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Don’t forget to enter the contest for Cutting Out (Cutting Cords #4) by Mickie B Ashling! Closes 7 pm CDT, Tuesday, October 28.


Congrats to Lee T, who won Danny and Mike (2nd ed) by Valentina Heart!



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Reading Update
Cited to Death (Jamie Brodie #1) by Meg Perry. Good mystery about an academic librarian who receives a puzzling letter from a recently deceased ex-boyfriend (a medical librarian) and encounters no end of problems as he tries to figure out the puzzle.
Hoarded to Death (Jamie Brodie #2) by Meg Perry. Pretty good mystery in which Jamie agrees to go on a hoarding show to help his ex-sister-in-law. While I really appreciated that Jamie and his boyfriend deal with issues in a realistic way, I got annoyed by how contrived the plotlines were.
Burdened to Death (Jamie Brodie #3) by Meg Perry. Ok continuation of the series as Jamie and Pete continue working on their relationship issues and it didn’t really feel as if the “mystery” had enough substance for the book.
Researched to Death (Jamie Brody #4) by Meg Perry. Good series continuation as both Jamie and Pete’s ex-boyfriends turn up, Jamie gets involved in a murderous search for an old book, and, of course, Jamie and Pete continue to work on their relationship issues. Fortunately, the mystery in this one was more substantial than in the previous book, although I think both mystery and relationship issues could’ve been edited down to decrease how repetitive and contrived things felt by the end.
Hidden (Alex Verus #5) by Benedict Jacka. Good continuation of this urban fantasy series about a London mage specializing in divination, although you’d think his specialty was finding trouble!
Hockey Abstract 2014 by Rob Vollman, Tom Awad, & Ian Fyffe. Very good explanation, using NHL examples, of the basics of hockey analytics. This edition builds on what was covered in the 2013 edition, including discussing where and why their predictions for the 2013-2014 season went wrong. I’ll definitely be rereading this to help all the concepts sink in.


“squirrelsquirrelsquirrelsquirrelsquirrelsquirrelsquirrelsquirrel!* -Mayhem

The squirrel is hard to see – it’s between May’s body and the curtain (but outside, fortunately!).

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Linkity is forced to admit that it’s fall

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Reading Update
The How Can It Be Gluten Free Cookbook: Revolutionary Techniques, Groundbreaking Recipes by America’s Test Kitchen. What I liked the most about this cookbook is its approach to gluten-free cooking. Instead of just providing recipes, America’s Test Kitchen explains what they tried that didn’t work as they developed each recipe. Maybe that doesn’t sound like a big deal, but gluten-free cooking (especially baking) requires a completely different sort of cooking chemistry than what most people are familiar with. Because they explained what the challenges of each recipes were, what they tried, why they tried it, and how successful the results were, I learned more about gluten-free cooking from this cookbook than I’d learned in my previous 18 years of being gluten-free. While the baking recipes use a flour blend developed by America’s Test Kitchen (which can be made in bulk for less than buying flour blends), each recipe also includes adaptations for using two different commercially available flour blends.
Fic: Why Fanfiction Is Taking Over the World by Anne Jamison. I’ve officially given up on this one – I just haven’t been in the mood to read academic writing. Might never be in the mood to do that, actually. :)
The Cats of Tanglewood Forest by Charles de Lint. Illustrated by Charles Vess. A young girl who lives in the Ozarks wanders deep into the woods and ends up on a very unexpected path. Charming illustrations follow her journey, as she learns about friendship. consequences, and standing up for herself.


“…zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz…” -Chaos

“…zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz…” -Mayhem

I have no idea where May’s head is in this picture. That’s her front paw to the right of Chaos’ nose, but other than that… o.O

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Linkity loves rainbows

Randonymity

  • And lo! a complete rainbow was seen through my living room window this evening:

  • It is surprisingly hard to take a decent picture of a rainbow with a cell phone camera through a window… or maybe not so surprising.

