It’s probably not a Dyson’s sphere, but Tabby’s Star is still weird.

childrenIt’s getting towards the end of the year again and I’m starting to think about what I would like to read next year. I haven’t come up with a definitive list, but I have been thinking.

The worst part about reading is that there are only so many hours in the day and so many books to read. Worse still is the fact that there are so many great books out there that I have already read and would love to read again. So that got me thinking. What I would really love to start doing is to mix things up and focus not only on new material that I want to read, but other books that I would love to read again.

For example, a few books that immediately jump to mind are Relic by Douglas Preston and Lincoln ChildMars and Return to Mars by Ben Bova and West of Eden by Harry Harrison. I read all these book when I was in high school. Relic especially was a book that really captured my attention. It was brand new, nobody had ever even heard of Lincoln Child or Douglas Preston, or Penergast for that matter. Today there are over fifteen books in the series that started with Relic, with more coming out all the time. Same thing with Ben Bova and Mars. Mars is part of his ever growing Grand Tour series that began even before the publication of Mars and is still going today.

These books make up the Something Remembered part of my list. They are books that immediately grabbed me as a young adult and books that I still think about today.

west_edenThen there are books that are Something New, just been published but end up in the back log of things to read. The End of All Things by John Scalzi is in this list. Terms of Enlistment by Marko Kloos are another that spring to mind.

And then there is Something Old. These are books that were publish more than ten years ago; books that I know about but, again, are back logged in the list of things to read. This list can be pretty big, but a few examples of these would be Dune by Frank Herbert (which has been on previous years lists), Rama by Arthur C. Clarke, Venus, by Ben Bova, or Forge of God by Greg Bear.

The problem with many of these books is that they make up a part of a larger series. And while I love series, I also like to mix it up when it come to my reading. It’s hard for me to start with Dune, for example, and then read the next five books in the series, one after the other. If they are really good, it’s no problem, I did that with the first three book in John Scalzi’s Old Man’s War.

This, however, doesn’t even begin to touch books on my History or writing lists that I hope to read in the next year as well.

For all you Game of Throne fans and computer geeks, which I am one, I thought you would find this interesting, I sure did. This is a video about how the special effect are made and all the different layering that goes into them. No talking at all, but gives you a pretty good idea how things are done.

Source

caves_2Word has been swirling around for a few years now that Isaac Asimov‘s Foundation books are being made into a show for HBO‘s. Now comes word that Hollywood is looking to make another Asimov book, The Caves of Steel, into a movie. No word on who will star in the movie, but it does have a screen writer, Akiva Goldsman. Apparently this isn’t the first time this book has tried to make it’s way onto the big screen. Upon reading this news, I bought the ebook and will hopefully get around to reading it…soon…later this year…maybe. Read More

star-wars-trilogySo, I did some digging and it appears that there is a book coming out for the new Rogue One movie, but it won’t be out until mid December. Also, as the Lengends books go, Timothy Zahn is coming out with a new Thrawn book in April of 2017. Not really clear about what the specifics of this book are, but given how much of a fan I am of the Heir to the Empire trilogy, I’m more than thrilled to see more new material coming out. Also, there is a second Rogue One book being written by James Luceno, who has written a few books in the Legends world and has apparently jumped over to the official cannon universe of Star Wars.  There new titles can be found herehere and here.

wedges_gambleSince Disney acquired the rights to Star Wars I have been a little concerned about where this could lead with the franchise. This concerned turned into panicked when I learned that Disney was categorizing ALL the previous books in the Star Wars series as Legends – stories having nothing to do with the actual Star Wars Universe. My fear was that this would lead to eventually those books being removed from off of bookshelves completely. This frightened me because if it wasn’t for Timothy Zahn and the Heir to the Empire trilogy, Kevin Anderson‘s Jedi Academy trilogy, along with a few other authors outside the Star Wars universe, my high school years and early college years might have involved a lot more trouble-some behavior if I wasn’t at home reading or discussing the latest in the Star Wars universe with friends. Needless to say, this hasn’t happened. The books are still being sold in book stores and available for purchase on Amazon. Not to mention, the latest Star Wars movie was pretty good, and the next one, Rogue One, looks decent. So, having said that, maybe it’s time I ate my words and expressed my opinion that Disney, thus far, seems to be doing alright by the franchise. Which brings me to the next order of business: what I’m reading now. There is no book out for the new Rogue One movie, but there are a ton of X-Wing books in the Star Wars Legends cannon.  Among those is Wedges Gamble, the second is a series of books centered around the X-Wing pilots in Star Wars. I read the first book many years ago and have been waiting for the perfect opportunity to read the second. And what better time than just before the movie comes out?

