Read through Anton LeVay's Satanic Bible recently (another book foisted upon me as a "you should read this sometime for the hell of it" [no pun intended] sort of thing), and while about 25% of the prose sections seem pretty coherent and reasonable, the rest of it is (predictably) completely loopy.

The hilarious thing is that LeVay doesn't actually believe in a supernatural Satan, but finds the imagery related to Satan interesting and useful, and believes that his "selectively compassionate hedonism" philosophy conveniently aligns with a lot of ideas attributed to the biblical Satan, so he just co-opts the whole schtick for his own purposes. He's pretty much a "do what feels good as long as it doesn't harm others" sort of guy, with a dash of "if someone harms you, do a greater harm to them in return to teach them a lesson". He seems to believe that the exertion of will power to obtain your desires is at the core of everything, and that certain rituals and invocations help to focus your will power toward those goals. While these rituals would superficially appear to call upon aid from demons or try to invoke magic, this is apparently all symbolic and not meant literally.

The book is broken into a few different sections, one written in a Bible-like structure and providing a counterpoint of sorts to the Ten Commandments, another being a prose description of his philosophy, and then some descriptions of suggested rituals and specific language to use depending upon the situation.

A pretty quick read, both amusing and silly, and I guess a little disturbing to think that some people take this stuff seriously enough to actually be members of his "church". But at the end of the day it all seems pretty pathetic and harmless, just outcasts wanting to play dress-up and pretend that they're cool.
Read Behind Her Eyes (2017) by Sarah Pinborough. A supernatural thriller - and I stress, supernatural. I watched the series on Netflix first, and while the story is very well translated between the mediums, I thought it worked better visually than it does here. An exposition-twist where a killer tells their story and motives is never good, no matter how it's done. I do enjoy the story though, despite the writing. It's very dark.

Also read Armada (2015) by Ernest Cline. Of Ready Player One-fame, Cline here presents an Ender's Game-esque sci-fi which references pretty much everything in the genre. Enjoyable read, and there was just enough of original ideas here to make it a decent SF-novel despite being derivative (intentionally, of course). While Cline is surely not a good enough writer to play the meta game full on, this is stupid fun YA, and though repeating a lot of the frameworks and ideas of his more famous novel I found it endearing still.

Also read Bird Box (2014) by Josh Malerman. A post-apocalyptic (and very effective) horror story. Movie with Sandra Bullock is great, and Malerman's awesome writing makes it worth reading the novel as well. Enough differences between the two to make the story fresh.
by Kathryn Meyer Griffith (Author), Dawne Dominique (Illustrator) Format: Kindle Edition
Book 4 of 7: Dinosaur Lake

Fourth book in this amazing series. Gave up on the previously posted book, Dead Sea by Tim Curran once I realized that I had read it before. Good book though.

  • Dinosaur Lake IV: Dinosaur Wars by [Kathryn Meyer Griffith, Dawne Dominique]

    For seven long years Chief Park Ranger Henry Shore has been dealing with and fighting anachronistic dinosaurs in his beloved Crater Lake National Park and in the surrounding town of Klamath Falls. It began with one lone leviathan, the one he tongue-in-cheek called Godzilla. Henry and his band of heroes defeated it but others followed: the flying varieties he named gargoyles, the mutant T-Rexes and roaming velociraptors that were so much smarter than their ancient ancestors. He, his rangers and the National Guard soldiers, fought all of them, but still the dinosaurs, cunningly destructive and blood-thirsty, kept coming. No one knew where they came from or what the future would now hold for a besieged humanity, they only knew the monsters were spreading like a voracious wildfire and had to be stopped before they ravaged the world. Eventually, he and his wife, Ann, their family and friends, retreated into a fortified ranger headquarters where they continued to battle the proliferating dinosaurs. Will Henry’s son-in-law, Doctor Justin Maltin, a brilliant paleontologist, find a way to exterminate the creatures and save them…save the world? And, more importantly, would he be able to do it in time? There are now six Dinosaur Lake books.
Don´t let Steve read this or he´ll make a sequel to Quest For Fire...
Hahahaha Not sure if you are referring to what I posted, but the series of books I'm reading has been unexpectedly good. It hasn't been one of those, "take your brain out" and enjoy it for what it is type of stories. It has been slightly above that. No matter. A fun read. On book 5:)
  • a brilliant paleontologist
would never even think of exterminating the creatures, world or no world; as for "in time", knowing my (not that brilliant) self and my (certainly brilliant) colleagues, no fucking way. Just saying.
Any fans of comics around here? Recently I bought the complete serie (drawn by the late Don Lawrence) of the science fiction comic "The rise and fall of the Trigan empire". Brings back nice memories, still 4 albums to go.

Read The Space Between Worlds (2020) by Micaiah Johnson.

There are 380 alternate worlds close enough to "Earth 0" to be traveled to, and our main Cara is dead in all but 8 of them. This means she is in high demand as a traverser, since people can only travel to other worlds in which they are dead... Unless they want to be violently ripped apart upon entry. It also means she's bound to live a very dangerous life.

This one has it all - emotions, deep questions, great characters and just crazy good writing. What I didn't know beforehand and what is never explained at all is that it takes place sometime in the future on a postapocalyptic, Mad Max-version of Earth. I don't know if that is a criticism or not, but the story never explains anything about the world, when it takes or place or if it's even about our own Earth - there's just the city of Wiley (highly advanced) and Ashtown, which is its slum.

