Of the making of books there is no end.
Overmuch study maketh men mad.


If you're curious about my approach to "reviews," you might want to read this. If you're curious about me, I have a Website, and a blog about things Medieval and Celtic. I read a lot. I suppose you could say I am a professional reader; I have a Ph.D. in English from UCLA, with an emphasis on things Celtic, and literature before 1832. I serve as Webmaster and Managing Editor for The Green Man Review and volunteer as an Admin for Absolute Write.


My most recent books are about doing stuff with the iPad. Most of the books I review here are books I purchased, a family member purchased, or that I borrowed from a library. When a publisher or author provides a book or an e-arc or an ARC, I will state that in the review. I am not paid to review the books on this site. (I do occasionally serve as an outside reviewer for scholarly books being considered for publication by academic or scholarly presses).


I like ebooks. I like making ebooks. I like reading ebooks. I object, violently, to text dumps and poorly made ebooks, and will so note in reviews of books that have been badly produced by a publisher who thinks exporting a file from InDesign is all it takes. In general, I am not soliciting books for review. Please do not send me review books as attachments without conferring with me first, since your attachment will be automatically deleted by my server. I am no longer willing to review self-published books, unless you're an author I've previously reviewed, or you are publishing a backlist of previously commercially published books. You can contact me here.


If you purchase something after following an affiliate link on this site, I will receive a percentage of the price. This is my FTC disclosure, in case you wondered. In other words, I'm a mercenary hack.



Fran Wilde, Updraft

Updraft - Fran Wilde

I reviewed Updraft for The Green Man Review. Go there and read it if you want a review; this is more of a meditational commentary. There may be Spoilers here.



I noted in my review that there's some spiffy well-thought out world building, of the sort you'd expect from NIven, Cherryh or McCaffrey. That's absolutely true, and it comes with strong characterizations, too. But the other thing that really reminded me of Anne McCaffrey's Pern books, the earlier ones, or Cherryh's Morgaine novels is that though they're often labeled fantasy rather than SF, they're both really SF.

I'm not sure Updraft, and the sequels, which I'm looking forward to reading, is fantasy. There's no hand-waving here. There's a post-apocalyptic traumatized society, and there's a rational, believable and even evolutionarily not implausible zoology.

Whether Updraft is SF or fantasy, I don't really know.

But it is compulsively readable.

Currently reading

In Search of the Irish Dreamtime: Archaeology and Early Irish Literature
J.P. Mallory