Monday, February 26, 2007

Never too old: Star Trek

Just a little reminder of what made William Shatner's Captain Kirk such a hit.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

PSA from Sulu!

LMAO! This is the funniest thing I've seen this month!

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Reserved Meeting Room

Just to let you know that the reservation for the meeting room on the second floor at the library has been confirmed for us on the first Sundays March-June. They only will reserve them for a 6-month block, but we have the room each of those days from 1-5PM, so we can get there early and stay later if we choose. The room is reserved for "The Scifi Book Club" in case you need to ask to have them unlock the door. I'll just have to put in another request for the second half of the year...


Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Recent book signings

Christopher Moore 1/30/07

Ok, if you haven’t read any of Chris Moore’s works you are missing a great fun read. I have been a fan of his since his first novel came out about 15 years ago. I picked it up and thought, “What an odd title...” and the rest is history. It took Chris several more books before a cult following blossomed. For the past few releases of his I managed to get Chris to come to the store early on the morning of (or after) his book signing in town to have a potluck breakfast with the staff for two hours before the store opened. Call me selfish, but I’d rather him do that than do a signing at the store. (I have pics if anyone os interested) Alas, since I’m no longer at the store that did not happen this year and when I saw Chris it was a good thing too, as he was sick and heavily medicated with Nyquil. But he was a trooper to be here in town to promote his new novel, You Suck: A Love Story, a sequel to Bloodsucking Fiends.

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Chris’ books are full of humor and just plain oddities and quirks and not surprisingly he comes across as stand-up comedian. He’s a great speaker and rambles about everything pertaining and not pertaining to his book. He has moved to San Francisco from Maui because as he explains, it’s like dating a supermodel. It’s beautiful and all but then there comes a time when you just need some intelligent conversation. People on Maui are not very deep and intelligent (Ok, I’m paraphrasing here, just in case there’s an Islander who reads this posting...). And he gives his reason why he will never do a book signing in Mississippi. One of his characters is a teenage goth named Abby Normal (who first appeared in his novel A Dirty Job) and he got her teenage girl goth voice down by lurking on to view the users chat. His next book will be based in the Middle Ages.

Great turnout! I estimated about 300 people of all ages showed up to hear him talk and to get his books signed. That’s why I like having breakfast with him... Unfortunately, looking his website,, he is not making an appearance at SLC.

Dan Simmons 2/8/07

As I was fishing about my bookshelves for any unsigned Dan Simmons’ titles, I hadn’t realized how many I acquired since I last saw him. It is not uncommon for me to see Dan between two and four times a year. But then I realized I haven’t seen him since his Ilium book tour. (He did not do any here in town for Olympos that I recall.) It then occured to me that recently, Dan has been something of a recluse of Neil Stephenson-esque proportions. Not sure if that’s good or bad...

Overall there was about 70 people total for the signing of his latest book, The Terror .

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Not too bad, but I had expected more. One must admit, however, that Dan’s novels are substantial and not fluff so his following is a minor cult status as opposed to Christopher Moore’s CULT status. Dan started off explaining how he came about to write this novel, his research into the historical records and how Hollywood recruited him to do the screenplay to one of Richard Matheson’s work (got to love tangents) and how they immediately fired him with the moral of the story being, “ goes to show how Hollywood considers it’s viewership to be essentially brainless.” Then he read a passage from the beginning of the book and took questions. No, he did not visit the Arctic or Antarctic to get the feel for the novel, he did add a homage to Poe, the mentioned the reason he did not think it was just the tainted tinned food that killed so many of the crew, and yes, Hollywood sucks. No one asked what his next project was surprisingly enough. I did get to chat with him about a scene at the end of the novel I was confuesed about; I wasn’t sure if I missed something in another part of the book or if it was another obscure homage reference to something else. He told me that was the most asked question , but as a one-on-one chat rather than a forum question. It all makes sense now after he explained it so if you read the book and run across something you aren’t sure about at the end of the novel, let me know and I will fill you in.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

A Couple of Books

Just finished a couple of books. The first was Ceres Storm by David Herter. Its main character is a young boy who over the course of the book discovers his heritage. It was a fun read, and quite short with only 250 pages in small format hardcover. The book reminded me a lot of Poul Anderson's The City and the Stars, which I must have read about 100 years ago. If you enjoyed that book, then you're probably going to like Ceres Storm. (This is supposed to be the first in a series, but you can stop with this one, if you want.)