Still, my favourite book read this year... probably. It's between this and Atomic Anna which both concern one of my two favourite SF topics - time travel and alternate worlds.

Now reading Far from the Light of Heaven by Tade Thompson. SF/space opera. Very interesting beginning, think I'm going to love this!
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would never even think of exterminating the creatures, world or no world; as for "in time", knowing my (not that brilliant) self and my (certainly brilliant) colleagues, no fucking way. Just saying.
Perhaps not, but what if said invasive species posed a threat to human kind? The author delves into that and brings an interesting twist in her later books. I'm now on book 7. Still a fun read. And despite what I said earlier, there have been times when you have to take your brain out and enjoy it for what it is type of stories:)As far as the song Quest For Fire goes, just listened to it for the first time since perhaps the 90s(?)Ugh:)
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Perhaps not, but what if said invasive species posed a threat to human kind?
Nobody worth calling themselves a palaeontologist would ever give a flying fuck about mankind over the creatures they've been studying all along*, or deadlines** for that matter, that's what I'm trying to say.

* So, obviously, an expert on, say, Oligocene hyaenodonts might oblige, and gladly, most probably.
** Unless heavily coerced by a non-palaeontologist immediate superior - which seems to happen too often, alas.
Read Far from the Light of Heaven (2021) by Tade Thompson.

Afterword concludes it probably isn't space opera after all. I disagree, but would like to add it's also a 'whodunnit' murder mystery and adventure tale in space, set on an advanced ship heading for a human colony - and features aliens while space battles are notably absent. Add horror elements to the mix to top it off.

Excellent book, this is. World building is fantastic, characters believable and the aliens beautifully imagined. Alastair Reynolds comes to mind - this is hard SF if there ever was any, but I felt Thompson did more here in less pages than Reynolds usually does. All in all a well rounded effort only tarnished by a slightly abrupt ending. I blame it for wanting to read more space opera - I thought I was tired of this genre!

Now reading Autonomous (2018) by Annalee Newitz.

Dark Timber: A Jackson Campbell Thriller (Book 1)​

From Best-Selling Author J R RICE — a New Horror is Rising.​


In the Vein of the 1970s Eco-thriller . . .

When Man Attacks Nature — Nature Bites Back

October, 1945—Five months after the end of World War II, Walton Hess Jr. returned from Europe to his family home in Lakes End. Three weeks later, his father, a wealthy cattle baron was dead, making him the sole heir to the vast Hess empire. Walton had dreamed of this day for three long years while fighting the War. Now was the time to create a new empire—his empire—an industrial-based empire of processing plants and manufacturing facilities. And nothing or no one would stand in his way.

July, 1976—The bicentennial celebration was underway. The small town of Lakes End at the southern tip of Lake Culebras was inundated with tourists, enjoying the warm, clear waters of the placid lake. Twenty-three miles to the north, at the opposite end of the long, narrow body of water, the story was quite different—the Hess Processing Plant had been spewing toxins into the remote region of the lake for more than thirty years. When a fledgling organization known as the EPA shows up, a series of events unfold, becoming the stuff of legends.

May, 2015—Sheriff Jackson Campbell was a relative newcomer to the town of Lakes End—relocating there from Bane County at the beginning of 2011. He’d run for Culebras County Sheriff the following year, winning the election hands down. Life had been good for the past few years. Jackson, his wife, Mariana, and his young son, Dylan, had never been happier. But things were about to change in the sleepy little village of Lakes Ends. And no one knew better than Jackson Campbell that—sometimes …old legends could come to life.
Read Autonomous (2018) by Annalee Newitz.

Future dystopian Earth where we get to follow a Robin Hood-esque pirate in the business of pirating drugs for the black market, and an android and his partner employed by big pharma on the hunt for her. Quite good. Can robots with human brains fall in love? What kind of identity do they create?

I ended up feeling more for the story of the supposed villains here.

Also read Lightning (1988) by Dean Koontz.

This I did not enjoy as much. I quite liked the plot, which involves time travel and the novel is certainly a page-turner, but the characters and prose are lackluster. And there are people who prefer this guy over Stephen King? Jesus.
Any fans of comics around here? Recently I bought the complete serie (drawn by the late Don Lawrence) of the science fiction comic "The rise and fall of the Trigan empire". Brings back nice memories, still 4 albums to go.

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I like comics. I don't buy a lot these days due to the price. Was mainly into Conan and Mad Magazine growing up. Go into the DCU and MU later on. Tank Girl too.
Anybody read the original stories by Howard? I have "The Complete Chronicles" here, like to read one every once in a while for some pulpy fun.
Anybody read the original stories by Howard? I have "The Complete Chronicles" here, like to read one every once in a while for some pulpy fun.
I've got copies of the originals and have listened to the audio versions. These below are the original, unedited REH stories as they were published in Weird Tales, plus some unfinished fragments. The paper backs by De Camp were edited.

Currently reading Six Wakes (2017) by Mur Lafferty.

A space opera murder mystery involving six clones crewing a generation ship heading to establish a human colony centuries of travel away from Earth. 24 years or so into the trip, fresh clones awake to find their previous bodies have all been murdered, seemingly killed themselves or are in a coma. They have no memories of what's happened during the years they've spent on the ship.

Got a few pages left, and while the pages fly by, I don't connect emotionally with any of the characters and it feels shallow despite going quite deeply into the ethics of cloning.