Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Family Photos – Week Five = Rest and Relaxation


Sorry this is so late. It took everyone, including me, a while to get our photos taken and then I got a head cold when I was just getting organised to put up the post.

Given the fact we all have busy lives, we’ve decided to make this a fortnightly challenge rather than a weekly one. That gives everyone a bit more time to find a good photo.

The theme for Week 4 was REST AND RELAXATION.

Marcus had an excellent idea and set up a photo-shoot for his favourite bedtime friend, Brown Bear Barney.


Pam sent us a photo of Grandad Len taking a moment for a bit of R&R. You can see who influenced me to be a reader, which Dave and I then passed on to Marcus.


Sally’s photo shows one of her workmates getting in a nap on the job.


Dave pointed out that he seems to get very little time for any rest or relaxation, but that if he did, this is what he’d choose to do with it.


As for me, I couldn’t resist this picture of Marcus sleeping. He has always slept in some very strange positions or with an interesting array of friends. (I have sneaked into his room and snapped a photo many times and fortunately he never responds to the flash at all and keeps right on sleeping.)


Sally chose the next theme and it is WARMTH.

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

DarkShip Thieves by Sarah A. Hoyt

DarkShip ThievesDarkShip Thieves by Sarah A. Hoyt

My rating: 4 of 5 stars (8/10)
Read: 3-3-11 to 8-3-11

This book ended up being a bit up and down, but overall I really liked it.

It stared off well, then seemed to slow a bit (although not in a bad way) when Athena got to Eden. At that point, I could see it turning into SF Romance, and while I don't mind that at all, it wasn't exactly what I had been expecting.

But I was wrong. While the romance is there, it's nicely done and not dwelled upon on its own account too much. Instead, the SF plot begins to build up, tying in a lot of threads that I had thought were only background world-building, into a generally satisfying whole.

I did especially enjoy the parts back on Earth where Thena began to put all the pieces together and work out what was really going on. I did think she was a little slow on the uptake, as I'd worked out the basics (although I admit, not the specifics) back when she was on Eden, but I can also kind of see how they were pieces her back brain probably didn't want to put together, so I'll forgive it.

However, after all that excellent third quarter or more, it all seemed to resolve very easily and suddenly. I was reading the ebook and keeping a mild eye on my progress through the book. I had seen that part three started at something like chapter 46, with another 6 or 7 chapters to go to get to the end. That meant I was very surprised to find I was at over 90% of the book when I was still in the early 40s, chapter wise and in the middle of the action on Earth. I was wondering how Ms Hoyt was going to tie everything up and get them rescued and home again in the short space left.

Very quickly, turned out to be the answer. Suddenly escape becomes easy, the villain is dealt with with surprising speed (and really, very little action on the part of the main protagonists) and they're off home, to end on an ironic note, rather than a satisfying one.

Yes, finishing with the same officious controller was clever, but I wanted to see the family's reaction to having them back, and Doc Bartholomeu's response to all they had learned. Not to mention, whatever the heck is happening back on Earth and where the other Mules might have gone.

If this is the beginning of a series, hopefully I'll still learn those things, but for a standalone, the ending didn't work for me.

All the same, I really enjoyed myself reading this one. I loved the world Ms Hoyt created (and in a way, I'm not sure why) and the characters (well, I had a love/hate relationship with Thena, but I loved Kit and I want to see how they both live beyond the parental legacies they were given). I'll happily read more books by her, but next time, I really would like a more satisfying ending please.

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