Grownups Are the Enemy: Stephen King’s It

GJones, your comments--about this review and about "The Cage" - have made my day. Thank you!

Everything that Isn’t Winter

This is thoroughly wonderful... it's like the beginning of the post-post-apocalypse, where things are bad, but they might be transitioning to better, and the narrator fears being left behind. I love it!

Connection Fatigue and the Modern Girl: Crosstalk by Connie Willis

Anytime, Wortmauer! If you're looking for more in-depth pointers on what to read and where to start, I have an essay on that, too!

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: “We’ve got company and they brought a crusade”

While that's true, I think it was a reasonable thing to try, given what she had on the line. Often in these things we do ask "Why didn't they just run?" because it seems obvious--especially when the bad guys are trying to hit a window--that it'd solve the problem.

Where to Start with the Works of Connie Willis

To Say Nothing of the Dog is a different animal (sorry) than Doomsday Book; same universe, entirely different kind of focus and tone. Actually, thinking about it makes me want to reread it.

A Magical Smorgasbord: Patricia McKillip’s Kingfisher

Infowitch: yes, the fusion of old Arthurian elements with the modern is really unique and marvellous!

A Magical Smorgasbord: Patricia McKillip’s Kingfisher

It's worth checking out! And, I'd read a second set in this world if I thought it might drill down a little.

Wizards and Politics: Fantastic Thrillers

Using diplomacy, intrigue and brains to get things done should be far more popular than it is.

Obviously, I have to agree with you on this point, Mayhem, given what I'm writing these days!

Wizards and Politics: Fantastic Thrillers

I'd lost touch with what Cussler was up to some time ago--when I no longer lived in a house where his books were lying around, freely available--but this is interesting to know! Thanks, John!

Wizards and Politics: Fantastic Thrillers

Wiredog... yeah. Suspension of disbelief just shattered in that moment. So. Very. Cheesy!

Pictures With a Thousand Words: Thing Explainer by Randall Munroe

Yes! I could definitely use a Thing Explainer version of both cricket and rugby, Mayhem!

String: Long strong thing? Hmmm.

Catch a Rising Wind with Fran Wilde’s Updraft

@Braid_Tug - The book is meant to stand alone. There will be others set in this universe, one of them from an older Kirit's point of view. However, they're not one big novel strung together in book-sized chapters.

Where to Start with the Works of Peter Straub

Blacksmith, I feel that impatience with other authors, especially the first time through a book.

Bylstrother, I would never read Ghost Story on the night shift. You are brave!

Fastlane: Mystery! Transcendant! Yes!

Ty, I'm forced to admit that I haven't read Mr. X yet.

Where to Start with the Works of Connie Willis

I totally get that, Margaret. I found myself moved to reacquaint myself with my (at the time shaky) U.S. Civil War history after reading Lincoln's Dreams, and I watched a few of those old movies, too. A few of them were actually appalling--Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, for example.

I'm always blown away by how intense her approach to research is!

Where to Start with the Works of Connie Willis

I see Passage as an attempt to look at death from another angle, which is, again, ambitious. I have mixed feelings about whether it entirely comes off, and I do take your point.

Where to Start with the Works of Connie Willis

Strangely, the presence of answering machines in Lincoln's Dreams makes it seem older, to me, than their absence in Doomsday Book. But your point (RJ, Andrew, and Fangirl) is a good one--the fact that these things are ubiquitous now makes them seem very obviously missing from these novels.

Miriam, I simply left out Blackout/All Clear because it's nowhere near where I'd start with Willis. I think it's cool that you did, though. 

Mantelli, I have strong feelings about smokers, too. I do generally agree that as a society we judge and shame people for behaviors that are none of our business, but when I get a lungful of somebody else's tobacco I tend to resent it, and them.

Sun Stealer, I completely agree that Inside Job is superfun.

Bob, I'd argue that Childhood's End is dated. One for the ages, as you say, but no longer cutting edge. And I love your heartfelt thank you to CW.

Saavik, baiting people with Miracle is brilliant!

Count the days, people: I believe her newest will be out in January!!