The second book was a piece by Cory Doctorow. This guy is a maverick, what with publishing his manuscripts online and arguing for a new take on copyright. Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom itself is a vision of a utopian future where those kids with all those cool ideas that started with Wikipedia have apparently taken over the world. Money, death, and taxes are all a thing of the past. That doesn't mean that there's no unhappiness left: people are still human, in spite of made to order bodies and a kind of hypergoogle interface built into their heads. Like Standard Eastern Tribe I enjoyed this book a lot. (Another author whose style and ideas remind me a lot of Doctorow is Charles Stross.)

Friday, February 09, 2007

Wow! 7 Years!!

Can you believe we've been getting together and sharing our thoughts & ideas since March 2000?? Figured an anniversary is as good a time as any to look back at all the cool (or not-so-cool) books we've read over the past seven years. So here's the list, as complete as I can determine. Lots of very interesting titles I know I would have never read otherwise...

Connie WillisTo Say Nothing of the Dog
Maureen McHughMission Child
L.E. ModesittOf Tangible Ghosts
C.J. CherryhDownbelow Station
Dan SimmonsHyperion
Roger ZelaznyLord of Light
Octavia ButlerWild Seed
Ursula K. Le GuinThe Lathe of Heaven
Ben BovaMars
Margaret AtwoodThe Handmaid’s Tale
Mary Doria RussellThe Sparrow
Tim PowersThe Anubis Gates
Lois McMaster BujoldFalling Free
James MorrowOnly Begotten Daughter
Nalo HopkinsonMidnight Robber
Gordon R. DicksonDorsai
China MievillePerdido Street Station
Philip K. DickUBIK
Pat MurphyThere & Back Again
J.R.R. TolkienThe Hobbit
Stanislaw LemSolaris
Graham JoyceDreamside
David BrinOtherness
Robert Charles WilsonDarwinia
Greg BearDarwin’s Radio
Alfred BesterThe Stars My Destination
Theodore SturgeonMore Than Human
Emma BullWar for the Oaks
Terry BissonThe Pickup Artist
China MievilleThe Scar
Thomas M. DischThe Dreams Our Stuff Is Made Of
Jacqueline CareyKushiel’s Dart
Joanna RussThe Female Man
Al Sarrantonio (editor) • Redshift
Joe HaldermanThe Forever War
Frank HerbertEye
Stephen BaxterThe Time Ships
Greg BearStrength of Stones
Thomas M. DischCamp Concentraton
Charles De LintSvaha
David BrinKiln People
Robert L. SawyerHominids
Julie CzernedaBeholder’s Eye
Vernor VingeA Fire Upon the Deep
Jack VanceTales of the Dying Earth
Isaac AsimovI, Robot
Lisa GoldsteinThe Alchemist’s Door
Dennis DanversThe Watch
Harlan EllisonTroublemakers
Tim PowersThe Drawing of the Dark
Neil Gaiman & Terry PratchettGood Omens
Richard Paul RussoShip of Fools
Jasper FfordeThe Eyre Affair
Sheri S. TepperThe Companions
Ursula K. Le GuinA Wizard of Earthsea
C.S. LewisOut of the Silent Planet
Vernor VingeA Deepness in the Sky
James GunnThe Immortals
Linda NagataMemory
Robert SilverbergThe Longest Way Home
Andre NortonJanus
Gene WolfeThere are Doors
Michael MoorcockGloriana
Joan VingeThe Snow Queen
Kate WilhelmWhere Late the Sweet Birds Sang
John BrunnerStand on Zanzibar
China MievilleLooking for Jake: Stories
Sean StewartMockingbird
Ursula K. Le GuinThe Left Hand of Darkness
Octavia ButlerKindred
Chris MoriartySpin State
Brandon SandersonElantris
William Gibson & Bruce SterlingThe Difference Engine
John VarleyMammoth
Tim PowersThree Days to Never
Connie WillisMiracle
Keith DonahueThe Stolen Child
Peter WattsStarfish
Nancy KressBeggars in Spain
Octavia ButlerFledgling

Sunday, February 04, 2007

March & April Selections

March 4th discussion = Beggars in Spain

April 1st discussion = Fledgling