10:20am: Fic: Running Backwards (3/?), Fandom: White Collar/DCU, Rating: PG-13 Title: Running Backwards (3/?) Author:in_excelsis_dea Fandom: White Collar/DCU (Batman) Characters: Neal, Peter, Elizabeth, Mozzie, Dick Grayson, Damian Wayne Genre: Drama, Action, Angst, Family Rating: PG-13 Summary: Neal thought that he’d be safe on a tropical island. Unfortunately, someone managed to track him down, and it isn’t the FBI… Chapter Summary:As they head away from danger, Neal reluctantly makes a phone call to someone from his past. AN: I’d like to thank my lovely beta-reader, leonie_alastair. I planned out the route the characters take on Google Maps, so it does exist. Finally we get a taste of the Batfamily and Neal’s past. I'm sorry for taking weeks to update this. I started working -- nights -- so I have to totally readjust my schedule, and I've had this sitting for weeks and just never got around to updating it. I am not completely certain when Chapter 4 will be posted, since I have technically to Chapter 6, but I need to rewrite a lot of it, so...hopefully soon, is all I can say. Anyways, comments and constructive criticism are always appreciated and I hope you enjoy the chapter.
11:57pm: Fic: Security, Fandom: Batman/DCU, Character: Tim, Rating: G Title:Security Fandom: Batman/DCU Characters: Tim Drake Rating: G Summary: Tim hides it really well, armed with his camera against the world. AN: Written for the prompt Armor at prompt_of_day, and based on two headcanons on tumblr, one about Tim having OCD and the other about Tim taking off-duty pictures of his family through the camera in his cowl. In regards to OCD, I just want to clarify that OCD is a lot more than the obsessive hand washing or stove/door/window checking that people tend to associate OCD with. This was a bit terrifying to write, to be honest, but it reawakened my love for Tim, so that makes it worth it. Comments and constructive criticism is always appreciated. I hope you enjoy the story.
11:56am: Fic: Running Backwards (2/?), Fandom: White Collar/DCU, Rating: PG-13 Title: Running Backwards (2/?) Author:in_excelsis_dea Fandom: White Collar/DCU Genre: Drama, Family, Action, and Angst are the main ones. Rating: PG-13 Disclaimer: Neither White Collar nor DCU are mine; I am simply borrowing them. Spoilers: In White Collar, to the season 3 season finale. In the DCU, none really. Warnings: None. Summary: Neal thought that he’d be safe on a tropical island. Unfortunately, someone managed to track him down, and it isn’t the FBI… Chapter Summary:Peter should have known that his quiet night wouldn't stay that way. AN: First I’d like to thank my lovely beta reader, leonie_alastair for the help. This is, of course, written pre-season 4, so nothing revealed within the new season will be found here. In the DCU, I am ignoring the recent revelations at SDCC. Comments and construcitve criticism is always appreciated. I hope you enjoy the chapter.
8:59pm: Fic: Running Backwards, Fandom: White Collar/DCU, Rating: PG-13 Title: Running Backwards (1/?) Author:in_excelsis_dea Fandom: White Collar/DCU Genre: Drama, Family, Action, and Angst are the main ones. Rating: PG-13 Disclaimer: Neither White Collar nor DCU are mine; I am simply borrowing them. Spoilers: In White Collar, to the season 3 season finale. In the DCU, none really. Warnings: None. Summary: Neal thought that he’d be safe on a tropical island. Unfortunately, someone managed to track him down, and it isn’t the FBI… AN: First I’d like to thank my lovely beta reader, leonie_alastair for the help. Second, this is a crossover, so knowledge of both universes is preferable. You should have at least a general knowledge of White Collar and the season 3 season finale, and you should know the basics of the Batfamily, which if you’ve watched any incarnation of any of the movies or TV shows involving Batman in some role, should be enough. Comments and/or constructive criticism is always appreciated. I hope you enjoy the story.
