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Italy

Rappacini’s daughter [essay] by

courserascifi

This week’s essay for my Coursera Course got a 5. W00t Beatrice, Beatrice, let down your hair. Giovanni is not a pregnant woman, but his longing looks[1] into the enclosed garden next door echo the desires that resulted in Rapunzel being taken from her parents. Beatrice may live with her father but she shares many similarities with Rapunzel; she is

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Rappaccini’s Daughter by

Mosses from an Old Manse

Giovanni moves to a new city, and finds that his apartment overlooks an enclosed garden where beautiful flowers grow. And a beautiful woman tends to them. She is Beatrice, the daughter of Rappaccini. But a friend of his father, Baglioni, warns Giovanni away from Rappaccini. He values knowledge and science too much, he pursues it without thought for humanity or

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The Black Opera by

The black opera by Mary Gentle

Conrad Scalese’s latest opera was a great success. Unfortunately the theatre in which it was performed has just been stuck by lightening. And since the composer and many of the performers have fled Naples the church decides to blame him. As the librettist his words caused God’s wrath to strike down the building. But, as the Inquisition come calling, King

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Ghosts of Vesuvius by

ghosts of vesuvius

It is hard to blurb this book. On the one hand it is about Vesuvius and volcanic explosions and disasters both natural and man-made. But it is also a book about the origins of the earth, of the universe, and about how precarious our existence is. How so much of what we are today is dependent on natural events a thousand years ago, or a millennia ago, or so long ago that it is almost pointless to count the time because it is so difficult to grasp those sort of numbers.

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Spartacus : Gods of the arena dir. by

Default fox is the defaults - Image taken from page 40 of 'Travels in Africa during the years 1875-1878 (1879-1883-1882-1886) ... from The British Library

First things first, this is an awesome show. Awesome! Anyone who says different is just plain wrong!

When I first started watching Spartacus : Blood and Sand I have to say that I wasn’t overly impressed. Obviously influenced by the style and look of 300 it seemed to be a show that existed only to show glossy violence and sex. And boy did it ever show that. But after the first few episodes it developed into a very enjoyable, almost addictive, show. But then its star was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma and so film making was delayed as he underwent treatment. And so instead of a second season we got a prequel. Spartacus : gods of the arena. Don’t be fooled by that name in the title, this has no Spartacus as all, instead it tells the story of how John Hannah’s Lentulus Batiatus comes to run the family ludus, and how Crixus becomes a gladiator.

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Blameless by

Default fox is the defaults - Image taken from page 40 of 'Travels in Africa during the years 1875-1878 (1879-1883-1882-1886) ... from The British Library

by Gail Carriger
If you haven’t yet read Soulless and Changeless then I am afraid that this review will contain spoilers for those two books. Always the way with reviewing books in a series.
I’ve just realised that I’ve never really mentioned the covers in my review of these books, but just take a second to take a proper look at them. Aren’t they wonderful! I’m not sure if that is exactly how I picture Alexia, she always seems, how would she put it, more substantial than the model on the cover, but the are so very appropriate. And just look at that othnithopter over Paris. Oops, spoilers, because yes, Alexia heads to France and then on to Italy. How exciting.

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Rome 2.10 De Parte Vostro dir. by

Default fox is the defaults - Image taken from page 40 of 'Travels in Africa during the years 1875-1878 (1879-1883-1882-1886) ... from The British Library

The final episode. I’m going to miss Lamb and Chicken, and even scheming Caesar/Octavian, not to mention bitch-Atia and all the others. And Beeb watchers, let me tell you, Heroeswhile entertaining, is not even half as good as Rome.

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Rome 2.6 Philippi dir. by

Default fox is the defaults - Image taken from page 40 of 'Travels in Africa during the years 1875-1878 (1879-1883-1882-1886) ... from The British Library

We start off this episode with Brutus and Cassius riding along with their army. Brutus is in good form, he has been chatting with the men, but Cassius is a tad on the grumpy side, all these mouths to feed. Brutus tells him he has such an unromantic view of the army. They are marching to take on Caesar/Octavian, for

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Rome 2.5 Heroes of the Republic dir. by

Default fox is the defaults - Image taken from page 40 of 'Travels in Africa during the years 1875-1878 (1879-1883-1882-1886) ... from The British Library

After the excitement of the last episode it seems that Timon has refound religion[1] as this episode begins with him and his brother praying at Temple. I do wonder will this last[2] But there isn’t too much time to think about this as soon we switch attention to Mark Anthony in the woods. With a beard. And a nasty, nasty

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Rome 2.4 Testudo et Lepus dir. by

Default fox is the defaults - Image taken from page 40 of 'Travels in Africa during the years 1875-1878 (1879-1883-1882-1886) ... from The British Library

When last we left Rome we all thought that evil slimy servant dude was going to succeed with Servilia’s plan to off Atia. He had, after all, found an opportunity when she wasn’t eating with Octavia, and so could be poisoned without harm coming to the daughter.

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