Gave up after about 90 pages. Why exactly is the narrator's pedestrian social life supposed to be the slightest bit interesting to me? Seriously. I haGave up after about 90 pages. Why exactly is the narrator's pedestrian social life supposed to be the slightest bit interesting to me? Seriously. I have no idea. ...more
Geordi from TNG? Nog from DS9? Scotty from TOS, and how he ended up in the TNG era? Guinan from TNG? Reg Barclay from TNG? Spock from TOS? RasmusseRemember:
Geordi from TNG? Nog from DS9? Scotty from TOS, and how he ended up in the TNG era? Guinan from TNG? Reg Barclay from TNG? Spock from TOS? Rasmussen, the time traveling thief from an episode of TNG? Bok, the vengeful Ferengi from TNG? Sonya Gomez, who appeared in a couple episodes of TNG? Sela, Tasha's Romulan daughter from TNG? Leah Brahms, the woman Geordi was interested in on a couple of TNG episodes? The Hera, Geordi's mother's lost ship? The EMH from Voyager? The Nexus from Generations?
Well, they're all here for at least a mention, crammed into this one novel. I'm sure along with all kinds of other little cameos I'm forgetting.
There are two problems with focusing this novel around engineering and science issues. The first problem is... a novel needs to be about people. The second problem is... When the engineering and science issues are all made up and silly, there's not really any substance. ...more
Collection of four DS9 novels and a short story. Some of these I enjoyed less than others, but overall it was cool to revisit DS9.
I will say it wouldCollection of four DS9 novels and a short story. Some of these I enjoyed less than others, but overall it was cool to revisit DS9.
I will say it would have been nice if the series had ended without gutting the cast. No Sisko, no Odo, no O'Brien, no Dukat, no Jadzia, mostly no Garak, no Weyoun... wait, who the heck is left? OK, I guess there's a few people still left on the station.
Also (this is sort of a SPOILER for the book):
Jake going missing seemed to prompt a lot less concern from the characters than I would have expected. Maybe there was some uproar than I skimmed and now can't recall, but as I remember it, it seemed that they just noticed he was gone and then went on to the next thing without a second thought. It's also weird from a storytelling perspective; why introduce what seems like will be a major plot point and then ignore it for the next 600 pages? ...more
This was the other Star Trek novel I recently reread, that I remembered from when I was a kid (the first was Imzadi).
I think I have a problem where iThis was the other Star Trek novel I recently reread, that I remembered from when I was a kid (the first was Imzadi).
I think I have a problem where it's harder for me to picture characters and scenes in books than it is for most people. These books are nice because I know what everything and everyone is supposed to look and sound like. Reading this book is a lot like watching an episode of the show. Unfortunately, in this case it's a season two episode. But it's still fun. ...more
When I was a kid I read a lot of these Star Trek novels. I decided to revisit them. There were two that I remembered specifically, and this was one ofWhen I was a kid I read a lot of these Star Trek novels. I decided to revisit them. There were two that I remembered specifically, and this was one of them.
And I liked it. It has some particularly cheesy moments, and I don't think it gets much nerdier than a Star Trek romance novel... but what the heck; it was fun. ...more
There's really an overwhelming amount of information thrown at you here. And yet somehow I always felt like I never quite knew what the heck was goingThere's really an overwhelming amount of information thrown at you here. And yet somehow I always felt like I never quite knew what the heck was going on. ...more
The beginning is extremely boring and I considered just quitting... But then I just skimmed the first 30 pages and the book kind ofInteresting idea.
The beginning is extremely boring and I considered just quitting... But then I just skimmed the first 30 pages and the book kind of became an actual story after that.
"All [the crew of the ship] had at least double-doctorates. . . Pierre himself had a Ph.D. in high-density nucleonic theory, and doctorates in gravitational engineering and journalism."
I read this and figured it was just what someone not connected to academia thinks to say to make characters seem really smart. The truth is nobody gets multiple doctorates, and doing so wouldn't really be a sign that one was brilliant. But then I realized the author himself has a doctorate. So, I don't get it. ...more
CD-ROMs! Small (aka, hilariously clunky) cell phones! Modems! Virtual reality! Sexual harassment lawsuits! And hey, what's this Internet thing?
Yes, itCD-ROMs! Small (aka, hilariously clunky) cell phones! Modems! Virtual reality! Sexual harassment lawsuits! And hey, what's this Internet thing?
Yes, it's ripped right from the headlines... of the early 90s. Which is fine, that's when the book was written, but it's so funny how the book trying so hard to seem contemporary and topical makes it feel dated that much sooner.
So it was fine, it kept me reading.
But... I'm not sure it actually all came together in the end.
OK, at the end, we find out that Meredith's goal was to get rid of Tom, so that she wouldn't be blamed for her screw ups. Fine, but... how exactly was she planning on doing that? It was clearly her intent to actually have sex with him. When that didn't work out, she decided to file the false sexual harassment complaint, but what was the original plan? The only thing I can figure is that maybe she was going to blackmail him, him being a married man and so on... but this is not at all clear, and it feels more like it just wasn't thought out very well. ...more
So, yeah, I read Twilight. My girlfriend wanted me to.
Anyway, while I can't say I liked the book, it wasn't really as awful as I thought it'd be. BesiSo, yeah, I read Twilight. My girlfriend wanted me to.
Anyway, while I can't say I liked the book, it wasn't really as awful as I thought it'd be. Besides, I'm not exactly in its target audience. And for that reason I'm not rating it -- it wouldn't really be fair to give it 1 star when I knew beforehand I wouldn't be interested in it.
