OK, OK, I believe you

  • Nov. 16th, 2011 at 1:07 PM
logovo: (Books)
I'm reading The Better Angels of Our Nature: The Decline of Violence in History and Its Causes, but at some point (lets say 200 pages in) I want to tell Steven Pinker yes, yes, I believe you, stop it with the stats, only to then realize that most of the book is stats. Who are these people that believe human beings, on average, are in more danger to suffer from violent acts now than in the not so distant past? I don't even have to look that far back in my own family history. The good old days were anything but.



  • Jul. 27th, 2011 at 1:58 PM
logovo: (Default)
Normally I could be a lot more chill about LJ being down for 3 days, but I've been looking forward to a fic posting in the SPN big bang, so I've been checking in every few hours. I can't remember how long it took LJ to get over it's last DDoS attack, but was it longer than 3 days?

[please insert the frowniest of faces]

I grabbed The Last Werewolf at COSTCO, which is filling in for the kind of reading experience I usually get from fanfic. Fast and fun, with nods here and there to pop culture, without getting too cute. Well, so far. It's a quick read at under 300 pages, so I'm crossing my fingers it will continue to be as good. I'm so looking forward to reading more of it tonight.

ETA: Adding some people to my reading list, since this LJ outage is that kind of thing that moves me out of my normal reading zone. Thankfully there is also AO3, which hasn't resulted in any new fics that make me incredibly happy, but has provided a chance to reread some excellent stories. I tend to read fic way too fast, which is not conducive to my complete appreciation.



  • Oct. 1st, 2010 at 1:44 PM
logovo: (Books)
Because I am both a masochist and a glutton, in September I found myself reading Freedom and The Corrections at the same time. It didn't take me long before I realized I wanted to hurt the characters in both novels with a sharp, rusty, poky object of some kind. In a weird John Sheppard fit I picked up War and Peace, which I can say I've made a bit more progress on that I think John ever did. It helps not loathing the characters and finding Tolstoy a fun writer, but now everyone is marching off to meet Napoleon's army and I got distracted again and so I picked up a forgotten book from the To Read pile, The Terror by Dan Simmons.

I've been trying to read at night instead of playing with my computer, but it turns out that holding a book is also bad for my carpal tunnel. I've been told to embrace more passive activities for evening entertainment, but most TV is so boring to me lately. Except Dexter! Oh my, Sunday's episode was exceptional and reminded me why I used to enjoy the show so much. I stopped watching after episode 1 of S4, because GAWD, that scene in the bathtub! I still freak out even thinking about it. Also, Mr. L refuses to watch that show with me. Maybe I can catch up with S4 now, since I know the major spoilers.

SPN tonight! YAY! I was left so confused last Friday, because I didn't get the emotional punch I was expecting in one particular scene. It was just weirdly cold. I hope the writers are going somewhere with this and it's not just a completely new and unexplained take on one character.


Reading & movies

  • Aug. 23rd, 2010 at 8:38 PM
logovo: (Default)
I've been avoiding the computer, but not as much as I should, obviously. I keep telling myself to read all those books I have piled by my bedside and give my wrist a rest, but oh, how I get antsy and promise myself I'll just be online for 30 minutes. Right.

One of the books I'm making slow, slow progress is The Kindly Ones, a book I would've not be reading if not for a friend lending it to me and asking me earnestly to read it, hoping we could discuss it later. I'm at page 140 and I don't know if I can take much more of this story and it's slimy narrator. It's about Nazis. 'Nuff said.

I managed to almost destroy Super Sad True Love Story minutes after I bought it, by putting it on the roof of my car, forgetting about it as I moved arranged other purchases around in the back seat, and then driving off. It got run over by more than one car before I rescued it from the middle of a wide street in Mission Valley . While this novel is not about Nazis it is about a US that has descended into what sounds like a Tea Party paradise. I'm finding it hard to enjoy the satire, considering my other reading.

