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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in Dan Shiovitz's LiveJournal:

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Sunday, August 2nd, 2009
4:28 am
belated move
I guess I never officially mentioned this here, so (for the few people who read this journal and don't know already) I've switched to doing my blogging on another site. If you want to keep on LJ, it's syndicated as inky_blog. This hasn't increased the frequency of my posting or anything, but I do have a few reviews up.
Friday, November 7th, 2008
6:11 am
IF Comp 2008, part 3
And the last set, hot on its heels. I guess this means I played seven games in two days, so really, if you want to play some before the comp ends on the 15th, there's plenty of time. Anyway, the games: Violet, April in Paris, Escape from the Underworld, Everybody Dies, Opening Night, Berrost's Challenge, and Grief. Now go play for yourself!
Tuesday, November 4th, 2008
5:35 am
IF Comp 2008, part 2
Well, this is hardly punctual, but life gets in the way sometimes. Anyway, some more comp reviews: LAIR of the CyberCow, Snack Time!, The Lucubrator, Magic, Ananachronist, Trein, Piracy 2.0, Riverside, and Dracula's Underground Crypt.
Sunday, October 12th, 2008
11:06 pm
IF Comp 2008, part 1
I guess this year everyone is blogging their IF Comp reviews as they play the games, not all at the end, so far be it for me to do anything different. This is actually better on the whole, since getting a whole wodge of reviews right at the end is kind of like trying to eat an entire cake at one sitting. Anyway, so far I've played these: Afflicted, Channel Surfing, Cry Wolf, A Date With Death, A Martian Odyssey, The Missing Piece, The Ngah Angah School of Forbidden Wisdom, Nightfall, Recess At Last, Red Moon, Search for the Ultimate Weapon, When Machines Attack, The Absolute Worst IF Game in History, Buried In Shoes, Freedom, The Hall of the Fount of Artois, The Lighthouse, Nerd Quest, Project Delta. Yeah, I know 19 is pretty wodge-y in itself, but at least you're not getting them on the same day as a dozen other people. Anyway, more next weekend, maybe.
Sunday, October 5th, 2008
11:04 pm
The First Law
I'm not really reviewing books this year (or posting at all, if it comes to that), but here's one anyway:
The First Law seriesCollapse )
Sunday, February 17th, 2008
2:17 am
So I'm not exactly sure what is up with the bookclub this year, but here's what I've been reading.

Various booksCollapse )

In addition to reading books, I recently got a review copy of Le Réprobateur which is an interesting interactive digital media thing. My review of that is here.
Monday, December 31st, 2007
3:11 pm
Dresden Files, Best of 2007
Ok, this is my last review post of the year, so I guess I'm obliged to list my top books reviewed this year. But first one more review squeaks across the line:

The Dresden Files (books 1-5)Collapse )

Now then, the best-of for the year. It looks like I did 107 book reviews, so I should probably pick a top couple. Here are nine, not taken from non-books or re-reads:
  • Blankets: This graphic novel is the best argument I have seen for the existence of graphic novels as a genre.
  • The Company series (finishing with The Sons of Heaven): An sf series about time travel, immortal cyborgs, and all that good stuff. Long but worth it.
  • The Porcelain Dove: A fairy-tale version of the French Revolution, with magic, but if this makes you think it is all spun-sugar and nice you are reading the wrong fairy tales.
  • Prince of Foxes: This is a romance in the Prisoner-of-Zenda sense of the term, set in Renaissance Italy and with all the machinations, heroics, and art that implies.
  • Scott Pilgrim series (and book 4): A charming set of graphic novels that blends a variety of genres together into a romance/comedy/slacker/videogame thing, drawn in a Western style but heavy manga influence.
  • Second Person: A collection of theories, how-tos, and surveys of the field in some of my favorite areas — interactive fiction, RPGs, and videogames — by both critics and authors.
  • Stumbling on Happiness: A discussion of the nature of happiness, what it means to be happy and how to get there (or why we don't get there). It has philosophy for the philosophers, psychology for the psychologists, and stories about people in psychological experiments for everyone else.
  • The Time Traveler's Wife: An sf novel written by someone who's not an sf author, but working out way better than that makes you think. Similarly better than what you think of if I describe it as a predestined romance. Just read it, seriously.
  • The Visual Display of Quantitative Information: Graph porn is its own reward.

In addition, I wrote some reviews that I thought were funny or insightful or charmingly meandering or something, even if the book didn't make my best-of list. My top five of those:

And that was 2007!
Thursday, December 27th, 2007
1:08 am
Watchtower, Singularity Sky, Should You Leave?
Couple of books. Also, I saw Charlie Wilson's War, which is recommended and is kind of like a Heinlein novel as written by Aaron Sorkin.

WatchtowerCollapse )
Singularity SkyCollapse )
Should You Leave?Collapse )

Next up: The Dresden Files, I think.
Saturday, December 15th, 2007
2:54 pm
Scott Pilgrim, Inspector Montalbano, The Jewel in the Crown
Couple of reviews. I also read Making Money, but it turns out I'm too distressed by the Alzheimer's thing to write a review, and anyway it's exactly like you expect, which is fine.

