Tag Archive | books

Miracles can happen …

Hours Sleep in 24 hours :
Today so far : – 10 hours in 1 session 🙂
Headache intensity / pain level : 1 😀
Nausea level : 0 😀
Joint / muscle pain : 1 😀
Fatigue : 2 🙂
Brain Fog : 3 🙂

 

Sorry I meant to nip on yesterday but dinner interrupted me and then I was dragged into playing The Settlers of Catan and then frogmarched to watch the newest episode of Grimm. After that it was my bedtime !!

 

The acupuncturist has managed a miracle !! 😀 I actually spent 5 hours yesterday working ! I know it’s shocking isn’t it. I’ve now completed most of the my coursework that was due in last week. I still have some polishing up to do like inserting the diagrams but for the most part I could send it in now and get reasonable marks. This is amazing given that just yesterday I couldn’t conceive that my brain would actually be capable of scanning a textbook and outputting new learned material. So here I am actually contemplating that I might actually complete this course after all !

 

I’m intending to crawl back into a hole and read my next book as a reward. I’ve been reading Karen Traviss and her Wass’har books. They are incredibly well written. Makes me very envious. I’ve been immersed in them the last couple of days and only have Ally and Judge left to read. I still have cravings to go and read Miles Vorkosigan so I think I might read his stories next. The old favourites never get lose their captivating charm.

 

Actually I’m thinking about trying to actually write something. I need to get my coursework out of the way first but my brain is actually working so maybe I’ll be able to write coherently for a change. I think I’ve got the ideas formulated enough to be able to write them. The first novel I ever wrote I just started writing and didn’t stop – I didn’t know what was going to happen until I wrote it. These days I want to have some idea where I’m going and need to spend a lot more time on world building before I can get to grips with putting words on paper.

 

At the moment I’m having difficulty with the plot (what happens) vs narrative (how the reader sees events). In particular I have events happening over a very long time which impact the culminating events of the novel. I don’t want to tell these events in a linear fashion which logically means either interweaving timelines or some type of flashback. I haven’t really resolved in my mind which is the best option. I think now I’ve worked out the logistics of just writing the scenes and then figuring out how to layer them together later. I think ultimately I might end up interweaving timelines simply because I am becoming more and more attached to the main characters of the early timeline section.

 

Well that’s a consideration for another day right now I have to get on with my coursework !!

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Books the food of life …

Hours Sleep in 24 hours :
Today so far : – 14 hours in 2 sessions 🙂
Headache intensity / pain level : 4 😀
Nausea level : 0 😀
Joint / muscle pain : 2 😀
Fatigue : 6 😦
Brain Fog : 6 😦

Well, I meant to write on Wednesday but I just ran out of words. My head feels like someone is trying to shove a needle in though my eye. I just wish I could just keep sleeping and not wake up until the headache goes away.

To keep the headache away I’ve been reading. Friday was Immortal in Death by J.D. Robb. I didn’t get very far the first time I read the series because I got too upset at what poor Eve had to deal with. But I’m hoping this time if I space the books out I’ll be able to enjoy more of the series ‘In Death’. Saturday I started Night Myst by Yasmine Galenorn. I’m at pg 141 and am very undecided about the book. I really dislike the good guy / bad guy romantic tension story line – most common in teen novels. I’m also not a fan of the whole forced sexual desire that is common in the darker vampire novels. It seems a bit too much like rape to me – physical desire is not emotional desire. Well I’ll see if I can persevere with the novel maybe I’ll get hooked. I’ve got the first book of another series by Yasmine Galenorn – Witchling – in my pile of ‘to be read’ maybe I’ll prefer that series.

I’ve been experiencing a common phenomenon these last couple of days. Terry Pratchett described it well – it amounts to sitting surrounded by sweets and throwing a tantrum because if you eat one sweet then you can’t be eating any of the others. I’ve been having that sensation with books. If I’m reading one book I can’t be reading any other book. Sometimes I just get the desire to suck down all the books on my bookshelves directly into my brain. Reading the words in through my eyes is just too slow. I want to be reading them all and right now. I had to settle for reading one word after another until I finished the book I had in hand.

I think it was brought on by my feeling jealous of my sister. She is currently reading one of my favourite series Foreigner by C.J. Cherryh for the very first time. I would love to be able to go back and revel in reading them for the first time. I love the whole series and have read it from the beginning at least six times which is a lot for me when it has to compete with all the other books in my life. Which reminds me I’m counting the hours till the latest Nalini Singh release Tangle of Need comes out on the 7th June !! Don’t expect any communication with me until I’ve had a chance to read it on the 7th.

