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Fool's Assassin
Robin Hobb
Random House US

FOOL'S ASSASSIN was another amazing book in this series. I'd hoped eventually we'd get back to this universe and now we are RIGHT in the middle of yet another amazing plot arc. People we knew are older and have changed and it only took me about 10 minutes to feel as if I was right back in a familiar and wonderful universe. As always, the author leaves us off at one of the WORST possible potions ever and now I am champing for the next book.

So glad we're here again and cannot wait for the next book!



FICTION: Dust & Sand By Sean P Wallace

A few weeks ago, I was whinging to Twitter out loud how I had nothing to read, and the author himself sent this book for me to read. I'd say it needs someone to go over it with the author, just to make it a bit easier to read, and remove a few of the more glaring errors that popped up HOWEVER the basic bit of the book was a decent read.

I liked the characters, I liked what was set up for both the heroes and villains to do, and I enjoyed how the author took the time to bring the plot all together. There was a small bit of error in the middle; but again, for this it could have been me, rather than the author. That error did not make the entire book anything less than a good book. No, this will not be the sort of book you reach for again and again, but it is a nice book for a longer weekend.

Book was not paid for-- was sent via the author.


OK.... so this is me again,,,,

Its been a long, long week and I'm still tired, but slowly we're here again... I had a stroke and it kinda was hard... but I'm still here!!

Lady Ithidel?

This is Veronica, Anne's wife. I wanted to let you know that Anne had a stroke on October 30. She has been in the hospital the past few days. She is getting better but won't be home for a few days yet. She is having some speech and memory problems and some ambulatory trouble (the stroke hit her right side so that side is weaker now) but they are getting better through work with a physical therapist and speech therapist. I will let you know when she is coming home tomorrow (the doctors are going to decide then). I'm sorry I didn't let you know sooner--it's been a little crazy around here. Take care!



Um... I have wanted the Azure Drake for like... a long time. Ever since I realized that (a) he has TRIBAL TATTOOS and (b) has ARMOR. I like PVP but stink at it, so I will enver ever EVER have a PVP armored gladiator drake. But I wanted one. So I began running Eye of Eternity weekly... and Malygos hated me. I and my friend Sie killed him over and over and over and either (a) we hit the glitch with NO loot or (b) we got everything BUT any reins.

Today, with all the log-in issues Wow was having, I still wanted to run EoE... and Sie finally got in and well... I even pulled out my LUCKY BATTLEPET -- Tumble the Guardian Cub. And we fought sans even a buff.... and got Maly down to 89K before phase two. And phase two went really really well and then the loot opened and THE REINS DROPPED!!! Sie gave him to me and I lost it and now I cn spend hours writing his story and drawing him and .... oh lords... LOOOK at Ezra:


Aint he pretty?

Oh look, It's August...

So, life rumbles on as it tends to do when I don't watch it close enough. I'm almost at my year wedding anniversary, and I've plotted gifts for my wife, and we'll work together on a nice dinner and relaxing day. I may take the next day off from work, actually...

Healthwise, I'm in a really odd place. See, the injuries to my left leg are healing, closing up, but as they do so the pain is ramping into near unbearable levels. No, really, I mean it. I think and say and plan to do things because I cannot deal with the pain I am feeling at certain times. I despair and am crying more than I have ever cried in my entire life and this very much bothers me. The other leg is healing slowly, but hell, those I've had for years, and can deal with them. I just worry that the left leg will not heal before the pain becomes entirely past something I can deal with, and hope I can learn to deal with it in better ways.

Work? I dunno. Times I feel like I am working good and doing great and then I find out the boss hates what I am doing, or feels I'm not doing enough or that somehow I'm failing them and I actually hate that. I did get my name in a Playbill for the help I'm giving to a play in a festival in Midtown Manhattan, and that was cool, but that's the only bright note so far. But we're paying the bills on time, and that makes me happy after a year of having to borrow just to pay my rent.

Wow? I'm desperately trying to get the Phosphorescent Stone Drake and the Azure Drake but they elude me, laughing at my need.... nasty bad dragons... :) And my warlock is finally over 500 for all his gear, so back I go to try to get the green fire for him. I think I want my 90 boost to be either a Night Elf Drood. I like the new night elves, and haven't played alliance for years.

And that's the way it goes....
The Dead Are Watching: Ghost Stories From a Reluctant Psychic
Debra Robinson
Llewellyn Publications
264 pages

I really think there should be warnings on books that are direct sequels. The warning should read "Don't waste your time reading this if you haven't read the first book because I, as the author who wants to make lots of money selling all my books, will constantly refer back to the first book and irritate the heck out of any ignorant reader who did not read that first book. Now, go and buy that first book. NOW!!!!!" What's worse is that this book is supposedly about ghost stories that the author got from other people. There was really no need to keep referring back to her first book, which was all about her personal ghost stories involving her dead son and father. But no, she had to make sure she mentioned it over and over and OVER AND OVER again, much to my eternal irritation.

