A Quote from “The Last of the Plainsmen”

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…to realize that the best of life lies in the daily needs of existence, and to battle for them!

~ Zane Grey in “The Last of the Plainsmen”

 

I kind of feel like I’m cheating with 2 Quote posts this month, but while Jeeves made me laugh, this just made me sit up at attention and exclaim “You tell’em Grey!”

 

 

 

 

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[Manga Monday] Yotsuba&! #14 ★★★★☆

yotsuba14 (Custom)This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot & Librarything by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission
Title: Yotsuba&! #14
Series: Yotsuba&!
Author: Kiyohiko Azuma
Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
Genre: Manga
Pages: 224
Format: Paperback Copy

 

Synopsis:

Yotsuba has a ton of adventures. She learns to make bead necklaces and helps her daddy run his business. She also gets a princess dress from one of her neighbors and goes to yoga. Then the big adventure is when she and daddy go to Tokyo. They eat cotton candy and crepes and see aliens in the park! Then they meet daddy’s sister who gives them a car. They go to a fancy restaurant which has big pans of pudding. Yotsuba is happy.

 

My Thoughts:

Well, it’s been 3 years since I read the previous volume. Even longer than the wait between 12 and 13. I think this is done.

If it is done, this was a great way to end things. Yotsuba has tons of little adventures, is as cute and bold as always and ends the book in a car on a highway than can go “anywhere”. Unlimited possibilities, isn’t that what childhood should be?

I read my review for Vol. 13 and many of the same things apply. This wasn’t funny even while it was super cute. I didn’t have a problem with that this time around, probably because it’s been so long since I’ve read any Yotsuba&! that I kind of forgot it started out as humorous and not just cute.

This definitely was cuteness overload, in a good way. The manga-ka definitely nails the whole cute kid thing spot on, probably to the idealization level. Not having any kids of our own, I can’t tell. But I’m pretty sure you’re not supposed to take your cues for real life from a manga, so I bet I’m safe.

I just checked and there have been 4 more chapters released between 2018 and now in the monthly magazine Yotsuba&! is in. This volume has 7 chapters, so we’re talking at least another year or 2 before there is enough material for another tankoubon. I’m ok with stopping this now. It ends on a great note and with no over-arching plot, there are no loose ends to tie up.

★★★★☆

 

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Survival Saturday – The Gingie Edition

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For all the Why’s and Wherefore’s of Survival Saturday, please visit the Intro Post. Thanks!

 

Last time I did a SS post was back in March with Attack of the Ninjabread Men. Which means it has been 2/3’s of a year. I’m a bit out of practice, so I wanted something fun, easy and still foody.  Thank goodness for Krusteaz! This was so easy. All I needed was the mix, 1 stick of butter and 1 egg. To bring this into survival terms, even if technology craps the bed, the plastic the mix is stored in will last for decades and then all you’ll need is a cow and a chicken and voila, you are set!

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This time I learned something from my past experience with Gingerbread. Melted butter and Softened butter are NOT the same thing. So I just let this sit out overnight so it would be nice and soft.

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Cracking an egg is much easier than cracking heads!

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I put ALL the complicated ingredients into a mixing bowl in the perfect proportions.

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Then I hand kneaded the bejabs out of it!

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By the time I was done, it was putty in my hand!

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Then it was time to divide and conquer.

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Finally, I brought them altogether for a family reunion.

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The final step was to flatten them on a cookie sheet and cook them. But obviously, a true Chef never cooks and tells!

 

And that was a good re-introduction to Survival Saturday. Whetted the appetite, as it were. Next month I’ll have a “real” Survival Saturday with another of the long term storage food things. Please look forward to it!

 

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–All Survival Saturday Related Posts–

Quote from “Very Good, Jeeves”

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“There is no time, sir, at which ties do not matter.”

~Jeeves to Bertie Wooster

 

 

 

 

 

Jeeves, that Sartorial Master, that Captain of Clothes,  that Guardian of the Avante Guarde, that Professional Appareller, that Vizier of Vestments and that King of Accoutrement, is never wrong.

This book is going along swimmingly!

