Robo, I normally love it when I see something which reminds me of something I read somewhere. Almost everyday I see, hear, taste, or smell something which reminds me of Bradbury. But last nite I was watching the European news on public access and I've been haunted ever since by a horrible feeling of impending doom. They were reporting on how the wheat, rye and other grain crops have had a really pathetic yeild this year all over Europe because of the extreme heat they've been experiencing this year. Did you read NO BLADE OF GRASS by John Christopher? Scary sh*t, man. The beginning of that book (first 50 pages or so) keep running through my mind. I know it's silly, and probably nothing to get alarmed about, but I kinda wish I hadn't read that book now.
I bought it but I have not read it yet. I read the back of the book and it does seem very plausable and scary. So far, I'm enjoying Forty Signs Of Rain. About sixty pages in, its a slower pace but I like it and I'm very concerned about global warming. I saw KSR speak on public t.v. about it and he spoke so spontaneously eloquent and full of passion and knowledge that I've wanted to read these books ever since.
Onward to Mars!
Beautiful low humidity sunshiny morning here, finished reading Forty Signs of Rain by K.S. Robinson out on back patio. I liked it, although a much slower methodical pace than I'm used to, full of serious science and politics. It was obviously setting the stage for the following novels in the series on global warming, a subject of magnitude in its warnings to us all. We have a Mimosa tree behind our garage back here and the blooms are pretty and sweet smelling in the soft early breeze. The hummingbirds are attracted to it and zip and dart around in the air while letting out high pitched cries. I finally filled our feeder by the window adding to their activities. I started to read Sturgeon Is Alive And Well while sitting out there drinking my coffee and smoking a cigarette. I am bone dry on gas for the car today and flat broke to boot, so I have to ride my bike to work later around 11:30. I pumped up my tires with zeal surprising myself by looking forward to the short ride. I'm either going to read John Cristopher's No Blade Of Grass or Hardwired by Walter Jon Williams next, although I have for some time been wanting to read some Pangborn, who knows, decisions, decisions...
Onward to Mars!
What Pangborn do you have? Perhaps we can both read JUDGEMENT OF EVE? I abandoned MIRROR FOR OBSERVERS about 3/4 through the book because there was some freaky pedaphile undertones. I've been searching for DAVY for years, I really want to read that one. "Judgement", however, is just sitting on my shelf feeling neglected waiting to be read. Actually, the book is fluttering it's pages and screaming, "PICK ME, PICK ME!!!"
The first story in STURGEON IS ALIVE AND WELL isn't really one of my favorites. But, the book certainly builds momentuum with each story begging for reflection and adequate time to grok the full impact of what you just read. Savor and enjoy, Robo.
Sounds really nice where you live, Robo.
We have wild turkeys strutting through this new complex we live at now. Big huge hawks, a beautiful Perrigrine(sp?) Falcon, lazy old buzzards, Dragonflies, Hummingbirds, and an occasional Praying Mantis and Black Widow keep me entertained while I'm wrecking my lungs, hmmm... I wonder who would win in a fight? And we've traded gangstas, urban gear shops, and gold teeth parlors for bikers, strip joints, and tattoo parlors, wouldn't wanna see that fight. We be "movin on up". It's a new city (about 6 years old) called Citrus Heights and they must be starved for revenue because the city limit signs all say "Welcome To Citrus Heights--Traffic Laws Strictly Enforced". And they are. Cops are everywhere. I like it.
That is great news Grassy! It sounds lovely especially compared to where you were. You really are moving up, congrats! Not to mention your great acheivement of overcoming d & a, like me. Now for me, it has been 5 and a half years since I used. You should pat yourself on the back for what you have done for your family!! Lightly that is, don't want to agitate the ol' spine. I can tell you are close to nature as I am too, I like hiking in the woods and just exploring everything down to the tiniest speck, usually with the kids but sometimes it needs to be in solitude. Its not too bad here. Right now we are experiencing the tail end of a high pressure system which has made it unusually cooler and dryer. But it is ending now and slowly moving back up to the usual high temps and high humidity. Regarding Pangborn, I have Davy, West of the Sun, and Mirror For Observers. Did you say that you had No Blade of Grass by Christopher? I think it would be cool to read the same book and discuss it here. Been meaning to pick up a Ray book and read it soon, if we can't think of anything else, let me know which one. I think I have almost all of his. I have been trying to read a few books in between reading a R.B. book. I'm due soon to read one.
[This message has been edited by Robot Lincoln (edited 08-25-2006).]
Onward to Mars!
I read NO BLADE OF GRASS not so very long ago and it's still fresh in my mind. A book like that one will probably stay fresh longer than most. As for my copy, I lent it to my nephew... you know how that goes. But I'd love to discuss it, all the same.
Some of the books on my shelves begging to be read:
THE MOTE IN GOD'S EYE - Niven & Pournelle
THE DOSADI EXPERIMENT - Herbert
DOWNBELOW STATION - CJ Cherryh
RITE OF PASSAGE - Alexei Panshin
TO YOUR SCATTERED BODIES GO - Farmer
GATEWAY - Pohl
TAO ZERO - Poul Anderson
HIGHWAY OF ETERNITY - Simak
OUT OF THEIR MINDS - Simak
NAKED TO THE STARS - Gordon Dickson
TACTICS OF MISTAKE - Dickson
LORD OF LIGHT - Zelazny
THE GODS THEMSELVES - Asimov
UP THE WALLS OF THE WORLD - Tiptree Jr.
STARMAN JONES - Heinlein
BETWEEN PLANETS - Heinlein
And virtually everything by Lois McMaster Bujold
If you have any of these on your shelves begging to be read, let's do it. I'll warn you now that I'm a slow reader with not much time for it now that school has started. I'm almost done with TAROT. It's been about 3 weeks since I read from that one. I got distracted with some short stories.
