I’m actually not one for historical novels much, though I love history and I especially love Roman history. However, Roman historical novels tend to…over-modernize. For a period of which we have extensive but hardly compete records, many authors decide to be too anachronistic in any number of ways. Sometimes it’s as bad as having the main character be an anti-slavery crusader, which is so historically absurd that you might as well include airplanes, sometimes it’s so subtle as just the wrong words or tone (garnered from some badly, badly taught history classes). Then there’s the “he-he sex” genre that takes on many different skins.
The Marcus Corvinus series by David Wishart has none of these problems. They are not only my favorite Roman historical novels, but they are my favorite mysteries and frequent comfort reads. I can’t recommend these books enough.
Continue reading “Book Review: The Marcus Corvinus Series”
I had cause recently to dwell upon the insane acronyms I encountered during my time in the Army., mostly because I recently found out that the Army had come up with one for e-cigarettes that sounded about right (i.e. stupid): Electronic Nicotine Delivery System, which is ENDS.
Many comments were made on the post where I learned this, informing me of what might be a Soldier-made acronym for the same thing: Personal Electronic Nicotine Inhalation System.
Continue reading “Ridiculous Acronyms and the People Who Use Them”
I’m not really an anime person for a number of reasons. While anime can contain some beautiful and/or interesting art, all too often they just do the weird faces (I know, chibi is the term) way too much. Just as often there characters simply become annoying (Naruto). They also have a tendency to be pacifistic to the point of madness, which I suppose is principled, or go too far with the Eastern version of moral relativism, a sort of ’embrace your sins as a part of yourself’ in a way that never existed in Western thought. To cap it off, the genre tends to just go off following the histories of people I don’t care about (Bleach).
Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood does none of this. It is the best anime I have ever watched and I recommend it to anyone who likes Brandon Sanderson (or just good fantasy stories) and Babylon 5 but finds Naruto annoying.
After several months of research, editing, and planning, I am pleased to announce the release of Valor, my short story collection, now available on Amazon.
Valor consists of five short stories set in fantasy and science fiction worlds, all focused on courage– though not always the same kinds of courage. I wrote these short stories over the course of the past several years, mostly on deployment. While this is not an epic undertaking and it won’t change the world, I’m proud to finally let these tales out into the wild.
I played Vermintide II over its free weekend. I highly recommend it if you’ve got some time to kill and some friends to play it with.
Vermintide II is, as you might guess, the sequel to Vermintide. Both games are set in the Warhammer fantasy universe as the world is actually really coming to an end. No seriously, Games Workshop blew it up at the conclusion of the arc. I played Vermintide some time ago on PC, and I was very terrible but I enjoyed it. I played the sequel on the Xbox and did much better but still not really great. Once again, I enjoy video games, but I am not good at them.
Continue reading “Video Game Review: Vermintide II”
This short story by Schuyler Hernstrom came to my attention as I wandered through the Mad Genius Club, I believe, or one of blogs of one of its contributors. It caught my eye because it addresses one of the more disturbing classic sci-fi short stories out there.
Continue reading “Book Review: Mortu and Kyrus in the White City”
I doubt the classics need much promotion, but in science fiction, the classic authors tend to be so prolific that some great work gets lost in the shuffle. Quite honestly I think their best work is not necessarily their best known work.
Such is the case for Larry Niven, in my humble opinion that is oh-so-relevant to the science fiction community (such as it exists in any definable sense anymore).
Continue reading “Book Review: A Gift From Earth”
I’ll preface this by saying that I increasingly despise what Disney has done to Star Wars. I grew up with the Extended Universe. In fact, my favorite book is Starfighters of Adumar. Wedge Antilles is my biggest fictional hero and Mara Jade is the coolest female character ever written.
Poe Dameron is the worst character in the Star Wars movies and I want to punch him in the face. Yes, worse than Jar Jar Binks. Worse then the other awful characters in Disney’s Star Wars, including Rose with her stupid, stupid, stupid line. I shall now explain at length why I have this unpopular opinion.
Continue reading “Why I Hate Poe Dameron”
The Clash of Eagles Trilogy by Alan Smale goes somewhere I have yet to find any other books go, or at least go in a way that is well written and mostly kind of makes sense: what if Rome survived? What would happen if the Romans went to North America?
Continue reading “Book Review: The Clash of Eagles Trilogy”
Now we join Marlow in his journey to Africa. He leads us in with a horrible yet wonderfully written passage, which hits heavily on multiple themes of the book.
To Marlow, the whole thing is a farce played against the backdrop of a mute and unchangeable wilderness. A tedious, futile farce, heavy with death and dullness. His transport hauls him down the coast, dropping off soldiers and clerks at tiny little posts.
Continue reading “A Guide to Heart of Darkness: Part 2”