The Yellow Wood Wields an Intimate and Disturbing Wizardry
I was glad it was good, too! I agree that Tem will be missed, very much!
Tim Powers Unlocks Another Gate in Nobody’s Home
I'm embarrased about the typos, folks, and I apologize. It has been an age since I read TAN... and while I thought I had fact-checked everything, clearly I did it in an unforgivably sloppy way.
Angels and Ending: Jay Lake’s Last Plane to Heaven
I've no idea if Jay offered anyone the opportunity to keep writing in any of his various universes, to be honest.
That Was Awesome: Starfish by Peter Watts
Hey, Torvald, I can't speak for all of Tor, but I'm sure I'll reread Blindsight one day. But probably not right away. Ad, there are some very intriguing (and I would say admirable) humans Echopraxia.)
That Was Awesome: Starfish by Peter Watts
I liked Lenie's rampage, actually. And I think, AD, the answer to your question about why the journey's worth following is twofold. First, it's a growing-to-power narrative that doesn't follow a standard goody-goody character as they achieve superheroic dimensions. Second, I'd argue that despite it all, there's a bit of redemption in Lenie. I like characters who really have to fight to express their own goodness; she's one such.
Among the Silvering Herd
Those hopeful ladies can't keep their hands off young Parrish!
Everything I Learned from the Buffy Rewatch
No plans for an Angel rewatch, Fiddler--my love there isn't quite pure enough. I'm still pondering whether I have another rewatch in me, and what it might be.
The Ugly Woman of Castello di Putti
Hi, Clelie, I'm glad--the idea was to let people find the connections between Gale and Parrish's early adventures together and the books at whatever pace worked for them. I have more of these stories in the works.
The Color of Paradox
Hey, all-- I'm thrilled that you want more. I did conceive this as something that would be larger, one day, but the next step hasn't come together. As for the shout-out, Connie is a tough no-nonsense kind of woman and I wanted that in Agent 16, though she would never be as heartles as Willie pretends to be. And, of course, she's got one of the great time-travel series in her Fire Watch universe.
The Pop Quiz at the End of the Universe: Alyx Dellamonica
Hi, Carolyn, That post is shamefully late. It's half-written, but I haven't quite got a lock on what I want to say. I am terribly sorry about that!
Attack of the Logical Positivists! James Morrow’s The Madonna and the Starship
It's true that I'm GenX, Lenny, and so just a hair off the perfect audience for this. Thank you for sharing your 7-year-old self's surprise!
The Devil in America
This is lovely--intriguing and tragic. The particular way in which the family's knowledge has been lost, and the back and forth temptation of Easter, are simply harrowing.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: In which it is, after all, about power.
Sophist, Buffy's choice to send Dawn away does fulfill the prophecy on paper, I suppose, but it feels incomplete to me.
Wild Things
Rooting for love! I'll be interested in what you think of the books, in that case. Thanks, Erica.
Among the Silvering Herd
Hi, Erica, I'm so glad you liked it! There's a second of the Gales up here at now--it's called "The Ugly Woman of Castello di Putti" --and both Gale and Garland Parrish appear in my upcoming novel, CHILD OF A HIDDEN SEA.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: “Tell anyone we had this conversation and I’ll bite you.”
I would definitely agree that Buffy argued badly. As the very overtired person being piled upon, I can understand how she didn't rise above. Xander might be entitled to a momentary loss of faith, though. He's suddenly realized that he's not untouchable.
The Ugly Woman of Castello di Putti
I have a later story in the works from Tonio's point of view, Dianthus, though it doesn't deal with his prayers specifically.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: “Am I The Good Slayer Now?”
In story terms, the fight was always going to end in a disaster and Xander losing an eye, right? And the Slayettes had to have some sense of legitimacy to their complaints. It seems to me that if Buffy had micro-surveyed, gone in with bazookas and still lost, the team kicking her out of Chez Slay would have seemed completely unfair. Which is, I suppose, an argument for balance. She made some effort to keep everyone safe and do a good job, and she was nevertheless a bit reckless.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: “Am I The Good Slayer Now?”
I wonder how many of us would love Mal if he'd been even darker, as Whedon apparently had wished to make him?
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: “Am I The Good Slayer Now?”
Nico, I'm so glad you caught up! Aeryl... I see what you mean about Alpha, though I'd never considered it before. I didn't know Caleb was the most hated (by fans, one assumes) villain. He is an underuse of Nathan Fillion, I'd say. He's so passin'-thru! Build-up would have helped.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: A trigger, a soul and a chip walk into the high school
Aeryl, Robin does get the short end in a lot of ways, but I can certainly forgive Spike for taking the harsh view on how he presents Nikki to Robin. He's got no great reason to be kind, in that moment, and his feelings about Slayers in general are pretty complicated. Add to that the fact that he did stalk and kill Nikki, and he's just had this epiphany about his own mother... well, he says what he thinks in the moment. Carmenghia, you're right: some essays weigh heavier to a recap. Others do dig in a little more. With such a savvy and well-informed group of fans, I do want to leave lots of room for discussion. Collectively you all know far more about BtVS than I ever could.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: Home Movies hit Sunnydale
@9 Well argued, Alex--I see your point. (I'm on the verge of rewatching "Empty Places," as it happens.) @17 Tarbis, what you say about the seal, the trigger subplot and the rest--I'm so in agreement with this. Too many plot devices, not enough sense!
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: Home Movies hit Sunnydale
Hmm. I'm trying to figure out if it matters that the group thinks the Spuffing has resumed, and if so how.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: Drop the bone already!
She's definitely not wrong in saying she needs everyone working at full strength, risky or no. In a sense, what she does in Spike's case is give him permission to enjoy himself while fighting on her side.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: Drop the bone already!
