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Book Review: The Black Prism by Brent Weeks

The Black Prismthe black prism
Brent Weeks

Orbit
2020
★★★☆☆

At its heart, The Black Prism is a spin on the classic fantasy Farm Boy trope. Kip, our farm boy, is just an ordinary 15-year-old kid living in a humble little village, when destiny suddenly comes a-knockin in the form of an army that slaughters his entire town. In the ensuing chaos, Kip discovers he is the illegitimate son of Gavin Guile, the Prism, who is a sort of religious/political figure, kind of like a Priest-King. Prisms are one in a generation; they alone are able to draft seven colors with no negative effects, making them extremely powerful; they also use this power to maintain “color balance” in the world. This particular Prism, though, is marked by a war from sixteen ago, when Gavin fought against his brother, who was seemingly also a Prism, leading the war to be known as the False Prism’s war.

There’s kind of a lot going on in this book, but also very little at the same time, so let’s break this down into categories. Continue reading “Book Review: The Black Prism by Brent Weeks”

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10 Work From Home Tips (I Don’t Always Follow But Should)

Full disclosure: I don’t follow most of my own advice. This is very much a case of “do as I say, not as I do” because I’m terrible at establishing any sort of healthy habits or routines. I started a work-from-home position in February, before the rest of the world transitioned to the same lifestyle, and I very quickly devolved into a slightly feral hermit-goblin, so I started scouring the internet for various tips and tricks to working from home, and I also began to come up with my own tips for improving my work-from-home experience. Some of these tips are specific, some are ridiculously generic, but they’re…well, here.

Anyway, all that is to say that I’m very much not an expert or even a slightly experienced work-from-home person, and this post is as much of a joke as it is actual serious advice, and of course bear in mind the usual disclaimers: YMMV (your mileage may vary), you don’t have to follow prescriptive advice, take what you like and leave the rest, etc, etc. Continue reading “10 Work From Home Tips (I Don’t Always Follow But Should)”

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Wrap-Up Post: April 2020

  • The Year of the Witching by Alexis Henderson (★★★☆☆)
  • The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab (★★★★★)
  • The Silence of Bones by June Hur (★★★★☆)
  • The Devil You Know by K.J. Parker (★★★☆☆)
  • Bringing Down the Duke by Evie Dunmore (★★☆☆☆)
  • The Bird King by G. Willow Wilson (★★★★★)
  • You Deserve Each Other by Sarah Hogle (★★★★★)
  • Trick Mirror by Jia Tolentino (★★★★★)
  • The Swap by Robyn Harding  (★★★★☆)
  • The Vampire Memoirs by Traci Briery (★★☆☆☆)
  • If I Had Your Face by Frances Cha (★★★★☆)
  • The Empress of Salt and Fortune by Nghi Vo (★★★☆☆)

MONTHLY TOTAL: 12
YEARLY SO FAR: 47

So I’m still reading pretty well, obviously! A lot of folks have been saying they’re struggling to read during these coronatimes, but I’m finding that it’s having the opposite effect on me; I am consuming content like a fiend. I completely failed on my OWLS Readathon goals, though. Out of 8 books, I read 3, DNF’d 1, and decided to put one aside for later after starting it. I’ve become pretty liberal about DNFing (I think I DNF’d 3 books this month?), which I’m content with.

Continue reading “Wrap-Up Post: April 2020”

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Book Review: The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab

The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue invisible life of addie larue
V.E. Schwab

Tor Books
October 6, 2020
★★★★★

This is by far the best Schwab book I’ve read, and yet I’ve still come away from the experience in much the same way I’ve come away from reading all her other books, which is to say: I think that, on a technical level, this is an absolutely brilliant book and I can’t fathom giving it less than five stars, but I still have several criticisms. And I just know there’s going to be so, so many effusive and glowing five-star reviews of this book (they’re coming out already), which are well-deserved, but I’d still like to discuss some of the issues I had.

Continue reading “Book Review: The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab”

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Book Review: The Bird King by G. Willow Wilson

The Bird Kingthe bird king
G. Willow Wilson

Grove Press, 2019
★★★★★

Al-Andalus is a gilded vision imprinted into the minds of many Muslim children, myself included. It is a dream of glory days long past, the Golden Age of the Islamic Empire, a time of prosperity and tolerance. The Bird King begins not in the midst of this glory age, but at the door of its downfall: the year is 1491. Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand have laid siege to Granada, the last remaining stronghold of the great empire of Muslim Spain, tenuously held by the sultan and his retinue.

Continue reading “Book Review: The Bird King by G. Willow Wilson”