RogerBW's Blog

Personal, Lee Child 31 January 2015

2014; 19th book of Jack Reacher. Some bad man has had a long range shot at the chief man of France, but few men are good enough to have a go, and Jack put one of them in clink some years back. So some spies bring him on board to help catch the bad man, and be bait.

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Danna ga Nani o Itteiruka Wakaranai Ken 30 January 2015

2014, 13 episodes: AniDB

Also known as I Can't Understand What My Husband Is Saying. Slice of life comedy dealing with the daily routine of a busy office lady and her otaku husband.

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Whit, Iain Banks 29 January 2015

1995: Isis Whit is the Elect of God and heir-designate to the small cult of Luskentyrianism, the granddaughter of its founder; she's lived all her life in its holdings near Dunblane. But now one of the members in London has fallen out of contact in an odd way, and it's up to Isis to travel outside and try to get her back.

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Reading Boardgames Social 27 January 2015 28 January 2015

Since the group is apparently now on Meetup, we got a much bigger meeting than we've sometimes had in the past, around twenty people altogether.

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Ideas for a 4X game 27 January 2015 - 5 comments

Back in the day I played quite a lot of VGA Planets. Now I'm thinking, not for the first time, about writing a computer game in the same broad style.

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The Portable Door, Tom Holt 26 January 2015 - 2 comments

2003 comic fantasy. Paul Carpenter applies for a job as a "junior clerk" at J. W. Wells, not knowing just what it is that they do; but it seems to be something really quite strange. He'd chuck it in if he hadn't fallen for his fellow junior clerk…

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Crossing the Sea in Simutrans 25 January 2015

In Simutrans, there are various ways of crossing the sea, though they basically boil down to bridges and tunnels.

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Fifth Victim, Zoe Sharp 24 January 2015

Ninth thriller in the series about Charlie (Charlotte) Fox, former soldier and current private bodyguard. Children of the super-rich are being kidnapped in the Hamptons, and Charlie is hired by the mother of one of the potential victims. But it's all more complex than it looks.

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Shuffle Things Meme 23 January 2015 - 2 comments

Take this list, remove a thing, sort it by how much you like the things, add a thing at the top, a thing in the middle, and a thing at the bottom (preserving the sortedness, pedants):

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Terra Formars 23 January 2015

2014, 13 episodes: AniDB

Mars was seeded with engineered cockroaches and mould. Five hundred years later, they ate the first manned mission. The second one had only two survivors. Now it's time for the third.

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The Getaway Special, Jerry Oltion 22 January 2015

2001 SF, expansion of 1985 short story. A scientist invents a hyperspace drive that's easy to build and use, and tells the world. Things don't go as smoothly as he expects.

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Sixth Harpoon PBEM AAR: Gulf Escort Deja Vu III 21 January 2015 - 1 comment

As an introduction for new players, I ran this variant scenario: it's Gulf Escort Deja Vu, but with a British Type 23 (Somerset) and Lynx rather than the Canadian Halifax and CH-124A attempting to get the tanker past the Iranian missile boats. Total real time was two weeks.

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The RogerBW Manifesto (2015 edition) 20 January 2015 - 13 comments

It's election season here in the UK – for the first time, since we've moved to fixed-term Parliaments, a protracted American-style election season rather than a few short weeks. These are the things I'd try to do if anyone were daft enough to put me in charge; they're also promises that would encourage me to vote for people who made them.

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Sword Art Online II 19 January 2015

2014, 24 episodes: AniDB, follow-up to 2012's Sword Art Online.

The survivors of the VR MMO Sword Art Online go on to new adventures.

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Rest You Merry, Charlotte MacLeod 18 January 2015

1979, cosy American detective fiction; first of MacLeod's novels of Professor Peter Shandy. In a New England agricultural college, the local busybody has had an accident, or been murdered. But was it really over the question of Christmas decorations?

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Shopping in Wycombe 17 January 2015 - 8 comments

I do very little shopping in person these days, and it's mostly in supermarkets. But yesterday I went to get a periodic eye test, so I thought I'd wander around our local shopping centre, "one of the top fifty shopping destinations in England". All images are cc-by-sa.

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X-Wing at Wycombe Warband, January 2015 16 January 2015 - 1 comment

Yesterday was the weekly meeting of Wycombe Warband, at the NFTS in Beaconsfield; I went along to play some more X-Wing.

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X-Wing at Home, January 2015 15 January 2015 - 3 comments

I'm still taking advantage of my employer's leave year ending in January, so Ashley came over to play some X-Wing.

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Thirsty Meeples January 2015 14 January 2015

Back to the boardgame café. With images; cc-by-sa on everything.

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Shipwreck! First Look 13 January 2015

"Modern" (i.e. post-WWII) naval warfare is surprisingly underserved by the wargaming community. There's Harpoon, of course, which I know and love, but it's a bit heavy on detail for many people. Shipwreck!, written by Martin Bourne and published in 1999 by Vandering Publications, is the "other" game, and it takes a much lighter approach.

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Grimspace, Ann Aguirre 12 January 2015

2008 SF/romance. Sirantha Jax is a jumper, one of the rare humans who can navigate FTL ships through grimspace. But her ship crashed, her pilot/lover died (along with everyone else on board), and she may be going mad.

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Hitsugi no Chaika Avenging Battle 11 January 2015

2014, 10 episodes: AniDB. Sequel to last spring's Hitsugi no Chaika.

The daughter of the evil mage-emperor is still collecting his remains in order to give him a proper funeral.

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Whispers Under Ground, Ben Aaronovitch 10 January 2015 - 1 comment

Contemporary fantasy. Peter Grant, Metropolitan Police constable and magician, investigates the death of a man found stabbed on Baker Street station.

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Happy Blogday to Me 09 January 2015 - 3 comments

On 9 January 2014 I made my first post to this blog.

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Heaven's Queen, Rachel Bach 08 January 2015 - 2 comments

2014 SF; sequel to Honour's Knight. With most of the powers in the known universe arrayed against her, Devi is still infected with the virus that could solve everything (or bring it all crashing down).

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All Cheerleaders Die 07 January 2015

2013, dir. Lucky McKee and Chris Sivertson, Caitlin Stasey, Sianoa Smit-McPhee: IMDb / allmovie

Outcast girl Maddy manages to get onto the cheerleading squad after its leader dies in a bizarre accident. But she has revenge in mind, for what is not yet clear, and that's only the beginning.

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The Cardinal's Mistress, Benito Mussolini 06 January 2015

1910; melodrama. In the middle of the 17th century, Claudia Particelli is mistress to the Cardinal (Prince-Bishop) of Trento, and everybody will come to a Bad End.

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Stabcon 2015 05 January 2015 - 2 comments

This long-running games convention started off as a Diplomacy gathering. These days it's a blend of board-gaming and roleplaying. With images; cc-by-sa on everything.

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Gold from Crete, C. S. Forester 04 January 2015

1971 collection of earlier fiction; various stories of action during the Second World War.

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Tokyo Ghoul 03 January 2015

2014, 12 episodes: AniDB

Modern Tokyo is infested by ghouls, who eat humans. Kaneki is about to become their latest victim.

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New Year's Eve 2014 02 January 2015

To a mate's place in London on New Year's Eve for beer, games and chat.

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National Maritime Museum, 30 December 2014 01 January 2015 - 6 comments

On a chilly December day, I drove to Greenwich (do not do this, by the way; if you don't have twenty-odd quid in coins or a disposable credit card, just park in Lewisham, it's less hassle) and visited the National Maritime Museum. (Many photos follow; cc-by-sa on everything.)

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