- This turned out pretty well – it’s a gift, for a late Christmas gathering later today:
Learn, Make, Do, Think
Cool or Wha…?
Down on the Farm (The Laundry Files 2.1) by Charles Stross. Good paranormal short in which Bob is sent to the Laundry’s psychiatric in-patient facility to investigate a patient complaint.
Equoid (The Laundry Files #2.9) by Charless Stross. Free online. Good paranormal horror short about Bob being sent forth to hunt for unicorns, which have rather more tentacles and carnivory than Bob (or the reader) expects. This won the Hugo for Best Novella this year.
Overtime (The Laundry Files #3.5) by Charles Stross. Good short paranormal holiday story about Bob working overnight in the office on Christmas Eve. Of course he doesn’t have a quiet night.
The Rhesus Chart (The Laundry Files #5) by Charles Stross. Good paranormal horror thriller in which computational demonologist Bob discovers what seems to be a nest of vampires, except everyone he works with is convinced that vampires can’t exist. While this didn’t end with a cliffhanger, it did end with me exclaiming, “Wait, what?!” and looking for additional pages…
Halting State (Halting State #1) by Charles Stross. Weird but good scifi novel about a crime (or not) that may (or not) have occurred inside a virtual reality game. It’s told in second person (to give you the feel of playing a game, I think) from the alternating perspectives of three people who are trying to figure out what happened (or didn’t). Definitely took me a bit to get used to the unusual storytelling mode.
Rule 34 (Halting State #2) by Charles Stross. Rule 34: “If it exists, there is p0rn of it. No exceptions.” Good scifi thriller about memes, spam, and life in the surveillance state, told in alternating second person (mostly) from three main points-of-view, although the POV number ratchets up toward the end. While there’s no POV character overlap with the first book, one of the main POV characters played a significant role in the first book. Again, it took me a while to get used to the storytelling mode, but once I did I was immersed.
“More socks! Are you feeling ok, Mom?” -Mayhem
And without Mayhem:
The neighbors across the hall recently had a baby, so I knit some bibs for a baby gift.
Think, Make, Do, Learn
Cool or Wha…?
The Kid: A Season with Sidney Crosby and the New NHL by Shawna Richer. Very good account of Sidney Crosby’s rookie season with the Pittsburgh Penguins in 2005-2006. I’m pretty sure that any use of the phrase “beestung lips” is too many – this book used it three times! As a Pens’ fan, it was fascinating to discover the origin of the much-repeated taunt about Crosby diving (blame the Flyers) and disheartening to realize that several of the things Crosby knew he needed to work on during his rookie season (such as letting rival teams get him wound up to put him off his game) remain problems for him today.
Ok, it wasn’t that long ago that I took this picture, but I can’t tell exactly how much of Mayhem is there on the right. You can see one of her back paws sticking straight up in the middle, but anything to the right of that… (Sorry, Cheryl.) Anyway! It’s possible they wouldn’t feel quite so done in by the (moderate) heat if they weren’t on a fleecy blanket…
Congrats to Penumbra, who wonÂ Too Good a Man (Red Dragon #2)Â by Becky Black!
Congrats to Ninna, who wonÂ Almost Mine by Eden Winters!
- I’d take a picture of the snow to show you, but there’s too much ice on my windows from all the snow and sleet blowing around.
Think, Do, Learn, Make
Cool or Wha…?
“Wait, these are different from the socks that were on the floor last week. What’s going on here?! Has Mom been replaced by an alien?!” -Mayhem
My SIL’s 2014 birthday socks, done three weeks before her birthday! 🙂
â€œUm, what am I doing?â€ -Mayhem
Never mind, Mayâ€¦ Letâ€™s peruse Hand Knits for Men (revised, 1961), shall we? Feel free to caption amongst yourselves, although letâ€™s try not to make my hit statistics too interesting, eh?! In a rare show of restraint, Iâ€™ve confined my captions to the picture titles â€“ hover your mouse pointer over the pictures to see.
Congrats to wusswoo, who won Cleave (Cutting Cords #3) by Mickie B. Ashling! Cleave is being released today by Dreamspinner Press.
Congrats to Logan, who won the signed paperback copy of The Talker Collection by Amy Lane!Â The Talker Collection is being released by Dreamspinner Press today.
Congrats to Jane O, who won Bennieâ€™s Wish by Xara X. Xanakas (plus swag)!
Congrats to Wendy, who wonÂ Absolutely Eric (Boston Boys #2) by Erica Pike! Absolutely Eric is being released today by MLR Press.
Do, Think, Learn, Make
Cool or Wha…?
- Bacon cat toy – it looks like Chaos in that picture, but it’s not!