Tarbis, I like the way you think: On a happy note I like to imagine Slayer Prime... etc.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: Drop the bone already!
You're right--the Slayer myth is important, and it does connect back to "Restless" in a really pleasing way. I had the general idea that "Storyteller" was pretty beloved.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: Wouldn’t you like to be a Slayer too?
Zorra--I'm with you. Though I loved BtVS, one of the things that excited me about Firefly was that it was about grownups, and not high school students. Perhaps they should've built something new on the Hellmouth and found a way to shoehorn Buffy/Robin/Spike into that mix. (What that would be, I can't imagine.) The point several of you make about Faith being more of a rule-followe than I said is most excellent and true. She talks the rebel talk, but you're right, she entirely buys into the Mayor's authority.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: This is Slayerdome
I look forward to hearing you all argue for off-screen sex at various points to come!
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: This is Slayerdome
I'd like it better if Faith's place in the Slayer line were acknowledged in a way that made more sense. At least she'll be in the mix soon!
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: Looking for Blood in All the Wrong Places
@20, I know you have been turned off the comics, but S8 is really all about exploring that "logical outgrowth" and the damage it does, because leading that Slayer organization only acts to continue to isolate Buffy. I am actually quite sorry to hear that!
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: Looking for Blood in All the Wrong Places
I almost wonder if the story might not have worked just as well if none of them had ever come to Sunnydale... Well... I'm not sure. It's a logical part of Buffy's growth that she comes to lead the Slayer organization. It's not a one-off blow up the high school battle, but permanent leadership. Without a few Slayettes to bring that home, would it work?
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: Looking for Blood in All the Wrong Places
A touching ritual makes a lot of sense, and you'd think in such a crowded house it would almost be impossible not to get touchy now and then. The Potentials do complicate things in terms of taking over the story without offering a lot of payoff. The speeching wears down my goodwill a little more each time the group falls into it. And yet, I love where "Chosen" ends up. Hammy or no, I'm looking forward to getting to Nathan Fillion.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: Evil rephrased—it eats you, starting with your bottom
Aw, Jack, that's almost sweet. My phone is actually so magical, it doesn't ring at two in the morning, even if I forget to shut it off! Have a terrific holiday!
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: Someone was a bit of an Audball all along
Nicely argued, Alex C. The Xander/Buffy argument is a high point for me, too--it's both hair-raising and such a signpost for how much they've both grown.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: Someone was a bit of an Audball all along
High impact, Aeryl--I agree. I would have loved an earlier Anya episode, or two, but this one has to fall exactly here in her story arc. And now I am already feeling pangs of sorrow, for what's to come. You'd say the seventh season destroyed Whedon's reputation, Vij?
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: Pretentious Inner Turmoil or Precognitive Abilities? How to Tell?
It's interesting to see the breakdown of fourth episodes--thank you very much for that! And I like how Buffy treats Spike as this season continues, too.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: Pretentious Inner Turmoil or Precognitive Abilities? How to Tell?
But I want her to save the puppies!! "Convos with the Dead Peeps" really is worth a lot of set-up, I agree.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: Redemption School Dropout
Spike and Angel both obviously feel some responsibility for the things they did while sans-soul. How much they are, I think, is something the Buffy canon leaves open to our interpretation.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: Redemption School Dropout
I'm with you on the Ewwwwww! Zorra. I was surprised by how difficult I found that to rewatch!
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: “Did you turn this lady’s ex into a giant worm monster?”
A good resurrection is so satisfying, but in general we do bring characters back more often than we probably ought. There were some great post-Becoming stories about Angel, but his actual return grated on me. Buffy's return felt earned: they worked for it, hard, and they paid. Spike's... yeah. Could've done without it.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: “Did you turn this lady’s ex into a giant worm monster?”
I think of the swinging in as more of a Tarzan thing, but you're right: Batman tracks with Spike's line. I don't know what was up with the naming of Ron and Nancy.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: Best Principal Ever or Evil Fiend? How do you tell?
Gardner--I'll miss your comments, positive and negative. I just watched "Selfless" and was surprised at how much I like it.
Rise of a… Saint? Meet Hild, and Decide
A lot of those incidents aren't covered in this book because it doesn't get that far into Hild's life, Patricia, but I am sure Griffith will get to them in the next novel.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: Wanna Kill the World? Start with Xander!
That's an interesting challenge, Gardner: how to give Buffy something more meaningful to do while leaving Xander to 'save' Willow. In the five seconds I've been thinking about it... if Willow had been drawing on Dawn energy, rather than Satan Church, maybe there could have been some need to choose involved, so Buffy was saving the world by saving Dawn. That's imperfect, because saving Dawn was what she did last year. The other possibility would be to capitalize on Willow's having brought Buffy back from the dead, instead of making a smart remark of it. Telling Osiris he could have her back, forcing her to fight him... there might be some plot to be worked there.

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