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  • Biography
    Writer, geek
  • Location
    Scotland - Edinburgh
  • Interests
    fandom, blogging, literary criticism

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  1. I've read this story - I remember how it ends. Unfortunately I couldn't tell you what it is called or who it is by. Could be Heinlein as I used to read a lot of his stuff, or perhaps Ray Bradbury - the twist at the end is reminiscent of his SF.
  2. I've got several slang dictionaries as I'm interested in historical slang. I downloaded the grandaddy of them all, Grose (1815) from the Gutenberg project which is good for late 18th and early 19th century bad words. I also have a copy of Hotton dating from the 1870s which relied on Grose for a lot, but also has much updated material. The best of the modern slang dictionaires for my purposes, I think is Partridge, and I've got a copy of the 8th edition. Full title, A Dictionary of Slang and Unconventional English.
  3. I started reading this earlier in the year. I thought it looked great when I bought it, and when I started to read it, it looked really promising. But I simply didn't connect with it. The idea was excellent, and it should have been really funny. But it wasn't. And I didn't like the characters. I didn't even finish it in the end, which is unlike me.
  4. The Wisdom of Crocodiles by Paul Hoffman
  5. Biggles Flies East by Captain WE Johns
  6. I always try and use disinterested properly, because I think the distinction between disinterested and uninterested is very useful to have, and if it's lost (as seems sadly likely) the only word to replace it with is neutral and it's not the same.
  7. I enjoy Dickens, and have done since I was a teenager. These days, I try and read or re-read at least one Dickens novel every year or so. This year's selection is going to be Our Mutual Friend, which I haven't read before. You're right - they can be hard going. I remember the first time I tried to read Bleak House, it took me months. I only persevered because it was a set text for SYS English. But I've read it voluntarily since, several times, and even enjoyed it. Part of the problem is, I think that they were written for people who had a lot more time on their hands for long books, or who were reading it as a serial - one issue a month for something like 18 months. Why not try one of the shorter ones? Oliver Twist say, and Nicholas Nickleby's a good one too.
  8. Darkstar

    Live 8

    Oh, Steely Dan were good. I had a couple of their albums.
  9. Patrick O'Brian was in the early stages of writing another Aubrey/Maturin novel when he died. I wish that hadn't been published.
  10. I do both. I borrow from my local library, and I pay large sums of money to my old university so I can continue to borrow books from their library, I buy and sell books on ebay and amazon, and I haunt bookstores. The only place I have never bought a book is a supermarket.
  11. Darkstar

    Live 8

    At the weekend I heard of two separate groups of people who are not now going to the Make Poverty History March in Edinburgh on the 2nd because they are so concerned about public safety. Since these groups were going to be taking busloads of schoolchildren they're quite right to be concerned. I expect similar decisions are being replicated across the country. This is a very great shame as it will lessen the impact the march (which has been in the planning for months) will have. It also shows that people in Scotland have a rather better idea of the numbers of people it is safe to have in Edinburgh than those calling for ridiculous numbers of people to come here.
  12. I've read two of his books - the Mad Monk of Gidleigh and A Moorland Hanging. I quite enjoyed the Mad Monk but was a bit taken aback at the blood bath at the end. However, having now read a second one where both characters and plot were heavily recycled, I'm less impressed. For example, Baldwin and wossname stay with a local knight with delinquent sons. A key plot point was a bastard that no one knew about. Once you knew that, the one wot dunnit was really obvious.
  13. I adore Pratchett and Feist, although I hate the way Feist seems to have done an 'official fan fiction' thing with the tales of the Riftwar series. I've read two of those and they were pretty dire. I came across Katherine Kurtz about twenty years or so ago, and really enjoyed them. I think I read the first two trilogies and the odd book from elsewhere in the sequence. But I never had them all so there was always something missing.
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