1. sophie: the entire chronicles of narnia. c s lewis.

    1. verdict: +
    2. review:

      "so how christian were they? i'll tell you. she read thim in the 'new' order,
      "which is, in the editor's opinion, some bullshit. in the 'new' order, she says
      "books one through five are good, but six and seven you can do without. jeff
      "quotes wikipedia regarding the appropriate reading order. sophie's opinion is
      "that they're still good and she's pumped to share them with her kid.

  2. chris: the short victorious war and field of dishonor. david weber.

    1. verdict: +
    2. review:

      more honor harrington from our intrepid space reporter. "so it's been three or
      four months since i read them, and they're not terribly memorable..." in case
      you forgot, they're in the future, and the future is just like today except
      everything's in space, and all the space stuff is just like navy stuff. in
      book three, she finds love, even though she's not technically pretty. in book
      four, her love, who she's about to marry, dies. 'so i got that going for me,
      which is nice.'

  3. jeff: the quantum thief. hannu rajaniemi.

    1. verdict: +
    2. review:

      there's some finnish borrowed words and neologisms and stuff, so jeff might
      need to read it again. it's a story about a thief. there are some implants.
      they live on different planets now, the oort cloud, nanotech powers, that kind
      of stuff. he doesn't remember all the details, but he liked it and recommends

  4. jeff: reamde. neal stephenson.

    1. verdict: +
    2. review:

      reamde, on the other hand, was totally easy to follow, but it was also really
      good. chris reminds us that he also liked it. it's hardly sci-fi, mostly just
      a techno-thriller.

  5. jeff: hyperion. dan simmons.

    1. verdict: ++
    2. review:

      "so, hyperion has definitely lived up to expectations." he gives a synopsis,
      which is pretty heavy business. he's into it for sure.

  6. jeff: the steel remains. richard k morgan.

    1. verdict: +
    2. review:

      he was hoping for something more in the vein of the abercrombie stuff. this
      isn't that. sorta fantasy, sorta sci-fi, there's some guild navigators,
      basically, and nobody knows what's up with that. there's some dark elves called
      dwinda, but their armor sounds kinda like space suits. there's some pretty
      uncomfortable sex. uncomfortable read about, uncomfortable to be involved in.
      plotwise, it moved along pretty quickly, but then it didn't really go anywhere.

  7. chad and jeff: the cold commands. richard k morgan.

    1. verdict: meh
    2. review:

      it's sort of a side quest. you think they're gonna go do this thing, but the
      whole thing takes place in some city and they never really go do the thing.
      stuff happens, but they both found it pretty boring after the novelty of the
      first one. both are pessimistic about the odds that the third one will be
      awesome enough to make the whole series work. there are ghosts that are sort
      of attached to the main dude, too, so i guess that's cool. chad doesn't know if
      he'll make it through the third one, jeff thinks he will.

  8. chris: the black company. glen cook.

    1. verdict: ++
    2. review:

      this and the rest of this series were supposedly inspiration for joe
      abercrombie and stuff like that. it's gritty and hard-hitting, although maybe
      not as gritty as abercrombie. it's about a cynical bunch of mercenaries in the
      employ of some city-state, but the boss just got overthrown in a coup. the new
      boss was captured by a wizard 500 years ago or something. so i guess that's
      cool. but yeah, it's pretty violent and gnarly and there's wizards fighting
      each other and stuff. they're good, he'll keep going with these.

  9. matt: surface detail. iain m banks.

    1. verdict: +
    2. review:

      good. not incredible. but good. jeff already reported on it. but yeah, i liked

  10. matt: the hobbit. jrr tolkien.

    1. verdict: ++++
    2. review:

      still awesome, obviously.

  11. matt: the silmarillion. jrr tolkien.

    1. verdict: ++++++++
    2. review:

      still so, so very awesome. OBVIOUSLY.

  12. adam: the gunslinger the drawing of the three. stephen king.

    1. verdict: ++
    2. review:

      weird as hell. clearly early when king was into some weird shit. reminded him
      a bit of the road. very different from stephen king's later stuff, after he
      started to get incredibly wordy and verbose. hard to say whether it's far, far
      distant earth or even earth at all. the main character is clint eastwood's man
      with no name, for sure, no question about it. in the second book, it's hard say
      why he wants to get to the dark tower. but i guess he does. he's been around
      for 1000 years, he's the last gunslinger, the dark tower is the lynchpin of
      the universe somehow. chris has read more of these. i guess the later books get
      more explicit in some ways, but it's still pretty weird and far out. i have to
      say, these books sound totally awesome.

  13. paul: kraken. china mieville.

    1. verdict: +?
    2. review:

      mixed opinions. we've had other reports on it, so no big synopsis here. by
      mieville standards, not the best. it's fine, but not the best. he felt like
      mieville was trying a bit to do vonnegut here, and it doesn't work well. he's
      just not vonnegut. the jokes aren't that great and tend to sputter out during
      the setup. there are some characters that mieville seems to really like but
      that paul, at least, did not. there were certainly no flaws that were so severe
      that he stopped reading it.

  14. chad. some stuff, but won't talk about it:

    1q84. haruki murakami.
    the wind-up girl. paolo bacigalupi.
    the drowned cities. paolo bacigalupi.

  15. chad. ready player one. ernest cline.

    1. verdict: +++
    2. review:

      "the distillation of all lore." there's a synopsis. but i can't keep up, cuz
      i'm too into it. in too deep. into deep. anyway, there's an mmo. there's an
      easter-egg hunt. this book is everywhere. chad loves it. everything is based
      on 80s stuff and videogame stuff. it's very fast, it's a very compelling game.
      there's pacman. there's 80s movies. there's "tons of d&d shit." there's vorpal
      bastard swords. solid. so very highly recommended. "even the most jaded and
      contrarian of us would enjoy it."

  16. chris. leviathan wakes. james s a corey.

    1. verdict: -
    2. review:

      george r r martin was advocating this as a hugo nominee. this is pseudonym for
      two other guys. chris didn't really like it. OH SNAP. space cops in the
      asteroid belt. (sounds good, what could go wrong?) humans in the solar system,
      but not outside it yet. starts good, cuz you don't know what's going on.
      there's a mystery. turns out it's not a standalone novel. when the big reveal
      comes, it's not very interesting. "you know, it's aliens." they're kinda cool
      and unknowable. he was just sort of let down, annoyed that it turned out to be
      the beginning of a series and had no particular ending. annoying.

  17. that's all, folks