12:28pm: Title: Sleeping Beauty Fandom: DCU Characters: Damian/Lian Rating: PG-13 Genre: hurt/comfort, angst, little bit of romance. Prompt:forced soulbonding from hc_bingo Warnings: Some hinted at non-con in the middle. Summary: Damian will do anything to bring her back. Future!Fic.
10:57pm: YA Book Club Reading Challenge 4
I've been a member on GoodReads for over a year now, but I honestly don't use it that much. For awhile I was updating books there as my "Have Read" list, since I kept on deleting/losing other copies of it. Of course, when you read the amount I do, it's a bit hard to keep up with. Also, while I have good intentions of reading books, usually I Want to say "wow, that was awesome" or "meh" without saying much else, and I felt obligated to review on GR.
It is a start of a new year, and I have full access to two US library systems that have lots of books (the LA city library has like 50 branches, seriously. It is a MASSIVE system), along with eBooks, of course. So while I'd love to read book blogs in the past, I never felt that I could review or keep up because I only had what the German libraries had or what people were uploading on the net and for most books, they aren't worth the effort of tracking them down.
Well, now, thanks to the lovely local libraries and their lovely "Hold" feature (seriously, putting books on hold has changed my life), I felt it was time to actually learn how to review books properly. And I came across this challenge and had to dive in.
I was surprised that I liked this book this much. I saw someone review it on LiveJournal and put it on my To-Read list, grabbing it while I was at the library today. I was initially skeptical due to its length, but I figured something about it must have caught my eye if I had added it to my TRL.
There is a lot of symbolism in this book, from the names of the characters (of which there are only a handful), to the setting and even the characters themselves. This book was a mix between showing and telling, and executed well. To be honest, I was, once again, skeptical about an aspect of this book: namely the format. But it worked. It was a quick, yet thought-provoking read.
I am a reader who prefers to leave the author out of the books I read. This is probably a reason I dislike most classic literature, because I find that generally books who require analysis of who their author is, and the author in relation to the book, are uninteresting and fall flat to me as a reader. When reading about the Republic as an island, I, in an effort to uncover more insight to what the book might be about, was reading the inside flap synopsis -- and read the blurb about the author and the fact that he was from New Zealand. Because of this, throughout the rest of the book, I kept on believing that Republic was NZ and wondering how that would affect not only the plot but my feelings as a reader. And then I came to realize that the setting of the Republic (be it based on NZ or not) has NOTHING to do with the plot of the book itself. The Republic is an island, and all contact with whatever is left of the outside world is forbidden.
I quite enjoyed Anax as a character. The plot twist is actually something I guessed ahead of time, but I do not believe it makes the book predictable. I read a book review earlier today about Never Let Me Go where the reviewer mentioned that part of the book's success as a story (or its downfall, depending on the reader) was that the narrator just assumes that the reader knows what's going on in their world, and thus does not explain things that the reader might find strange, because they take it for granted. This book functions slightly in this way -- though a lot of this book IS explaining about the world and its history. Actually, you could say that the plot of the book is the history and Anax's interpretation of it.
I could imagine this book being a great Twilight Zone episode of old, to be honest. The real, final twist, one that I did not guess, was only revealed in the last paragraphs -- truly, within the last paragraph. Genesis is a thought-provoking book, a quick read that stays with you, and I highly recommend it.
9:03pm: The Trials and Tribulations of Finishing a Series
I've been reading a lot this past month. Part of it was being in the US and having little to do but read. Then I got to Berlin and have hit three libraries and have probably 25 books out, and I've also been reading a bunch of eBooks the last week(s) as well.
So I download this series on Demonoid, a 6 book series, and don't really think anything of it. It's a military action thriller type thing that I've been into recently, so I think it has potential. I read the first book and while it has its moments, I'm not too into it. There's a lot of talking about the bad guys, which I don't really care about -- I care about the good guys. But the action is pretty good and there are a few redeeming moments in there, so I check out the second one. After all, I already have it, so why not?
