Wednesday, June 4, 2008

E-Books Galore!

Recent attempts to read have been a bit uninspiring for me ("Code 2.0" took me a ridiculously lone time to get through). So in an effort to get back into my reading groove, I downloaded and read several works from

“Raffles” by E.W.Hornung: Basically this is a parody of the Sherlock Holmes by a friend of Arthur Conan Doyle. Aside from some embarrassing changes in slang since the nineteenth century, it’s held up remarkably well. The Raffles character is enjoyable and the narrator-sidekick is a bit amusing as his conscience turns on and off depending on how desperate he is for money. I can't wait to read the rest of the books in this series.

“Planet of the Damned” by Harry Harrison
: What a nice little suspense novel! The settings and circumstances are all sci-fi but at its heart this is a story of a clock ticking and one man’s attempts to avert disaster. While reading I found it quite dated but I cannot recall why; it definitely has an old-fashioned sensibility but it serves the story quite well. Very nice with some quite interesting twists.

“The Call of Cthulhu by HP Lovecraft: I read this one after realizing I never had checked out the origin of the whole Cthulhu business. Lovecraft builds a horror tale strictly around events investigated but never seen by the narrating character. Very good tale that leaves you with a palpable sense of dread and foreboding.

“The Aliens” by Murray Leinster: An interesting first-contact tale. This one isn’t as dated as the Harrison novel (in terms that it was clearly written in the 1960). The story does a pretty good job of conveying the fear, misunderstandings and potential of contacting an alien race. Again, this had a couple of interesting turns. The only downer was the completely nonsensical science. Giant Magnets as Stardrives?!

“The Time Traders” by Andre Norton: I’m not usually one for time-travel stories or Andre Norton but this was a damn good book! Russians stealing technology through time-travel and the efforts to recruit non-conformists to travel back in time to hunt them down….It’s one hell of a premise. I can’t wait to check out the sequels.

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