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After the Fall, Before the Fall, During the Fall: A Novel
After the Fall, Before the Fall, During the Fall: A Novel
by Nancy Kress
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 12.37
32 used & new from CDN$ 3.25

4.0 out of 5 stars Three linked stories before during and after Earth experiences a life ending event, Sept. 22 2013
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This is three linked story lines before during and after a natural , or some feel; not natural disaster, decimates Earth resulting in 26 humans existing in a enclosed structure called the Shell. Everything is white in the shell.

In the "Before" story line reveals something ecologically lethal to plant life and mutating on a continuous basis. This is discovered but who or what it is, is not widely distributeds.

The "During" story line is as the disasters heats up and not normal geological events happen the super powers feel that it is an attack and atomic counter attacks are launched which irradiates the Earth and most of it's few remaining inhabitant.

The "After" story covers the 26 human survivors in the "Shell" and their decision to repopulate the world. The main problem is that most of the woman saved have been impacted by the radiation.

The creators of the Shell are identified as the "Tesllies" by the older people in the Shell. After 20 years the Tesslies supply a machine that transports the inhabitants of the Shell back in time; but only for 10 minutes

The only solution to this is to time travel back before the disaster, called a "Grab" and bring back babies and young children who have not been affected by the radiation.

This then closes the loop between the "After" and the "Before".

This is not an intense technical sci fi novel but rather a character driven story.

It's a novella rather than a novel.

Recommended

The Anubis Gates
The Anubis Gates
by Tim Powers
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 13.72
36 used & new from CDN$ 3.36

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Time travel, werewolf and magic. Great villains. Great mythology., Sept. 21 2013
This review is from: The Anubis Gates (Paperback)
This is a great mash up of Fantasy and Science Fiction genres.

To set the stage, imagine time is a fast flowing river under a sheet of ice. You can't get out of time because of the ice and you can't go back in time because the flow of time is too fast. Now what would happen if there are holes in that ice ? You got it, you could jump between the holes, if you knew where and when they were. And some people know about these holes through magic or scientific investigation.

Our protagonist throughout this journey is one Brendan Doyle who is called to England by an eccentric billionaire to investigate activities in the early 1800's. Apparently he , or rather people who work fro him, have found the holes in the ice over the time stream.

While Doyle does go back in time through the hole he si captured while there and does not return with the rest of the time travellers back to their origin in 1983. He is stuck in 1804. He soon meets all sorts of magical and maniacal people and creatures as he fights to find his way back.

Doctors Romany and Romanelli are two key villains, and we even have a body switching werewolf added to the mix.

Can Doyle somehow overcome all the impediments to the return to his real time or will he be stuck in early England.

It's truly an adventure to find out.

A fun and entertaining read about magic and time travel.

Centipede Press is releasing a limited edition high end hard cover version of the book this Fall

Encounters of Sherlock Holmes
Encounters of Sherlock Holmes
by George Mann
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 12.96
45 used & new from CDN$ 2.34

5.0 out of 5 stars Great selection of Holmes tales told by various authors. Great investment, Sept. 17 2013
This is a great compendium of stories based on Sherlock Holmes pastiche.

Staying true to the language, and process, used by Sherlock the stories range far and wide. We even have Dr Watson and Mrs Hudson solving mysteries. With Sherlock taking the credit of course.

The various authors have also brought into play characters that they have developed and which have appeared in their books, particularly George Mann's great series Newbury and Hobbes (of which I have read all).

Other authors include Mark Hodder; who I have read and enjoyed; Paul Magrs, Eric Brown and several more.

A nice cross section of ideas and mysteries means each page is a delight.

Recommended.

And coming in early 2014; the Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes

Science Fiction, Fantasy, & Horror: 1986 : A Comprehensive Bibliography of Books and Short Fiction Published in the English Language
Science Fiction, Fantasy, & Horror: 1986 : A Comprehensive Bibliography of Books and Short Fiction Published in the English Language
by Charles N. Brown
Edition: Hardcover
6 used & new from CDN$ 9.90

1.0 out of 5 stars Literally a detailed guide of books issued in 1986 ! Not much use as a research tool, Sept. 14 2013
I had decided that I needed some reference books as I continue to collect early science fiction stories, and thought this guide would be of assistance.

Turns out the title literaly tells you about this book. It is a comprehensive listing and details of most Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror publications during the year 1986.

Huge disappointment. Not much use as I would have to buy a book fror every year from 1920 to 1985 to use them as research tools.

I will look elsewhere and let you know I future reviews.

Unless you are after some deatil from a 1986 publication, NOT RECOMMENDED

Ematic EGS004-BL 7.0-Inch 4 GB Genesis Prime Multi-Touch Tablet, Black
Ematic EGS004-BL 7.0-Inch 4 GB Genesis Prime Multi-Touch Tablet, Black
Price: CDN$ 69.99
17 used & new from CDN$ 62.19

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Very bad attempt at an inexpensive tablet.Buy something else. You will not be happy with this one, Sept. 3 2013
Boy oh boy was I sold a line on this item. This pretend tablet is very very limited. First off it only has 4gb internal memory so this soon gets filled up with your applications.

The reference to "MicroSD Card slot allows you to add up to an additional 32GB of storage." is totally wrong. I checked with Ematic and the 32 GB can only be used to hold pictures etc that you have downloaded elsewhere. It is a READ ONLY STORAGE. As noted before, 4GB is it for programs and applications. AND THIS IS NOT VERY MUCH !

The battery is another HUGE issue with this tablet. It runs out really really fast so you have to constantly be recharging it. Which means sooner than later the battery will not be able to hold a charge and you might as well throw it away and get a new tablet (not this one) because the battery replacement cost will be higher than the original cost of the unit.

NOT RECOMMENDED AT ALL !!!

