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December 22, 2009


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I picked up Foundation because I was expecting/hoping it was about the founding of Valdemar itself. I probably won't bother with the sequels.

adolescent angst-once-removed left dripping all over the page


Speaking of ho-hum writers... Anybody else ever tried Kevin Anderson?

I'm currently going thru recent issues of Asimov's. The first one had nothing to write about, but it sounds better than this last outing of the Lackey oeuvre. The 2nd issue I read had, not one, but two stories I liked. One made me smile, the other is another story by Robert Reed: "The Good Hand" may not be as harrowing as "Truth", but I intend to nominate it for a Hugo.

The warning is very appreciated! Thank you.

Mary Aileen,
No such luck. I guess I neglected to mention it was (in theory) about the founding of the Collegium, with the big conflict being that some Heralds think it's a bad idea (they support direct apprenticeship) and some think it's a good idea. I found myself completely indifferent on the topic.

No Kevin Anderson that I can recall. What does he write?

Well, I read a couple of Lackey's many years ago, and heard about her psychological problems, and don't read her books.

Susan, Kevin J. Anderson is the guy who co-writes Dune books with Herbert's son. He does write some stuff on his own, but it's still crap.

Anderson has also done Star Wars novels, and stuff of his own. Every time I tried anything of his, I gave up fairly quickly because his writing was so damned flat and pedestrian.

Susan: Yeah, the founding of the Collegium didn't interest me much either. In my experience, Lackey is pretty good at characterization and setup, but her resolutions tend to be, well, lacking. In other words, her beginnings are better than her endings. So when the first book in a sequence isn't much good, that doesn't bode well for the rest.

Well, I'm quite convinced never to bother with Kevin Anderson! But I wouldn't be likely to read any Dune sequels past the first few (I stopped after God Emperor and should perhaps have stopped sooner) or any Star Wars novels anyway.

Mary Aileen,
I've liked about ten or twelve of her books and been at best bored by the rest. Why on earth do I keep doing this to myself??? It's like my masochistic habit of continuing to buy Yarbro's Saint-Germain novels long after the series has become senescent.

(Hey, aren't you supposed to be away for the holidays?)

Susan: I *am* away for the holidays. But my parents have a computer, see...

Mary Aileen... So do my parents-in-law. Still, I wish they had something other than DSL so that I could hook up my own laptop. I feel like I'm wearing someone else's clothes.

This is why I just borrowed it from the library! I have a lot of Lackey books... it's my mind candy. But I wasn't about to buy this one unless I knew it was actually *good*.

Nikki: That's what I do, too. There are only a few authors on my Buy in Hardcover list. Lackey isn't one of them.

My mom has wifi now. :) Happy Susan.

Nikki & Mary Aileen,
I have never seen any novel by Lackey that was worth buying in hardcover. What I need to do is stop buying them in paperback. Or at least in new paperback; the 99-cent price one often finds on Amazon for used paperbacks seems about right. I am disgusted with myself for spending $8 on this dreck.

Susan needs a Lackey intervention.

My mom has wifi now. :) Happy Susan.

I set ours up not long ago. I too am happy by that change in our home's technological state. No more unsighly 80-foot cable snaking around the house whenever we want to bring our laptops into the living-room. I've been thinking about acquiring a wifi-incorporating printer, but I'm not sure it's really worth the cost. Or does somebody know of such printers in the low-price range?

I have been disappointed by every Kevin Anderson (co-) authored novel except Captain Nemo (subtitled The fantastic history of a dark genius) in which Jules Verne had a childhood friend named Andre Nemo whose adventures inspired Verne's novels. It was quite fun, although as it included the highlights of all of Verne's stories it ought to have been.

That one sounds like it has potential, but I think I won't go out of my way to look for it, given how poorly everyone speaks of him in general.

My favorite gift this year is a reprint of an 1829 manual on dueling.

That is an awesome gift, Susan! Reminds me of my favorite gift from last year, from my brother... a vintage 1880s etiquette book :)

Oooh, that sounds interesting as well! This book is partly an argument against dueling at all and partly an "if you must" treatise on how to do so honorably. It's very practical in places:

"In choosing the scene of action, special precaution should invariably be used, to prevent the necessity for carrying wounded gentlemen over walls, ditches, gates, stiles, or hedges; or too great a distance to a dwelling."

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