mmcjawa (mmcjawa) wrote,

latest reads

I SHOULD be studying for my marine mammal test...but I am not...oh well...

Anyway...mostly I have been frustrated today with my phylogenetic analyses, and how they are just not working out. Giant unresolved polytomies equal badness.

But anyway, I figured I would make a post about some of my recent books I have read. Right now I am currently reading Otherness, a collection of short stories by David Brin, and I just finished 2 other short story collections, Worlds Vast and Various by Gregory Benford and The Creatures of Man, by Thomas Myers.

First off, Gregory Benford is one of my favorite "hard" Sci-fi writers. Often I have a difficulty getting emotionally involved with the characters in other hard sci-fi works; the authors get so wrapped up in science that they forget about characterization. Not so with Benford...most of the stories manage to have decent science along with compelling characters. My favorite story had to be "A Dance to Strange Musics"...which was increbibly creepy and managed to capture the tone of lovecraft without any borrowing of other conventions. "A Diamond as Big as the Ritz" also stood out. But the entire collection was solid.

The Creatures of Man collects all the stories of Thomas Myers into one volume. Thomas Myers was apparently a writer who who was about to reach a level of recognition, when he passed away of an early heart attack. Anyway...the collection and tone is somewhat dated. For one, I generally prefer my sci-fi with less metaphysics. And there is quite a bit of that here. Also, I noticed a tendency through the writing of of putting a huge importance on reproduction. It was implied or illustrated that the production of offspring is the greatest achievement an indidivual could make. Some stories though were pretty cool. The title story was probably the best, and some of the ideas related to space transport were certainly original. The one fantasy story in the book though....bad just really bad. It was random, the geas concept was a horrible idea, and the female character was written as pretty much a piece of meat. Eww...

Anyway...David Brin is a personal favorite of mine in regards to writing, so far pretty good.

Looks like the computer is running low of batteries, so it's my time to peace out
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