starlady: (abhorsen key)
McGuire, Seanan. Late Eclipses. New York: DAW Books, 2011.

This is the fourth book in Seanan McGuire's Toby Daye series, and at this point I am confident in stating that a) the books have thoroughly transmogrified themselves from their rather obviously urban fantasy origins in Rosemary and Rue, and b) I like this series a lot. I would, however, urge people to read the first book and skip the second, which is unquestionably the weakest of the four thus far. I think this one might be the strongest, though the third, An Artificial Night, is really good too.

The one who can is the one who must. )

I think it's possible to see McGuire becoming a better writer as the series goes along, and I'm very much looking forward to the next book, One Salt Sea. Nothing will be the same for Toby and her crew from here on out, but change is the way of everything, even those who are immortal. For those who like filk, you should check out "Oak and Ash and Rowan and Thorn," a filk by Cat Faber about Toby at the end of this book that was covered at its release party and that is quite awesome.
starlady: a circular well of books (well of books)
So, two weekends ago I went to FOGcon. Short version: It was pretty awesome, especially for a first con! I feel fairly confident in predicting that next year will be even more awesome.

The City in SFF )

In conclusion: When can I register for 2012? Also, next time I'll probably spring for a hotel room with some people, shuttling over from the East Bay and back was a pain in the arse.
starlady: (adventure)
My roommate and I went to San Fran for the Giants' victory parade this morning more or less on a whim, and it was pretty awesome: a beautiful day in San Francisco, a happy crowd, a great series win, and then we walked to the Ferry Building and had lunch and gelato by the water before heading back. Hard to be disappointed about the election results in some ways, since it all pretty much went down the way Nate Silver and Fivethirtyeight told us it would. That said, I'm already looking forward to 2012. The next two years are going to be…interesting.

Happy birthday, [personal profile] shveta_writes!

Happy birthday, [personal profile] janni!

Clarkesworld Magazine has a lot of awesome content in this issue, including a story by N.K. Jemisin.

Cat Valente has been on a roll this week; I particularly appreciated her points in this post about steampunk.
And the Apex Magazine Arab/Muslim issue is out!

babarnett has a Jon Stewart photo that sums up my feelings about many things.

[personal profile] boundbooks has George Takei's contribution to the It Gets Better project. 

I think by now most people have heard about Fiction Alley's attempt to save itself via the Pepsi Refresh contest. [personal profile] rydra_wong has the link to vote for a cause that is not Fiction Alley; [personal profile] futuransky has a brilliant post on neoliberalism, charity, and corporations

And now to class, and then to read about the Sino-Soviet split. In the meantime: don't lose hope. 
starlady: Cindi Mayweather running through Metropolis (i believe in the archandroid)
Happy Friday, everyone! And Happy Birthday, [personal profile] rachelmanija! May your day be as awesome as you are.

I have two things to share that made me smile: first, via Twitter, Bryan Lee O'Malley has drawn Wallace Wells as (a slightly tipsty) Astro Boy. (Happy Halloween, All Hallows, and Samhain to those who celebrate it.)

So I'm a baseball fan, and it just so happens that there's a World Series on, and that my tied-for-second-favorite team (the Phillies, of course, being my first, and the Hanshin Tigers being my other favorite) the San Francisco Giants are up 2-0 against the Texas Rangers. They scored seven runs in one inning last night. Seven runs! And in that same inning, the entire ballpark sang along to "Lights" by Journey, which is a song about San Francisco, and it was pretty cool (though for those of us watching on the TV, not immediately apparent):


This post also has video of the entire ballpark singing "Don't Stop Believin'" which as I know from Wiscon 34 can be magical in a sing-along even with 40 people, let alone 43,000.