The other problem I had with this book is that honestly it read like the author had a two or three book contract and this was the final book meant to fill out said contract. I don't know about most people but I can go around and ask my friends and acquaintances about ghost stories and have a hell of a lot better time that I did reading this book. I really don't care about her neighbors' and friends' ghost stories--they have no meaning to me because I don't know the people involved. So, unfortunately, this book was a disappointment all around.

I received a copy of this book from Netgalley--the opinions expressed are my own.

NONFICTION: The House Where Evil Dwells

The House Where Evil Lurks: A Paranormal Investigator's Most Frightening Encounter
Brandon Callahan
Llewelyn Publications
288 pages

I normally don't do this but I am going to start off this review with a spoiler. I really appreciate that the author chose to write about a failure. The force that took over the house in this book wins--it is not eliminated from this plane and in fact, nearly destroys the author. Most people would never document something like this; these books are usually all about triumphant victories over the ghosts and goblins in all the encounters they have. It took some courage for the author to write this book, especially since I'm sure other investigators will read this. Since it seems like a competitive field, showing vulnerability is appreciated.

That being said, I really didn't like this book. First off (and this is a personal address to the author), about your desire to help people, YOU. PROTEST. TOO. MUCH. You repeat this constantly throughout the book to the point where it becomes completely unbelievable. The fact that you also continually mention the fact that you are a writer and independent filmmaker really shows what you want from the people who read this book. I understand that seeing people who seem more stupid than you become famous is galling but those are the breaks in life. I also think that is why you try to "bro" your way through most of the book. I can understand that you want to be like others in the field but I think it was the lack of respect that you gave the ghosts (and/or demons) in this encounter that caused most of your trouble. What happened to you was beyond awful, but if it taught you to respect things which you don't understand (something that you really didn't display throughout most of the book), maybe something good will come of it.

I received a copy of this book from Netgalley; the opinions, of course, are my own.


Stalking Shadows: The Most Chilling Experiences of a Paranormal Investigator
Debi Chestnut
Llewellyn Publishers
216 pages

I've read quite a few of these paranormal books in the past two years. I usually enjoy the first quarter of the book because the authors always talk about their childhood and usually refer to their "strongest" cases--meaning the cases that are the most powerful indicators of ghostly encounters. After the first portion of the book; however, the cases get weaker in that the investigator had nothing to do with them (referring to different historical hauntings in the area) or the cases are far more ambiguous (the people referred to seem to be made up or are a combination of many different cases). This book has the same problem but also has one that is much, much worse. There were two cases referred to in the book which were absolutely incomplete-- the author actually has the nerve to say that her paranormal investigation group will be going back at some later date (summer of 2014 for one case and no date given for the other) so both cases are still technically open. Why would you even write about cases that you really don't know the answers to? It doesn't make sense and therefore, I really didn't enjoy this book as much as I thought I would.

Also, there were some spelling problems which I hope are corrected in the finished copy of the book, although I suspect that one problem (the spelling of altar [from a church] as alter [to change something]) is an author error since it was done consistently throughout the book.

I received a copy of this book from Netgalley; however, the opinions are my own.

Yes, Challenge Accepted....

... at least that's how this week has seemed. I have had a lot of issues, painwise, due tot he fact the leg is actually healing-- did you all know that when something is NOT healing it hurts, but your body gets used to that continual level of pain... but see, as something HEALS, as it creates nerve endings, and skin and the like, the pain level will often ratchet into something approaching licking the freaking SUN for hours at a time. Sometimes it lasts a full day. Oh and the thought that you're getting better? Not really helping, trust me... not when you want to scream and tear things and claw at the injury to make the pain STOP.

That issue aside, there is work. One job is collating journals. Did you know there are literally thousands of professional journals out there? Online, offline, free, paid, members-only, professionals only, anyone can get a copy and so many more... collating this list into something less than elephantine that can be USED by my boss is... um... mind bogglingly difficult. Excel itself hates me for making it try and do this thing. But it *is* getting done, along with everything else I do for my main job for those lovely 8 hours a day.

On the front of the PR I do... OY! OK, the lovely gentleman I know who wrote an opera and wants me to try and find a home for it is getting discouraged-- not at me, but at the fact opera companies can be so damn turgid in looking at new material. So I'm working harder to see if I can find more people to take the sample CD. And the director I've worked with is about to open a new musical as part of a festival in NYC and she is in a tizzy and it is generating a lot of stuff.

So I am busy, and going nuts, and trying to maintain sanity.... all in all, it's been an interesting time... with luck I can update more often soon...