to you, but it's not exciting for me. And anyway, interesting visuals aren't going to save a story that stinks (and at least in Volume …

Gene Wolfe: The Devil in a Forest (Paperback, 1976, PENGUIN PUTNAM * TRADE) 4 stars

Review of 'The Devil in a Forest' on 'Goodreads'

No rating

I enjoyed this book, although it would be easy to misunderstand what it is going into it.

First of all, this is usually listed as a fantasy but it's more like historical fiction. It takes place in medieval Europe. There isn't much magic. There are a few things that could be magic, or they could be given natural explanations.

The book cover makes this story out to be an epic battle of good vs. evil. There isn't one single villain, though. It's more about a group of people and the circumstances that split them into smaller and smaller factions. My own interpretation is that "The Devil" in the story isn't a visible character, but more of an unseen force that turns people against each other.

I found the story to be enjoyable. For a Wolfe book, it's pretty straightforward. There are a couple of mysteries that I didn't solve, but …