Movie review: Oblivion

view date: 20 April 2013

The short version: Jack Harper is the repair tech of tower 49; tasked to keep the armed drones flying. The drones protect the hydrostations that are converting Earth’s seas to fusion power for the remaining population that has moved to Titan after the war with the alien Scavengers decimated the population and destroyed the environment.

Jack and his partner, Victoria, have had their memories wiped in standard procedure for their tour of duty, however Jack is haunted by dreams of a woman that he has never seen. When events conspire to bring the woman down … more

Oblivion Spoilers

This post contains spoilers from the movie Oblivion. If you want the review without the spoilers go here. You have been warned.

SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS

There are several things in this movie that set off my bogosity meter.

1. We find out at the end that Jack is a clone, created by the Scavenger to be its soldiers in phase one of the invasion, then the repair techs in phase two of the rape of Earth. However, unless recent research has discovered that memory is stored in DNA, then a clone should … more

Fiction: With a Bang, Not a Whimper

Latest flash fiction challenge from Chuck Wendig: http://terribleminds.com/ramble/2013/04/12/flash-fiction-challenge-choose-your-opening-line/

With a Bang, Not a Whimper

It’s always midnight somewhere.

It took both a witch and a physicist to destroy the world.

Frank stepped quietly into the kitchen.

Mary was bent over rummaging in one of the refrigerator drawers. He took a quick step and pinched her bottom.

She squeaked and jerked upright, whirling around. He stepped in close and wrapped his arms around her and kissed her thoroughly.

“Mmmm, much as I like this, I have to finish dinner.”

“Well, you just do that, because after dinner I have … more

“Anywhere touched by magic” – A Turn of Light by Julie E. Czerneda

I am new to the reviewing game, and so I’m still learning how to do it right. I tend to retell the book or movie, rather than telling about it. I’m going to do my best not to retell this book, because there is absolutely no way I could tell it as well as Julie.

As a general rule, I don’t like humungous books. The Wheel of Time soured me on that whole thing. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the first few, but the the next few I had to force myself to finish, not because the writing wasn’t … more

Oz: The Great and Powerful – movie review

There may be some spoilers below. I’ll try to keep them few.

I have never read any of the Oz books. My only previous exposure to Oz has been the original 1939 movie. It was a tradition in my family to watch that movie whenever it appeared on TV. This was before cable or satellite TV, so we were dependent on when the broadcast networks decided to show it.

Like the original movie, Oz starts in a small town in Kansas, and like the original the movie is black and white until the scene moves to Oz, where the color … more

Free Fiction: Library

This story was prompted by Chuck Wendig’s Flash Fiction challenge at http://terribleminds.com/ramble/2013/03/22/flash-fiction-challenge-ten-words-will-give-you-five/. It was supposed to be 1,000 words, but I ran over by a hundred and a half.

The words I chose were Library / Storm / Satellite / Cube / Ethereal

Enjoy!

Library

Jared spotted it on the satellite feed after the storm had passed.

“Hey Billie,” Jared said. “Look at this.”

“Whatcha got?” she said, rolling her chair over to his console.

“Huh,” he said. “It’s gone.”

“What’s gone?”

“There was something on the feed a minute ago, but now it’s gone.”

“Rewind it and let’s … more

The Body Electric by Allie Duzett

I won an early review copy of this book on Library Thing. This review is for the ebook version.

Warning: some spoilers may be possible, although I’ll try to keep them limited.

The Body Electric is the story of seventeen year-old Helena Clark. She lives in a small town in Colorado where she has one friend, one boyfriend, three siblings and two parents.

Lena describes herself as average in everything, yet she is friendly, kind, sweet, and a good friend. When she discovers her boyfriend is cheating on her, she turns to … more

Discount Armageddon – Seanan McGuire

I’ve just finished last year’s Discount Armegeddon, the first InCryptid novel by Seanan McGuire. This is an urban fantasy about Verity Price, a dancer/waitress/cryptozoologist. She is in NYC entering dance competitions, supporting herself working as a waitress at a strip club, and trying to decide whether to return to the family business.

This was my first book by this author and I will definitely be coming back for more.

This book is a light-hearted romp through the streets, rooftops, and sewers of New York, but not devoid of serious concepts. Verity’s official job is to assist the cryptid population, protecting … more

E-publishing, circa 1974

farther out cover 72px 2x3

A Step Farther Out by Jerry Pournelle is a wonderfully optimistic, thought-provoking book. This is not a review of that book, but commentary on a small section of one essay that makes up one part of the book.

Electronic Publishing has been around for a while now, but I first read about it in Jerry Pournelle’s book, which was a collection of the science columns he did for Galaxy magazine. My copy was published in 1979, but the essay in question, Here Come the Brains, first … more

Calendar reform

I think it is time for another calendar reform. I want a lunar calendar.

Thirteen months of 28 days each: 13×28=364. This would have several advantages:

1) All months have the same number of days. None of this “30 days hath september” crap. We will still need a leap year, but it should be an invisible day. I nominate December 29th as the leap day. This would be an invisible day, skipped by all.
2) Each date will fall on the same day of the week. Each 1st of the month will be on Monday, or whatever

Disadvantages:
more