Dirt Devil UD20005 Easy Lite Cyclonic Quick Vacuum Bagless Upright
Dirt Devil UD20005 Easy Lite Cyclonic Quick Vacuum Bagless Upright
Price: CDN$ 69.81
5 used & new from CDN$ 69.81

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars You get what you pay for. Poor performance, Sept. 2 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I was hoping to get a light vacuum cleaner that had some suction. I got it cheap, but the suction was missing.

Other than dust bunnies this machine is pretty well useless to pick up anything off even a lino floor.

The hose is all of 3 fet long so it also is ineffective to use.

Not recommended

Red Planet Blues
Red Planet Blues
by Robert J Sawyer
Edition: Hardcover
Price: CDN$ 18.81
6 used & new from CDN$ 12.27

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Exploits of a detective in a Mars colony - Great Read - A fun romp, Sept. 2 2013
This review is from: Red Planet Blues (Hardcover)
Robert J Sawyer always has his characters have a little flair and that is certainly evident in this story with the main character Alexander Lomax who is a private eye in a settlement under a dome on Mars.

Double X as he is called by his friends is hired by a lovely lady, Lomax is a sucker for a beautiful dame, to find her missing husband. Which is an interesting request as they all live in a dome and if you're in the dome you're alive and if you're outside you are dead. Plus there is no record of him leaving the protective dome. Like I said he's a sucker for the ladies and he accepts the case.

Soon he runs into a cast of characters both real and so called transfers. Transfers are like clones except you get your brain transferred into a clone like body and it can look like anyone and you can buy options like extra strength, enhanced vision etc. Oh and as a bonus you don't need to breath or eat so you can leave the dome just in your regular cloths if you want to.

What seems like a simple case soon has twist and turns that drive Lomax crazy.
Lomax takes on other cases that involve events that occurred 30 mears ago (mears are Mars years which are slightly longer than Earth years) and the hunt for a fabled archaeological site on Mars.

The author handles all these machinations with good humour and twists galore.

A great detective novel situated in a limited environment just adds to the appeal of the book.

Recommended book and author.

Be sure to check out his Neanderthal Parallax Trilogy (Hominids, Humans, Hybrids) for more great reading

Stark's Crusade
Stark's Crusade
by John G. Hemry
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
Price: CDN$ 8.99
29 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Military Sci-Fi - Final effort by USA forces to retake the Moon base from Stark, Aug. 28 2013
Jack Campbell (or John G Hemry which is his actual name) spins another space opera, this time on the moon, in this the third book in the Starks War trilogy (the others being Stark's War and Stark's Command).

Stark is the commander on the moon although he still reports to the senior civilian position. The USA on Earth appears adamant that they retake the Moon base and keep sending more sophisticated deployments to do that. The latest being autonomous "robot" like creations.

Can Stark defeat someone without a soul ?

Can the Moon base be successfully defended if the USA on Earth sends all their resources ?

What about the unrest on Earth with what is happening there ?

Campbell wraps up this trilogy in eminent fashion.

Well developed characters. Nicely evolving story line. Well worth the time to read.

RECOMMENDED series and author.

The Executioner's Heart
The Executioner's Heart
by George Mann
Edition: Hardcover
Price: CDN$ 20.05
31 used & new from CDN$ 9.89

5.0 out of 5 stars Steampunk Thriller - Newbury & Hobbes investigation - Very Well Presented, Aug. 25 2013
Newbury & Hobbes are into another mystery in this popular Steampunk series from George Mann. This is the fourth book in the "A Newbury & Hobbes Investigation" series with the other three books being "The Affinity Bridge" , "The Osiris Ritual", and "The Immorality Engine" ALL ARE RECOMMENDED

In this book we run into Newbury & Hobbes's being asked to investigate the murder of three apparently unrelated individuals. What is perplexing the police is that the murderer is opening up their victims chest cavity and removing their heart.

We are soon on the case and adding a little royalty into the mix and a definite danger to both Newbury and Hobbes. There is much focus on developing the plot and an introduction of the expected villain.

There are attempts by the palace and the police to link the murders to the Kaiser. The thinking being that it is meant to disrupt the Queen and during that disruption start a war. Newbury follows this line of reasoning for a bit.

Another rousing adventure and an enjoyable read from a master story teller. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

Inferno: A Novel
Inferno: A Novel
by Dan Brown
Edition: Hardcover
Price: CDN$ 18.81
158 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Thriller in Florence Italy. Langdon has amnesia. What is really going on ? New plaque needed ?, Aug. 14 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Inferno: A Novel (Hardcover)
I just couldn't put this down until I finished it.

Dan Brown supplies us with three different stories within his books and that's what makes them so compelling to read.

The main story line is of course about Robert Langdon but in this adventure, or quest, he is at a huge disadvantage having just woken up in the hospital with a head injury and no memory of the previous two days. Plus someone is definitely out to kill him, for reasons at that time are unknown to him.

The second story rolls out as Langdon tries to deal with the killers while giving us a detailed travel guide on Florence Italy both from a geographical and historical perspective.

And the third story evolves around Dante and his Divine Comedy and particularly the Inferno section.
Brown weaves these three story lines together to entertain as Langdon fights to regain his memory of the last two days, and more importantly stay alive long enough to figure out what is going on.

The main theme of the action has to do with the population explosion and what the negative impact of unchecked population growth will do to the resources our planet has to support that increased demand.

The Black Plague is looked at as a previous event that dealt with the issue. Do we need a new plague to deal with our current and future overpopulation problems ?

A great combination of sleuthing and moral "churn" that delivers a book that's an absolute delight to read.

Highly recommended along with Dan Browns other books including Demons and Angels, Deception Point, Digital Firtress and of course The Da Vinci Code that first introduced us to Robert Langdon

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