newnumber6: (rotating2)
[personal profile] newnumber6
Book Foo to start off with:

Finished: The Science Fiction Century, Vol 1(short story collection)
Started: Blindsight, by Peter Watts (reread)

Like all short story collections there's a mix of good and rather dull, and stories I've read before of each. This one had a bit of a focus on much older material of the HG Wells/Jack London eras (though there's plenty of new material too). There was even a non-Lovecraft Lovecraftian story (The Hounds of Tindalos). I read all of them, even the rereads, with the exception of E.M. Forster's "The Machine Stops" which I've read SO MANY times in school alone that I just can't bear it any more.
(minor concept related spoilers behind cut, no biggies).



A pleasant surprise was the previously mentioned "The Hounds of Tindalos". I like the ideas in the various Lovecraftian style authors, but often I find the material is hard to get through. But this one was actually quite pleasant, and the Hounds themselves were one of the Call of Cthulhu beasts I always liked despite never having read the source. Kind of interesting. I tend to see them less as a 'creature' and more of a sort of natural force that converts other material into them much like strong acid dissolves various solid objects. They're not evil, it's just the nature of what they are compared to what they're set against is inherently destructive.

Another pleasing story was "Ginungagap" by Michael Swanwick, about a conversation with a possibly untrustworthy alien race across a black hole (may have reread it but still good).
Anyway, probably a bit less of the 'good' to 'less interesting' ratio in this collection, but I didn't hate it.

Finished: Nineteen Eighty-Four, by George Orwell (reread)

Can't really comment on this one since I've read it so many times, it's like visiting an old friend. One who kicks you in the gut to say goodbye, but nonetheless!

Started and Finished: Rainbows End, by Vernor Vinge
Started: Eon, by Greg Bear (reread, but long enough ago that I can barely remember anything but the back of the book premise)

Rainbows End was a reread, so no need to get too detailed about the thoughts, but once again I really like the near future technological gadgetry that you can almost believe is just around the corner.

Had some memorable dreams lately, although a few of them have faded from memory, I still wanna record them. So, behind the cut, Zombies (with guest appearance by Zombie Flash), The Avatarverse, and bio-forming.

Okay, first, the zombie dream. This was a bit interesting because it didn't start as a zombie dream at all. It started as a Prison Dream. Me, and a bunch of others, were in prison for some reason. We were separated from the general population, although still in one big group, so I got the impression that it was some sort of suspected terrorism plot or something. I didn't get the impression we were guilty, it was sort of detaining while they figure things out, but it was a real prison. There were both men and women there, except the women were segregated into a separate section. We could see, but generally not interact. Anyway, our part was inside the prison, with windows that could look outside, but not very conveniently. The memory of it's a bit vague, but we could generally only see a little bit out of the windows unless we did things like climb up to the ceiling.

Anyway, at one point we realized that the guards all seemed to have disappeared. The entrance to the women's section had also opened up, and we started mixing together. It was getting pretty eerie that nobody was answering. Nobody was visible through the windows, either, so we had to do the climb up towards the ceiling thing.

it was then we saw that it was zombies, and in fact they were inside the prison, just not at our area.

The prison yard was mostly clear, and we could break through that by breaking the windows, so we did, since they were slow zombies. But as we did, that drew the zombies attention and they started coming for our area. We split up trying to get to a car on the other side of the fence (which was beaten down by the zombies, but clear since they'd left looking for better food). Someone got the car and instead of coming back for the rest of us, they just left, so we had to try to escape on foot on our own. Luckily, the zombies were _very_ slow, so we could dodge them and got out of the prison. That's when we saw "The Flash". You know, the comics character. And he was clearly a zombie. At first we were freaked because he could use his super-speed to get us, but when he tried he collapsed on the ground because his tendons had rotted and such, and so we just walked around him. That's about where I woke up. Still, fun zombie-dodging action.

Another dream had me on an alien planet, where people had wings, much like Angel... looked otherwise mostly human. Anyway, I was undergoing a series of surgeries to make me one of them. The only one I can remember (aside from the obvious 'grafting the wings on') involved cracking my breastbone so that it could be made wider. I think they might have done the same to lengthen the arms and legs, too. Also had a pleasant conversation with one of the natives, but the specifics elude me.

The final one was set sort of in the universe of Avatar: The Last Airbender. At least, we were being pursued by Azula, and I think Sokka and Katara were with me. We found a big buried artefact that was in some senses alive, and there were pieces of another ultimate weapon inside it that we had to search through and find (it was like a large sandpile). Azula arrived while we only had about half of the pieces assembled but the mind behind the artifacct was able to help fend them off temporarily by producing a force field.

So, not all that interesting, but fun to dream of.

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newnumber6

November 2009

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