 

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The Prefect (Revelation Space #7) ★★★★☆

prefect (Custom)This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot & Librarything by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission
Title: The Prefect
Series: Revelation Space #7
Author: Alastair Reynolds
Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
Genre: SF
Pages: 516
Format: Digital Edition

 

Synopsis:

Tom Dreyfus is a Prefect, an officer in the Panoply, a police force that enforces the few laws of the Glitter Band that orbits the planet Yellowstone.

Things start off with a bang as an Ultra ship uses its engines to wipe out 1 of the 10,000 Habitats. Dreyfus is sent in to investigate by his boss, Jane Aumonier. Jane had a run-in several years ago with an entity named the Clockmaker and has a mechanical tick on neck that places all sorts of restrictions on her or it will kill her.

During Dreyfus’s investigation it becomes apparent that the Ultra Captain was framed to cover something else up. While this investigation is going on, Dreyfus’s newest underling, Thalia Ng, is sent out on a routine software patch update to 4 of the Habitats. Said patch closes a loophole that allowed those habitats to sway the voting in their habitats, which is strictly against the Law. Thalia installs the code but finds out that it hid some other code that allowed another entity to take over those Habitats.

Thus is revealed the Bad Guy, Aurora Nerval-Lermontov. She is the only surviving member of the 80, an experiment by the Sylveste’s to truly digitize humans. She has been hiding and found a ship full of Conjoiners. Said conjoiners could see the future and saw the melding plague, which spells the end of the Glitter Band, and thus Aurora, as she would be destroyed by the melding plague. Aurora wants to prevent this plague but the only way she thinks is viable is to take over and control the entire Glitter Band, no matter how many people she has to kill.

Thalia must survive on the Habitat she is on while the rest of the Panoply tries to deal with Aurora, who has a traitor inside the Panoply. She uses the resources of the 4 Habitats she controls to create drones to spread her control code to other Habitats. Panoply ends up nuking several of them to contain the spread but realize they can’t really stop Aurora.

Dreyfus realizes that the first Habitat destroyed by the Ultra ship probably contained the Clockmaker and that Aurora was behind it, as the Clockmaker is the only entity Aurora truly fears. Dreyfus races against the traitor in their midst to find the Clockmaker and release it.

The Clockmaker and Aurora end up inhabiting the entire data band, which slows them down and makes them a non-threat for at least a century or two. The Panoply and the Ultra’s get together to clean up the remnants of Aurora’s forces and Dreyfus deals with the traitor, regains some memories he never knew he’d even lost and Life Goes On.

 

My Thoughts:

This was a decent end to my Revelation Space series read. Since I had already read about the melding plague and the glitter band, the situation presented to me wasn’t completely outside what I could comprehend.

That being said, this was only a decent end to my Revelation Space series read. I enjoyed what I read but I was neither wowed or impressed nor disgusted.

Dreyfus came across as this careworn, stoic, tired man who could barely function. I didn’t enjoy him as a character even while he wasn’t boring. No character was boring though. Each and everyone was unique and made the story what it was. I didn’t feel like anyone should have been cut out nor did I feel like I wanted “someone else”. But by the end of the book I realized that my time with Reynolds was over.

It feels kind of funny to be giving this 4stars and yet saying it wasn’t good enough to keep me reading more Reynolds, but hey, thems the breaks! Reynold’s style just never grabbed me like Neal Asher’s writing did, so take from that what you may.

Glad I read this compendium of 7 books but I’ve had enough.

★★★★☆

 

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Superman III (1983 Movie)

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So, Superman III with its boring as all get out bluray cover. That barely looks like Christopher Reeve anyway!

This was released in 1983, has no “directors cut” and as far as I know generated ZERO controversy.  Let’s look at an alternate cover, shall we?

 

 

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Now THAT cover does a MUCH better job of showcasing just what kind of movie this is going to be.