Scott Pilgrim Gets It TogetherCollapse )
Inspector Montalbano seriesCollapse )
The Jewel in the CrownCollapse )

Up next: Watchtower, Singularity Sky, Her Smoke Rose Up Forever.
Thursday, November 29th, 2007
12:26 am
A Walk in the Woods, The Sword-Edged Blonde, Halting State
Books, thus:

A Walk in the WoodsCollapse )
The Sword-Edged BlondeCollapse )
Halting StateCollapse )

Up next: finally getting my hands on a couple Inspector Montalbano books. Also, Scott Pilgrim #4, hooray.
Friday, November 16th, 2007
12:48 am
Chinatown Beat, Feersum Endjinn
Another couple.

Chinatown BeatCollapse )
Feersum EndjinnCollapse )

Next up: A Walk in the Woods, The Shape of Water, The Sword-edged Blonde
Wednesday, November 7th, 2007
7:32 pm
Souls and Bodies, The Sons of Heaven
Just two this time, but they're on the long side. I have otherwise been busy reading unidentified research materials and writing IF comp reviews (it's conceivable some of them will be amusing even without familiarity with the games/IF community, but I dunno).

Souls and BodiesCollapse )
The Sons of HeavenCollapse )

Next up: I don't actually have anything scheduled to read next, but for those few of you not from ifmud, I should point out Rob has a web comic.
Sunday, October 14th, 2007
11:01 pm
Was, White Teeth, A Heartbreaking Work ...
Another couple books here, usual drill.

WasCollapse )
White TeethCollapse )
A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering GeniusCollapse )

Up next: as you no doubt know, October is the Annual IF Competition, the happiest time of year, so I am a bit preoccupied with playing and reviewing games for that. I expect more books will turn up at some point, though.
Friday, October 5th, 2007
12:21 am
New Amsterdam, Imaro, Consider the Lobster
I have some other things coming up but I figure I'd get these out there now.

New AmsterdamCollapse )
Imaro / Imaro 2Collapse )
Consider the LobsterCollapse )

Currently: Was; next up: White Teeth and A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius. (This is my contribution to the 106 books meme.)
Sunday, September 23rd, 2007
7:32 pm
Classic adventure week wrap-up
As you recall, this has been Classic Adventure Novel week. Or more like Classic Adventure Novel Twenty Days Or So, but close enough. Since there are a bunch of these, I have provided some helpful summary notes at the beginning of each review.

I think if I had to summarize the main difference between these books and the movie versions of them I've seen, it would be way less swordfighting. I don't know why this is -- it could be because the authors didn't know enough about swordfighting to write an accurate scene, or because there's a modern fashion for it in period movies, or because on the page it's just as easy to convey a tense conflict between two guys, but on-screen you can't do the same emotional stuff as easily with just talking.

The Mark of ZorroCollapse )
The Scarlet PimpernelCollapse )
The Sea HawkCollapse )
Prince of FoxesCollapse )
AshendenCollapse )
The Count of Monte CristoCollapse )

Next up: I collapse after finishing Count of Monte Cristo. Then I read New Amsterdam.
Tuesday, September 4th, 2007
11:03 pm
Dress Your Family ..., How to be an Antiques Detective, etc
Four short books this time, clearing the queue for more.

Dress Your Family in Corduroy and DenimCollapse )
How to be an Antiques DetectiveCollapse )
The Damned SeasonCollapse )
Cutting Up TouchesCollapse )

Up next: as you know, it is Classic Adventure Novel week. I am starting with The Mark of Zorro and going from there.
Tuesday, August 28th, 2007
10:38 pm
Majestrum, Red Seas Under Red Skies, etc
Trivia note: two of the three books I took on my trip involved archons. (The third was the first Dresden files book, which I think I am going to wait to review until I've read a few more.)

MajestrumCollapse )
Red Seas Under Red SkiesCollapse )
etc.Collapse )

Next up: man, who knows.
Saturday, August 25th, 2007
12:15 pm
White Noise, 2006 Fantasy, Carte Blanche
I have a fair chunk of these, so I guess I'm going to split them into pre-trip and ones I read on the trip.

White NoiseCollapse )
Fantasy: The Best of the Year, 2006 EditionCollapse )
Carte BlancheCollapse )

More soon.
Tuesday, August 14th, 2007
7:08 pm
Dhlagren, 1066 and All That, Precious Dragon, Blighted Isle
Steadily working my way through the pile. Here's what's up now:

DhalgrenCollapse )
1066 and All ThatCollapse )
Precious DragonCollapse )
Blighted IsleCollapse )

Up next: the Lies of Locke Lamora sequel, which I am assured is thoroughly gripping.
Friday, August 3rd, 2007
10:22 pm
The Ghost Brigades, Winnetou, Island of the Sequined Love Nun
More books. Also, I saw The Bourne Ultimatum tonight. I've gone back and forth on whether I like the tropes in this series (there's always a corrupt superior officer, Bourne never loses conflicts, the action sequences are almost entirely dialogueless and paced too fast to fully comprehend them), but with this one I think I'm a convert and willing to accept this as a viable style on its own. Also, man, the security camera setup in London is such a gift to this kind of movie.

The Ghost BrigadesCollapse )
WinnetouCollapse )
Island of the Sequined Love NunCollapse )

Next up: Dhalgren, 1066 And All That, the Lies of Locke Lamora sequel. Possibly even in that order.
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