Radio silence around here again. Been quite busy since Christmas, long hours at work and long hours at home. But, somehow, I've still managed to plow a decent path through the pile of books left for me under the tree.
So, I figure this might be a good time to mention them:
Burn, by James Patrick Kelley
This is an excellent mix of post-human future and pastoral retreat from same. It's just shy of novel length, but there's plenty of story here. And there are plenty of things not completely spelled out, but explained just enough to give a sense of a larger universe into which this tale is nestled. Also, don't miss the podcast reading by the author! That's how I found out about the book, after all.
First Meetings in the Enderverse, by Orson Scott Card
I'm always a sucker for an Ender story, and Orson Scott Card is one of my all-time favorite authors—even if I do think he voices some ornery political opinions from time to time and has a pretty unpleasant reputation. Some great origin material here, as well as the original Ender's Game.
The Crystal City, by Orson Scott Card
I'll be sad if this is the final volume. I'm pretty sure that the entire Alvin Maker series is a barely-concealed religious allegory, but that doesn't keep me from enjoying the heck out of this alternate history America. Whatever your faith or lack thereof, the struggle against the Unmaker is universal. That, and I'd like to think I strive to be a bit of a Maker, albeit mostly only in software.
I'm also starting on:
A Mind So Rare, by Merlin Donald
Just about 30 pages into this one, but so far I'm enjoying it. As opposed to a lot of the deterministic stuff about consciousness I've read in school and on my own—"You are simply a machine!"—this book would appear to use the same research to present a picture of the mind which in fact supports awareness and free will.