Book Review: The Water Knife by Paolo Bacigalupi

The Water KnifeThe Water Knife by Paolo Bacigalupi

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Paolo Bacigalupi is a master of near-future dystopian science fiction. I’ve been dabbling in the genre, and reading this book made me realize that I have a long way to go with respect to world building. In many ways, this book is a textbook for how it should be done. The book is richly drawn, with complex characters, plausible extrapolation of current events, catchy slang, and unexpected twists and turns. With The Water Knife, Bacigalupi is at the top of his imaginative game.

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Thursday Doors: More from San Francisco

The news is getting heavy this week, so I’m taking a little time out for some Thursday Doors in San Francisco. Thursday Doors is a weekly feature allowing door lovers to come together to admire and share their favorite door photos from around the world, run by Norm 2.0.  Join in any time!

Even though I live in the Bay Area I don’t get to San Francisco very often. It is still more legend in my mind than reality. People around here call it “the city,” which I think is kinda funny given that San Jose is also a city and is much closer. Even Mountain View, where I live, is a city. Continue reading Thursday Doors: More from San Francisco

Wild and Precious

Last Sunday the UU church I joined in December, the UU Fellowship of Sunnyvale, held a service called the Our One Wild and Precious Life service. The title is inspired by the last lines of Mary Oliver’s poem, The Summer Day.

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Mundane Monday: Fun with Prisma

Prisma is an app, available for iphone and android, that enables you to convert photos into artwork. It is almost scary how easy it is to use and transform ordinary phone photographs into pictures that look like paintings or prints. I first tried it on our trip to Santa Barbara over Thanksgiving, and was pleased with what it did with a gnarled tree.

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Film Review: Rogue One, a Star Wars Story

I was going to post this review a couple weeks earlier, but the untimely death of Carrie Fisher, the actress who played Princess Leia, delayed my finishing it. Leia was barely in this installment, and much of the initial discussion of her cameo focused on the CGI. But even though I haven’t been a real Star Wars geek for many years, Fisher’s death hit me hard. Continue reading Film Review: Rogue One, a Star Wars Story

Mundane Monday: The Moldau

Orchestra rehearsals are starting up again in a little over a week. For this concert cycle, I will be playing two pieces I’ve played before, on violin: Beethoven’s Egmont Overture, and Smetana’s Ma Vlast, or The Moldau. But this time I’ll be playing them on the viola.

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Book Review: The Elephant Whisperer by Lawrence Anthony

I met blogger Marsha Ingrao on the NaNoWriMo blog hop in December. We were excited to find out that we both were educators and both reviewed books.

For my weekend book review, I’m sharing her review of The Elephant Whisperer by Lawrence Anthony, here. As she says, this book will interest a wide variety of readers and integrate science and social studies if you are looking to use it in the classroom. And you really can’t go wrong with elephants! I’m looking forward to reading it myself.

Check out the rest of her Travel and History blog here at: https://tchistorygal.net/

Marsha Ingrao

This book, The Elephant Whisperer, kept me on the edge of my seat the entire two days it took me to finish it.

Considering that I was reading it on my cell phone the whole time because my Kindle needs to be emptied before I can load any more books, it’s amazing that I even stuck it out.   Out of forty-two chapters, there wasn’t a single dud.  I read it because I was intrigued when someone  wrote that when Lawrence Anthony died, the elephants mourned.

We all have problems and obstacles when we follow our dreams, but this man had more than most.  He bought a 5,000 acre game reserve in Zululand, South Africa called Thula Thula.  He had the ability to get, not only wild elephants to listen to him, but also local police, local political leaders including tribal leaders from warring tribes.  He conquered poaching problems, floods…

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Thursday Doors: Painted Ladies

Most people seem to know these houses because they were in a show that I never watched. I found out about them through geocaching. My family and I went into San Francisco for New Year’s Day and one of our first stops was this virtual geocache.

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Mundane Monday: Patterns of Creativity

The Mundane Monday challenge for this week hasn’t been published yet, but it’s still Monday, and I have a picture that fits the spirit of the challenge: to find beauty in the mundane and take a picture of it.

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