ghostbusters_1So just to be clear, I haven’t seen it yet, and I probably won’t. But that’s not to say because I think it looks bad or I have issues with an all women cast, because I don’t. I just don’t go to movies in theaters, I wait for things to come out on Blu-ray. When it is released on Blu-ray, however, I will definitely rent it, and who knows, maybe even buy it. Despite all the uproar before the movie was released, I hear it’s getting pretty reviews and even making more money then most thought it would. And I’m glad to see that. The thing is I have never seen a movie so heavily criticized before it’s release than this one. And shamefully, the Geeks and Nerds out there, which I am apart, seemed to be leading this charge.  Moreover, their criticism was, well…drivel. I mean, what was being said made absolutely no sense. Usually the nerds of the world have a knack about sharing the same opinion about a new movie, or book, and that gives them a sense that they are speaking in one, unified voice. But not in this case. Some said they didn’t pay enough tribute to the old Ghostbusters, while others said they paid to much. Some said the visual effects were to bright or, in a general sense, just to well put together. To make a long story short, I thought to myself after reading all these reviews, Give me a break! Maybe these was an agenda to criticize the film before it came because it was an all female cast, I don’t know? What I do know is that we need to give the film a chance. It hadn’t even been released when the shit hit the fan. In fact, it was months from being released. Watch the movie first before you criticize it, I’m going to.

As a side note, I went to see the new Star Wars in the theaters last year and will probably go and see Rogue One this year – there are exceptions to even my own rules – but that’s because it’s Star Wars.

I noticed that over at Whatever, John Scalzi has announced he has made his 10,000 post. Wow! My current count is right around 585…I guess I have some catching up to do. Anyway just a shout out to Scalzi and a well earned congratulations.

the_deepI’m not sure where I first heard about The Deep by Nick Cutter. It must have popped up on amazon in relation to something else I had read or purchased or looked at. In any event, I like the description and decided to purchase it. I’m over half way through the book that tells the story of a group of scientists that are desperately trying to find the cure for a horrible plague that is ravishing the entire planet. The name of this disease is The Gets. It makes you forget. First you forget where you put your car keys, and eventually you forget where you live, and they you forget other things, things more vital to your well being, like how to breathe, and then…the end. A possible cure is found deep in the ocean – 8 miles down – in the form of a substance name Ambrosia. But is it really a cure?

This is one of a couple of books I have recently picked up that are written by author that I have not only never read anything by them, I haven’t heard their names before. Depth by Lev Ac Rosen is another book and author. As for the deep, so far I like the writing style. It is clear and not confusing and everything makes sense. If there is one complaint that I have so far it is that there is a little too much background given at times. But that’s a minor point. So far I’m pretty pleased with the author and the writing.

ghost_brigadesI’ve been snooping through the web trying to figure out what is new in the Science Fiction world – books, movies, etc – and what I have found is…not much. And at the same time, a lot. We have known for some time that HBO is making a show based on Asimov‘s science fiction classic, Foundation series, but as of today, there is no release date. The same goes for other books that are thought to be in pre-production to be brought to the small screen such John Scalzi‘s Old Man‘s War and Redshirts, Frederik Pohl‘s Gateway, and Ann Leckie‘s Ancillary Justice. Although, the Old Man’s War television series does seem to have a show name of The Ghost Brigades after the second book in that series. The only thing we do know is that 3001 by Arthur C. Clarke does seem to have a tentative release date of 2017, which is good because I’m currently reading 2061 and will move onto 3001 when I’m done. New additions to the list of soon-to-be T.V. shows are Red Mars by Kim Stanley Robinson, The Dark Tower by Stephen King (which has actually been thrown around for several years as possible T.V. show), Lock In by John Scalzi, and Hyperion by Dan Simmons. So…yeah, a lot happening without much of anything happening, all at the same time. Being a huge Old Man’s War fan, though, I can’t wait to see that story being told on television. So I guess stay tuned. As for movies, well…apparently re-bootes for both The Mummy and Interview with a Vampire are in the works. And Pacific Rim 2 has been delayed.

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