Moon Flights by Elizabeth Moon

A neat collection of short stories; all well crafted and relatively uniform in length. They’re mostly books from her universes.

My reaction to stories mostly corresponded to the exposure to the source books. The one short story about the composer who hastily signs a contract was good and memorable — and unfamiliar to me. The stories in universes that I already liked (Paksenarrion), were cool additions to the universe — not required, but new slantwise reads on the way things are. The Vatta series came out well–I really liked “Say Cheese”, and may have to track down the novels that go with it. (The short story about the musician in Sparta was also interesting, but relied on familiarity with the culture (and maybe the hero) a bit too much for me to love it. The Ladies Arms short stories were humorous, but didn’t really grab me.

In the end, it was a fun read–and no clunkers.

End of September media

Books
Several issues of the Nation magazine: Several good articles that retain significance, and lots of articles about events that have passed. On to the articles about the government shutdown and debt ceiling.

Elizabeth Moon: Oath of Betrayal It turns out that this wasn’t a trilogy; the world and its struggles will continue on for another book or three. The themes of change and reconciliation are still strong; the book ends on a big reveal, bringing the hidden foe into the open.

The Graveyard Book, by Neil Gaimen. A good book; I can see why it won a Newberry Medal and the Hugo. I read it front to back, broken only by silly things like work. It was a quick read, quite engaging–and, much like Jennifer, I suspect there will be more to savor on a reread.

What, more listening?
TJ 1041 Madam I Blush: A good in character interview following last week’s, about Jefferson’s relations with the women in his life. The only problem was that it was too short.

TJ 1042 Hamiltonian or Jeffersonian: A discussion of what our nation currently practices and preaches. The move away from self sufficiency on isolated farms really moves us away from Jeffersonian ideals…

TJ 1043 Home Schooling: A good discussion of the tensions between individual liberty, a family’s right to raise their children as they choose, and the evolution of the public school system.

Ask me another: 223: Foodie: The Other ‘F’ Word — A fun show as always.
224: Planet money as the special guest.

TAL 504: How I got into college — Interesting, but dominated by one long story instead of the many viewpoints I expected (and would have appreciated.)

TAL 505: About acetaminophen, and the dangerous toxicity level… double the label dose is enough to cause kidney failure and risk worse. Good discussion of company policies, the FDA and its label requirements, etc.

Roll for News 2-8: Magpie Games and Indie +. I like the 5 minute format.

Ken and Robin talk at FanExpo Canada(57): A good live show for them; not very heavy on the local questions.

Recent Media through Mid-September

Books

Elizabeth Moon: Oath of Fealty, Kings of the North, and Oath of Betrayal
— An interesting trilogy, a sequel to the Paks books. The multiple points of view do a great job of revealing more about the universe and adding depth. It’s interesting how much slower events progress with the multiple POVs… Pak’s first book covered more time and big changes than the first two and a half books [so far] of this trilogy.

Despite that, I’m not complaining. It’s a good set of books, with a good cast of characters. It’s interesting to see “from the inside” characters that Paks interacted with–and their views of her.

Spero Lucas: The Cut by George P. Pelecanos. A straight up modern day mystery, kind of. The main character is troubled, somewhat troubling, and very interesting. Another interesting view of “sliding between” type characters. Very well written and enjoyable. Good DC area atmosphere too–with a strong place feel.

Podcasts

RoleplayDNA 23 — Phil talks about Odyssey with Roleplay DNA.
RoleplayDNA 24 — Planning the first adventure; while good, I think the episode would have benefitted from a larger team that could have unpacked the unconscious assumptions they were making.
RoleplayDNA-U 1 — Good start, interesting interview
RoleplayDNA-U 2 — Very inside baseball, more about running a game company, still somewhat interesting

Roll for News 2-10: Listened to it because it was about Silverine games. I like the format–very short, good interview. I’ve downloaded a few more for the next week or two.

Ken and Robin 51 – 54. Congratulations on over a year of podcasting! Continued solid episodes.

Ask me Another 9/5 — Peter Segel was the guest. Fun as always.

This American Life 175 — All about what happens when babysitting. Some good tales, somewhat familiar, though not to the extremes shown.
This American Life 388 — A visit to a rest stop. Talking with the workers, travelers. A nice slice of life.

TJ 1034 — Intellectual Property w/ Brad Crisler; an interesting discussion. It’s interesting how Jefferson’s passion for free exchange of ideas cut against patent protection.
TJ 1035 — Regrets w/ Brad Crisler, excellent episode, really quite revealing.
TJ 1036 — Wine; a pleasant conversation with a lot of interesting detail about
TJ 1037 — Government Farms and Food; an easily anticipated attempt to get Jefferson’s hostility to “big government” to rail against SNAP.
TJ 1038 & 39 — Delving into Lewis, discussing the common components of suicides and how they apply to Lewis.
TJ 1040 — The women Jefferson loved; an interesting discussion of how Jefferson related to the women of his life; his wife, daughters, Sally Hemming, etc.