Apart from reading I have been watching my latest Lovefilm DVD’s. We’ve started watching a new series The Big C. I’ve been really enjoying the first disc of the series. It is certainly different from other shows and it is very quirky but I like that about it. It has made me smile and laugh with my sister so it makes a big change from Dexter which is the other disc we were watching this weekend !!

Filling my days with Happily Ever Afters …

Hours Sleep in 24 hours :
Today so far : – 10 hours in 1 session 🙂
Headache intensity / pain level : 2 😀
Nausea level : 0 😀
Joint / muscle pain : 2 😀
Fatigue : 6 😦
Brain Fog : 6 😦

 

Sorry I disappeared again. I’ve had great difficulty crawling out of bed. My sister has had to resort to nagging and bullying in order to get me to leave my bedroom and watch tv with her. Thankfully she doesn’t give up on me and makes me interact with her.

 

Of course I can’t sleep all the time. I’ve been reading my easy reading books. I’ve been bingeing on romance novels. They make great light reading since I already know the main plot outline and it is just the details that change. They don’t require me to engage my frontal brain all that much, they tend not to have really awful things happen to the main characters and there is always a Happily Ever After ending. Although saying that I have needed my tissues handy on a few occasions when the heroes are particularly dense. Mostly I’ve been reading ‘read-once’ books but I also devoured Cloud Watcher by Lililth Saintcrow in a couple of hours after it arrived at the library. The next book in the series Mind Healer is already waiting for me at the library so I expect I will be nose deep in that soon. I also really enjoyed reading The Iron Hunt by Marjorie M. Liu. I spent my holiday reading Marjorie M. Liu’s Dirk and Steele series, on my Kindle, which I really enjoyed. The Iron Hunt is a very different style of book but I think I enjoyed it more if that’s possible. Marjorie M. Liu is a very talented writer to write so well across multiple genres.

 

I know I mentioned last time my Kindle buying weakness. I’ve decided I have the backbone of a jellyfish. I really wasn’t intending to spend any more money — really I wasn’t. That hasn’t stopped me though ! I have strengthened my resolve – I will not buy anymore new books until I’ve read the ones I already have !! Which just means I’d better get back to reading so I can zoom through the rest of the books so I can buy some more. 😉

Hair camouflage in place ? Check …

Hours Sleep in 24 hours :
Today so far : – 10 hours in 2 sessions 🙂
Headache intensity / pain level : 2 😀
Nausea level : 0 😀
Joint / muscle pain : 2 😀
Fatigue : 8 😦
Brain Fog : 6 😦

I am now professionally coiffed. The last attempt at colouring my hair left the colours a bit blocky so I went back today to have some more segments put in. I now have chilli pink, blonde and aubergine purple streaks in my hair. I’ll be sure to find a photo for you once we’re back from holiday. It will need a couple of washes to settle in properly.

My goodness it takes a long time though. It took 3 hours just to put the foils in !! Even though my hair isn’t that long it is very thick. It causes all sorts of difficulties. My hair is very resistant to dye, which is sort of a good thing, but does mean that the dye has to stay on for longer than usual to even partially take. After 7 long hours I finally escaped the hair dresser to collapse into bed for a nap. The actual hair dying is not too tiring it is the being social for so long that is the problem.

Probably doesn’t help that I’m in partial hibernation mode. Once I woke up from my nap there was no way I was leaving my room to socialize with family. I read Naked in Death by J. D. Robb instead. I’ve read the start of the series before but after reading Tempting Danger by Eileen Wilks I had a craving to see Eve Dallas again. I’m even considering buying the Kindle versions although I think I’ll hold off for now and see what the holiday brings. The library has the complete collection so there is no necessary reason to buy the books when I can still get my hands on them for free.

Books glorious books …

Hours Sleep in 24 hours :
Today so far : – 8 hours in 1 session 🙂
Headache intensity / pain level : 3 😀
Nausea level : 0 😀
Joint / muscle pain : 3 😀
Fatigue : 6 😦
Brain Fog : 6 😦

 

The books have arrived. They’ve arrived, yeah 🙂 (dances around the room, figuratively). I apologize now if I totally disappear on you – the allure of the books is not to be denied ! I read Storm Watcher by Lililth Saintcrow and Taken by Midnight by Lara Adrian last night and this morning. I’ll be taking them back today and getting 2 more books to add to my hoard. I can’t tell you how excited I am by having a pile of books to read.

 

Well I have to go get poked by needles but I just wanted to let you know where I was if I don’t get in touch later today. Just think of me curled up in bed with my nose stuck in a book.

