Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Moon Over Soho- Ben Aaronovitch

Moon Over Soho

Peter Grant is back in this second installment of Aaronovitch's series, and all I can say is "More, please!" I'd swear he's writing these things just for me- set in London, featuring jazz and a biracial hero, with a healthy dollop of paranormal activity thrown in. All things I love, and well written, to boot! I liked the fact that a critically injured character from the first book still appears in the second, and without being magically cured of the damage she suffered. It's hard for Peter (and Leslie herself) to deal with the aftermath, but it doesn't get glossed over. Peter's mentor is also still suffering the effects of his injuries from Midnight Riot, and Peter is left with a great deal less superivision as a result. This, for him, does not prove to be an entirely good thing as he is faced with a man-eating woman (literally), several unexpectedly dead jazz musicians, and yet another woman who wants Peter for her own. Good stuff!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Poetry Monday

I Sit and Think

I sit beside the fire and think

of all that I have seen,

of meadow-flowers and butterflies

in summers that have been;

Of yellow leaves and gossamer

in autumns that there were,

with morning mist and silver sun

and wind upon my hair.

I sit beside the fire and think

of how the world will be

when winter comes without a spring

that I shall never see.

For still there are so many things

that I have never seen:

in every wood in every spring

there is a different green.

I sit beside the fire and think

of people long ago,

and people who will see a world

that I shall never know.

But all the while I sit and think

of times there were before,

I listen for returning feet

and voices at the door.

John Ronald Reuel Tolkien

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

*once again, thanks to google images and the designer who created this sweet picture

Monday, November 21, 2011

Poetry Monday

Little Red Riding Hood and the Wolf

As soon as Wolf began to feel

That he would like a decent meal,

He went and knocked on Grandma's door.

When Grandma opened it, she saw

The sharp white teeth, the horrid grin,

And Wolfie said, 'May I come in?'

Poor Grandmamma was terrified,

'He's going to eat me up!' she cried.

And she was absolutely right.

He ate her up in one big bite.

But Grandmamma was small and tough,

And Wolfie wailed, 'That's not enough!

I haven't yet begun to feel

That I have had a decent meal!'

He ran around the kitchen yelping,

'I've got to have a second helping!'

Then added with a frightful leer,

'I'm therefore going to wait right here

Till Little Miss Red Riding Hood

Comes home from walking in the wood.'

He quickly put on Grandma's clothes,

(Of course he hadn't eaten those).

He dressed himself in coat and hat.

He put on shoes, and after that,

He even brushed and curled his hair,

Then sat himself in Grandma's chair.

In came the little girl in red.

She stopped. She stared. And then she said,

'What great big ears you have, Grandma.'

'All the better to hear you with,'

the Wolf replied.

'What great big eyes you have, Grandma.'

said Little Red Riding Hood.

'All the better to see you with,'

the Wolf replied.

He sat there watching her and smiled.

He thought, I'm going to eat this child.

Compared with her old Grandmamma,

She's going to taste like caviar.

Then Little Red Riding Hood said, '

But Grandma, what a lovely great big

furry coat you have on.'

'That's wrong!' cried Wolf.

'Have you forgot

To tell me what BIG TEETH I've got?

Ah well, no matter what you say,

I'm going to eat you anyway.'

The small girl smiles. One eyelid flickers.

She whips a pistol from her knickers.

She aims it at the creature's head,

And bang bang bang, she shoots him dead.

A few weeks later, in the wood,

I came across Miss Riding Hood.

But what a change! No cloak of red,

No silly hood upon her head.

She said, 'Hello, and do please note

My lovely furry wolfskin coat.'

Roald Dahl

Monday, November 14, 2011

Poetry Monday


'I cannot go to school today, '

Said little Peggy Ann McKay.

'I have the measles and the mumps,

A gash, a rash and purple bumps.

My mouth is wet, my throat is dry,

I'm going blind in my right eye.

My tonsils are as big as rocks,

I've counted sixteen chicken pox

And there's one more-that's seventeen,

And don't you think my face looks green?

My leg is cut-my eyes are blue-

It might be instamatic flu.

I cough and sneeze and gasp and choke,

I'm sure that my left leg is broke-

My hip hurts when I move my chin,

My belly button's caving in,

My back is wrenched, my ankle's sprained,

My 'pendix pains each time it rains.

My nose is cold, my toes are numb.

I have a sliver in my thumb.

My neck is stiff, my voice is weak,

I hardly whisper when I speak.

My tongue is filling up my mouth,

I think my hair is falling out.

My elbow's bent, my spine ain't straight,

My temperature is one-o-eight.

My brain is shrunk, I cannot hear,

There is a hole inside my ear.