Last week I finished Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell. Awww, that was so much fluffy, cool fun. Charming and with characters I came to care about, even if it the style (that has been compared to Austen and Dickens) sometimes made it sometimes difficult for me. I'm not a fantasy reader, but have read a few things like Lord of the Rings and the Harry Potter books. I have to say that this book was more my speed, with just a bit of magic in what is probably best described as a comedy of manners.

It seems that Scott Pilgrim v. The Worldcompletely bombed, while stuff like The Expendables is making enough money that there is already talk of a sequel. I'm pretty sad that so few people will get to see Scott Pilgrim, but at least it will live on as a favorite of movie and gaming geeks for years. It was directed by the same guy who did Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz, so yeah, damn funny. I saw it with Mr. Logovo and we both enjoyed it a lot more than we expected, even as we can make no real claims of getting gaming culture, beyond vague memories of Atari and Nintendo game systems.

OK, time for some stretching exercises for my whinny wrist and shoulder.


Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell

  • Aug. 4th, 2010 at 7:08 AM
logovo: (Books)
I got both the book and used an audible credit to download the audiobook. This has to be the first time that I think the audiobook version is much better than the regular book. The voice actor is wonderful, I really love him. He captures all the humor of the book, does the character voices distinct and fun, and sounds like he's enjoying himself. So, hearing the book throughout the day today, have a lot of bookkeeping to do, rote stuff, and later tonight a bit of reading.

This is not the book I had planned reading this week, The Corrections is sitting there, waiting, and then there is The Kindly Ones, which I'm kind of afraid of reading (some reviewers described it as torture porn - DNW!), but a friend loaned it to me and I want to give it another shot, before I return it.


The Passage

  • Aug. 2nd, 2010 at 7:54 AM
logovo: (Books)
It's a good thing I found out that The Passage was the first in a trilogy, before I finished reading it, which I just did. When I first downloaded it as an audiobook, I didn't know anything about it beyond the basic premise of apocalypse via vampires. After getting into it and picking up the book too, I had to look up if it was going to be turned into a movie, because it had that kind of feel, even if the book is huge and has a lot of characters. Turns out Ridley Scott is attached to the movie right now, and that I was going to be left hanging at the end of book.

I wonder if Scott is going to keep Alicia as she is in the story. I heard a comments/complaints about another book adaption, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, saying how the more interesting bad-ass character was Lisbeth, while Mikael was kind of a boring and passive*. So I'm thinking that Peter, who could be considered the central character for the majority of the book, is going to be kicking a bit more ass in a Ridley Scott adaptation.

Alicia in The Passage sort of reminds me of Aeryn Sun from Farscape or Faith from B:tVS, although I don't think she gets to wear leather pants.

Anyway, I just finished the book, and I'm looking to see when part two comes out. 2012? Aw, sheesh.

*A a detail I'm sure they'll try to -er- fix, with Daniel Craig in the Mikael role for the English language adaptation.


Anthony Bourdain

  • Jun. 15th, 2010 at 1:44 PM
logovo: (Food)
In my head there is a category for "assholes I enjoy" and Señor Bourdain (alias 'Flaco') has consistently been in the top ten of people I'll read or listen to, even when I occasionally want to throttle him. My husband kind of cringes whenever I bring him up in conversation, which has happened a lot this week, since I bought and quickly read Medium Raw: A Bloody Valentine to the World of Food and the People Who Cook. I'm very interested in food and food writing, while at the same time having suspect tastes in humor, so it's a good fit. Still, impossible to forget for even a minute, I'm enjoying an asshole. Bourdain makes sure of it every few paragraphs.


The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo

  • Apr. 4th, 2010 at 7:02 AM
logovo: (Default)
We saw "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo" last night. I was pleasantly surprised. I ended up liking it a lot more than the book. They changed or took out a lot of details that were awkward (sometimes MaryStu-ish), which ended up making the main character more likable, and kept whole all of the details that I remember about the other main character, Lisbeth Salander.

Both main actors were terrific and the movie looks great. I'm glad I got to see it before it's remade into a US movie by David Fincher, who sorry to say with probably ruin it, no matter how much I liked "Fight Club". "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" was his last one and I was not impressed.