I'm reading John Christopher's WHITE MOUNTAINS to the kids at night. It's neat, but got off to a very slow start and is filled with those odd words the British use. Why don't they translate these things into english?
"...those odd words the British use..."
I remember the old Mad Magazines often reminded us, "It's crackers to slip a rozzer the dropsy in snide!"
I've been reading G.K. Chesterton stories and am just about to finish C.S. Lewis' "Reflections On The Psalms", so I know whereof thou speakest.
Being married to a Brit and having pretty good language skills helps.
Aaaah yes... C.S. Lewis, of excessive "hither" and "tither" usage fame.
Exessive "Hither and (you probably mean) thither"?
I've read most of his works and haven't noticed that...
I've only read OUT OF THE SILENT PLANET and PERELANDRA, the latter being one of my all-time favorites.
I recently found out that John Christopher's real name is Christopher Youd, which was kind of an "Oh wow" moment for me. Youd is the author of one of my favorite stories called "The Christmas Tree". In this story an old man on a moon base can never return to Earth because the gravity would be fatal to him. In a conversation he tells a younger man how much he misses the smells of Earth that pictures can't reproduce for him. This younger man has a knack for arranging for contraband to be smuggled aboard shipments to the moon, similar to McHale. He arranges for a Christmas tree to be brought to the moon, and sacrifices a few cases of "the good stuff" for the clandestine Christmas party he had planned in order to accommodate the tree. The old man dies before the tree arrives and is buried on the barren surface of the moon at the foot of the fully decorated Christmas tree. That image of the Christmas tree and the small mound in front of it has stayed with me for many, many years.
Okay....tired so bear with me. I'm still reading the first story in S.I.A.A.W., Easel and the Artist. This is a bizarre tale. I like it, don't get me wrong, I've never read a story that really conveyed insanity, if that is whats going on. I mean, I can feel by reading it how it would feel to have a multiple or another personality. Even if the other personality is situated in a fantasy land of midieval castles from another time. Its really funny, that whole spiel about the money too. I think Sturgeon works on a lot of different levels to get his various views and messages across. Anxious to read on with this, especially if the rest is even better! Here is the books I have from your list, Mote in Gods Eye, Gateway, Highway of Eternity, The Gods Themselves, Everything Heinlein put out(mostly bought when I was 17-18 and living in S.C.A.). I, after looking have quite a few Simak books, and I have been wanting to try him out soon, your call though. To Your Scattered Bodies Go is on my wish list. Another one I can't seem to lay my greedy lil paws on is The Man in the High Castle by P.K. Dick. I average roughly a week to read a book give or take. But I'm in no hurry, just say the word, it won't be a race. I have never joined a reading group before but I know a few who have and enjoyed it, this is similiar. I think it will be fun, anyone else can join in too, mores the merrier, I say.
Onward to Mars!
Okay, I also have TIME IS THE SIMPLEST THING and PROJECT POPE by Simak. Either "Highway" or "Pope" will work for me. James Blish's CITIES IN FLIGHT is another (a small series actually) that is really screaming and fluttering at me.
Funny how we have these books which prove to be elusive and become a sort of quest for us, like a Holy Grail. Mine are Pangborn's DAVY and Olaf Stapledon's ODD JOHN. I do have THE MAN IN HIGH CASTLE and was thinking that after I read that one and you read DAVY perhaps we could exchange copies through the mail? I think the postage couldn't be more than a buck or two. What do you think?
I'd love to have company on this fun-filled and fascinating journey through the wonderful world of science fiction. I don't really know anyone else who reads the stuff, well nobody who either A) reads enough of it, or B) reads the same kind of stuff, or C) that I can stand conversing with for more than 10 minutes. The guys I know who read SF all remind me of "The Comic Book Guy" from THE SIMPSONS and the girls... well I know two females and they're both not really into my kind of SF. One even referred to Bradbury as being "weird"!?!
I went to a convention back in 1981 at the Hilton off the 91 FRWY at Lemon St. (near the Laura Scudder's and Sunkist factories) in Anaheim and freaked out at all fandemonium, with the fanboys and geekgirls in their costumes and all, and demanded that we leave after about 15-20 minutes. We held a session in the parking lot with that funny little guy from Thailand, all powdered and pretty, before entering and that definately contributed to the freakedoutedness of the whole bizarre scene. That was when I was 15 years old and have never been to one since. I think Ray Bradbury was the Guest Of Honor and that may have been the convention where he was awarded his Grand Master thingy from the SFWA. I know, I blew it. It's all that darn funny little guy from Thailand's fault.
[This message has been edited by grasstains (edited 08-26-2006).]
Haha, that was a great story about the convention and all. Have you ever written to Ray and asked him to sign any books? Alrighty dighty (did I really just write that?), I am so exhausted, but good though because I'm off tomorrow and busy though it was, it was a good day. Boy, when that store fills up with people and your running around, the air liturally is sucked from the place. Okay, lets start the snail mail book club. I'll read Davy next, you read The Man in the High Castle. When we're each finished, we'll let them spread their wings and set them free, er so to speak. No hurry. Then after reading our newly arrived postal delivery, we can discuss it in fullness, ya grok? E-mail me so we can get the particulars of it ironed out. If it works, we'll be getting twice our initial investment in the book price. Coolio!
Onward to Mars!
planning to catch Ray at the World Science Fiction Convention tomorrow. (Aug 27th). Ray will be speaking around noon or thereabouts, signing autographs soon after. Patrick is driving him. Ray has looked forward to this event. Saw him on Thursday at his home. Looked in good spirits. Went thru more photos and will be posting around 20 new ones early next week. Included is a great photo of Ray (around 10 yrs. old) with his Mom and older brother.
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