kiffie: Star Trek's Enterprise-D. (Linocut Owl)
So I've been cataloging my books on LibraryThing.

See 'em here at LibraryThing

Not everything I own is up there, yet-- hell, that's not even everything in my main bookcase! --but it's a good start.
kiffie: Star Trek's Enterprise-D. (Toothless)
James Gurney, the author of Dinotopia, is holding an art contest. Specifically, it's an envelope art contest.

http://gurneyjourney.blogspot.com/2011/04/envelope-art-gallery.html

I'm so entering. :3

Hmm!

Feb. 21st, 2011 05:05 pm
kiffie: Star Trek's Enterprise-D. (Harry and Morgan)
Picked up "The Somnambulist," by Jonathan Barnes, today on a whim.

I'm about five chapters in and enjoying it a little more than I expected. It's very clearly dimestore drivel, but intentionally so, and the jabs at Holmesian-type detectives alone are pleasing me enough that, should the book have no other merits, I might consider keeping it around.

To it's credit, by its premise, alone, I'm inclined to like it. I do love magicians as main characters -- they're so much fun. It's an overused trope, but an entertaining one, and I wouldn't mind a novel series going in that direction, rather than wizards.

I have been warned, however, that the ending will engender a "WTF?!" reaction in almost every reader, either good or bad. I'm keen to finish it, if only to see what everyone is so wound up about. Most of the reviews made it seem like it's a 'love it or hate it' scenario -- I can't resist that sort of an offering.

At some point, I do need to read through "The Prestige," as well, though probably over a summer where I can deal with multiple mindfucks and not have to worry about school the next morning. Delicious, delicious mindfucks.

Thinky

Feb. 9th, 2011 08:32 pm
kiffie: Star Trek's Enterprise-D. (Linocut Owl)
A secret posted on fandomsecrets, as well as ed's own recent nostalgia kick with Bruce Coville, made me think of a book from my childhood that I loved-- love --very much:

James Gurney's Dinotopia.

I'd been into dinosaurs since I could walk. One of my mom's favorite "stupid kid tricks" when I had just learned to move on my own was sitting me in front of a mess of toy dinosaurs and having me name each one. And not just triceratops and T-rex -- I had brachiosaurus and anklyosaurus and pleisiosaur down. One of my favorite toys was a black-and-purple plastic triceratops. My mom scribbled my name on the bottom so I could take it to preschool with me, supposedly without fear of another kid nicking it. They did, anyway, but at least I had a good comeback to, "Is your name on it?"

Anyway, some time after the first Dinotopia book came out, the whole "feathered dinosaurs" thing came into vogue, mostly driven, at that point, by Archeopteryx (even though that particular critter is now considered a proto-bird, not a dinosaur). Dinotopia kept with the accepted-- and, in my opinion, more visually-appealing --version of non-feathered dinos. Really, most people still draw dinosaurs as giant lizards. After all, T-rex is hardly scary when you imagine a great big chicken. Lizards, though? Lizards are scary. They're pretty much the exact opposite of us warm, fuzzy mammals. And what makes for a better monster?

But then I got to thinking.

If, in a few million years' time, someone found a chicken skeleton, would they imagine this or this? Why did we end up with the latter, when iguanadon and megalosaurus (semi- and fully bipedal, respectively) were the first skeletons on display?

Science is very strange.

From a design standpoint, I love the smooth and slick raptors, the clunky armored tank anklyosaurs, and the graceful gnarled tree trunk sauropods. They hit all of the right notes for a great creature. But the scientist in me looks back at those books-- and man, I love those books! --and screams "WRONG WRONG WRONG!"

...

I should be doing homework.

B|

Oct. 27th, 2009 11:21 am
kiffie: Chauvelin, from the Scarlet Pimpernel musical. (Chauvelin)
When I said I wanted a live-action Beauty and the Beast, I did not mean a film adaptation of "Beastly."

What the hell.