Keep your finger off the button …

Hours Sleep in 24 hours :
Today so far : – 10 hours in 3 sessions 😐
Headache intensity / pain level : 2 😀
Nausea level : 0 😀
Joint / muscle pain : 3 😀
Fatigue : 6 😦
Brain Fog : 6 😦

 

Well a bit of slow day today. My sister has been very ill so she was home today. We watched TV together for a while. We both crawled off for afternoon naps and I managed to read for a while when I woke up before her. I’ve managed to finish Winds of Fate and move onto Winds of Change. Since then we have been watching the latest episodes of The Secret Circle and The Lying Game. I watched a very interesting program over dinner on BBC 2 called Modern Spies which was very interesting to me as a recent addict to Spooks. After dinner Dad came to join us to watch the semi-finals of University Challenge from a month ago still lurking on our Sky box.

 

The library is still holding out on shipping my reserved books in fast enough. I was hoping they would have some in by today but sadly not 😦 Never mind I still have a library of my own books to keep me company. I did spend last night trying not to break my book buying ban. I spent a couple of hours looking over the Amazon recommendations and found quite few new scifi and urban books to try out on Kindle.  So I spent this evening sending my Kindle the samples and then in a loss of will power bought several of the books that were under £3.00. Most of the books I bought were £0.72 which tempted me into buying them rather than just getting the sample. Of course then you get sucked into thinking a £1.00 book isn’t that much different, then a £1.50 book, then £2.50. It’s a very slippery slope !! But I finally got my will power back in operation and resisted the £4.00 book. Still it is on my list so I might well end up buying in the future.

 

Now that I have a huge pile of samples to read I will have to make an effort to read them to check whether I would enjoy reading the novels on holiday. Although now I think about it I think the Whispernet will work in America, I mean I don’t think I have to register it or anything for it to work. So that means I should be able to download any book I’m interested in while I’m on holiday. I often use holidays as a good time to sort through samples into buy, might buy and no. Since they are short they are convenient for when you are hanging around for shortish periods of time and don’t want to get to engrossed in any one book, or for when I simply can’t decide what I want to read like a kid surrounded by sweets who can’t pick which one to start with.

Intruder alert, Intruder alert …

Hours Sleep in 24 hours :
Today so far : – 10 hours in 1 session 🙂
Headache intensity / pain level : 1 😀
Nausea level : 0 😀
Joint / muscle pain : 0 😀
Fatigue : 7.5 😦
Brain Fog : 8 😦

 

So after I spoke to you yesterday the most wonderous and magnificent postman arrived delivering his packages of joy. Amazon came through on their delivery 2 days early much to my delight. The latest Foreigner book by C. J. CherryhIntruder – arrived causing me to feel like I wanted to dance around the room in excitement. I absolutely adore the Foreigner series. It’s a series that I got to the end of the previous 12 books and then just started at the beginning again. I’ve read the first books more times than the last ones but I’ve re-read the entire series at least 8 or 9 times. Every time I read them I’m still looking to see whether I can guess what is going to happen just based on the clues that the main character is given. Bren Cameron is perhaps my favourite character of all time. He is smart, analytical and self-critical. He is very human in his doubts and fears. But he is also truly heroic. He rises to meet the crisis he encounters. He is willing to be self-sacrificing to save not only his people but the Atevi.

 

The latest book, Intruder, is the first book in the 5th trilogy of books set in the Atevi Universe. If you’re going to read this series you definitely have to start with the 1st book Foreigner and work your way through all of them. Personally I would recommend reading each book twice before moving on to the next book in the series. These books are a mixture of political thriller and action novel. The first book, especially, contains a great deal of hidden motives that only reading the rest of the 1st trilogy can really start to unpick.  The Atevi are genuinely mysterious and alien in their motives and it takes very careful reading to unpick the clues in their behaviour. What I find amazing is the clues are there and when you come back to read the first book, having read the rest of the series, you can see the hidden currents based on your expanded knowledge.

 

I was dubious at first as to whether I would like Foreigner. In general I’m not a fan of political fantasy books. All the court machinations tend to leave me confused and ambivalent. I think these books work so well because Bren captures your sympathy and friendship. You genuinely want to solve the puzzles alongside him. The outcomes of the puzzles feel important in that they directly affect the main characters survival. You feel a real sense of danger in misjudging the reaction of one of the Atevi characters.

 

C.J. Cherrh is perhaps the most outstanding author I have come across for creating truly alien aliens. In all her science fiction novels she manages to create a real sense of a completely different set of biological and social impulses. The Foreigner books are perhaps her best realization of aliens, both biologically and socially, since there are in fact several different alien mindsets in the book not least among the humans. I find her writing especially interesting where it deals with the effects of long term separation of human cultures – the idea that environment shapes human responses and culture.

 

I would highly recommend any of her science fiction series but in particular the Foreigner series. You won’t regret the time you spend with Bren and his ‘friends’.