The Android’s Dream

Part of my Sci-Fi 2014 Experience When a book opens with a death by farting, two deaths by farting actually, you know this isn’t your usual run of the mill science fiction story. The deaths mentioned occur at trade negotiations between earth and the Nidu, and the farting was designed …

Ghost Hawk

Little Hawk is about to leave his family and village to go into the woods and live alone for three months, a ritual that will see him in his way to manhood. But life if changing for his tribe, and for all Native Americans. The European settlement of America is …

The light heart of stone

Book one in the Promise of Stones series. Fox is a young girl growing up on the Stone Body, a land ruled over by the Compionarii. She is a member of an Indiginy tribe. A long time ago the Stone Body was only inhabited by the indiginy peoples, but over …

Dune (round iii)

Dune

The final questions for the Dune group read are:

  1. What is your reaction to finally learning the identity of Princess Irulan? Do you think that her convention added to the story?
  2. Were you satisfied with the ending? For those reading for the first time, was it what you expected?
  3. On both Arrakis and Salusa Secundus, ecology plays a major role in shaping both characters and the story itself. Was this convincing? Do you think that Paul would have gone through with his threat to destroy the spice, knowing what it would mean for Arrakis?
  4. Both Leto and Paul made their decisions on marriage for political reasons. Do you agree with their choices?
  5. What was your favorite part in this section of the book?
  6. One of the things I noticed in the discussions last week was Herbert’s use of the word “jihad.” What do you think of Herbert’s message about religion and politics?

The good man Jesus and the scoundrel Christ

by Philip Pullman

The back of the edition of this that I read has only the words: This is a story. Interesting. Is that because the publisher’s don’t want to offend the ultra religious in the Christian world. Or is it a message from the author that the life of Jesus is a story. That the bible is a story.

Pullman, of course, is known for his ever so slightly controversial views on religion, he has used them in his fiction before. In that case it involved a worn-out god, and power-hungry angels. Here he revisits the myth:”(is a myth a religion we dont believe in?)”: of Jesus Christ and weaves a new story out of it.

A letter of Mary

The more I read of this series the more I come to love the characters, and indeed the whole set-up. Mary Russell is such a believable character, and King’s Holmes is just perfect.

The mystery at the heart of this novel concerns the death of Dorothy Ruskin. An archaeologist working in Jerusalem, she met up with Russell and Holmes when they travelled the area back in book one. In this book she comes to visit them, bringing with her an exquisite wooden box which contains a parchment on which is written a letter, from Mary of Magdala to her sister. Was it really written by the infamous Mary Magdalen? And was the car accident that killed her really an accident?

Purple Hibiscus

Things started to fall apart at home when my brother, Jaja, did not go to communion and Papa flung his heavy missal across the room and broke the figurines on the étagére.

Kambili, the teenage narrator of the book, is a 15 year old girl. In many ways she lives a priveliged life in Nigeria. Her father owns factories; he is a “big man” in the community. A fact that is brought home to her when she visits her less well off aunt and cousins. But wealth doesn’t equal happiness. Kamibili and her brother Jaja live under the strict rules of their father and his fiercely religious beliefs.

The Golden Compass [based on the book]

I read, and really enjoyed, Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials a while back, so I was really looking forward to this film, the first of three. Unfortunately it just isn’t very good. It should be. The story is a wonderful one, Kidman and Craig are fantastic, although Craig isn’t really …

He taught me how to wash, fight and pray

I really love this sorta weather. Sunny, but a little on the cold side[1] When I headed out this morning I could actually feel the chill in the air. Autumn weather, when dry, is great. And look, Paul O’Connell[2] has been named captain of Munster. I’ve a great grá for …