Book Review

Thrawn—Timothy Zahn

ThrawnCover flap text: One of the most cunning and ruthless warriors in the history of the Galactic Empire, Grand Admiral Thrawn is also one of the most captivating characters in the Star Wars universe. From his introduction in bestselling author Timothy Zahn’s classic Heir to the Empire through his continued adventures in Dark Force RisingThe Last Command, and beyond, Grand Admiral Thrawn has earned an iconic status among the greatest Star Wars villains. But Thrawn’s origins and the story of his rise in the Imperial ranks have remained mysterious. Now, in Star Wars: Thrawn, Timothy Zahn chronicles the fateful events that launched the blue-skinned, red-eyed master of military strategy and lethal warfare into the highest realms of power—and infamy.

After Thrawn is rescued from exile by Imperial soldiers, his deadly ingenuity and keen tactical abilities swiftly capture the attention of Emperor Palpatine. And just as quickly, Thrawn proves to be indispensable to the Empire as he is ambitious; as devoted as its most loyal servant, Darth Vader; and a brilliant warrior never to be underestimated. On missions to rout smugglers, snare spies, and defeat pirates, he triumphs time and again—even as his renegade methods infuriate superiors while inspiring ever greater admiration from the Empire. As one promotion follows another in his rapid ascension to greater power, he schools his trusted aide, Ensign Eli Vanto, in the arts of combat and leadership, and the secrets of claiming victory. But even though Thrawn dominates the battlefield, he has much to learn in the arena of politics, where ruthless administrator Arihnda Pryce holds the power to be a potent ally or a brutal enemy.

All these lessons will be put to the ultimate test when Thrawn rises to admiral and must pit all the knowledge, instincts, and battle forces at his command against an insurgent uprising that threatens not only innocent lives but also the Empire’s grip on the galaxy—and his own carefully laid plans for future ascendancy.

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Book Review

The Road—Cormac McCarthy

The roadBack cover text: A father and his son walk alone through burned America. Nothing moves in the ravaged landscape save the ash on the wind. It is cold enough to crack stones, and when the snow falls it is gray. The sky is dark. Their destination is the coast, although they don’t know what, if anything, awaits them there. They have nothing; just a pistol to defend themselves against the lawless bands that stalk the road, the clothes they are wearing, a cart of scavenged food—and each other.

The Road is the profoundly moving story of a journey. It boldly imagines a future in which no hope remains, but in which the father and his son, “each the other’s world entire,” are sustained by love. Awesome in the totality of its vision, The Road is an unflinching meditation on the worst and the best that we are capable of: ultimate destructiveness, desperate tenacity, and the tenderness that keeps two people alive in the face of total devastation.

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Book Review

4000 Years of Uppity Women—Vicki León

4000 Years Goodreads synopsis: Since ancient times, irrepressible women have broken all kinds of barriers. They ruled. They invented. They cured people. They killed people. They ran cities and businesses. The won races, athletic and political. They explored. They bankrolled explorers. They even bankrolled religions. Almost every organized religion, from Christianity to Buddhism to Quaker, has gotten off the ground thanks to the hard work and cold cash of women!

Most traditional histories written by men ignore, obscure, or erase the role of women, especially those who challenge the status quo. But the evidence of their achievements exists everywhere: in writings, coins, artifacts, graffiti, music, portraits, legal transcripts, love notes, and hate mail. For more than twenty years, Vicki Leon has been examining this evidence, chasing clues however faint and unconventional, and reporting her findings in numerous books, including the delightful four volume Uppity Women series.

4,000 Years of Uppity Women features the best of that series, chosen by Leon herself. It focuses not on legendary goddesses or literary characters but on real women (though many of them did become the subjects of poems, plays, and stories).

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Play by Play

Play by Play: The Angel Wore Fangs—Sandra Hill [pt 10]

We’ve reached the tenth part of The Angel Wore Fangs and, well… it’s time to get on with it.

Last time there was more sex, weird analogies, some kinkshaming, just really awful puns, some timey wimey questions, and Zeb finally found Cnut, but didn’t kill him. Except Cnut almost killed himself by getting lost in a blizzard. Andrea is enforcing modern-day American Christian Christmas traditions on the pagan Vikings, and there is a giant tree in Cnut’s hall, which confused him. And Andrea officially said the L-word. In her head, so I guess she didn’t say it.

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Play by Play

Play by Play: The Angel Wore Fangs—Sandra Hill [pt 9]

Part 8 back here.

Last time we finally got to the sex and I shared with you Taeyang’s Ringa Linga, and I’m not even sorry. That’s pretty much it, honestly. Oh, Jasper is getting suspicious of Zeb and wants him to bring Cnut in to make up for the fact that he’s only bringing in definite sinners that they were already going to end up recruiting anyway. Also Cnut had to bite Andrea and I’m still weirded out more than a week later.

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Play by Play

Play by Play: The Angel Wore Fangs—Sandra Hill [pt 8]

I’m starting to need these recaps more than you guys are, probably.

Previously on The Angel Wore Fangs: We referenced Outlander a lot, because why not. The Vikings knew how to cook Elizabethan white bread a thousand years before the Elizabethans existed. (I talked a lot about bread.) Andrea cooked a lot. There are Lucipires in 850s Scandinavia. Vikings apparently don’t know what bears look like. My sexprediction is chapter 14, which we will get to in this reading. Andrea’s sister has been rescued, Andrea is Cnut’s “lifemate,” Michael probably is responsible for sending them back in time, coconut tingles.

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