Last August, I was hot and swollen and uncomfortable. This August made up for it.
Last August, I was hot and swollen and uncomfortable. This August made up for it.
I have been wondering if I will ever have something to write about other than the baby or the book I’m reading, and the answer is: YES! But only if it’s something that happened to someone else. Apparently. Because the only things happening to me are baby-related.
What happened, you may ask? And since it didn’t happen to me, why should you care?
My neighbor’s new barn burned to the ground! And because it’s crazy-dramatic, that’s why!
My front-yard neighbors, Kev and Kerry, bought a house about 10 minutes north of here and moved in last weekend. On Monday, Kev was burning cardboard boxes in the fire pit and his barn (his new house
has had a barn) burned down. He swears he put the fire out before he left (he was at the old house, getting it ready for tenants when the fire started). The arson guy (Kev is not being charged with arson) says an ember must have gotten under the barn.
No one was home. The police (or whoever) called Kerry, and when she couldn’t reach Kev, she called Allison (who owns the bookstore across the street from us), and Allison ran over to the house shouting about a fire, so Kev went running for his fire extinguisher thinking the bookstore was on fire, and HOW DID I MISS ALL THIS? It was Monday. We were here Monday. We’re here all day, every day.
I wonder if this is a new curse. Remember the house that caught on fire across the street from us in Oregon? Maybe fires happen to those near us. At least it was their new house, not the old one. Wait – twice is a coincidence. Keep your eyes peeled for a third one – that’ll make a pattern.
Jack’s morning nap today was in my arms. Usually, once he falls asleep, I take a couple of minutes (at least) to gaze adoringly at the sweet cuddly baby before I open my book or close my eyes. This morning, I’m pretty sure I was asleep before he was. I certainly don’t have any memory of his sleeping face. I am SO TIRED. Wednesday night wasn’t quite as bad as last Monday, but it was bad enough (he was awake from 2am to 5).
I can’t even write about it without yawning.
Gave up: 8/23/19
Time travel story that’s a little heavy-handed on the SF aspect. I like hard SF, and I like time travel, but there’s something about the way we’re being told about the time travel bureau that feels amateurish. The plot device for it could work, but it’s too clinical, I think. Too much telling, not enough showing, maybe. And the fact that the guy is in trouble for something he a) couldn’t control, and b) CAN’T REMEMBER seems really crappy. Not finishing!
For the first time in a long time, like months, we had a really bad night with Jack. He’s fine, and he was fine during the night. He was just, you know, awake. He went to bed like normal, pretty easily. He was asleep in the crib before 7:30. He woke up about 3 and a half hours later, just before 11pm. We had JUST climbed into bed. I hadn’t even put my book down yet. John changed his diaper, and then I tried to nurse him back to sleep. For most of an hour. He didn’t go to sleep, so I stood up and held him, trying to sway him to sleep. He’d put his head down, then shift it, then shift it again. I thought it was going to work, but then he started to squirm and protest, so I sat back down with him and tried to nurse him to sleep again. No luck, repeat of the almost-settling on my shoulder, and then around 12:30 I texted John to come in and try, since he usually has really good luck getting him to sleep on his shoulder. Not that night – Jack was having none of it. Less than 15 minutes later, I was nursing him again, thinking super-sleepy thoughts at him, but it still didn’t work. Around 1:30, maybe a little before, I tagged John back in, but Jack just didn’t want to sleep. John put him in his crib and stayed nearby – Jack happily crawled in circles on the mattress for half an hour. So a little before 2am, it was back to nursing (and another diaper change) for us. Then I tried the crib thing. He giggled and wanted to play. I tried reading to him from outside the crib, but the light from the kindle fascinated him. I tried lying down on the floor next to the crib, but he kept babbling at me and reaching through the slats to poke me. Then around 2:30 John texted me to suggest we take him for a drive.
YES. BRILLIANT. LET’S DO THAT TWO HOURS AGO.
Jack was asleep within 20 minutes, and we were in bed by 3:15.