If they were going to pick a less-familiar, Beast-centric retelling, why not take "Beast" by Donna Jo Napoli? CGI lions can be done well, after all.
kiffie: An A. seemani tarantula. (Bobling)
I've been working on my Chem homework, on and off, for most of the night. I will go back to it soon.

For now, though, I've got a short story-- "Meeting At Falmouth," as it's my favorite from the copy of Beyond the Great Snow Mountains I got from someone a few months back --going on my headphones. I am so damn chill right now. I love audiobooks, but I very rarely have the money to buy them. I'd love to have the Dresden books on audio CD, as well. But, again, that would involve cash.

I should never be given a large sum of money. It would end with a houseful of books (and audiobooks) and a starving kiff.
kiffie: Star Trek's Enterprise-D. (Tiny Crime)
I have David McCullough's John Adams.

I've been reading far too much of it since buying it yesterday, and I fear I will be reading far too much of it in the coming (school- and work-dominated) weeks.

Crap.
kiffie: Star Trek's Enterprise-D. (Tiny Crime)
One of a broken set.

A new bookcase to supplement the old, ugly, orange thing that has served us these last few years. That one will be reassigned as the "junk shelf" -- at least until we fill the new one up and need more room...

Also, on a sadder note:

The Free Library of Philadelphia (http://www.library.phila.gov/) will be closing its branches next month. It's one of the longest-running libraries in the country. ;_;

Book!

Nov. 12th, 2007 06:52 pm
kiffie: Star Trek's Enterprise-D. (Default)
If you're ever keen to keep an eye on my bookcase over any period of time, it's pretty obvious where most of my paycheck goes each month. And in keeping with that, I have a book rec:

"The Fighting Ships 1750-1850" by Sam Willis.

I won't lie. It's a picture book. But it's a wonderful picture book. It has very high-quality images of many famous naval paintings, as well as some modern art that is equally as spectacular as any of the period pieces. The text is concise and informative, and just the right amount given the type of book it is. It's also a nice intro to British (and non-British) naval history for any newbs. Not to say that non-newbs can't enjoy it (I certainly did), but if you have a newb who likes ships, this might be a cool Christmas gift.

The print quality on my copy was a little shoddy -- the white inks they used to print with didn't seem to have dried enough before they bound the book, and so several of the facing pages are smeared with (light) coatings of the powdery stuff. It doesn't detract from the quality of the paintings themselves, but it is distracting when reading the accompanying text. Still, I got my copy for $20 at Border's. And it is an oversized. So I'm not complaining terribly much.

One of my favorite parts of the book is the draught diagram for the HMS Endevour. It's very neat to have a large, high quality version of the image, where otherwise I would be limited to grainy GIFs or fuzzy JPEGs on the internets.

So there's my rant for today. Now I go off to study and make myself beeny in the common room.
kiffie: Star Trek's Enterprise-D. (Old Been)
A short list.

1) Go to McCormick's to check on Sucker, and possibly look into buying Daniel some additional tubes for his tank. I can see where this might be a bad idea, letting an unusually smart mouse loose in several feet of brightly coloured tunnels, but what's the worst that can happen?

And if anyone says "he'll build an owlship", there will be ass-kicking. B|

2) Go to the library to pick up some books I ordered. I requested some books on British naval uniforms, so hopefully they didn't screw it up. I kinda want to read something historical, and as much as I like my dad's little library here at home, "The Quest For El Cid" just doesn't do it for me.

3) Go to Target, look for something for my aunt's birfday, and hopefully get a new pillow while I'm there. The pillow I've been using to prop myself up while I drive Voodoo* has kind've... disintegrated. Well, 'exploded' would be a better term, but I refuse to admit that the inside of my car is covered in pillow guts.

4) Sleep. A lot. Ohgod.

*One of the drawbacks to driving an older car -- not everything works. Case in point, Voodoo's adjustable seat mechanism. There is no way to push the driver's seat foreward. So I must instead push ME foreward with a pillow. :3

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