If you read The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo" you know it has some pretty violent stuff and that the book is actually called "Män som hatar kvinnor" which means "Men Who Hate Women". Yeah, the title fits. While they changed the title to something more palatable for the English market, I read they kept the original title in Spain. I do wonder how it was publish in other Spanish speaking countries.



  • Jan. 25th, 2010 at 8:11 AM
logovo: (Books)
I put Hans Fallada's "Everyman Dies Alone" on hold last summer, while I did Infinite Summer, but it wasn't until last week that I finished the novel about civilian life under Nazi Germany. My husband noticed that I finished "Everyman Dies Alone" almost immediately after reading "Nothing to Envy", a non-fiction account of the lives of North Korea defectors, before their new life in the south.

The lives of ordinary people under a police state horrify me, but I keep reading. I keep thinking it can get this bad, anywhere. I don't believe any country is immune, although I do believe the US is many steps away from anything like what I read. But still, not immune.

Living where one has to be careful all the time, where being paranoid is a must, and everything one has been brought up to believe by the State turns out to be a lie, but where people still need to live their day to day lives like they do believe. Romances and bad marriages, promotions at work, worrying about fitting in and pleasing those you care about. Yeah, shudder worthy but compelling reading for me.


Notes on reading these past 6 months

  • Dec. 22nd, 2009 at 12:42 PM
logovo: (Books)
Even as I find it more and more difficult to read fic (get distracted, bored, not in the mood, whatever) I'm enjoying reading original fiction and some non-fiction in huge, huge amounts. At least huge compared to what I was managing to read last year.

I read a couple of superduper weird and interesting fiction books (Infinite Jest and 2666), read some short stories, which I usually avoid, and managed to finish stuff like Children of Men (which was better as a movie, and less with PD James' creepy religious imagery) and just this month gave up very quickly on Under the Dome by Stephen King.

I feel very grateful to the hours of enjoyment I got out of King's writing while in high school and college, it was one way I learned to read in English. However, it seems that now everytime I pick up one his novels I feel like I've read it all before. I've liked King, his public persona, for a long time, what he has to say about books and writing and his own talent. I so wish he really did have in him something new I could enjoy, but I guess the gift is what it is and will just remember his stuff fondly.


This just in from the "Duh!" department

  • Sep. 30th, 2009 at 3:32 PM
logovo: (Castiel book)
Do no, do not if you can help it, read/listen to a translated version of Bolaño's 2666. I'm reading it in Spanish and have the audiobook in English, which I was listening to and from work. Mistake! When I got to part four and all the characters are Mexican, the English translation was missing a lot of the flavor. As I said, duh! How could this have been such a surprise? I think about translations and dubbing and language all the time. I guess I was just hoping this time it would be different, and I was excited to have had been able to download audible's file for only about 7 dollars and get completely into the novel even as I was driving.

I think part one of 2666, the one about The Critics, works in English sort of OK, but the closer I got in the narrative to the town of Santa Teresa, the more I realized I had to dump the audiobook. Hrrmp!

Now I need to download some podfic, to listen to instead.


  • Sep. 29th, 2009 at 8:08 AM
logovo: (Books)
I'm in the middle of a streak of reading pro-fiction, the kind that makes me wonder what exactly I'm getting out of it, considering the buttons being hit are fuzzy and difficult to describe. Can I say reading Bolaño's 2666 is fun? Nope. It's pretty much antifun, specially part 4, which I'm in the middle of right now.

I'm hoping my interest in pro-fiction doesn't go away too soon. I read the first pages of The Corrections and I really liked it. Or found it compelling anyway.


Infinite Jest

  • Sep. 14th, 2009 at 4:07 PM
logovo: (Books)
I read David Foster Wallace's Infinite Jest this summer* because someone in my flist, who I can't remember at the moment, linked to the Infinite Summer project. It was to read this massive, funny, sad and infuriating book this summer, 75 pages at a time.

There are get-togethers of readers planned, which sound like fun unless I really think about it. Would I want to be in a room with a bunch of DFW fanboys?