I think it's pretty funny/interesting to see how Meyer twists the vampire thing to make Edward as attractive as possible... basically all these characteristics women/girls usually find attractive are turned up to 11:
* gorgeous * strong - superhumanly so * authoritative/dominant - Edward always "commands" and "orders"; Bella "obeys" and "surrenders". * he's a lot older and more experienced - usually people today freak out when teenage girls are involved with older men; for some reason the vampire thing (or maybe just that he's enrolled in high school?) means people tend to let this slide * mysterious - perpetually; even when she learns the basics about what Edward is, there's still so much she doesn't know * aloof - he can tell Bella "I love you" sincerely, and yet there's still reasons for him to stay away, for the future of their relationship to be in doubt, etc. This is in overdrive at the beginning where Bella actually thinks Edward hates her (predictably, this makes her obsess over him) * he saves Bella all the time
Fine, if you want to write a book about an attractive man, do it. Except... it's all just too obvious and over the top for me.
I'd also like to say a word about the charges that this book is antifeminist. I'm OK with that. Deep down, men want to be heroes, and women want to be rescued by their knight in shining armor. This is who we are. And while I'm fine with people subverting that idea, powerful women, all that stuff, I don't believe that the traditional picture is artificial or imposed purposefully to oppress women - it's part of us.
In fact, when the book strays from this, it seems sillier to me. There's a part where Bella says to Edward that a man and a woman should be at least somewhat equal - if she were strong like him, it wouldn't be him saving her all the time, there would be some reciprocation. But this is just ridiculous... a huge chunk of why she likes him so much is that he is so much stronger than her and saves her all the time.
On the other hand, his spying and watching her sleep and so on is... odd. ...more
I've been reading the DiscWorld books in order (having never read one before). At this point, I've just about decided they're not for me. They're notI've been reading the DiscWorld books in order (having never read one before). At this point, I've just about decided they're not for me. They're not awful, and they are sometimes amusing, but almost never laugh out loud funny. I don't understand what all the fuss is about.
I have one more to read that I've already bought (Eric). If that one doesn't change my mind, I will move on. ...more
From somewhere I already knew the outline of this story, so some of the impact of this book was probably diminished for me. I still enjoyed it though.From somewhere I already knew the outline of this story, so some of the impact of this book was probably diminished for me. I still enjoyed it though.
"science... Newton and Einstein and Freud..."
One of these things is not like the others.
"Little in mathematics beyond the elementary calculus of variations, and nothing at all about Banach algebra or Riemannian manifolds."
Unfortunately it's clear the author is just throwing around jargon he asked somebody to give him. Banach algebra is not a subject or theory, as in, "I'm taking an algebra class." A Banach algebra is a mathematical object.
Also, some parts of this felt a little dishonest. For instance, at one point a man providing funding is forcing a scientist to justify his work, to explain how it has practical value, in order to keep his funding. Now, of course this is something scientists really have to do. The people with the money don't necessarily understand things or may not want to fund something without immediate practical applications. But in this context, it's completely unbelievable. Essentially, "I've been giving you funding because I am interested in your work, and now that you have made an incredible breakthrough and are having success beyond anything I could have hoped for and will soon be making headlines all over the world, I'm really starting to wonder if your research is worthy of my funding." It comes across as absolutely insane. ...more
I considered rating this lower, but... I was entertained at parts, and it does have an epic feel to it, and the "magical realism" concept is neat, I gI considered rating this lower, but... I was entertained at parts, and it does have an epic feel to it, and the "magical realism" concept is neat, I guess.
Really, though, I just don't get it. It's fine to set your story in a world where the rules are different from those of our world. But this is a world where there aren't any rules. Weird things don't happen in this book in order to explore humanity in different situations... they happen because it sounds cool, or because it creates pretty mental images, or because Marquez liked hearing these kinds of stories from his grandmother, or... I don't know why, really. They just do.
There's just nothing really to latch onto here; it's just a sequence of events. I don't know if it qualifies as a story. ...more
I really tried to like this. But it didn't happen. It would seem boring and pointless for so long, then something would happen and make me think "ah,I really tried to like this. But it didn't happen. It would seem boring and pointless for so long, then something would happen and make me think "ah, now we're going somewhere," but it never really came together for me.
So many threads were left unfinished for me. I still have no idea why people want Sawtelle dogs, which I think was the main thing I was supposed to learn.
I was too ignorant to recognize the Shakespeare connection, but I don't like Shakespeare anyway...
Also: The text on the dust jacket gives away the first 330 pages of the book. What the heck? ...more
As others have pointed out, the parts of the book dealing with the present day are not interesting. Part of the problem is the sort of academic showinAs others have pointed out, the parts of the book dealing with the present day are not interesting. Part of the problem is the sort of academic showiness of it all (OK, now they're speaking Latin... now German... OK, what language is that??). The showiness gets in the way. At one point a character refers to a structure as nonabelian... but to my knowledge the term "abelian" is only used in the context of group theory; in the context used here, it just seems like the author is trying to dazzle the reader with his knowledge of mathematical vocabulary... and getting it wrong.
I think the real problem is this, though: This book started as a short story featuring ONLY the present day characters. I guess it was sort of a science/history mystery thing. I assume it worked as such. Then the author went back and added the sections dealing with the past, and developed a good novel there. But he failed to realize that the present day sections don't really work anymore, because the reader already knows through the entire book the answer to the mystery those characters are trying to uncover. In particular, one can imagine the final revelation having a much bigger impact if the reader didn't already know it. (On the other hand, I suppose it would be neat for someone who FIRST read the short story, present day version in its entirety, to then read the novel and meet the characters from the past who they previously knew only through the lens of history. But even in that structure there would be problems, because maybe that reader knows too much about what these characters' outcomes will be to enjoy the novel.)
Anyway, this is definitely worth reading, but I think you won't lose anything by skipping the present day sections. ...more