Monday, January 31, 2011

RSA Animate - Changing Education Paradigms

Some spot on ideas here and some that I have been talking about for years. I guess I just needed to be able to draw.

Ed's Mini Book Review - The Book of Fate by Brad Meltzer

Thebook of fateImage by cdrummbks via FlickrSo the trick worked on me. I saw a few episodes of Brad Meltzer's Decoded on TV ( I want to say the History Channel but I'm not 100%), and that got me to buy one of his books to see what he's about, writing-wise and such. I'm sure that was a goal of his with the show, if you like the show, go buy some of his books.

Going in to reading this, I couldn't help shake the obvious Dan Brown comparisons, especially after The Lost Symbol, Brown's long awaited pseudo-sequel to The Da Vinci Code featuring the return of the much beloved Robert Langdon. The Book of Fate promises much of the same as The Lost Symbol, secrets, symbols and the Freemasons.

Yeah, it's pretty much a cheap knock-off. I don't think I would have minded it that much if it actually had at least a little of the Freemason mystique going for it. It really was a let down from that stand point. The real mystery of the book is the mystery of any mystery book, who's in on it. Not much on the masons or the titular Book of Fate. It was just your standard thriller. Below standard if you expect, as the book is billed as, a mason mystery. I will give it this, the writing and the pacing is pretty popcorn like a Dan Brown book. That is the say it moves well and can be easily digestible by the masses. That may get me to give Meltzer another chance with another book but if that is more of the same, then I'll drop his books all together.

My Grade: C-

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Monday, January 10, 2011

Ed's Mini Book Review - Thicker Than Water by Mike Carey

Thicker Than Water is book four of the Felix Castor series by current X-Men scribe Mike Carey. Castor is a British exorcist, making his lining in modern day London and gaining a bit of a rep. As with many fictitious gumshoe characters, he's got his detractors with the local police as well as three books worth of enemies built up.

This latest outing has Castor in a bit of a 'fix' as he is called to a scene by to police to explain why 'F. Castor' is written in blood at a crime scene. Back are some old police friends that are not too keen on Mr. Castor and are looking to send him up the river on this one so Felix is against the clock a bit to solve the mystery before the cops get enough proverbial rope to hang Felix. Sprinkle in a generous portion of Rafi, Felix's best chum who happens to be possessed by a major demon, and Juliet, a demon in her own right trying to live among the humans and you get that supernatural ensemble cast that is such a staple of the Urban Fantasy genre.

I think that the series keeps getting better. I wasn't sold after the first book and picked up the second because I was short on reads but I am so glad I did. The biggest improvement for me in the series is the pacing which was like molasses in the first book and now moves at a good clip for a series which averages over 400 pages an installment.

Solid from beginning to end, Thicker Than Water, gets a thumbs up from the LL.

My Grade: B

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Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy Holidays!

Happy New Year 2011Image by [ Mooi ] via FlickrHappy Holidays out there!

Going to focus more on writing this upcoming year (then again I said that last year. Baby steps).

I am also putting together the reading list for this upcoming winter season and an article on LibGuides (finally!).

Hope you had a safe and happy holiday season.

Now, gearing up to get back to work for 2011.

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