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Gwinn in MN

I live in Minnesota and Like things

Currently reading

Gooseberry Bluff Community College of Magic: The Thirteenth Rib
David J. Schwartz
DIY Cocktails: A Simple Guide to Creating Your Own Signature Drinks
Marcia Simmons;Jonas Halpren
The Lifecycle of Software Objects
Ted Chiang
JavaScript: The Good Parts
Douglas Crockford
The Historian
Elizabeth Kostova


Anathem - Neal Stephenson Easily my favorite book of Stephenson's since Snow Crash, and the only book since Diamond Age where I didn't wish an editor would take a chainsaw to the book. A fantastic read.

The 100 Most Popular Young Adult Authors: Biographical Sketches and Bibliographies (Popular Authors Series)

The 100 Most Popular Young Adult Authors - Bernard A. Drew I have no idea if this book holds up, and I don't care. This was one of my favorite young adult books when I was a kid. I think I even made my own version of the game. And today I discovered that there is a sequel.

The Green Futures of Tycho

The Green Futures of Tycho - William Sleator I had remembered this book, but never the name or the author. And I somehow never figured out it was by the same author as one of my other childhood favorites.

5 Novels: Alan Mendelsohn, the Boy from Mars; Slaves of Spiegel; The Last Guru; Young Adult Novel; The Snarkout Boys and the Avocado of Death

5 Novels: Alan Mendelsohn, the Boy from Mars / Slaves of Spiegel / The Snarkout Boys and the Avocado of Death / The Last Guru / Young Adult Novel - Daniel Pinkwater, Jules Feiffer If you constructed elaborate genetic algorithms designed to produce the perfect book to delight an 11-year-old me, this is the book you would end up with.

The Westing Game

The Westing Game - Ellen Raskin Another in my list of formative books I read over and over again as a child. I think Zoe's going to love this when she's old enough.

The Sword of Truth, Boxed Set I, Books 1-3: Wizard's First Rule, Blood of the Fold ,Stone of Tears

The Sword of Truth, Boxed Set I: Wizard's First Rule, Blood of the Fold, Stone of Tears - Terry Goodkind Crap. I couldn't even finish it, and I've enjoyed some objectively awful fantasy novels. If you're in to BDSD, pseudo-objectivist ramblings and anything with swords, maybe it would be your thing.

American Gods: A Novel

American Gods - Neil Gaiman I love this book. One of my top-5 SF/Fantasy favorites, and one of the few books I have the urge to re-read every time someone mentions it.

The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch

The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch - Philip K. Dick Don't take "Dick at his strangest" lightly. This one's weird. Not where you would want to start with PKD.

Ready Player One: A Novel

Ready Player One - Ernest Cline I thought I had a review here. The short version: I loved this book. People like me may love this book. I think dismissing it as "nostalgia porn" is wrong, but I can see how people would misread it that way in the same way you can misread Scott Pilgrim.

Pretend Soup and Other Real Recipes: A Cookbook for Preschoolers and Up

Pretend Soup and Other Real Recipes: A Cookbook for Preschoolers and Up - Mollie Katzen, Ann Henderson, Ann L. Henderson Let's be clear - this is, as advertised, a cookbook for preschoolers, and has to be evaluated in that context. My five-year-old daughter loves it with the sort of passion that only small children loves things. She will "read" it on her own. She wants to make something different out of it every day. I'm never going to make a recipe from this book without her. Ann's run into some occasional discrepancies between the adult and kid recipes. There's the occasional vague iconography and inconsistent serving size. The resulting food is pitched to a kid's palette, although fairly healthy.But if you want to get a kid excited about cooking, I've not run into anything better.

Galatea 2.2: A Novel

Galatea 2.2: A Novel - Richard Powers I read this book quite a number of years ago and have no idea how well it holds up .

Dies the Fire: A Novel of the Change

Dies the Fire - S.M. Stirling If you like a certain kind of old school speculative fiction in the Niven/Pournelle/etc. vein, full of Mary Sues and leaden dialogue and lots of ideas, this is probably great. I've realized I'm done with that. If the idea of SCA members, pagan covens and manly outdoorsmen surviving in a world where all of our modern conveniences suddenly stop working sounds awesome, maybe this is for you.I'm sure it doesn't help that I tried to read this right after World War Z, an infinitely better version of a future that's completely messed up.I did not finish this. Not even close.


Superfolks - Robert   Mayer, Grant Morrison Sometimes there are books that shift entire genres enough that they feel strip mined when you read them late. Superfolks was like that for me - all that was left was the strange use of celebrity names.

John Dies at the End

John Dies at the End  - David Wong Very weird. Reads like a collection of shorts, which it basically is.

Geek Mafia: Mile Zero (PM Fiction)

Geek Mafia: Mile Zero (PM Fiction) - Rick Dakan More than a bit of a Mary Sue, with some pacing issues. It was fine, I suppose.

White Night (The Dresden Files, Book 9)

White Night  - Jim Butcher General consensus seems to be that this is one of the best in the series. I don't think it's as good as the last couple of books. It's definitely a end plot arc, setup next plot arc sort of book, but it didn't grab me.