So, yeah. I'm glad to be here in the Bay area, and I'm going to see Janelle Monáe and Of Montreal tonight! Woo-hoo!
starlady: headphones on top of colorful buttons (music (makes the people))
I did two awesome things yesterday.
  1. I made a Darker Than BLACK AMV! Or rather, I finished and posted my Darker Than BLACK AMV. Yes, this is a shameless plug for everyone to watch it, I'm quite pleased with this one. 
  2. Went with my housemate to see the Arcade Fire at the Greek Theatre in Berkeley. Ah, the Arcade Fire are still so AMAZING. It was really interesting too to hear what a difference two months' touring makes in their sound, and in the songs they played--"Month of May" just keeps getting faster and more perilous, in particular, and I swear that siren sound effect was not used at all at the Philly show. The tambourine man (I forget his name, sorry) also climbed part of the scaffolding, which was awesome. They also played fewer songs from the new album and more from Funeral, though not all of the ones I expected; they did play "Crown of Love," which almost sounds incongruous compared to the majority of their oeuvre these days. It was a great show, and I loved it, but I was (like Wyn), sort of annoyed with "you laidback motherfuckers" as he characterized the crowd, who WOULD NOT get up off their asses until like the last two songs of the set and the encore. Come on, people, seriously--though I do think the theater itself (which the classics snob in me is compelled to point out is actually Roman in design rather than Greek) works against people getting into the show completely, and the fact that by the end people did is a testament to the band again. Still, I never thought I'd find a venue harder to get riled up than the Mann Center, though I suppose at heart the Philly crowd was also "better" in the sense of "more willing to get into it," too. Oh Bay area, of all the times to be a stickler for propriety… Still, awesome. Next time I see them I'm buying a shirt, since that's two shows at which I've resisted; I'm wearing my shirt from the Neon Bible tour today. If you can still see them, you TOTALLY SHOULD.
  3. As we were leaving the theater some obnoxious girl walking behind us was complaining about people walking around in T-shirts; since I am contrary by nature and also proud of my tolerance for what's called "cold" here and would be "mild" anywhere else in the country, I took off my hoody immediately and ostentatiously. My housemate, who was wearing a peacoat, sort of boggled at me, but I was fine all the way home.
starlady: (sora)
This is an impromptu linkspam; I'll find a review of something to put up tomorrow. (Irony of grad school: as my Japanese reading comprehension goes up, my time to read goes down: thus, translated manga! I never would have believed myself.)

[personal profile] naraht is proposing an AO3 Comment Fest! There are various suggested ways to participate at the post, but the important thing is, make an effort to comment on fics at the Archive of Our Own. I think we all know how awesome it can be to get a nice comment delivered at random.

[livejournal.com profile] upstart_crow has the table of contents for Steam-Powered, aka The Lesbian Steampunk Anthology. I am so freaking excited for this book, I can't even tell you. N.K. Jemisin's amazing story "The Effluent Engine" is already available online, and I want to read the rest so much.

The Rumpus has a map of San Francisco in quotations. San Francisco's a pretty cool (and very literary) city, and I'm thrilled to live near it.

McSweeney's has extracts from H.P. Lovecraft's brief stint as a copywriter for the Whitman samplers (you know, those collections of candy you can buy at drugstores). I laughed fiendishly, rather than in eldritch terror.

Hmm, I think that was it. All right, I'm going to go read things, including manga.

starlady: (orihime)
I was productive yesterday (as I have not yet been today, alas) and so I went in to the city for two parties last night: the first, [livejournal.com profile] seanan_mcguire's release party for An Artificial Night at Borderlands Books, and the second, [personal profile] damned_colonial's couchwarming party.

Both were a lot of fun--at the Artificial Night party I had rosemary shortbread and obtained a Chimera Fancies pendant of mine own and talked with Seanan McGuire about kitsune in the Toby Daye books, about which she had very thoughtful and cogent things to say, and I got to hear the fabled S.J. Tucker perform, along with some other highly talented musicians, and talked about books with other party-goers, principally the WTFRage of E.Moon and the GrrArgh of The Windup Girl being nominated for the Hugo (and then winning, but its winning was a foregone conclusion once it was nominated; the Hugo electorate is not particularly volatile). That was all one sentence. The couchwarming party was even better, though--many wonderful geeks of various stripes, good food, good fun (and also fanvids, because would it be a couchwarming party without fanvids? no, it would not). *waves to party people*

Took the very last BART back with [personal profile] anatsuno and then did shell out for a taxi from the BART stop to my house--at the advice of one of my fellow party-goers, I think I'm going to start using the paid 24-hour bike parking next to the station for when I come back late from the city. It is a practice I can live with on multiple axes, anyway.

And now I must go translate things. Maybe shower first.

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