The second one pulls me in. I gobble down the third and fourth. Take my time a bit on the fifth (which means I took two days to read it instead of one...), do the same to the sixth. I know that the sixth is the last one published, and it's been a few years, so I'm figuring that it's the last of the series.
Well, I just finished the sixth one. The ending definitely crept up on me...there I am, scrolling down in Adobe Digital Editions and BAM, suddenly it goes to the glossary. And it's not a case of the eBook being incomplete, because the book was resolved. I mean, the ending made sense. But there's still a character missing who I've been waiting for to show up, and by no means does it seem like the series is over.
So I Google the author, because there's got to be an author website, right? Or a blog or maybe Amazon has something. It's 2011, come on. There's always some site out there.
Except there isn't.
The paper copies of this series don't seem to be in print (or at least Amazon isn't selling them -- it's only through Amazon Marketplace). The first book is the only book in the series that has any reviews on Amazon. Fantasicfiction.co.uk has a page listing the series in order, but no information about the author, which is somewhat strange. The author doesn't have a website.
What is up with this?
So it made me think about how it feels to finish a series. Lots of books come in series now. Some series seem to never end. Some series have an end, but aren't there yet. Some series are more duos or trilogies or quartets. YA is full of series, it seems like.
On one hand, I really like series. It's nice finishing a book and knowing that there's another one out there -- or at least, there will be. There are other books that have sequels that I wish they didn't. But usually I can trust sequels. If I liked the first book, chances are I'll like the rest. As someone with fan fic constantly on the brain, I adore exploring the "what-if"s and the "what next"s of series (and books in general). I plow through series because they're fun and I know I can trust them, and man, I just want to keep on reading!
...And then you get to the end. And it's like this trusted friend you had has left. You're so excited and happy that you've read all the books -- until you remember that there are no more. This is it. Now what? How do you know what book to pick next? How can you trust another book after you fell in love with a series that just ended and you're still keyed up on those characters?
I've found myself putting off new releases of series that I enjoy because of this, I think. And that's just the knowledge that I'm going to have to wait a year or two for the next book. Jeffery Deaver, JD Robb, Michael Connelly, etc. -- they're not stopping any time soon.
But there are five Sue Grafton novels left before the Kinsey Millhone series is over.
There is one Alex Rider book left, and I even have it.
There are 2-3 Alice books left -- and I've been reading the Alice series by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor for thirteen years.
Diana Wynne Jones died, so no more Chrestomanci or Howl books.
Plus all the trilogies that have ended: The Bartimaeus Trilogy by Johnathan Stroud, the His Dark Materials series by Philip Pullman, The Heir series by Cinda Williams Chima (though I think I heard a rumor that a fourth one might be coming out, and the third one sucked), the various Tortall quartets by Tamora Pierce (though she does come up with new series where former characters are sometimes seen), etc.
I could go on.
I have tons of books -- probably thousands of eBooks and I just checked out a backpack full of library books plus books of my own that I haven't read yet and even more library books I checked out a couple of weeks ago.
And I'm in the middle of four books at the moment. Yet I don't really feel like reading any of them at the moment. I just want to read more of the series I finished. It doesn't help that absolutely no fan fic exists.
So, have you finished any series lately? How do you feel finishing a series? What about series that you started but couldn't finish? What about books you think should have at least gotten sequels? What about books that shouldn't have been made into series, but were?
6:05pm: Diana Wynne Jones
I read some of Diana Wynne Jones' works back in sixth and seventh grade -- Witch Week is the one I remember the most. But I didn't really grow to love her until astaraelweeper re-introduced me to her via the Chrestomanci series and the Howl books. These were some of my favorite books, books I reread countless times the first months in Germany, and books that I still adore to this day (Charmed Lives in German was the first German book I ever bought).'
I haven't read all of her books, though they're all on my reading list, and each one I read still manages to wow me with the twists.
And now I have learned that she died.
She died March 26, 2011. She had had cancer for the last two years, had been in remission, but now succumbed to it. She was 77. A YA novel and a collection of essays are still due to be published.