I have a hangnail, and my heart is-what?

What's that? What's that you say?

You say today is...Saturday?

G'bye, I'm going out to play! '

Shel Silverstein

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Happy Haul-idays, year 2!

The good folks at Chronicle Books have revived the contest for another year! This year has a twist- not only can one of you & I win $500 worth of books, they'll donate the same to the charity of the winner's choice! How awesome is that? I'd have to donate to First Books ( just because I believe that EVERYONE should have books that wants them.

So, without further ado, here's my wishlist:

Cake SimpleCake Simple: Recipes for Bundt-Style Cakes from Classic Dark Chocolate to Luscious Lemon Basil  $19.95

Farts Around the World $15.95

It’s Lonely in the Modern World

It’s Lonely in the Modern World: The Essential Guide to Form, Function, and Ennui from the Creators of Unhappy Hipsters  $19.95

Treasured Classics $19.99


How to Speak Wookiee $16.95


Bon Voyage $16.95

Music ListographyMusic Listography: Your Life in (Play) Lists $16.95


World of GeekcraftWorld of Geekcraft: Step-by-Step Instructions for 25 Super-Cool Craft Projects $19.95


CatalogCatalog: The Illustrated History of Mail Order Shopping Princeton Architectural Press $35.00  

Holidays on Display $24.95

Foodie Fight Rematch $22.95

The Kittens of Boxville $14.95

Handheld Pies $19.95

And I'll take the rest on a gift certificate, Chuck. (Does anyone get that, or am I just old?)

Be sure to leave a comment, and include your email address so you can be contacted if I/we win!




Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Milking the Rhino: Dangerously Funny Lists by Chris Rush

Product Details

This was an odd little title that I picked up as a kindle freebie. While it was somewhat amusing (I love lists of all sorts- probably my OCD kicking in), I think I'm glad I didn't actually pay anything for it.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Poetry Monday

The Pig

In England once there lived a big

And wonderfully clever pig.

To everybody it was plain

That Piggy had a massive brain.

He worked out sums inside his head,

There was no book he hadn't read.

He knew what made an airplane fly,

He knew how engines worked and why.

He knew all this, but in the end

One question drove him round the bend:

He simply couldn't puzzle out

What LIFE was really all about.

What was the reason for his birth?

Why was he placed upon this earth?

His giant brain went round and round.

Alas, no answer could be found.

Till suddenly one wondrous night.

All in a flash he saw the light.

He jumped up like a ballet dancer

And yelled, "By gum, I've got the answer!"

"They want my bacon slice by slice

"To sell at a tremendous price!

"They want my tender juicy chops

"To put in all the butcher's shops!

"They want my pork to make a roast

"And that's the part'll cost the most!

"They want my sausages in strings!

"They even want my chitterlings!

"The butcher's shop! The carving knife!

"That is the reason for my life!"

Such thoughts as these are not designed

To give a pig great piece of mind.

Next morning, in comes Farmer Bland,

A pail of pigswill in his hand,

And piggy with a mighty roar,

Bashes the farmer to the floor…

Now comes the rather grizzly bit

So let's not make too much of it,

Except that you must understand

That Piggy did eat Farmer Bland,

He ate him up from head to toe,

Chewing the pieces nice and slow.

It took an hour to reach the feet,

Because there was so much to eat,

And when he finished, Pig, of course,

Felt absolutely no remorse.

Slowly he scratched his brainy head

And with a little smile he said,

"I had a fairly powerful hunch

"That he might have me for his lunch.

"And so, because I feared the worst,

"I thought I'd better eat him first."

Roald Dahl

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Midnight Riot- Ben Aaronovitch

Product Details
From Goodreads:
The police career of techie Peter Grant was stuck in "pause" until a ghost whispered in his ear. The insights of this deceased eyewitness help solve a baffling homicide and bring paranormal Peter to the attention of his London Metropolitan Police bosses. What follows is a smoothly-paced supernatural procedural that is grounded enough to keep you guessing and strange enough to keep you amused

My opinion:

This was a fun read. The hero is a biracial police officer (not that it matters to the plot- just being biracial myself means I notice more when I come across a character that is) who meets a ghost while being stuck at a crime scene and finds himself launched into the world of the supertnatural while still trying to be a good police officer. He's transferred into the unknown-to-him paranormal police squad and begins to learn magic himself- all while solving the seemingly random crime wave in his area and settling squabbles among river deities. Add in a potential police officer girlfriend, a potential river deity grilfriend, and Molly the maid of unknown supernatural descent, Toby the dog, and an exploding cell phone, and you have quite an entertaining novel. Can't wait to start Moon over Soho- the next book in the series!