Binti by Nnedi Okorafor

Posted by on Jul 7, 2017 in 2017, 4 stars, Book Review | 2 comments

Binti by Nnedi OkoraforBinti by Nnedi Okorafor

Genre: Science Fiction
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Tom Doherty Associates
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 90
Source: Library

The Book:
From the publisher:

Her name is Binti, and she is the first of the Himba people ever to be offered a place at Oomza University, the finest institution of higher learning in the galaxy. But to accept the offer will mean giving up her place in her family to travel between the stars among strangers who do not share her ways or respect her customs.

Knowledge comes at a cost, one that Binti is willing to pay, but her journey will not be easy. The world she seeks to enter has long warred with the Meduse, an alien race that has become the stuff of nightmares. Oomza University has wronged the Meduse, and Binti’s stellar travel will bring her within their deadly reach.

If Binti hopes to survive the legacy of a war not of her making, she will need both the the gifts of her people and the wisdom enshrined within the University, itself – but first she has to make it there, alive.

My Thoughts:
This little 90 page novella is a whole lot of story.

One of the folks in my LibraryThing group mentioned this and since I hadn’t read much science fiction in a while I decided to give it a try. You should get your hands on this and read it.

It begins in Africa where Binti is the first of her people to go the University across the galaxy. The trip becomes a harrowing adventure for her but I’m not going to say anything else about the plot beyond what is in the synopsis above because it would be spoilerish.

I discovered that the author has written two more novellas in this series. The second is available but the third won’t be out until January.

Grab this book and the next for your next readathon.

4 starsRating 3/5

Read More

Weekend Update – June 2017 Reading Wrap Up

Posted by on Jul 2, 2017 in Blogging/Reading, Monthly Reading Wrap Up, Weekend Update | 2 comments

Weekend Update
June 2017 Reading Wrap-Up

June 2017 Reading Wrap-Up

Here’s what I read in June:

Novels and Novellas

Imitation in Death by J.D Robb (audio narrated by Susan Ericksen)

The Princess Bride by William Goldman

Binti by Nnedi Okorafor (review coming this week)


Graphic Novels and Comics

Roughneck by Jeff Lemire

Secret Path by Gord Downie

Queen & Country: Operation Saddlebags by Greg Rucka



Oops! I didn’t finish my nonfiction audio before the end of the month. I read two last month and will read two next month so my average nonfiction reading this year is still good.


Hope you had a great reading month in June. What was the best book you read last month?

Read More

July 2017 Photo a Day Challenges

Posted by on Jul 1, 2017 in Fun, photos | 0 comments

July 2017 Photo a Day Challenges

I have found a way to make daily photo prompts work well for me.

No single photo a day prompt list fully works for me. I choose to save several lists and choose one prompt each day from among those lists. I’m happy to say that I love this approach and it works great for me. I highly recommend it.

Here is a sample of the photo a day lists I’ll be using for July:
(click on the images to see larger versions)

If committing to a month at a time feels like too much, there are other weekly and daily options available on Instagram
There are several Instagram accounts that feature a new theme every day or every week. I follow these accounts and every once in a while they save me when I just don’t like any of the other prompts. These are all worth following on Instagram.

As you can tell, I am a huge fan of using prompts for daily photos because it helps make a personal photo journal and also makes me look for inspiration throughout my daily life. It helps me to notice and appreciate the little moments and things every day.

I’ve been doing this since March of 2012 so I now have over 5 years of daily photos.

Follow my Daily Photos on Instagram

These are the most liked of my June 2017 Photo a Day photos:

If you’re not doing a Photo a Day challenge I hope you’ll consider it because it’s a fun way to have a photo journal. If you are, great! Keep up with it. You won’t be sorry. I highly recommend the pick from many prompts each day approach.

Read More

Queen & Country Vol. 7: Operation Saddlebags

Posted by on Jun 29, 2017 in 2017, 3.5 stars, Book Review, Comics, Greg Rucka | 0 comments

Queen & Country Vol. 7: Operation Saddlebags by Greg RuckaQueen & Country Vol. 7: Operation Saddlebags by Greg Rucka with art by Mike Norton and Steve Rolston

Genre: Spy Thriller, Comics
Format: Collected Trade Paperback
Series: #7 in the Queen & Country series
Publisher: Oni Press
Publication Date: 2005
Pages: 144
Source: Library

The Book:
This volume 7 is a compilation of issues 25-28 of the comic series.
From the publisher:

Still recovering from the death of her co-worker and lover, Tara Chace is granted a brief reprieve from London’s rain and MI6’s bureaucracy. This emotionally charged vacation take Chace to the slopes of Switzerland for a visit with old friends and family. But being an agent for Her Majesty’s Secret Intelligence Service leaves very little time for rest and Chace is quickly thrown into another mission of national importance. A junior minister with close ties to the Prime Minister appears to be selling state secrets to the Russians, and the Minders are assigned to quietly investigate. Tara is forced to walk a tight rope between the violent dangers inherent in the field of espionage and the discretion inherent in the bureaucracy of the government, all the while assuming the new position of Minder One and field-testing a new agent.

My Thoughts:
Another excellent volume in this well done spy thriller series.

Tara Chase is a spy for the British Government. She’s got issues and in the first issue she faces one of the major ones. Her mother. Tara’s time off is anyting but restful as she visits and clashes with her mother.

Once back at work, Tara is now the leader of her team. They have mission to find out what if anything a junior diplomat might be shopping to the Russians. Tara’s got a rookie agent with her on this one and things do not go well and not just because of the newbie. Real spies aren’t like James Bond. Sometimes they make mistakes.

This is tense and exciting spy thriller fiction. I like the recurring characters but there is always something and someone new with each story arc.

As is typical for this series there is a new artist for most of this story arc. While Steve Rolston returned for the first issue which has Tara’s trip to Switzerland. For the final three issues and the majority of the volume Mike Norton is the artist. I liked his work a lot. It’s all pretty stark black and white and the action in portrayed well.
You can see an excerpt here on Greg Rucka’s website

As I’ve said before, if you’re a fan of Homeland and/or The Americans you should check out this series.

3.5 stars Rating 3.5/5

Read More