I'm completely enjoying his writing, I'm a fan of his talent, but I also have major issues with the man. Which is cool, that happens a lot when it comes to things I love, but would I ever feel masochistic enough to get into an argument about his books, specially Infinite Jest?

*A big deal for me, because I don't read and enjoy novels like I did decades ago.


LJ out, Twitter out, Infinite Jest

  • Aug. 6th, 2009 at 12:46 PM
logovo: (Books)
LJ was down this morning* and as usual I freaked and kept hitting refresh. Those LJ pellets, they keep pulling me back. Twitter** was also down, but ::shrug:: it's obvious I'm not getting the amounts of fun out of Twitter that makes it a must thing each morning.

About Infinite Jest. )

*It's down AGAIN?
LiveJournal may be unresponsive or slow to load due to an ongoing attack against our network and servers.

**Sometimes it feels that if there is a semi-popular service out there I probably have an account. I'm compulsive like that.


Podfics and books

  • Jun. 26th, 2009 at 8:36 AM
logovo: (Books)
Uploading a bunch of new podfic today. Candle_beck has continued to post readings of her own SPN fic and they are all very well done. Also, some new astolat Master & Commander stuff has been recently recorded and I began listening to some of it. Duende is still my favorite all around M&C fic by astolat, the reading is great, although the sound is quality bad, but nothing I can't live with. But this new M&C fic I don't think I ever even read before (Jack and Stephen IN SPACE!). So I'm all ready for a day of tons of data entry style work, which I've been putting off but must get to today.

I'm at page 52 of Infinite Jest and I need to pick up speed if I'm going to make the 75 page mark by tomorrow. Saturday's are usually good reading days. I tried reading last night in bed and let me tell you, this is not a book I can read while lying down. Porny fic? Yes. Anything more plotty than that and I fall asleep. I miss my youngerself's capacity for reading in bed all night :(


Infinite Summer

  • Jun. 25th, 2009 at 10:05 AM
logovo: (Books)
Yep, I'm reading Infinite Jest. It's one those books that a lot of people try and read and after a few hundred pages give up on. http://infinitesummer.org/ is how I decided to give it a try. The starting date was June 21 and will continue with 75 pages a weeks throughout the summer.

I think I got the idea from someone in my flist. I know there is also a LJ com for it that I need to go and find later.

So, a tumbaburros to read this summer. Will see how I keep up with a narrative not trying to be earth-logic bound.



  • May. 29th, 2009 at 8:15 AM
logovo: (Food)
DW & LJ & IJ
You know how there are all these posts where people explain how they're going to handle crossposting and commenting in different journaling services? This post is not that!

I have no freakin idea what I'm going to be doing from one week to the other. Like it's a mood thing, which is not helpful to other people, but I'm hoping not much of an inconvenience. Besides having accounts seemingly everywhere, I also have a Spanish LJ which I've been pretty much ignoring for months now. I'm not moved to post in Spanish lately and have been feeling distracted and low energy about fannish stuff in general. What that is about I don't know and it makes me slightly unhappy.

Stuffed and Starved
This morning I began yet another scary food business book, Stuffed and Starved, reading the chapter on how Mexicans from the south of the country really have very few choices if they don't want to starve. Since NAFTA went through the small farmers were doomed, and now it's either go to the big cities (where the extra workers have driven down wages for everyone) or come to the US. I think a lot of people don't realize that Mexicans coming in as unskilled labor into the US would have much rather have stayed in their small towns, trying to make a living like their parents did. That just isn't an option anymore, with cheap corn and other crops coming in from the US. One surprising factoid that I got from this book is that the US only buys about 2% of all it's imported crops from Mexico. That seems incredibly low, so I need to check where they got that number from.


Tomato plants

  • May. 28th, 2009 at 8:39 AM
logovo: (Food)
Even after being at it for a few years, it's so weird to be gardening. Notes from an accidental gardener. )

Reading another of the "scary food books" I keep buying, this one called The End of Food by Paul Roberts. One more reminder to myself to cut down on our meat consumption. It's just so easy and satisfying to eat meat, but the amounts of meat we eat in this country (and back home in Mexico) are insane.