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  2. Gods, Monsters & The Lucky Peach - Kelly Robson - Another tor novella, another time travel piece. Set in post-environmental collapse, folks have gone underground, some have come back up and are trying to rebuild. Rebuilding is slow and painful, but progress gets derailed with the discovery of a form of time travel. A multi-limbed old woman of the rebuild generation, gets offered a gig to go back in time and study important river with task of recreating. She is joined by young sidekick, and we get the whole generational differences, experience and desperation and entitlement and drive that go with that. This was much more pleasing that I feared given base idea, perhaps niche but I really enjoyed all the environmental/economic stuff, that was great. The time travel stuff less so, though it was largely handled in a way that was complimentary. The end, sadly was frustrating, and oddly anti-climactic. So, I enjoyed reading, disliked end. The Last Supper Before Ragnarok - Cassandra Khaw - This is an odd series, down to the idea of ownership, which I have seen Khaw talk about in the past. The Gods And Monsters series is a publisher owned series of novellas - each writer created a character and the publisher then owns that character having paid the writer off. Very much an old school comic book model, the publisher being part of that school of thought. This is Khaw's third novel with her chef Rupert Wong. But oddly, this is the culmination, I understand, of the Gods And Monsters series, so she takes the characters from two other writers, and brings the set together in an end of the world scenario where only these characters can save the world. I think there are a few new characters, who act as instigators, and not having read the other books it was hard to say what I was missing. At the start of the story, I definitely felt I was missing something, but I was actually OK with that. A group of people from different backgrounds, different abilities go on a road trip of America, exploring the ideas of old gods and new gods, with a hat tip consciously made to American Gods at once. It is an odd book, a lot more eating and drinking and sarcasm than one might expect, but probably to be expected when your narrator is an ex-cannibal chef, weird immortal demon touched, ex-gangster. I enjoyed. The Curses - Laure Eve - Sequel to The Graces. The Graces was a YA book I picked up at random - not sure it was expressly sold as YA, pretty sure I picked it up off the general promo tables in Waterstones, but definitely that is where you will find the two of them now. The Graces was published in 2016, so following up with the promised sequel 3 years later isn't industry standard (though, knocking them out every couple of months might not be a preferred/sustainable model...) The Graces are a family of notorious witches that live in a small town, with this generation there are three teenagers - attractive, popular, influential, cursed. A stranger comes to town, she desperately wants to be friends with Summer Grace who is in her class, to date Summer's older brother. The girl recreates herself, names herself River, and she becomes a witch too, things are good, then they are not, and bad things happen. With The Curses, time has passed (though in terms of months, rather than years like publication). The Graces have been removed from school and are trying to move on from what happened. This book switches POV, from River in book 1, to Summer in book 2, so we follow Summer in a new school, then getting expelled. The Graces returning to their old school to find that River has somewhat taken on their role. But the result seems to be a ripple of increasingly dark curses, and maybe the resolution of the first book wasn't the solution they thought it was. The POV threw me a little, as did how much it has been since I read the original. Once into it and as events started to fall into place I enjoyed it more. Not sure I enjoyed as much as Graces, but I'm certainly in a different place from reading first book, so that is definite a factor. Dark Arts And A Daiquiri - Annette Marie - I've got a few books on the go, some harder more demanding books, and unfortunately my brain is struggling between work and the collapse of all we hold sacred. So I consciously switched from some of those other books, which I am still reading, slowly, and went for something lighter. Book 2 of book I recently posted about - continuing adventures of Tori, who is a basic human, working in a secret guild where everyone has magic abilities. The ongoing distinction between humans and magic people as not humans is always a thing that annoys me always. Between start of first book and course of this one the time period is weeks, Tori is enjoying her job and keeps maybe dating one of her extraordinarily handsome and rugged new friends. Those new friends act as bounty hunters, tracking down and stopping magic bad guys for the magic secret police. Here there is a missing girl and they recruit Tori as bait to help track down the super elusive bad guy they suspect has taken the girl. Which of course lead to Tori being abducted and her friends being unable to rescue her, but things aren't as they seem, and oh,boy,isn't the bad guy super swoony! I enjoyed again, starts nicely with continuity from book 1, twists it so that this isn't more of the same, continues good world building, keeps it sassy and fun, even when it gets dark and explosive. Exactly what I was after. The Ten Thousand Doors of January - Alix E Harrow - surprisingly not been able to find this in the