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This turned out to be a huge disappointment. It wasn't a total loss because the last two stories were Liu in his true form, but the other 8 or 10 stories felt like filler. Was Liu short on money? Was publisher forcing him to publish something? Was he digging out old stories he had never gotten published before?

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Second Foundation by Isaac Asimov

(Foundation #3)

A continuation of the Foundation series, this one wholly centered on finding the Second Foundation. This iteration of the series felt more philosophical and less political than previous books in The Foundation series. I didn't care for this one all that much.

Rating: ★★ Book #61 in my My 2020 Reading Challenge

#Books #BookReview #Foundation #IsaacAsimov #SpaceOpera

The Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael Pollan

A very important book, about an important topic: food! The first two thirds of the book focus on factory farming of the corn food chain, and the grass food chain. Along the way it talks about many interesting topics, the climate implications of CAFO's (concentrated animal feeding operations), and organic 'farming'. In the last third of the book, he talks about his own experience hunting, gathering, and growing food to create his 'perfect' meal.

Food is such an important topic because we vote on the type of food we want 3 times a day. It is also the thing that affects every single person on this planet when we are talking about: food security, climate change, and health. We need to eat smarter, and make our food chain more sustainable. Personally this book is the last push I need to eat less meat. Let's hope humans become smarter before we make ourselves become extinct.

Rating: ★★★★ Book #60 in my My 2020 Reading Challenge

#Books #BookReview #Food #MichaelPollan #Farming #Organic

Adventure Time by Ryan North

(Volume 1 & 2)

The perfect antidote to the dreary, anxiety ridden COVID-19 times we live in. These guys Finn and Jake are always up for wacky, zany adventures on the planet Ooo. Their dialogue is funny, cheesy, and pun-y. It's ridiculous, and I love it.

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Foundation and Empire by Isaac Asimov

(Foundation #2)

Another solid entry in the Foundation series. This one is about the expansion of the Foundation and it meeting its greatest nemesis yet, a military commander that wasn't forseen by Hari Seldon. It's more of the same with Foundation, and that is perfectly fine because the formula is great, and the plot moves into new territory that is very cool.

PS This book feels like a more substantial version of what John Scalzi seems to be trying to do with his Collapsing Empire series, but his series can't touch this masterpiece from the 50s. Scalzi focuses too much on lightweight banter that doesn't move the world forward. It feels like he's stretching out his story to sell more books. It's fine, but it shouldn't feel like that when reading it.

I'm already reading Foundation #3 now. It still sizzles!

Rating: ★★★★ Book #57 in my My 2020 Reading Challenge

#Books #BookReview #SciFi #IsaacAsimov #SpaceOpera

One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez

Sometimes you hear about a book, over and over again, and finally decide, OK I'll finally read it. This is one of those books that is often put on a pedestal as a an incredible book. It's also often used to describe other books – as this book seems to have 'invented' the term or be a stand out example of 'magical realism'.

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Hilda graphic novel series by Luke Pearson

(Hilda #1-5)

  • Hilda and the Troll
  • Hilda and the Midnight Giant
  • Hilda and the Bird Parade
  • Hilda and the Black Hound
  • Hilda and the Stone Forest

This review is for the first 5 books in the Hilda series. The Hilda series is a great series about a kind, and courageous blue-haired girl who has many adventures with monsters, spirits, and other creatures around Trollberg. The illustrations are great. The stories are funny. I love these sort of graphic novels about strong female characters. I can't wait until my daughter can grow up to enjoy these books.

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Foundation by Isaac Asimov

Foundation #1

This is a huge novel in scope. This is a sci-fi, political thriller that deals with civilization and the maneuvering that goes on at the highest levels. Are the characters 1 dimensional? Yes. Does it matter? No. It's amazing the world he builds with only ideas. Every sentence is required, he is not one for superfluous plot points or description. This is the essentials stripped down, and it's beautiful.

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The Explosion Chronicles by Yan Lianke

The dastardly history of the deeds behind the Chinese village of Explosion and its meteoric rise to become a city metropolis like Shanghai, Beijing, and Tokyo. It's written in the form of a dynastic history that court scribes were usually ordered to write on behalf of a Chinese dynasty, though this one is not flattering to the leaders of Explosion.

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Recipe: Greek Tzatziki

τζατζίκι a perfect spicy yogurt dip for deep fried chicken nuggets, a spread on bread, to add to your curry, or use as sauce on vegetables.

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