Ancillary Mercy by Ann Leckie

Jul. 25th, 2016 08:00 am
calissa: A low angle photo of a book with a pair of glasses sitting on top. (Mt TBR)
[personal profile] calissa

Ancillary Mercy, Ann Leckie, Imperial Radch, Ancillary Justice, Hugo Awards, science fiction, sci-fi, SFF

Published: October 2015 by Orbit
Format reviewed: Paperback, 336 pages
Series: Imperial Radch #3
Genres: Science fiction
Source: Dymocks
Reading Challenges: #ReadMyOwnDamnBooks
Available: Abbey’s ~ Amazon ~ Barnes & Noble ~ Book Depository ~ Booktopia ~ Dymocks ~ Kobo

Disclaimer: This review contains spoilers for previous volumes/books.

For a moment, things seem to be under control for the soldier known as Breq. Then a search of Athoek Station’s slums turns up someone who shouldn’t exist – someone who might be an ancillary from a ship that’s been hiding beyond the empire’s reach for three thousand years. Meanwhile, a messenger from the alien and mysterious Presger empire arrives, as does Breq’s enemy, the divided and quite possibly insane Anaander Mianaai – ruler of an empire at war with itself.

Anaander is heavily armed and extremely unhappy with Breq. She could take her ship and crew and flee, but that would leave everyone at Athoek in terrible danger. Breq has a desperate plan. The odds aren’t good, but that’s never stopped her before.

Ancillary Mercy is the final book in Ann Leckie’s Imperial Radch trilogy and brings the series to a satisfying conclusion.

Just as with the first two books, Ancillary Mercy has a slightly different tone to its predecessors. Each book has been about the personal to some degree–after all, Breq set out to assassinate the Emperor in revenge for the Emperor forcing her to kill one of her lieutenants. However, now Breq is firmly enmeshed in relationships with her crew and the residents of Athoek Station, leading to a more intimate atmosphere. This is particularly interesting because the book uses style to create distance. Being an AI, Breq is not always very good at identifying emotions, particularly positive ones. She often misses (or fails to interpret) clues about how the people around her feel towards her. Nor does she always recognise or acknowledge her own emotions. This forces the reader to pay attention and read between the lines.

Identity and injustice have been strong themes throughout the series so far and continue to be crucial. The intimate tone of the book gives it the scope to focus on the importance of the personal. One of the subplots focuses on privilege and microaggressions between two of the crew members, which echoes through the larger plot in relation to the AIs.

Speaking of which, I adored seeing the AIs come into their own. The animistic view of the series has been one of the things I’ve loved most and it was awesome to see that become such an important part of the plot. Each AI–be it Station or Ship–had its own distinct personality and agenda, which really brought these characters to life. There were some great parallels made between slavery and the treatment of AIs. Plus, seeing them navigate their relationship with each other was a delight–especially since they don’t always get along.

There was a reasonable amount of action in the story, particularly towards the end, which provided a nice counterbalance to the personal relationships and discussions of ethics.

I’m rather sorry the series is over. However, the depth of these books will reward rereading.

Mirrored from Earl Grey Editing.

[syndicated profile] siderea_lj_feed
Something that would be really helpful for me right now is if people who have some time and internet access could hunt me down leads for extended-stay hotels, and get rough price quotes, but filter for ones I could plausible commute to via the T. Unfortunately, most places are out in the burbs, and I need to get to: Porter Square Cambridge, Central Square East Boston, and Medford Square Medford.

There's a Homewood Suites in Arlington, but they are booked at the moment (though may be free when I need it), and are pretty expensive.

Extended Stay America doesn't have anything inside Rt 128.

Downtown would be fine. Near Logan Airport would be fine. Arlington, Medford, Somerville, Cambridge, Brookline, Boston, and Malden would all work well. The more leads the better.
[syndicated profile] siderea_lj_feed
CONTENT WARNING: VERY GROSS, VERMIN, DEATH



Update to the previous: There are far fewer visible maggots now, but the far side neighbor has a compelling argument under the rug (I have wall-to-wall carpet).

I know know what putrescene smells like!

We pulled three boxes of the most expensive and hard to replace books/paperwork, and most of the musical instruments, and a few other such things.

