RogerBW's Blog

The Price of Peace, Mike Moscoe 30 September 2015

2000 military SF, second in the Jump Universe series. The Unity War is over, but that doesn't mean things are peaceful; Commander Izzy Umboto of the cruiser Patton is chasing down pirates, and worse.

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Total Lunar Eclipse, September 2015 29 September 2015 - 2 comments

I hadn't particularly planned to stay up for this, but then I noticed that the next total lunar eclipse isn't due for a while.

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YSDC Games Day 4 28 September 2015 - 4 comments

Fourth in this series of one-day conventions in bustling metropolitan Baildon (suburban Bradford). All images are cc-by-sa.

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The Great Martian War, 1913-1917 27 September 2015 - 2 comments

2013, dir. Mike Slee, Mark Strong, Jock McLeod; IMDb / Wikipedia

A brief history of the Great Martian War, combining interviews with veterans and archive footage.

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The Luck Runs Out, Charlotte MacLeod 26 September 2015

1981, cosy American detective fiction; second of MacLeod's novels of Professor Peter Shandy, set at an agricultural college in Massachussetts. A few days before the Annual Competition of the Balaclava County Draft Horse Association, the college's farrier has been murdered. And the prize pig has gone missing. Is it a school prank gone horribly wrong, or something more sinister?

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Twelfth Harpoon PBEM AAR: Still Gulf Escort Deja Vu 25 September 2015 - 1 comment

The latest Harpoon PBEM game was a return to the old standard scenario, to get a new player up to speed.

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The Annihilation Score, Charles Stross 24 September 2015 - 11 comments

2015 modern occult secret service, sixth in the Laundry Files series. As CASE NIGHTMARE GREEN continues, more and more people are developing occult powers, and they envision them according to their own mythologies. Which means superheroes. Mo O'Brien, combat epistemologist and wielder of the last Zahn violin, now has to run a super-crime-fighting squad.

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Reading Boardgames Social 22 September 2015 23 September 2015

Back at the Great Expectations. Food's not bad, but pricy; beer is much better. Images follow: cc-by-sa on everything.

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The First Casualty, Mike Moscoe 22 September 2015

1999 military SF, first of a series that comes both chronologically and in publication date before the Kris Longknife books. Four soldiers on opposite sides of the war between the Society of Humanity and the Unity do their best to stay alive in the face of enemies both of the conventional kind and in their own ranks.

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Suburbia Five Star first look 21 September 2015

Suburbia Five Star (or 5★ if you follow the cover style) is the second expansion to Suburbia.

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Barbecue Like a Pirate Day 2015 20 September 2015 - 5 comments

Surprisingly good weather after a week of mostly rain, so I left the tent down again for the relatively small party (if it rained we could all shelter in the gazebo, though it didn't anyway).

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A utopian vision for transport 19 September 2015 - 7 comments

Driverless cars, quite apart from privacy concerns, are solving the wrong problem. Here's what I want to build to replace the majority of transport infrastructure. It is unabashedly utopian.

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Dead Men's Bones, James Oswald 18 September 2015

2014 supernatural mystery, fourth in Oswald's Inspector McLean series. A body is found in the North Esk, dead of a fall, and tattooed all over. A prominent politician shoots his wife and children, then himself. Tony McLean is more interested in the former, but gets the latter on his plate as well.

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Forever season 1 17 September 2015

2014-2015, 22 episodes: the immortal Henry Morgan works as a medical examiner in modern New York to fund his research on ending his own life. Wikipedia

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Mutineer, Mike Shepherd 16 September 2015 - 3 comments

2004 military SF, first of a series of twelve books so far with at least two more planned. Kris Longknife, daughter of the Prime Minister of the long-settled world of Wardhaven, joined the Navy to get away from politics. But as the old alliance of humanity falls apart, it's not going to be that easy.

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Introducing pyromachy 15 September 2015 - 7 comments

My old file server is Full. So it's time to build a new one. All images are cc-by-sa.

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Pyramid 81: Horrific Creations 14 September 2015

Pyramid is the monthly GURPS supplement containing short articles with a loose linking theme. This time it's about created, and creative, creatures in a horror context.

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The Secret Hangman, Peter Lovesey 13 September 2015

2007 mystery, the ninth book in Lovesey's Peter Diamond series. A woman is found hanged in a park in Bath; a few days later her partner turns up in the same state. A suicide pact?

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Dark Intruder 12 September 2015

1965, dir. Harvey Hart, Leslie Nielsen, Peter Mark Richman; IMDb / allmovie

San Francisco, 1891. Playboy Brett Kingsford is secretly an occult detective. When his best friend's fiancée comes to him describing her husband-to-be's strange mental state, he starts to look into it.

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The Grub-and-Stakers Move a Mountain, Charlotte MacLeod 11 September 2015

1981, cosy American detective fiction; first of MacLeod's novels (as "Alisa Craig") of Dittany Henbit and the Lobelia Falls Grub-and-Stakers Gardening & Roving Club. In a small town in Ontario, the local villain has a plan to build houses on a wilderness area. But one of his patsies ends up shot.

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Doctor Who Re-Watch, series 22 10 September 2015 - 9 comments

As always, spoilers abound. See Wikipedia for production details

The Doctor - Colin Baker
Peri Brown - Nicola Bryant

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Victory Conditions, Elizabeth Moon 09 September 2015

2009 military SF, last in a five-book series. Ky Vatta has her fleet, and is ready to move against the pirates as soon as they attack. But she doesn't know all their plans.

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Hyperdog 4-ball launcher 08 September 2015 - 4 comments

I recently bought a tennis-ball catapult, for the benefit of a visiting dog. It's not as good as I'd hoped.

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Jaggy Splinters, Chris Brookmyre 07 September 2015

2012 collection of six short stories.

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Mini-TringCon 5 September 2015 06 September 2015

Mini-TringCons are all-day house gaming events run by the organiser of TringCon, in Deepest Buckinghamshire.

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God's War, Kameron Hurley 05 September 2015 - 2 comments

2011 SF. Nyx is a bel dame, an assassin tracking down and killing deserters for the government of Nasheen. Then things go wrong. Now she's being employed for a covert recovery mission, but everyone's hand is against her.

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GURPS Social Engineering: Back to School, William H. Stoddard 04 September 2015 - 2 comments

This GURPS supplement deals with teaching, learning, and games based on either or both.

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The End is Nigh, John Joseph Adams and Hugh Howey 03 September 2015 - 2 comments

2014 SF anthology about the run-up to the end of the world.

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Thirsty Meeples September 2015 02 September 2015 - 4 comments

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

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August 2015 Trailers 01 September 2015 - 2 comments

Some trailers I've seen recently, and my thoughts on them. (Links are to youtube.)

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