Read/Watchlist + Music x Monday



  • the_aeronauts_windlassThe Aeronaut’s Windlass, Jim Butcher – I like this book and am excited for the sequel. (Psst, the figure on the front cover isn’t Captain Grimm,  it’s XO Creedy.)
  • Some Federation of the Hub stories–Legacy, and The Searcher–by James H. Schmitz. (Legacy is available as a free audiobook from Librivox, BTW.) Really good stuff from the golden age of science fiction: optimistic, imaginative, adventurous, funny, exciting. Highly recommend all Schmitz stuff to everyone.
  • Outlaws of Sherwood, Robin McKinley – a comfortably low-key variant on the Howard Pyle/N. C. Wyeth type of Robin Hood legend. It’s also very obviously written by a woman: it’s a lot more interested in the interpersonal relationships than the adventures, and is almost completely uninterested in making the villains threatening or the outlawry exciting. Not to say that it’s not a good book, only that it made me think fondly of the Toby Venables Knight of Shadows version.
  • Guards! Guards!, Terry Pratchett – …✨…


  • The Stars My Destination, Alfred Bester – This has been described as The Count of Monte Cristo–in Space! It’s really not. For one thing, it’s about four hundred pages too short. Still, it’s a good story told in headlong pulp style, raw-edged and colorful, with just enough thought to hint at deeper meaning but without the self indulgence to pretend that depth is what makes it interesting.
  • Captain Blood, Rafael Sabatini – This is a historical fiction adventure-romance, not a pulp novel. You can tell by the way the protagonist keeps bouncing back and forth between different groups without making up his mind until almost the final chapter. Sidenote: during one of my college classes, Doc S was offering extra credit for reading “books,” preferably from his curated collection but also for various classics. I got probably an extra ten points by introducing him to Rafael Sabatini and also to this song. I wonder how Doc S is doing these days? (He also brought ice cream to the finals.)


  • Captain Blood (1935) – Accept no substitutes.
  • The Buccaneer (1938) – Cecil B. DeMille’s first take on the Battle for New Orleans. This version lacks the star power of the 1958 remake, but it has its own charm. One of the things that older-slash-better movies do is a) allow there to be background characters, b) give them visually distinct appearances, c) give them distinctive personalities. Even if these personalities are individually over the top, because the characters aren’t on screen for very long, they rarely have the chance to become grating. You’ll notice this trick was used to great effect in the Pirates of the Caribbean movies.
  • What Women Want – I thought I’d take advantage of a mild fever and watch something I normally wouldn’t.
    • Next time I’ll just take more pills and stare at the ceiling.