Was Jack kind enough to sleep in since he was awake for four hours in the middle of the night and we hadn’t yet gotten ANY sleep? Um, no. No, he was not. We all got up at 7am that morning. That’s less than four hours for me and John, for anyone too tired to do the math. Jack at least got that first 3 and a half hours.
Next question: why am I up NOW, at 10pm, with that in my recent history?
Short story by an author I like, but I was led astray by the title. I assumed, since with one word changed, it’s the title of a Shirley Jackson book, that it would be similar or related to that book. It’s not, not at all. The title is perfectly appropriate to the story, and a cute nod to Shirley Jackson, but I spent a lot of time (for such a short story) trying to figure out the connection. I might have enjoyed it more without that. It’s about a virtual reality game company employee who has “volunteered” to do some training to avoid being fired for being a jerk, basically. Will she learn? Will she grow? Once I let go of the title, I liked it.
Another book that was good but one I don’t know if I liked. It’s a coming of age story, but the framing device was a little confusing…and then I was totally engrossed in the story, and the framing device sort of starts to make sense near the end (most of the story is within the frame, so it doesn’t matter in the moment), but then the very end made NO sense to me. The book includes an essay by the author about the themes and inspirations, and I can tell you I missed all of that. It did make everything make more sense, and I don’t mean to say that the book didn’t make sense (except for the end, which was confusing), and now I’m not making sense, so I’ll end by saying that this book could be taught in a literature course and the students would get a lot out of it.
A gender-swapped take on The Picture of Dorian Gray, but with magic (okay, like explicit magic). And demons. And sword-fighting! I didn’t love it. It was slow to start, and the two main characters were pretty annoying (they got better), and the demon plot took FOREVER to roll, and the two main characters got the same information from different sources, but the information was identical, and WE, the lucky readers, got to read about it both time, and okay, maybe I didn’t like it, either. I mean, I didn’t hate it. But I probably won’t read the sequel.
I can’t tell you if I liked this book because I don’t know. There’s a really nice, very real family, maybe an apocalypse, definitely a home invasion, something TRULY AWFUL happens, and then…so, it was good? I mean, it was GOOD, but I don’t know if I liked it.
Sequel to Updraft, which I enjoyed, but I have nearly put this down more than once. It’s plenty good, and the main character is a somewhat realistic 20-year-old (which is kind of annoying, but I guess good?). The problem is that I DO want to know how this world is constructed (at the moment, my best guess is that the towers these people live on and fly between are spines on the back of an enormous turtle), but I don’t care enough about the plot to keep reading to find out.
Update: I kept reading, I DID finish it, and I’ll tell you offline what I know about how the world is constructed if you ask nicely. Also, I don’t plan to read the third one. These books aren’t bad, but I just don’t care that much.
This was the very last Hugo-eligible story I read, and it took a serious run at the top of my novelette list (I landed on #2 for it, but it was close). It’s a refreshingly NICE story, and I am moving the author’s novels higher up my to-read list.
Super short, and very moving, but it’s mostly in the footnotes and the editing comments, so it takes a little maneuvering to get at it.
I LOVE THIS STORY SO MUCH. I am not ashamed to admit I cried at the end. I was reading it out loud to Jack and he wasn’t sure what to do with me.
The style of this short story was interesting – like encyclopedia entries – and I appreciate how each of the “donors” affected George Washington, but this was both a little too weird for me (I’m shuddering at the whole teeth thing) and a little not enough.
For a novelette, it took too long to reel me in. I considered not finishing it, and come on, it’s a novelette. I did finish it, and it did get good, but there’s too much left to the imagination after the end. And I’m not sure I care enough to imagine it.
LOVED this novelette – the style, the voice, the story. It’s about a woman who has just returned to her academic research after losing her mother (who she took care of for years). It rocketed to the top of my voting list for novelette this year.
SHORT short story, with a cute twist on the sly faerie folk genre.
In contrast to the previous novelette, I felt like this one needed more. As a family story, I think it had enough (and it was really good). As a science fiction story, it felt a little empty.
Oh, how I liked this novelette. A bad leader, a long-term revenge, pain and suffering. Really good stuff in a very small package. And food! Delicious food!