STAR WARS: DARTH BANE: RULE OF TWO
-318-the continuing story of Darth Bane. Follows him and his apprentice Zannah. Ends with the Jedi council believing that ALL the Sith are now gone. A light read like the first Darth Bane, but once again, highly satisfying.
MARS: THUVIA, MAID OF MARS
-124-the adventures of Carthoris, son of John Carter. He is framed for the kidnapping of Thuvia, the woman he loves. Finds her and is bringing her back to stop a war between the city-states.
SPELLSONG: THE SOPRANO SORCERESS
-L.E. Modesitt, Jr-fantasy
-664- a middle aged soprano is transported to a world where magic is invoked through song. Has great power. However, she spends so much time wishing and complaining that it got on my nerves. The idea is interesting, but once again, Modesitt falls back on certain character types who act and re-act like they are on a string.
CASTLE IN THE AIR
-D.W. Jones-juvenile fantasy
-199-a young man daydreams that he is somebody else. Buys a magic carpet and ends up in prison, with a group of bandits, fighting an evil genie and rescuing Princesses with the help of an enchanted Prince. Ends up marrying a Princess. Light and delightful.
DARK LORD OF DERKHOLM
-D.W. Jones-juvenile fantasy
-345-a world is being exploited for its fantasy elements. Tours go through and the people living there have to put on a world wide show. All because one man in our world has control of a demon. It bordered on the funny, but glossed over the horror of what the Tours actually meant-people dying in battle, land and buildings destroyed, livelihoods ruined-if you sat down and thought about it, what was going on was horrific. But it was a good juvie read.
SPELLSONG: THE SPELLSONG WAR
-L.E. Modesitt, Jr-fantasy
-672-Anna unites Defalk and goes after Duram, which has been causing trouble, which in turn has been fueled by the Sturinn. Enjoyable and I'll probably read the rest. However, the whole males=idiots sub-theme is really getting old. Instead of complaining about it, like Anna does in her thoughts almost constantly, do something about it. And that is the problem. Anna is a woman and refuses to understand that the men of Erde will respond to strength alone, so she gets frustrated when "reasoning" doesn't work. Force is her last resort when it should be her first. Modesitt must be trying to get on some woman's good side with this series.
BLEAK HOUSE PART I
-511- A young orphan girl grows up and becomes a housekeeper for an older man. He has 2 young cousins who are the principles in a long running legal dispute about some money. There is mystery surrounding the orphan girl and various characters all tie in to her past and present and are attempting to influence her future. Good stuff. Making me realize that without a solid Bible background, many of Dicken's allusions would be meaningless.
THE MARTIAN CHRONICLES
-182-a series of of short stories chronicling humanities contact with Mars, the decline of Martian civilization, Humanities self-destruction on Earth and ends with a few families becoming the "new Martians". Bradbury has a very unique writing style. Sentences, while whole and complete, are put together in such a way as to suggest fragmentation. His style increases the dark view of humanity that Bradbury seems to hold.
SOMETHING WICKED THIS WAY COMES
-290-A Dark Carnival comes to town, promising to give people what they want, but turning their own dark desires against them and making them slaves of the Carnival. One middle aged man and two teens fight and win, with laughter. I don't like Bradbury's writings. I shall not be reading anymore. His style annoys me. Patricia McKillip writes of shadows and so does Bradbury; however, McKillip's shadows come from the Light, Bradbury's shadows come from the Dark. I don't want to fill myself with shadows from the Dark.
QUADRAIL: THE THIRD LYNX
-350- Sequel to Night Train to Rigel. Going to be a series, that is for sure. The Modhri tries to get its 'limbs' on some sort of weapon. Compton and Bayta draw a little closer. Ends with Compton realizing that there is a whole world of hidden spaceships and weapons for the Modhri, and he has to keep it secret.
The whole flavor is very light and almost fluff. I am looking for a little bit more depth and substance from Zahn. This universe has a lot to offer, I hope that Zahn utilizes it appropriately.
MARS: THE CHESSMEN OF MARS
-222-follows the adventures of John Carters daughter. A spoiled brat who should have been spanked, imo. Anyway, a Jed from another kingdom falls in love with her, rescues her and everyone is happy. Meet the kaldanes, heads without bodies and another nation that lives on slavery. Burroughs seems to be running out of people to have adventures. Needs to get back to John Carter.
BLEAK HOUSE PART II
-540-Richard and Ada [the cousins] marry. Lady Dedlock is revealed as Esther's mother. Many relationships are shown between characters otherwise thought to be unrelated. Richard dies because the Jarndyce and Jarndyce case is ended because the costs have taken up the whole estate. Esther marries Dr. Woodcourt and Mr Jarndyce remains a guardian to them all. Many twistings and turnings. A thoroughly enjoyable novel. Dickens pokes at society's problems but without a preachy attitude.
THE ILLUSTRATED MAN
-253-many of these stories[and several in the Martian Chronicles] were in The Stories of Ray Bradbury. His old familiar themes of hate, despair, revenge and weirdness. I only read this because I'd gotten it out at the same time as Something Wicked... and it seemed a waste to have taken it out and not read it. But no more.
THE PRINCESS AND THE GOBLIN
-161-a young miner boy rescues a princess from goblins and saves a castle from the goblins revenge.
THE PRINCESS AND CURDIE
-160-Curdie, the young miner, is sent off to rescue the King and Princess Irene, who are under the sway of evil men bent on taking the kingdom for themselves. The people of the city ignore what is going on and descend towards beastlife. Ends with a new king [after Curdie and Irene] who mines the city for its gold and jewels and ends up bringing about its destruction. A sad ending. One of my favorite books back in elementary school.
THE ROALD DAHL OMNIBUS
-682- short stories from different books for adults. Many had his trademark weirdness and almost horror. A couple near the end were more sexual in nature. Definitely not recommended. I think I'll stick to his juvenile fiction.
MARTIN CHUZZLEWIT PART I
-568- A grandfather by that name. A grandson by that name. Both are obstinate and headstrong. Grandfather filthy rich, no direct heir beyond the Grandson, extended family of venial vultures full of greed. Grandfather looked after by a young woman, Grandson in love with said young woman. Grandfather won't allow marriage. Grandson leaves, strikes out for America. Grandfather begins to sound out other relatives as to worthiness of being his heir. My goodness, this is one of Dickens' wordiest books ever! The characters go on and on in their fawnings and moralizings and the American Groups do the same about whatever Cause they are supporting, that half the time I have no idea what they are actually talking about. Gets across the idea of them all being windbags, but still. I read a whole page and hadn't a clue what the talker was blabbing about. Enjoyable though.
THE OLD MAN AND THE SEA
-140- an old man goes out to sea to fish. Gets a huge fish which drags him all over the sea. Subdues it and begins his trek home. Sharks eat all of the meat on the fish. Hemingway blew his head off with a shotgun. After reading this, I'm not surprised. What a complete waste. Not terrible or something that made me hate it, but so pointless. As was the author's life. Glad to have read one book by him though. Now I KNOW to avoid any others.
HOWL'S MOVING CASTLE
-329-a young woman is turned into an old woman by a jealous witch. She ends up becoming the cleaning lady for the wizard Howl in an attempt to get him to turn her back. The jealous witch is after Howl. Everything turns out ok in the end. I would have to recommend reading this before watching the movie by Miyazaki. A much more full bodied story and things are explained a bit more.