22 April 2015

Wordless Wednesday: Holiday Snaps

Central Pier and Blackpool Tower

Looking toward Blackpool Tower from North Pier

Looking toward Central Pier

21 April 2015

Top 10 Tuesday: Favorite Authors

For this week's Top Ten Tuesday, we're supposed to write about our Top Ten ALL TIME Favorite Authors ... but it's hard to get just ten, so I've limited my list just to female science fiction writers and it's not as if that list wanted to be short, either, just shorter.

So, here's a purely arbitrary favorite ten eleven plus some recommended titles/series:
  • Ann Leckie
  • Imperial Radch trilogy
  • CJ Cherryh
  • Alliance-Union universe & Foreigner universe series
  • Elizabeth Moon
  • Planet Pirates series & Speed of Dark
  • James Tiptree, Jr. (aka Alice Sheldon)
  • Her Smoke Rose Up Forever
  • Joanna Russ
  • "When It Changed" & The Female Man

  • Justina Robson
  • Natural History & Silver Screen
  • Karen Traviss
  • Wess'har Wars series
  • Margaret Atwood
  • Oryx and Crake trilogy & The Handmaid's Tale
  • Marge Piercy
  • He, She and It & Woman on the Edge of Time
  • Sheri Tepper
  • Arbai trilogy & Singer from the Sea
  • Ursula K LeGuin
  • The Lathe of Heaven & Hainish Cycle series

14 April 2015

Silas Marner, Part Two: Chapters XVI - Conclusion

Sixteen years have passed since Silas Marner found a golden-haired child at his hearthside. He is very much a different man from the one who tore into the Rainbow, desperate for the return of his gold. And Eppie? All grown up now and quite beautiful in all the ways that matter most. Twice Eppie's biological father has suggested to his childless wife that they adopt a her, and twice his wife has refused his whim, ignorant there is a particular reason to want Eppie.

But then the squire's shiftless son, missing all these years, is found! Or, rather his body is found, and there can be no doubt it was he who had stolen Silas' money. Eppie's father, finally accepting that secrets will out, tells his wife about his prior marriage and unrecognized daughter. Together, they approach Silas and Eppie about adopting the girl and securing her a better future than Silas ever could. But Eppie, darling Eppie, refuses. She will not leave her dad or the life she has always known. The wealthy-and-socially-well-placed-but-childless couple try to sway her, but are rebuffed and withdraw. And then Eppie marries her own true love in a quiet country wedding and everyone that matters lives happily ever after! Amen.

I have to say that, having read Silas Marner alongside two Charlotte Bronte novels, I find Eliot's blend of Realism and Romanticism quite refreshing. Bronte's writing can become quite overwrought and impenetrable when she touches on religion and Eliot, while she seems to share many of the same opinions, manages to make her points more clearly and, perhaps, more kindly. (I say that having read all of one Eliot novel -- I understand I may be very very wrong about her).

Silas Marner is my second selection for the 2015 Back to the Classics and No Book Buying reading challenges. I claim it as "A Classic with a Person's Name in the Title" for Back to the Classics.

Silas Marner by George Eliot (Harper & Row, 1965)