October 2014 archive

Elric: The Stealer of Souls (Chronicles of the Last Emperor of Melnibone, Voume I) by Michael Moorcock

It is impossible for me to write an objective review of any book that concerns the character Elric. This book is a collection of short stories or novellas that Moorcock wrote about Elric and had published in various SciFi/Fantasy magazines in the 1960s. I grew up reading these books, and I still have the original …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/10/25/elric-the-stealer-of-souls-chronicles-of-the-last-emperor-of-melnibone-voume-i-by-michael-moorcock/

Ancillary Sword (Imperial Radch Book 2) by Ann Leckie

This book is the long-awaited sequel to Ancillary Justice, and it did not disappoint. I read the first book and then the newly released sequel, so that I could keep everything in my head straight. It was wonderful. So wonderful that I didn’t want the story to stop and when it did, and I realized …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/10/25/ancillary-sword-imperial-radch-book-2-by-ann-leckie/

The Milkweed Trilogy by Ian Tregillis

This trilogy consists of the following three books (shocking, I know): Bitter Seeds, The Coldest War, and Necessary Evil. I enjoyed the books well enough, although it was yet another alternate history of World War II, with warlocks on the British side and German supermen with powers, and a dollop of time travel just to …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/10/25/the-milkweed-trilogy-by-ian-tregillis/

The MaddAddam Trilogy by Margaret Atwood

Yes, another dystopian novel (trilogy) by the intelligent and tricksy Margaret Atwood. The three books, in order, are Oryx and Crake, The Year of the Flood, and MaddAddam. I read good reviews about it, and bad reviews about it, and lukewarm reviews about it, but in the end all that matters is that I enjoyed …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/10/25/the-maddaddam-trilogy-by-margaret-atwood/

Early Socratic Dialogues by Plato

It seems to me there is something flawed in the Socratic question and answer approach to discerning truth. A person may know what something is and even be an expert on it even if he does not know how to precisely define it. An ophthalmologist, for instance, knows what sight is and is competent to …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/10/25/early-socratic-dialogues-by-plato/

Life-Span Development by John Santrock

I took a correspondence course in developmental psychology many years ago, and I managed to hang on to the textbook in case I should ever get a desire to reread it. Very good decision. This book provides a wealth of information on the human stages of development based on current and historical research. Particularly interesting, …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/10/19/life-span-development-by-john-santrock/

Twentieth Century France by James McMillan

I read this book from beginning to end, and I have almost nothing to say about it, except that French history after Napoleon is pretty boring.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/10/18/twentieth-century-france-by-james-mcmillan/

The Second World War by J.F.C. Fuller

This is a tactical and strategic analysis of World War II, a purely military history without much in the way of human dimension. It makes some interesting arguments. Fuller believes air power is wasteful, immoral, and ineffective at deciding military conflict, and that the best use of it is in cargo transport rather than aerial …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/10/18/the-second-world-war-by-j-f-c-fuller/

Tintentod by Cornelia Funke

This was the immensely satisfying end to a very good trilogy, although I will have to think about it a little longer to say just why. The author thanks her English translator in the acknowledgements to German edition, so she is presumably very happy with its rendering as Inkdeath.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/10/14/tintentod-by-cornelia-funke/

Catastrophe 1914: Europe Goes to War by Max Hastings

This book only covers the first five months of World War I, but those five months were certainly horrendous enough to be worth remembering. The author does not buy into the the subsequent consensus that the war was pointless and not worth the cost; perhaps it never should have been fought, but in his view …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/10/12/catastrophe-1914-europe-goes-to-war-by-max-hastings/