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03 July 2008 @ 12:35 am
book list, June 2008; fax machines and fireworks  
It's time for the continuing adventures of Liz and her reading list! These are the books I read in June 2008. (Click on the cuts for summaries and reactions.)

New: 6
---Dark Needs at Night's Edge, Kresley Cole (romance: the mechanics are fine -- Cole is a technically competent writer -- but she has an absolutely tin ear for tone. She apparently wants to be writing dark seduction, or at least emotionally believable romance, but what hits the page is flippant sarcasm and tissue-thin characterization.)

---Furies of Calderon, Jim Butcher (fantasy: book 1 of the Codex Alera, in which we meet Tavi, Amara, and Isana; various lords of Alera plan rebellion against Gaius Sextus; and the Marat invade through the Calderon valley.)

---Academ's Fury, Jim Butcher (fantasy: book 2 of the Codex Alera, in which Tavi has become a student at the Academy, under Gaius's patronage, and a conspiracy is afoot between the Canim embassy and the malevolent Vord.)

---Cursor's Fury, Jim Butcher (fantasy: book 3 of the Codex Alera, in which Tavi is sent undercover to one of the legions, which suddenly becomes very important after Lord Kalarus starts a rebellion to coincide with a Canim invasion. Meanwhile, Amara, partnered against her will with Lady Acquitaine [instigator of the Marat invasion in book 1], leads a group to rescue Kalarus's hostages.)

---Captain's Fury, Jim Butcher (fantasy: book 4 of the Codex Alera, in which Tavi is arrested, and then escapes and kidnaps the imprisoned Canim ambassador in an attempt to make peace between Alera and the Canim. Meanwhile, Amara and Gaius go on a secret mission to stop Lord Kalarus.)

---Saiyuki Reload vol. 8, Kazuya Minekura (manga: four guys and a jeep travel west to save the world. Only now they've separated -- Sanzo is off with Hazel and Gat, trying to hunt down Ukoku, while Hakkai, Gojyo, and Goku are pushing on by themselves -- and have stumbled into a nasty mess between a youkai village and a human town. Also, Hazel gets a second jolt telling him that maybe his path isn't as righteous as he thinks.)

Old: 3
---The Vor Game, Lois McMaster Bujold (science fiction: in which Miles attempts to be a normal part of the Barrayaran military, and fails miserably. Fortunately, this puts him in an excellent position to rescue the runaway Emperor Gregor and stop an invasion of the Hegen Hub.)

---Borders of Infinity, Lois McMaster Bujold (science fiction: in which Miles has three extended flashbacks while recovering from an operation. "The Mountains of Mourning" is a low key murder mystery and sociological study that helps anchor Miles's devotion to Barrayar; "Labyrinth" is an action-adventure set in the anything goes technocratic crime guild world of Jackson's Whole; and "The Borders of Infinity" is a prison break-out, again with a lot of sociological stuff woven in.)

---Mirror Dance, Lois McMaster Bujold (science fiction: in which Mark Vorkosigan needs a hug. So does his brother Miles. Rereading the first few chapters of this book was literally physically uncomfortable for me -- Bujold likes to ask 'What's the worst thing that could happen to Character X?' and then make it happen, which often hits my sympathetic humiliation squick -- but I love the fallout and the way she follows her characters on their attempts to cope and rebuild.)

June Total: 9 books (plus several magazines, a few newspapers, and a lot of fanfiction)

Year to Date: 64 books (40 new, 24 old)


I was late getting out of work tonight. At about 7:30pm, I realized the fax machine cartridge had run out, halfway through printing an invoice. So I opened a replacement cartridge, but couldn't install it until after I'd closed the store, counted my drawer, and put everything else away. Then I spent twenty minutes figuring out the instruction sheet, fighting rolls of carbon paper, slicing a new notch in one heavy cardboard roll because the pre-existing notch was off-center, and trying to get the cartridge back into the fax machine without letting any of the parts slip and undo all my hard work.

There are times I badly wish I had an extra hand.

Anyway, I had to code an extension on the main floor alarm, since I didn't get out until 9:35, rather than my usual 9:10-9:20.

But this turned out to be a good thing! You see, as I was walking home along Cascadilla St., I saw the beginning of the Ithaca College fireworks display, which I'd assumed I wouldn't get to see. So I stopped and spent the next twenty minutes leaning on a rail at the edge of Cascadilla Creek, watching fireworks and listening to the sound lag several seconds behind the lights.

Serendipity is a beautiful thing. :-)
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