May 25th, 2004

He has arms, and legs, and hands, and feet...

The Dobie Mall is showing "The Life of Brian". I must go see this in the theatre. Shrek 2 is out. I should go see that, too, considering the first one's one of my favorite movies. I also have two complimentary tickets to the downtown drafthouse. They're showing "the producers" this weekend, which I've only seen about half of, I think...

Of course I tend not to go to movies by myself, which is why I still haven't seen "Monsters, Inc." I should probably bother my dating service ("it's just lunch", which is the first one to actually deliver what it promises, although in all fairness I have to pay for the lunch myself), and see if they can dredge up a random stranger for me to drag out to the movies, if given sufficient warning. Or I could just drag Bender out to see something, he'd probably enjoy it...

Hmmm...

By myself, I read. I've recently reread two Discworld books ("The Fifth Elephant" and "The Truth"), and read a new one by Roger Zelazny, "Manna from Heaven". Yes, Roger Zelazny has been dead for about a decade now (liver cander), but they collected together a lot of his not widely published short stories together into a book, including fragments of the Amber novel he was working on when he died.

I don't ordinarily read short stories, because I work based on momentum. It takes nuclear weapons to get me to start reading something, and then once I'm into it it takes nuclear weapons to get me to stop. It takes some doing to get me invested enough in a story to keep reading, but once I've broken the surface tension... This is why I like long series; once I'm a few dozen pages in I'll read straight through to the end of the series.

But for the last new Amber stories I'll ever get to read, I'll make an exception. (Not really an exception, actually, since they're part of a world and characters I'm already familiar with. But while I was at it, I read lots of the non-amber short stories from earlier in the book too. Being good before desert, as it were.)

The new Amber stories were _really_good_. I'd forgotten how good the Amber books were, it's sad to re-read them the way they cut off in the middle of the action like that. I suppose it could have been worse (Riftwar saga, case in point. The first four were great, and the three "mistress of the empire" books with the co-author were superb, but then he wrote more and it just went downhill. I stopped reading somewhere after "rise of a merchant prince". And don't make me mention the Xanth series. (When an author clearly stops believing in the reality of his own world, it's time to pack it in. Really.))

But Zelazny definitely left me wanting more. Sigh.

At the moment, I'm reading the gutenberg edition of "Alice in Wonderland". Well I've never actually read it before, not all the way through. I don't get the original illustrations this way, and I've definitely got the disney film stuck in my head, but oh well. And this way it doesn't take up space on my bookshelves. (I need more bookshelves again. I was weak. I passed a library that was having a fundraiser, meaning I have yet _another_ copy of Crystal Singer, and a zillion other things. I now own the boxed set of Anne Rice novels, and I'm not even into horror. Maybe Reese will want them...)

Speaking of series, I need to get the new Yurt book, and the new Kedrigern book... (Yeah, I've got the old paperbacks of the Kedrigern stuff, but there's new short stories inserted as interstitials to add to the series, and I'm told Morrisey's writing new stories at the end of the series.) Both of those are new books in ongoing series I've bought into already, which means that as soon as I get them I'll actually read them, without the normal fermentation period sitting on my bookshelves unread...

Rob