I've adjusted the HVAC to provide a positive pressure of fresh air, and sealed at least some of my file cabinets with tape.

If it's not a lost cause, I'm hoping tomorrow to rent a storage locker, find somebody with a van or truck or something, and then fill it with boxes of books and papers to get them out of there. If there's anybody around Boston who has such a vehicle and is available for such a project, please PM me with phone info (text or voice).

I have internet and phone and am reachable by all the normal means, though I'm triaging communications fiercely under the circumstances.

Other help that would be keen: I'm not sure my landlord has managed to retain a bio-reclaimation (remediation) company, though I passed him the leads I was give and another. If anybody knows of or can find any others - I'm not in a position to be googling right now - and can leave them in the comments, that would be super.

Mad, mad shout out to cosmicgarden and snarkyman who came and got me and almost every item of clothing I own at 2:30 am last night, and are putting me up at their place. They are heros, and if you see them, buy them beverages.

And special love to my sweetie tn3270 who is going through this with me.

that's right, ladies hate bustin'.

Jul. 24th, 2016 10:28 pm
soupytwist: Miranda Otto dancing (dancing crazy)
[personal profile] soupytwist
I went to see Ghostbusters the other week and ABSOLUTELY LOVED IT. I have not had that much fun at the cinema in a good long time. And I have literally never seen a movie on the big screen that I felt was more aimed at me and people like me.

In the light of it, there's been a lot of discussion of rebooting various franchises with women playing the main roles. And while there's been backlash, the thing that's been making me really happy is how many women there are coming out of the woodwork going, YES PLEASE. There's this one Facebook group I'm on that had a post by a guy going "omg my wife wants a lady reboot of this thing I love, hahaha stupid right" and you know what he got? Loads of comments going "Ghostbusters was good!" and "Why not?" and suggestions for who might play the characters. And one or two people who weren't into the idea either, but who clearly didn't consider the idea inherently stupid. The more the guy tried to reply to everyone with "BUT LADIES THO, THAT'S NOT RIGHT", the more clear it was that he wasn't the mainstream any more.

People, this is what progress looks like. It's a small thing, but it's beautiful.

So, is Trump a racist? Let's see...

Jul. 24th, 2016 05:38 pm
thnidu: Jolly Roger, black w white skull & cross-snakes, THNIDU in creepy orange caps. tinyurl.com/c32ajat (skull)
[personal profile] thnidu
From the New York Times

Is Donald Trump a Racist?

July 23, 2016

Op-Ed Columnist Nicholas Kristof

HAS the party of Lincoln just nominated a racist to be president? We shouldn’t toss around such accusations lightly, so I’ve looked back over more than 40 years of Donald Trump’s career to see what the record says.

Read on )

Culinary

Jul. 24th, 2016 09:30 pm
oursin: Frontispiece from C17th household manual (Accomplisht Lady)
[personal profile] oursin

During the week made a Standen Loaf, 2:2:1 strong white/wholemeal/buckwheat flour. V nice

No Saturday breakfast rolls due to getting in too late on Friday evening.

Today's lunch: pheasant breasts beaten out flat, seasoned with salt and pepper, panfried in butter, deglazed with madeira, served with roasted buckwheat (kasha), and mangetout peas and fine asparagus roasted in olive oil and splashed with gooseberry vinegar. (This was not as ambitious as it might have been but we thought we might be going hospital-visiting today.)

umadoshi: (fangirl (bisty_icons))
[personal profile] umadoshi
The practical note: my linkspam file is...uh, let's go with "terrifying". A while back now I asked about people's preferred length etc. for linkspam posts, which affects how much I usually post at once, but I suspect sometime tonight or in the next day or so I'm just gonna make a huge (cut) post to clear out my file.

The geeky thought, which I mentioned on Twitter yesterday, won't make sense to those of you who aren't familiar with at least the basic Newsflesh-verse parameters, but consider this: Jillian Holtzmann as an Irwin. Consider. (This is not something I'm likely to fic about. If anyone else did, that would be amazing. Just sayin'.)