 

 

 

 

 

Richard Pryor is an out of work bum whose unemployment benefits have been denied. He sees a computer programming training course on the cover of a book of matches and next thing we know he is working at a computer coding computer. Oh, we get sequence from his training where he makes his computer do something that even the trainer thought was impossible. Thus is set the stage for Pryor’s genius as a computer programmer. He gets his first paycheck and sees that 1/2cent is missing. He wonders where all those 1/2cents goes and programs the computer to put them all into his account. Next payday he gets an extra paycheck for $85K. Of course, this doesn’t go unnoticed by the Big Evil Capitalist running the company but they have no way of tracking who did it. Until Pryor screeches into work driving a new ferrari.

A lot of silliness ensues. Trust me, it isn’t worth typing out. But needless to say, a secret government satellite that can control the weather is involved.

Pryor, under the direction of the Evil Capitalist, creates a supercomputer capable of destroying even Superman. It attacks Superman, Pryor has a change of heart and rescues Supes. Supes gets some super acid and one little canning jar’s worth sends the entire computer system (about a large cave’s worth) crashing into a fiery, lava’y pit of destruction.

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Yep, one little canning jar destroyed all of this!

 

Supes fixes all the problems his silliness caused (synthetic kryptonite was involved) and is once again the world’s hero. The movie ends with Lana Lang moving to Metropolis and working at the same paper as Clarke and Lois, as a secretary.

Now, I had memories of this being silly, campy and almost stupid. I definitely got the silly and campy part right. I think the “stupid” would depend more on just how mean you were feeling at the moment. Pryor was supposed to be comedic and in many ways he was, but it was over the top, rub most people the wrong way funny.

There was one scene where Superman has to fight himself, as he’s possessed by the kryptonite. I thought they did an excellent job and that Reeve did an absolutely fantastic job of showing a mean, brutish, 5 o’clock shadow drunk Superman. He looked mean and animalistic. I’m not one to usually notice an actor’s ability, but between Reeve making Clarke Kent and Superman truly different people and this time around portraying a good and bad Superman, I have to admit that the man was an ACTOR! It was also pretty fun to realize that the actress who plays Lana Lang is the same actress who plays Martha Kent in the tv series Smallville.

This was definitely the campiest of the movies so far. I thoroughly enjoyed watching this but I’d only recommend this to others if they are a huge Superman fan or like watching the acting skills of Christopher Reeve.

 

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October ’19 Roundup & Ramblings

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Raw Data:

Books – 8

Pages – 2125

Average Rating – 2.88 Stars

 

The Bad:

Dark Sky – 1 Star DNF for Content

Places in the Darkness – 1 Star DNF for Content

 

The Good:

War Factory – 4 Stars of Polity Goodness!

The Ragged Man – 4 Stars of Authorial Improvement

 

Movie:

Watched two versions of Superman II. The Theatrical Cut and the (released recently on disc & digital) fired Director’s Cut. I surprised myself by favoring the Theatrical Edition over the Director’s Cut.

November will be Superman III. Now are these names original or what?!?!?

 

Book Give-Away:

Doing yet another Give-Away. This time 8 of the Myth Adventure books by Robert Asprin.  It’s open until November 16, so feel free to enter until then.

 

Survival Saturday:

With the weather changing and it getting colder outside, I’m probably going to try to resurrect this series for a couple of months. Of course, I’ll ease into things with something so easy that even I can’t mess it up for November.  Who wants a butter stick!?!? 😀 😀 😀

But seriously, it will be something extremely simple and probably not an actual survival food. Now I just have to figure out what this mythical “food” actually is.

 

Miscellaneous And Personal:

Even though my average rating dropped below a 3, since I dnf’d both of the stinkers almost from the get-go, there was no wasted time or regrets. All it really does is puff up my book numbers from last month and drop my average rating I can live with that. I figure I’ll be culling existing series in November so I’m not reading things that don’t really grab me.

Work is. Started full time at Company New Mid-October. I’m reserving judgement until the New Years. Algebra is going along, but there are times it is really hard to stay motivated, especially when they’re teaching a concept that I KNOW I won’t need and I think to myself “What is the point of this?” I almost feel like a rebellious teenager! Weight Watchers is going fantastic and I continue to lose some weight every week. Slow and steady.

Here is a list of the various non-review posts I did:

 

Cover Love:

Warlock by Dean Koontz is this month’s winner. It doesn’t get more 70’s than this!

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