The Persistence of Memory (Mnevermind #1) by Jordan Castillo Price. ebook. Excellent alternate reality m/m romance about a mneomographer who’s lost his confidence after accidentally changing his dad’s reality… permanently. And then he runs into something inexplicable during an mneming session… Totally sucked into this, and impatiently waiting for the next segment. *taps fingers*
Hard Tail by JL Merrow. ebook. Very good m/m romance about an accountant, freshly laid off and from his job and newly left by his wife, who ends up running his brother’s bike shop while his brother is in the hospital. Since he’s not gay, why does he spend so much time staring at the bike mechanic’s arse?
My True Love Gave to Me (Brook Street #0.5) by Ava March. ebook. reread. Very good historical holiday m/m romance about young love, fear, and trying for a second chance, even if you’re not sure you deserve one.
Thief (Brook Street #1) by Ava March. ebook. Very good historical m/m romance about a peer who heads to a gambling hall of a certain repute to find out whether, as he suspects, he’d be wasting his time looking for a bride. The man he meets that night proves that, but is ever so mysterious…
Fortune Hunter (Brook Street #2) by Ava March. ebook. Very good historical m/m romance about a man who returns to England planning to marry an heiress so he won’t have to work; he’s not going to let anything, even friendship, stand in his way. This one really got to me. *blots eyes*
Rogues (Brook Street #3) by Ava March. ebook. Very good historical m/m romance about two men who’ve been friends since childhood and occasional lovers since their teens. Both are notorious rakehells, although one prefers men and the other women. But the whole balance of their friendship is about to change… I got sniffly reading this one, too.
Acrobat by Mary Calmes. ebook. Very good m/m romance about an English professor who spends a lot of time taking care of the teen living next door and who’s become comfortable with the teen’s uncle over the years, but never really noticed just how attractive said uncle was… until recently.
Frog by Mary Calmes. ebook. Sweet m/m romance about a cowboy who’s always traveling between rodeos and short-term jobs, only visiting his not-quite-a-boyfriend in San Francisco a few times a year. Because… how could he be a cowboy if he stayed?
Smoking Is Bad for You by Sasha L. Miller. ebook short. Very good short m/m story about two guys meeting under interesting circumstances and proceeding from there. This would get a PG-13 rating, so be aware.
Tumble Turn by Charlie Cochrane. ebook. Good m/m romance about a Paralympic swimmer who’s always planned to avoid romantic entanglements until after the 2012 Paralympics, but life has other plans… As others have noted, the British voice in this is very, very strong.
Dirty Little Secret (Dear Lake, Michigan #2) by Anah Crow & Dianne Fox. ebook short. Ok short m/m story about a guy who reaches a gay-friendly resort town in Michigan just as his married boyfriend sort of dumps him over the phone. This was way too short to be satisfying for the amount of story. Be aware this has an HFN ending.
Finally finished my sister-in-law’s Christmas (2011) socks! 🙂
“I love me some stripey socks!!” -Mayhem
Congrats to Leni, who won Sebastianâ€™s Wolves by Valentina Heart!
Congrats to Susan C, who won The Duty of a Beta (Pack Discipline #3) by Kim Dare! The Duty of a Beta will be released by Total-E-Bound on March 7.
Learn, Do, Think, Make
- Speaking of rainbows, I finished this subdued rainbow toddler jacket last weekend (project details on Ravelry, if you’re interested):
GhosTV (PsyCop, Book 6) by Jordan Castillo Price. ebook Excellent m/m paranormal romantic suspense in which Vic and Jacob head to California to find their friend Lisa, who’s vanished without a trace. Definitely looking forward to the next book! (I read this book twice this week: I read it as soon as I bought it, then I reread all the other PsyCop books and read it again.)
Among the Living (PsyCop, Book 1) by Jordan Castillo Price. ebook. reread. Excellent m/m paranormal romantic suspense about a PsyCop, who can see ghosts even though he really would prefer not to. After I read GhosTV, I needed more Vic and Jacob. 🙂
Thaw (PsyCop, Book 1.1) by Jordan Castillo Price. free ebook short. reread. Sweet short m/m romance about Vic and Jacob going ice skating.
Criss Cross (PsyCop, Book 2) by Jordan Castillo Price. ebook. reread. Very good m/m paranormal romantic suspense that takes place a few weeks after Among the Living. Jacob’s staying with Vic while looking for a new condo, and Vic has a creepily eager-to-please new partner at work.
Striking Sparks (PsyCop, Book 2.1) by Jordan Castillo Price. ebook short. reread. Steamy short m/m encounter about a guy who’s too late to get his palm read by the fortune teller in Crash’s building and runs into Crash instead…
Many Happy Returns (PsyCop, Book 2.2) by Jordan Castillo Price. ebook short. reread. Steamy m/m short about Crash attempting to exchange a shirt at SaverPlus.
Mind Reader (PsyCop, Book 2.3) by Jordan Castillo Price. free ebook short. reread. Good m/m short about Vic and Crash wandering around a museum.
