7.29.2011

Episode 163: Genesis, chapters 32-33


In which Jacob prepares for his family reunion.
Will he survive it?

Episode 163, chapters 32-33
(download or listen via this link)
Book Information
  • This book is in under copyright. Forgotten Classics has been granted the non-exclusive right to read Robert Alter's translation of Genesis and his commentary. This book is published by WW Norton. Please contact Mr. Alter or his agent for any permissions. Many thanks to Robert Alter and Georges Borchardt for their graciousness in allowing us to read this book.
  • If you are enjoying this reading, please buy Genesis. It comes to life even more when you are able to see and ponder the words.
  • Story rating: R for adult situations and commentary.
  • I will do my best to properly pronounce any Hebrew words but cannot promise accuracy. Biblical words may be pronounced using this guide.
Highlights
    Mentioned Links
    My Huffduffer Feed
    (where you can easily download sample episodes of the podcast highlight or other various podcasts I want to share)

    7.26.2011

    Ancient Arabia, Djinn, and Two Improbable Heroes: reviewing The Desert of Souls

    The Desert of SoulsThe Desert of Souls by Howard Andrew Jones

    My rating: 5 of 5 stars


    The glittering tradition of sword-and-sorcery sweeps into the sands of ancient Arabia with the heart-stopping speed of a whirling dervish in this thrilling debut novel from new talent Howard Andrew Jones

    In 8th century Baghdad, a stranger pleads with the vizier to safeguard the bejeweled tablet he carries, but he is murdered before he can explain. Charged with solving the puzzle, the scholar Dabir soon realizes that the tablet may unlock secrets hidden within the lost city of Ubar, the Atlantis of the sands. When the tablet is stolen from his care, Dabir and Captain Asim are sent after it, and into a life and death chase through the ancient Middle East.
    This was an easy and exciting read and I finished it quickly, partially because I was flipping the pages so fast.

    Asim and Dabir somewhat remind me of Number Ten Ox and Master Li from Barry Hughart's stories of a China that never was. Asim is not as dim as Number Ten Ox and Dabir is not as wise (or old) as Master Li, but it is a classic pairing of brawn and brains, which can lead to misunderstandings that are sometimes comic but which can endanger everything if both do not learn to trust one another. By the end of the book we are fond of both characters, as, indeed, they are of each other.

    The adventure itself is multi-faceted and highly inventive, while still remaining true to form in what feels like a factually based universe. In fact, Jones has taken great care to keep the historical facts true to form with Jaffar and the caliph being based on the actual historical people. In this, he must have been highly influenced by the stories of Harold Lamb, several volumes of which he collected into anthologies before writing his own novel.

    Room was clearly left for more adventures and I hope that Jones is at work on the next. I can't wait to see what Asim and Dabir must tangle with next.


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    Most of my reviews are posted on this Book Reviews page.

    7.25.2011

    Lagniappe 49: East of Eden

    In which we hear the story of Olive and the airplane...

    East of Eden
    (listen or download from link above)
    A delightful vignette that I wanted to share.
    Scott and I will be discussing the entire novel (as much as we can in an hour)
    at A Good Story is Hard to Find in Episode 15.

    According to Webster
    la·gniappe \ˈlan-ˌyap, lan-ˈ\
    Function:
    noun
    Etymology: American French, from American Spanish la ñapa the lagniappe, from la + ñapa, yapa, from Quechua yapa something added
    Date: 1844
    : a small gift given a customer by a merchant at the time of a purchase;
    broadly : something given or obtained gratuitously or by way of good measure

    7.22.2011

    Episode 162: The Green Girl, chapters 17-24

    In which Melvin and Sam encounter Lord of Flame
    and Alexander learns some new tricks.


    Episode 162, chapters 17-24
    (download or listen via this link)
    Book Information
    • For The Fifth Annual SFFaudio Challenge
      Courtesy of the Wonder Ebooks edition.

      NOTES: “Early sense of wonder SF.” First published in the March and April 1930 issues of Amazing Stories. Later collected in 1950 as Avon Fantasy Novel #2. “Melvin Dane has been seeing a vision of a green girl since he was a child. Images of her came over the ether. Is she just fantasy? Or a reality that managed to cross time and space? And now, with the Earth under threat of extinction, will Melvin ever meet that girl of his dreams?”
    • Story rating: G (so far)
    Podcast Highlight
      My Huffduffer Feed
      (where you can easily download sample episodes of the podcast highlight or other various podcasts I want to share)

      7.18.2011

      John Carter of Mars Trailer



      I could never get into the books (and oh how I've tried) but I could definitely get into this movie.

      Directed by Andrew Stanton. Toy Story, Toy Story 2, Finding Nemo, Wall-E, and now this live action movie. I'm ready.

      Via Scott at Rivets and Trees.

      7.16.2011

      Lagniappe 48: Just So - The Elephant's Child

      In the High and Far-Off Times
      the Elephant, O Best Beloved, had no trunk ...

      The Elephant's Child
      (listen or download from link above)
      As always, read with dash and verve by Will Duquette.

      See the story, a poem, and all the illustrations with Kipling's captions.
      As always, thank you to Will Duquette for his tip-top narration.

      According to Webster
      la·gniappe \ˈlan-ˌyap, lan-ˈ\
      Function:
      noun
      Etymology: American French, from American Spanish la ñapa the lagniappe, from la + ñapa, yapa, from Quechua yapa something added
      Date: 1844
      : a small gift given a customer by a merchant at the time of a purchase;
      broadly : something given or obtained gratuitously or by way of good measure

      Episode 161 Genesis, chapter 31


      In which Jacob and his family go on the lam.
      Episode 161, chapter 31
      (download or listen via this link)
      Book Information
      • This book is in under copyright. Forgotten Classics has been granted the non-exclusive right to read Robert Alter's translation of Genesis and his commentary. This book is published by WW Norton. Please contact Mr. Alter or his agent for any permissions. Many thanks to Robert Alter and Georges Borchardt for their graciousness in allowing us to read this book.
      • If you are enjoying this reading, please buy Genesis. It comes to life even more when you are able to see and ponder the words.
      • Story rating: R for adult situations and commentary.
      • I will do my best to properly pronounce any Hebrew words but cannot promise accuracy. Biblical words may be pronounced using this guide.
      Highlight
        Mentioned Link
        My Huffduffer Feed
        (where you can easily download sample episodes of the podcast highlight or other various podcasts I want to share)

        7.07.2011

        Episode 160: The Green Girl, chapters 9-16

        In which Melvin and Sam pursue Earth's enemy,
        discover astounding new forms of life, and make a new acquaintance.


        Episode 160, chapters 9-16
        (download or listen via this link)
        Book Information
        • For The Fifth Annual SFFaudio Challenge
          Courtesy of the Wonder Ebooks edition.

          NOTES: “Early sense of wonder SF.” First published in the March and April 1930 issues of Amazing Stories. Later collected in 1950 as Avon Fantasy Novel #2. “Melvin Dane has been seeing a vision of a green girl since he was a child. Images of her came over the ether. Is she just fantasy? Or a reality that managed to cross time and space? And now, with the Earth under threat of extinction, will Melvin ever meet that girl of his dreams?”
        • Story rating: G (so far)
        Podcast Highlight
          Mentioned Links
          My Huffduffer Feed
          (where you can easily download sample episodes of the podcast highlight or other various podcasts I want to share)