The linkspam:

"Who Ya Gonna Troll? With his ​Ghostbusters reboot, director Paul Feig wades — with good intentions, he swears — into the gender wars". "Now 53, Feig has been going to ComicCon annually for over 20 years, for no other reason than that he likes to be among his people. He doesn’t do cosplay, i.e., dress up as his favorite characters, but he does read Cosplay magazine and made sure to release blueprints for proton packs early on so that people who wanted to make costumes for the movie’s opening would be properly prepared."

"Apparently Little Boys Are Buying Ghostbusters Toys And That's A Big Deal".

"Kate McKinnon’s 10 Gayest ‘Ghostbusters’ Gay Moments of Gay". [Autostraddle]

Here's a Storify of [twitter.com profile] seananmcguire's tweets about Ghostbusters.

"Queer Women Of The Internet Are Fangirling Hard Over 'Ghostbusters'". [Huffington Post]

"What Lady Ghostbusters Have In Common With 17th-Century Nuns". [The Establishment]

"Ready for Prime Time: After twenty-five years as a road comic, Leslie Jones becomes a star". [The New Yorker] [Jan. 2016]

"The MIT Physicists Who Infused Ghostbusters With Real Science". [Wired]

14 more links under the cut, in no particular order: a variety of posts/posts/criticism, a couple of links on the vile racist/misogynist stuff Leslie Jones dealt with on Twitter recently, and a couple of more random things )
shadowsong26: (isshiri)
[personal profile] shadowsong26 posting in [community profile] rainbowfic
Name: shadowsong26
Story: sparks in his eyes
'Verse: Feredar
Colors: Liver #11. feet, Oliphaunt Grey #9. The days have gone down in the West behind the hills into shadow, Plant Party #26. Moon Plant
Supplies and Materials: graffiti (Gymnastics), fingerpainting (weird second-person thing; non-human point of view), eraser (Urban Fantasy AU), charcoal (in this AU), novelty beads (one; two; three; four; five; six; seven; eight; nine; ten; eleven ("Hearts have colors/Don't we all know?" - Kaleidoscope Heart, Sara Bareilles); twelve, thirteen)
Word Count: 434
Rating: R
Characters: Isshiri, Telri
Warnings: Stalking/obsession-type romantic interest, kidnapping, implied dubcon (due to fairy glamour). Fairies are kind of creepy when they fall in love with humans. If I missed anything I should have warned for, please let me know.
Notes: Constructive criticism welcome, as always.


Read more... )

Sunday Picnic In the Shade

Jul. 24th, 2016 03:50 pm
poetree_admin: Paper sculpture of bulbuous tree made from strips of book pages (Default)
[personal profile] poetree_admin posting in [community profile] poetree
jjhunter

Sunday, every Sunday, let's have a community picnic. It's probably been a long week, and it's lovely to have a few minutes to sit back and relax and enjoy some good conversation in a less formal space. Feel free to bring something for the Picnic Basket - a poem you liked this week, a thought you had or something you experienced, or even something completely unrelated to poetry whatsoever that you just feel like sharing. Just take a moment to say hello, and maybe have a bite to eat; no one is going anywhere fast, and the shade promises some relief from the everyday heat. Let’s get to know each other a bit better, here under the branches of the poet’s tree.

moooovies

Jul. 24th, 2016 12:03 pm
blueraccoon: (khan is better)
[personal profile] blueraccoon
Morgan and I went to see Star Trek Beyond last night. The non-spoilery version is that we both loved it and both of us think it's the best of the reboot movies so far. It feels like Trek, which the first two didn't quite. Note that I really did love the first two (obviously; see icon) but this was just awesome.

the spoilers, many of them )

tl;dr movie rocks, go see it.

[ SECRET POST #3490 ]

Jul. 24th, 2016 03:22 pm
case: (Default)
[personal profile] case posting in [community profile] fandomsecrets

⌈ Secret Post #3490 ⌋

Warning: Some secrets are NOT worksafe and may contain SPOILERS.

01.


More! )


Notes:

Secrets Left to Post: 03 pages, 52 secrets from Secret Submission Post #499.
Secrets Not Posted: [ 1 - broken links ], [ 0 - not!secrets ], [ 0 - not!fandom ], [ 0 - too big ], [ 0 - repeat ].
Current Secret Submissions Post: here.
Suggestions, comments, and concerns should go here.

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ursamajor: people on the beach watching the ocean (Default)
she of the remarkable biochemical capabilities!

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