Body and Soul (PsyCop, Book 3) by Jordan Castillo Price. ebook. reread. Very good m/m paranormal romantic suspense in which Vic gets another new partner at work and Jacob continues hunting for an unhaunted place to live.
Stroke of Midnight (PsyCop, Book 3.1) by Jordan Castillo Price. free ebook short. reread. Very good short m/m romance, told from Jacob’s point of view, about him going to a New Year’s party alone because Vic got called into work.
Secrets (PsyCop, Book 4) by Jordan Castillo Price. ebook. Very good paranormal m/m romantic suspense in which Vic and Jacob’s living situation changes dramatically and Vic stumbles upon an epic conspiracy.
Camp Hell (PsyCop, Book 5) by Jordan Castillo Price. ebook. Excellent m/m paranormal romantic suspense in which Vic experiences some personal growth (beyond his paranoia, even!), and both Vic and Jacob have unexpected professional growth.
A Change of Scenery by J.M. Cartwright. ebook. Good m/m romance about a construction project manager who’s frustrated by his job in Chicago, so he takes a job in a small West Virginia town.
*hee hee* “No one will notice I’m sticking my tongue out at them, because I look so noble and dignified!” -Chaos
I finished knitting these socks a bit after midnight on December 22. I knew I’d be mailing them over my lunch break that day, so I took pictures as soon as they were finished. When I set the socks on the floor, Mayhem woke from a deep sleep and came over to see what was up.
“Hey!! Stripey socks!!” -Mayhem
“Yup, definitely stripey socks. I approve of their bright pinky purpleness!” -Mayhem
“Oh, nice texture, too.” -Mayhem
“Were you trying to take pictures of stripey socks without my assistance?! For shame, Mom, for shame.” -Mayhem
“Ok, carry on, then.” -Mayhem
The yarn is Grignasco Strong Print, colorway 013, and the pattern is a basic blueberry waffle.
Back in, um, February, I started a pair of socks for my SIL’s birthday in early March. *hopes no one notices what date it is now* Those socks are now complete!
“Socks on the floor! Yay!!!!” -Mayhem
“Is there a problem?” -Mayhem
Apparently you’ll just have to imagine what the rest of the socks look like…
“Socks! I love socks! Even if they aren’t stripey.” -Mayhem
I even started knitting a new pair of socks for myself.
“Stripey! Hurry up, Mom.” -Mayhem
Hopefully all the knitters were near padded surfaces when they collapsed from the shock of seeing knitting on the blog. 😉
Congrats to Lily, who won the copy of Mobry’s Dick by K.Z. Snow, which is being released today from Loose Id. (Congrats, K.Z.!)
- It’s been ages since I did a random update on my life and stray thoughts.
- When last we spoke, I was worried whether the new refrigerator would arrive before the old refrigerator died.
- The new refrigerator was delivered on April 29 by two guys who were unnaturally cheerful about carrying refrigerators up and down three flights of stairs at 7:30 am.
- The new refrigerator is more spacious despite being smaller (I know!) and is quieter.
- The kitties remain deeply suspicious of it.
- On Saturday, I finally wandered over to the hardware store and picked up a patch for the screen.
- I’m sure the kitties are sad about that.
- Knitting? Um, what? Ok, fine. I’m nearly done with the foot of the second of my SIL’s birthday socks.
- Yes, her birthday was two months ago.
- Give me a break – it’s nearly 80F, so she’s not going to be wearing wool socks for months!
- I’m trying to figure out what the three sickly trees in front of our building are.
- I know that they are not ashes, elms, oaks, maples, boxelders, lindens, any sort of evergreen, sycamores, gingkos, hophornbeams, cottonwoods, or aspens.
- You’d think I’d get a bit further than that with a forestry degree, wouldn’t you?
- Quit laughing, Mel. (We have the same undergraduate degree.)
- Hmm. Apparently I’ll be leaving both cat carriers portable kitty caves out for a while. I hate to discourage this sort of behavior:
Congrats to elaing8, who won the copy of Deadly Obsession by Kris Norris!
It turns out that for years, Jeanne has believed I stage those knitting pictures (well, back when I had regular knitting pictures!) in which Mayhem sniffs, gnaws, or lounges about on every single piece of knitting I place on the floor. Jeanne decided she needed to see for herself what really happened when knitting is placed on my living room floor.
So, when she was visiting recently, she waited until there weren’t any kitties in the living room, got up from her chair, and placed her gorgeous sock on the floor. Before she made it back to the chair, Mayhem appeared!
“Hey, what’s up? Did I hear knitting hit the floor?” -Mayhem
“Oh, look at that. Where did this stripey sock come from? Mom, I know you’re not knitting much of anything these days.” -Mayhem
“That’s it? Where’s the other sock? Where are the knitting needles? I like it best when there are knitting needles to chew.” -Mayhem
Anything else to add, Jeanne?? 🙂