I definitely have an urge to read all the DWJ now I can find, rereading old-favorites. She's a great author, and she will certainly be missed.
11:46am: Book Meme The book(s) I am reading:Eighth Grade Bites by Heather Brewer, The Messiah Secret by James Becker, Endless War by Ralph Peters, and Down Range by Dick Couch.
The book I am writing: None, at the moment. I keep telling myself to start one or continue one, but like I have no muse lately.
The book I love most: Hahaha what is this for a question? How am I supposed to just choose one? Okay, hmm... I always adored the Alanna series by Tamora Pierce. Wizard Heir and Warrior Heir by Cinda Williams Chima are great though I didn't like Dragon Heir. Artemis Fowl is amusing and well-written. Laura Ingalls Wilder and Nancy Drew are both fantastic series I read as a kid...along with the BSC I still love them. Percy Jackson by Rick Riordan I have so much love for, also Bartimaeus Trilogy by Jonathan Stroud. The Alice series by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor is great to grow up with, Margaret Maron, Kathy Reichs, Patricia Cornwell except all her books written from 2003-2007, Jeffery Deaver, Michael Connelly and more are mystery/thriller authors I adore. And I'm stopping here because there is NO book that I love the most, I love tons of books for different reasons, and I know I am forgetting favorites here.
The last book I received as a gift: Does a book that my mom read and said "Here, take this with on the flight" count? If so, then
The last book I gave as a gift:</b> I stopped giving books to people after I realized that they don't read them. *sigh* But the books I gave (it was Christmas, so I gave several people books), were Warrior Heir by Cinda Williams Chima (Gunther and Gabrielle), Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer (Gunther), Alanna's First Adventure by Tamora Pierce (Gabrielle), Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder (Lucy) and The Witch Family by Eleanor Estes (Michele).
The nearest book on my desk: ECG Workout by Jane Huff, my ECG class text. If that doesn't count, then The Messiah Secret.
3:59pm: Fic: Eternity, Fandom: Percy Jackson, Pairing: Percy/Calypso, Rating: G Title: Eternity Author:in_excelsis_dea Fandom: Percy Jackson Characters: Calypso, Percy, OFC Pairings: Past Percy/Annabeth, Percy/Calypso Rating: G Disclaimer: The characters are not mine, I'm only borrowing them. AN: This was written for a fic prompt at Christmas, I believe... finally getting around to cleaning up my Desktop and posting some fics. This takes place in the future. Comments and constructive criticism are always welcome.
2:46pm: Movie: Never Let Me Go
I'm back in Germany after two and a half weeks in the states and a lot went on, and I'm going to write all about that later. This post is only to pimp out a movie.
On the plain I watched Never Let Me Go, for two reasons: 1) the description sounded somewhat interesting ("a young woman reunited with old school friends reminisces about her school days and a terrible secret" or something like that) and 2) there were only two hours left to go on the flight and I was bored.
Let me say that American Airlines LIED about the description, because while I suppose it's a very vague (and misleading) description, it really does not do the movie justice. At all.
I guessed the plot twist (well, the main one, there's a bit of one at the end) right away, but the movie never really tries to hide it. I will say that it's quite reminiscent of The Island with Ewan MacGregor and Scarlett Johannsen, which came out in 2005 and is another great movie. Never Let Me Go has a similar basis, but I would really call it quite opposite of The Island. This movie does not cater to car chases or action and lots of *shocking* drama; instead it is introspective and, well, calm.
Oh, and Kiera Knightley is in the movie, which I thought it was her, but then decided it couldn't be, but then it turned out (when I Googled the movie because I couldn't remember the name...) she was. And the main actress is supposedly a newcomer who does a great job. And the male lead is also a new comer who does a great job.
The score is lovely as well and really fits with the movie.
It also turns out that the movie is based off the book of the same name by Kazuo Ishugiro, and he is a familiar name, though he wasn't on my reading list. Yet.
