Moments of escape can be moments of clarity!

"Oh, had I but followed the Arts"-William Shakespeare

Monday, December 30, 2013

Bits & Bobs...& Creeps....& Shapeshifters....

This is a special year end Bits & Bobs. I have compiled a list of my favorite Reads & Music Cd's from 2013.
#1: "WILD SEED" by Octavia Butler

Anyanwu is a Shape-shifter, ageless, timeless. She has built tribes & birthed tribes. She is all women, every woman. Doro goes from body to body, taking all he needs, then discarding the husk, without a backward glance. He has also built tribes, but he possesses & destroys. When their worlds collide, it is a hatred & a passion that upsets & impacts Worlds. The fate of Anyanwu's tribe & family rests in Doro's ambitious, power-hungry hands.
I'm a big fan of Octavia Butler and WILD SEED surprised me, it was not the story I expected. It has all the best of Sci-Fi & Fantasy. It's timeless & relevant. Her writing is magical. She was a brilliant writer and I miss all the books that could have been.
#2: THE CREEPS by John Connolly   
The CREEPS is the third and final follow-up to the
Samuel Johnson series which includes, THE GATES and 
THE INFERNALS.
Although this is a series, each book can definitely
stand on its own. I happened to read them out of
order...their were no dire consequences.
It's the story of Samuel, his loyal & perceptive dog, Boswell and their battle with the forces of hell, demons, good & bad, the Universe and the multiverse.
When you have plotted and planned for millennia to destroy the world and have had your plans thwarted by an unassuming boy and his annoying dog, well, you simply can't be expected to take that kind of thing lying down. Especially when you have a name like The Great Malevolence to live up to. That's just plain embarassing.
So just when the town of Biddlecombe believes all is back to normal & the battle has been won..well, really things are still a little strange, but it's a strange they have grown accustomed to.  Little do they know, darkness is falling fast & danger is afoot.  Starting with the new Toy Shop opening in the town square. Can Samuel save the day again?
The Samuel Johnson books are a great read for the young (A mature age 7) & up. They are scary in the best way. But be warned, their will be serious eye moisture. John Connolly is a lyrical & insightful writer. He is also the Author of the Charlie Parker Detective books & a new Sci-Fi series, the first out now  CONQUEST, with his partner Jennie Ridyard 

#3 "IMPACT" by Douglas Preston 
It starts with a request from Washington for ex-CIA operative Wyman Ford to find the source of gemstones that have appeared on the market, whose origins are unknown.
A meteor crashes to earth somewhere off the coast of Maine.
A Scientist makes a strange discovery involving the source of unusual Gamma-Rays, and is later discovered murdered.
Abby a young College student , whose passion lies skyward, is intrigued by the Meteor and is determined to find the impact crater.
With the Meteor at the apex, all are on a collision course, and time is not on their side.
Douglas Preston writes about Dinosaurs, Meteors, Epidemics and Monsters with a masters hand & skill. You suspend your skepticism willingly.
He is also Co-Authors with Lincoln Child, the Aloysius Pendergast Detective novels. (My second favorite detective, after Charlie Parker).

#4  "THE FARMING OF BONES" by Edwidge Danticat
The backdrop of "THE FARMING OF BONES" is the

1937 "Parsley Massacre". Dominican Soldiers would carry a sprig of parsley and ask people suspected of being Haitian, to pronounce the Spanish word for it. Those who couldn't, were killed. This all under the rule of dictator Rafael Trujillo.
Haitians had crossed the border to find work in the sugar cane fields.
Amabelle, an orphan, falls hard for Sebastien, a sugar cane cutter. When word of the atrocities reaches the farm where Amabelle lives, her dreams of a life with Sebastien shatters as they become enmeshed in the horrors unfolding.
This was a heart wrenching, but beautifully told story. Rich with survival, loyalty & renewal.

Two of my top for favorite Books of 2013, were written by Black women. I have read many lists of Book Store & bloggers top picks in fiction. Rarely did a Black woman Author make the list....in fact of the ones I read..none made the list.
I hope these books will make your list of 2014 reads.

MY TOP MUSIC PICKS OF 2013:

#1  SHUGGIE OTIS  "Inspiration Information"
Just hip-swinging perfection
#2  MAROON 5 "Overexposed"
Yes, they are, but I still found myself singing along.

 #3 VALERIE JUNE  "Pushin Against a Stone" 

All that is R & B and Bluegrass.... Amazing



#4 One Republic " Native"
They are just really where I'm at right now...at the moment.
"Counting Stars" is musically & lyrically just really well configured.
ever-changing tempo & rhythm , a great bridge..just fine.

I look forward to new books ( lots of them) and new music. The backdrop to whatever new adventures await me in 2014!





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