shops, which given it is a new release from Orbit seems really weird. I ended up splashing out on full price kindle book, and might end up buying physical book anyway. Harrow's "A Witch's Guide To Escape" was one of my favourite stories of last year, and I imagine folk will not be surprised to hear it was very much up my street (read it here: https://www.apex-magazine.com/a-witchs-guide-to-escape-a-practical-compendium-of-portal-fantasies/). This is Harrow's debut novel, and lives up to her full potential, it is great, I loved it. January is an in-between girl, skin a funny colour, not really definable, but thanks to her mentor/step-father she lives in a world of privilege. Her father travels the world discovering (and stealing) the most fantastic artifacts and sending them back to Mr. Locke. Mr. Locke takes care of January and tries to shape her into being a good girl, which isn't always easy given her fascination with pulp fiction and penny dreadful type adventures. But when she discovers a doorway to another world, something inside her changes, despite Mr. Locke's persistent attempts to forcefully keep here respectable. As the novel builds, January finds a book, a book about Doors and other worlds, and the story becomes a book with a book, alternating story and book chapters. Which reminded me of Will Do Magic For Small Change, another book I really enjoyed recently. There are plot points that fall into place for the reader, but not for the characters, which sometimes can be frustrating, here I felt Harrow handles them perfectly. So instead of being frustrated, there is a joy as pieces you have seen coming fall into place at just the right moment. If pushed I would perhaps admit a few little niggles, but you'd have to push me. This book was a joy, I had to stop myself rushing through it, slow myself to read it at a pace where I could appreciate each new chapter. I finished this morning and there is always a thing with a book like this as you watch the pages vanish: will the end satisfy, will it land 100%, will this book pull it off? Yes.
  3. PHX is hot, yo. If this job could magically teleport to Seattle, that'd be so cool. I still really hope I can get it! And, I'm uncharactristically optimistic about my chances! ❤️ IDK.
  4. This past Sunday! Only here for 4 weeks. Unless they wanna hire me! They're not paying me for the 4 week eval But, they are funding hotel + airfare + providing meals But, they can sometimes be ploddingly slow about reimbursing my expenses, so I'm always semi-worried they'll leave me homeless on the streets of Phoenix for half a week 😮 (No, I won't really be hotel-less for half a week: it's being mediated by that Danish employment agency that does targetted hiring of autistics, lol. But, I'd be really embarrassed to ask for even more money, TBH) (so, I am still being a tight-wad while here). I don't think we have anyone in PHX, but if any of y'all *do* happen to know anyone who could house me for the last two weeks (Oct 26 to Nov 8th) cheaper than a hotel, feel free to network us together
  5. Yesterday
  6. Waitjustadamnminute, when did you suddenly teleport into Phoenix?? EDIT: And yes, Phoenix is always at least one circle closer to the center of Hell than Tucson, but at least once circle further away than Yuma, lol.
  7. this is a month-long "interview". I am not getting paid, but am getting hotel, food, airfare paid for. It's another one of those things where they try to hire autistics
  8. I'm not an accountant (of course), but they seem to have a "kitchen sink business model" that employs plenty of computer nerds, too
  9. Yeah. With one of the Big Four. (Um. IDK how much I wanna put up on a google-able profile, even pseudonymously, lol)
  10. Last week
  11. db


    So this is another job interview, Xeno?
  12. And just in case you want to know what a monster (see my post above) looks like. I am in the blue shirt, the pedophile that I worked with is next to me. We were that close for over four years and I really never knew.
  13. That thing where you go to use the work bathroom that is a single because you are not just urinating and the woman that sits nearby says "good morning!" as soon you you leave and you just know she was sitting there watching the door as you pooped.
  14. also: only the 2nd night in PHX, and I'm already homesick for my family's cat
  15. How does one explain cats? ❤️
  16. Phoenix is hot. I got a hotel in a ghetto-y area in Mesa. Stray cats everywhere. Which are very cute, but also make me a bit sad, because stray kitties tend to live hard lives. IDK if it's a metroplex wide problem (lack of TNR or whatever), or just that the poor area tends to have a lot of strays.
  17. Yeah. I don't know enough to know anything.... sheesh.
  18. In more horrific news. I read the statement of facts from the police about my former colleague's crimes and they were so much worse than just pics on his computer. The man is a monster.
  19. I am not in any way familiar with this situation, but my understanding is that sexual abuse and sexual assault allegations are very rarely completely fabricated. The accusers suffer almost as much as they do in the actual attack, both by reliving the ordeal and enduring the inevitable social consequences of speaking up.
  20. oh, man like I said, I don't actually follow that closely 😮
  21. I'm still just a bike nerd, lol. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
  22. LETTERKENNY SEASON 7 HAS DROPPED. And it is good! That is all.
  23. lol! The beard is my preference, but the girl, she don't like it.
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