From Left Field
Diamond Brides Series 7
by Mindy Klasky
Adam Sartain is the face of the Rockets baseball franchise, a long-time left fielder with an easy-going attitude and a reputation for helping out in the community.
Haley Thurman is literally the girl next door; she and Adam grew up like siblings, raising hell and sneaking out for late-night hijinks at the neighboring Reeves Farm. Now, Haley dreams of buying the farm for her no-kill animal shelter. Continue reading
BVC’s own Chaz Brenchley is basking in the glow of a starred Publishers Weekly review of his soon-to-be-released collection of short fiction, BITTER WATERS, from Lethe Press.
Check it out here.
by Brenda W. Clough
While we were in London we saw the UK production of War Horse. This show won five Tonys in the US production, and a hatful of awards in Britain. It also was made into a movie by Steven Spielberg. I had not realized that the original source material was a popular British children’s book of the same name, by Michael Morpurgo.
People do not go to see this stage show for the story, which is somewhat sentimental and rather coincidence-heavy. What carries the stage drama, perfectly, is the puppetry. Joey the horse is played by a team of three to five puppeteers, and it is absolutely convincing. The puppet moves and acts like a real horse, exquisitely observed and masterfully manipulated. It is a marvel of stagecraft, able to do all the gaits, carry riders, even pull a plow across the stage. And there are several puppet horses, a farmyard goose, even some birds. The theatricality of it is entirely winning and worth every penny. Continue reading
Once upon a time the horse carried the human, and war and migrations and transport in general became much easier, simpler, and faster. People could travel farther, take more with them, and get there more quickly.
Then came the age of mechanical transport, and the horse collected some of the agelong debt. Now if a horse needs to travel a considerable distance at speed, he travels in a van, and the humans do the work of making sure he gets there.
We experienced that firsthand this weekend. Continue reading
Book Two of the Night Calls series
by Katharine Eliska Kimbriel
A Christmas Eve Visitation
“Ready for a lesson?” Marta said suddenly.
I blinked, surprised by the question. “Tonight?”
Marta lifted her head to meet my gaze; a half smile flitted across her lips. “No time like the present,” she offered, tugging her thread back through. “Between fetches and poltergeists, I think it is time for you to learn the first of the major arcana.”
Suddenly I was wide awake, and there was an ache in my chest, like I couldn’t catch my breath. Between fetches and poltergeists, I’d been feeling a bit ragged, truth to tell. I wasn’t sure I was ready just then for any more surprises.
“Christmas Eve?” I clarified. Marta had conducted a ritual on the solstice a few days past, but as a neophyte, I had not actively participated. Christmas was also a good time for ceremonies? Continue reading
Posted in Book View Cafe publications, fantasy, historical novels
Tagged coming of age, Dark Fantasy, Night Calls, pioneers and magic, Story Excerpt Sunday, teen, witch in training, witchcraft, young adult
(Picture from here.)
It’s harvest season on our little microfarm. Nanofarm? Postage Stamp Farm? That might be a good name for the place.
We have two gardens. The main one south of the house and the east garden where the turtles live. Yes, we have livestock. We grow turtles. And chickens, but the chickens give us less trouble. There’s a long and sordid history on how we got into raising turtles but it boils down to not wanting the pet trade to decimate animals we like. Turns out from capture to pet store takes a toll on wild animals. So we got into breeding them to compete with the captors. But that’s a long story for another post.
Besides, they love to eat slugs. The turtle garden is always slug free. Continue reading
Worldcon is now over, and if you were stuck home like me, your internet reading every day was full of posts about panels and discussions and finally the awards, which latter sparked some discussion, including the inevitable backlash of derision for various choices.
As far back as I can remember (the first Worldcon I attended was 1972, a few blocks from my house, directly underneath the LAX runway) fans and readers have enthusiastically praised or trashed the past year’s publications.
I’m always interested in how different the same text varies so widely in perceptions. Everyone has opinions—usually emphatic ones—but so often someone’s great book is on another’s stinker list.
by Brenda W. Clough
For those of you who have just tuned in, I went to Britain and came back. While I was there I wedged in as much theater as I possibly could. Clearly reviews must be written!
We went to the TKTS booth in Leicester Square the first day we arrived and picked up half-price tickets for The Importance of Being Ernest on impulse. It was that or The Pajama Game, and my husband is easily overdosed with musicals. This production is an oddity — a play within a play, the central one being the Oscar Wilde drama you are thinking about when you read the title. The bookending drama is a simple one, an ageing company of players restaging the classic.
Note: I’m off hiking at Point Reyes National Seashore this week, so I’ve posted one of the stories from my flash fiction collection, Flashes of Illumination. This is what I call flash memoir: a type of creative nonfiction built on things that happened to the author. I’m working on more of these.
I wrote this story ten years ago. I’m still not married, but I am in a serious relationship these days.
by Nancy Jane Moore
I got my first cat when I was 19. My grandmother said, “Oh, dear, you’re going to be an Old Maid.”
I’ve had cats ever since. But I never did find a husband. Continue reading
WWW Wednesday. This meme is from shouldbereading.
My reading of late has been sporadic, fitted around beta reading and proofing.
• What are you currently reading?
After Elizabeth, by Leanda de Lisle. Basic, eminently readable history about James I of England, when the Stuarts came to the English throne. There’s so much out there about Elizabeth Tudor, and about Charles I and the Protectorate, but not all that much about James, who is a complicated figure, to say the least.
Sorcerer’s Feud, by Katharine Kerr. This is the sequel to Sorcerer’s Luck, in which art student Maya Cantescu, who is a vampire in a way totally unlike the standard vamp, meets up with rune master Tor Thorlaksson.
Sparks fly, leading to romance, danger, magic, in a nifty mix of romantic suspense with plenty of supernatural pizazz. I have been looking forward to the sequel, which I’ve just begun.