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Reading Update
Street Magic (Black London #1) by Caitlin Kittredge. Pretty good London-based urban fantasy about a detective inspector who discovers the informant she’s meeting is the mage she thought died over a decade ago – a death that left her traumatized. We’ll see how far I make it into this series…


“…zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz…” -Chaos

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Linkity wishes the Chaos Kitty a happy 11th birthday on Sunday

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Reading Update
London Falling (Shadow Police #1) by Paul Cornell. Very good urban fantasy about three police officers and an analyst who find themselves able to see the unseen as they pursue something murderous throughout London. It took me a couple of chapters to get drawn into this, in part because it starts so mundanely and with a lot of names to suddenly remember. After that, I was immersed – so immersed that I didn’t even realize it was written in third-person omniscient until well past halfway.
The Severed Streets (Shadow Police #2) by Paul Cornell. Pretty good urban fantasy, but not nearly as good as the first book – this was definitely a sophomore effort, suffering some times from self-consciousness and at others from trying too hard. While I enjoyed Neil Gaiman’s initial brief appearance in the book as a clever cameo, I found his reappearing and having a significant part to play in the narrative much less enjoyable. It felt as if a line was crossed, if that makes any sense.
Thicker than Water (Felix Castor #4) by Mike Carey. Good installment of the series in which Felix finds out altogether more about demons than he really bargained for. Very intense read, this. Definitely reading the fifth and presumably last book (since it was written five years ago) immediately.
The Naming of the Beasts (Felix Castor #5) by Mike Carey. I believe this is the final Felix Castor book, unless the author decides to begin a new story arc in the future. Felix ends up roughly where the series began, trying to fix what he broke three years ago. Many of the faces will be familiar from the previous books, as everything swirls down to a final confrontation.
Hard Spell (Occult Crimes Unit Investigation #1) by Justin Gustainis. Ok urban fantasy from the point of view of a cop in the Scranton, New Jersey, Police Department’s paranormal division.
Evil Dark (Occult Crimes Unit Investigation #2) by Justin Gustainis. Ok addition to this series about a cop who investigates paranormal crime in New Jersey. These are an enjoyable enough distraction, but not exactly involving or compelling reads.


“…zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz…” -Chaos

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Linkity regrets to inform you that it’s Talk Like a Pirate Day



Congrats to Yvette, who won Love Comes Around (Senses #4) by Andrew GreyLove Comes Around is being released today by Dreamspinner Press.

Congrats to Loren, who won With Wings (The Dark Angels #1) (2nd ed) by Z Allora!



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Reading Update
The Grendel Affair (SPI Files #1) by Lisa Shearin. Ok paranormal romance about a seer who works for a secret non-government agency devoted to keeping the existence of the magical world secret. Since I never got invested in the POV character, I don’t believe I’ll be reading more of this series.
Stray Souls (Magicals Anonymous #1) by Kate Griffin. Good urban fantasy about a London barista who discovers she’s a shaman and somehow has to rescue the missing spirit of the city. I enjoyed the unusual premise, but struggled a bit with the style – although that got better as I became more used to it. Plus I think this could’ve been trimmed down a bit, as bits of the middle seemed to drag.
The Devil You Know (Felix Castor #1) by Mike Carey. Good London-based urban fantasy about an exorcist who’s been on hiatus but takes an innocuous sounding job because he desperately needs money. I tried reading this 18 months ago and quit at 1/3 because I couldn’t get into it – no such problem this time!
Vicious Circle (Felix Castor #2) by Mike Carey. Good continuation of this urban fantasy series as Felix tries to do right, but things get terribly screwed up in the process.
Dead Men’s Boots (Felix Castor #3) by Mike Carey. Good continuation of this series in which Felix finds himself helping the widow of another exorcist, who killed himself. Of course, nothing’s as it seems and everything gets much more complicated. I did catch a couple of continuity errors, which I always find distracting.


“…zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz…” -Chaos & Mayhem

This picture requires a bit of explanation. :) Mayhem’s side is in the foreground – you can kind of see one of her ears to the left of Chaos’ head, between his head and his tail. She’s sleeping with the top of her head smooshed up against Chaos. He started to hiss at her (I think she was making happy paws on his throat), but fell asleep mid-hiss.

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