Trips To The Fair

In our increasingly polarized society I think there’s one thing that I hope we can all agree upon, and that is: Carnies are creepy. And put those carnies in a traveling circus, and guess what? Über-creepy. There’s something about the way that they just appear in town one day and are gone another. They are…

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Book Review: Redshirts by John Scalzi

When my friends and I watch or discuss Star Trek, someone will almost always say in their best Shatner impersonation, “Spock – you, me, McCoy, Rabinowitz. We’re heading down to the planet.” Can you guess who’s not coming back? Of course, it’s Rabinowitz that’s going to meet an untimely-but-plot-point-providing death down on the planet. Almost…

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Super Shorts 2: Unaccustomed Earth by Jhumpa Lahiri

It wasn’t until I was a graduate student that I had any real exposure to Indian culture. One of the things about it that raised a lot of curiosity in me was that it was a culture that even in the late 20th century seemed to function pretty seamlessly with a good deal of arranged…

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Super Shorts I: 20th Century Ghosts by Joe Hill

I admit that I had a certain amount of skepticism about Joe Hill as a writer. Being the son of Stephen King, I couldn’t help but think that just maybe he hadn’t quite earned his entrance into the world of publishing the way that other writers had. I felt a little vindicated with this feeling…

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More Mystery Bites

I like a good mystery. In fact, the Beloved and I were just talking about mysteries this morning. I said that I use them as “palate cleansers” between other types of books. (Actually, it turns out that I’ve said that before while using the same title convention for a post. Ah well, so much for…

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Book Review: Graveminder, by Melissa Marr

A couple of months ago, I was casting about for a new audiobook to listen to and it happened to be right as Goodreads was releasing its Readers Choice Awards for 2011. Melissa Marr’s novel Graveminder won Best Horror, so I decided to give it a shot. In the story, a young woman, Rebekkah Barrow…

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Book Review: 11/22/63 by Stephen King

At the end of 2011, I was surprised to see Stephen King’s latest book 11/22/63 on a number of “Best of the Year” lists. And not just best “Horror” or best “genre” type of lists – but honest-to-goodness “Best of the Year” for literary fiction lists. That sort of praise has been hard to come…

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Book Review: Zone One, by Colson Whitehead

Zombies are in. From AMC’s smash hit television series The Walking Dead, to the movie Zombieland (and the upcoming film version of Max Brooks’ World War Z), flesheaters are everywhere. In fact, they’re so much everywhere that I’ve started worrying that zombies are reaching that too-much-of-a-good-thing spot that vampires reached right around the second Twilight…

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Good For You Oates

During my interview with Kelly (which you should check out because it was really fun) and a recent conversation with Tom and Bookish, my affection for the books of Joyce Carol Oates came up. That made me realize that I had a couple of her books in my “to review” list. Blonde is a fictionalized…

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2011 Favorites: Books

I must admit that I am a sucker for “Year In Review” posts and articles. I enjoy reflecting on what’s happened and though I know a calendar year is a somewhat arbitrary unit, it still works out pretty well as a timeframe to reflect upon. Many people will right “Best of 2011” lists for many…

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