Review: Dragon Pearl

I devoured this book in a way I don’t normally these days (I try to savor a good book). It came out on Tuesday. I got a library notification it was automatically checked out for me. I downloaded it in the morning. Started reading at lunch. Came home and finished it. Now I am trying to decide when/where to go pick up a physical copy to put on my shelf. I expect I’ll be reading this again and again over the years. This is a middle grades novel, so it is marketed for ~11-14 year old kids. It is not however childish. It deals with issues that are very, very real – gambling addiction; honor (and recognizing the dishonor of adults); trust and friendship and betrayal – of all kinds; and definitely death. These aren’t childish ideas or themes and Yoon Ha Lee does not shy from them nor preach about them. They are facts of life and must be

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Review: Writing “Bad” reviews

Interesting conversation popped up this week that made me want to respond. Read this: https://www.theringer.com/pop-culture/2019/1/10/18176366/bad-reviews-jeff-weiss-a-o-scott-greta-van-fleet-post-malone-bohemian-rhapsodyThen Read this: https://whatever.scalzi.com/2019/01/12/yes-theres-a-point-to-bad-reviews-in-2019/ So I ran across these through Scalzi’s blog (I like his blog, I find it funny and enjoyable). I read these in the order I recommended to you. I then decided I don’t think Scalzi or Harvilla hit on some of the important things I think make a “bad” review actually very valuable. In the past year I think I’ve only post two “bad” reviews – and both of those I would definitely put in quotes because even on those… well let me link them and then defend them:Simon Sinek: https://librinlatone.com/2018/11/20/review-simon-sinek/Freedom: https://librinlatone.com/2018/08/07/review-freedom/ I think there are two reasons people would/should read a review (negative or positive): either they find the review itself entertaining OR they are looking for an informed opinion IF they even want to read a book (or watch a movie, go to a play, etc.). If those are the

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Politics: AOC’s Plan

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortex (AOC) has announced a proposal for a tax plan with a top rate of 70% on anything over $10 million. She is nicer than I am. I wrote two posts on the realities of costs & taxation in the 1950’s back in 2017 Part 1Part 2 In my research I found less than 20% of households in America break across the $100,000 mark. HOUSEHOLDS – not individuals. So for better than 80% of people an increase in taxes on over $100k (much less $1M or $10M) – DOES NOT IMPACT THEM AT ALL. I can’t express how confusing I find it that so many people who I am sure are NOT in that top 20% are upset when the taxes are raised on them. The only explanation that makes any sense to me is that there is something in their brain saying this: As much as I hope that someday I too am one of those rich people, I

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Review: Early Access Games

There has been a been hullabaloo in the gaming world lately over “Early Access Games.” This is really on the tails of a larger conversation of “unfinished releases” which are more and more common. Just go watch some early reviews of FalloutĀ 76 or Call Of Duty: Black Ops 4 – and their “day-one-patches” which are basically the same size as the game itself. I’ve played a good handful of Early Access games. I always go in knowing they are a gamble. They are promises from the developer that they will finish, but “finishing” a project is a mutable idea. I’ve worked on several projects where the line of “done” moved back and forth for damn good reasons – you run into a hurdle that you just don’t have the time or money or energy to meet the original line. Or you moved the line and then had to move it back again. The bad about Early Access (EA for short)

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Resolutions: Books

So for 2018 I did the “Goodreads Challenge” – and if you aren’t on Goodreads, I recommend it – I love being able to add stuff in the library or bookstore or wherever to my “to read” list and go back later to re-find the things I couldn’t pick up at the time but want to read. Sorry, that’s my plug for the week. I set the challenge of reading 60 books in 2018. I ended up reading 62. Now, I counted anything that was on Goodreads. All my re-reads, all my new books, audiobooks – everything. I read a lot. I never felt like I had to go find a short book to fit in the challenge. There were 2 books I started and gave up halfway through (rare, but it does happen!) In 2019 I set the goal of 12. This year I am going to work on reading some of the classics I’ve always missed for one

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2018 Resolution Review

My goal for 2018 was to say “yes” to life. I think I succeeded in some ways and still fell down in others. But overall, I feel like 2018 was a “win” on this resolution. I didn’t write as much as I wanted. But I forgave myself that because I wasn’t prioritizing it over friends, family and work. I got a lot done that I didn’t expect to – including adopting a dog, getting pregnant, and starting a major home renovation project (and the stress that has introduced to my life). All of these were things my husband and I had sort of had circling, but we took the plunge on ALL of them in 2018. I had an incredibly stressful year at work and I feel like I came out on top of it. I made successes. I learned a LOT. I did a lot of growing and developing to be better for future projects and roles. I DID

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Review: Aquaman

Let me begin by saying, this review WILL have spoilers. The non-spoiler review is that this a fun movie. If you like the Fast and Furious franchise, I think it’s safe to say you will enjoy this (James Wan, also directed F&F7). I didn’t know this going in, but when my husband told me afterwards, I could feel the similarities. It’s a fun rompy-action movie with great special effects. Ok, so everything after this might be spoilery. Fair warning. Let me begin with the good. The action scenes are GOOD. Not always great, some of them might have gone one a fraction too long for me, but it was VERY GOOD. They were well choreographed and well shot (no shaky cam or other shitty camera tricks). The characters styles fit their personality (I always hate when the “well training tiny dude takes on gianormous dude hand-to-hand”). The colors were spectacular. It felt like a comic book. Nolan’s Batman was good, but I am

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Life Memories: Christmas Presents

I was about 5 when Christmas was ruined. My older brother found the stash of Christmas presents. He showed my older sister and myself. I don’t specifically remember looking through the presents, what I remember is the sense of wonder when he opened the closet door and dragged the box out. Nothing was a surprise that Christmas. Again, I was young enough I don’t remember the specific emotion of disappointment. What I do remember is my mother’s future rule about presents. She labeled the box(es) (some years we each had a box) in her bedroom. They weren’t even in the closet. I never looked again. This experience changed Christmas presents for my family. Not just because my mother – instead of feeling somehow “at fault” for making it “too easy” to “discover” our presents – was smart. She made sure we understood the consequence of our actions. If we didn’t care about the surprise as we unwrap gifts, we could go

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