Anyways, this movie was a limited release in the states, and still hasn't been released in Britian (where it was made...), so seeing it in theaters might be a challenge, and who knows when it will be out on DVD. However, there are torrents around, so I guess there is a DVD somewhere...
Regardless of how you come to see the movie, I really suggest you do.
7:34pm: Fic: Baby Please Come Home, Fandom: PJO, Rating: G Title: Baby Please Come Home Author:in_excelsis_dea Fandom: Percy Jackson/The Heroes of Olympus Characters: Annabeth, appearance of Piper. Pairings: Percy/Annabeth Warnings: None if you’ve read TLH, otherwise spoilers Rating: G Disclaimer: The characters are not mine. Summary: It just doesn’t feel like Christmas without Percy. AN: Hera is found on the winter solstice, which is December 21 and I took it from there. The title is from the Christmas song, Christmas (Baby Please Come Home), but the fic kind of changed on me. Oh well...
4:46pm: My Reading List
So back in my first semester, we were told that by the end of our fourth semester, we have to read 20 different authors from our reading list. These are my 20 authors. Need I mention how much I dislike "Classic" literature?
I have until the end of June to read these all, by the way. This is going to be so much fun...
Poe, Edgar Allan. "The Murders in the Rue Morgue";"The Fall of the House of Usher"; "The Tell-Tale Heart"; Rezension zu Hawthornes Twice-Told Tales; "Philosophy of Composition"; oder "The Raven".
Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "Young Goodman Brown"; "The Birthmark"; The Scarlet Letter oder The Blithedale Romance; "Preface" zu: The House of the Seven Gables.
Fuller, Margaret. Auszug aus: Woman in the Nineteenth-Century: "The Great Lawsuit".
Whitman, Walt. Cantos 1, 5, 6, 24, 49-52 aus: "Song of Myself"; "Crossing Brooklyn Ferry"; "When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom'd"; Preface to Leaves of Grass.
8:10pm: Fic: Mad World, DCU, Jason, Tim, PG-13 Title: Mad World Author:in_excelsis_dea Fandom: DCU; Oracle!Tim verse Characters: Jason, Tim Summary: The new Robin is not what he expected. Prompt:31_days June 16th, the universe is viewing itself in wide-angle, and by cat_13145 on this entry. Rating: PG-13 for Jason's mouth Disclaimer: The characters are not mine. AN: Nice to be writing DCU again is all I can say.
I like never do these. But this one made me think and I'm bored enough. I actually think it was the Fall of the Berlin wall. I remember walking into a dark living room with just the glow of the TV, and my mom and Gary telling me what was happening. I remember seeing people perched upon the wall and taking pieces down, I think. It's been awhile...
It's kind of funny how not only do I now live in Berlin, but in the former East Berlin.
5:16pm: My Book List 2009 Part 2
Mini-reviews, lots of different genres. I think the majority are YA, which is probably my favorite genre at the moment. I know, I'm technically too old, but it's what I write as well, so it's research? *coughs*
These are all the books that I read from start to finish this year in a range of genres. I didn't add any books that I started but didn't finish or rereads and I didn't include any fan fiction either (50bookchallenge allows you to set the parameters and some people do include fan fic). My goal for 2010 is 300. *grins* There are also mini-reviews of varying lengths for the books.
12:54am: Fic: That which Binds Us Together, Fandom: DCU, Characters: Tim, Cassie, Rating: PG Title: That which ties us together. Author:in_excelsis_dea Fandom: DCU Characters: Tim, Cassie, an appearance of Eddie and mentions of Conner Rating: PG Summary: Confronting the past is never easy. Prompt:7snogs 7. milk and 64damn_prompts 2. metaphor. Disclaimer: The characters are not mine. AN: I finished my 7snogs challenge! Finally! After over two years, I am so thrilled to actually have done it. Anyways, taking a bit of liberty with the metaphor prompt, with the whole symbolism of milk. Also, I'm still not caught up on my DCU, so I tried to be as vague as possible with what happened before this. Comments and constructive criticism are appreciated, as always. Enjoy the fic.