Mirrors, Games and Darkness…

Hello out there, world. It is I, the fox/lion/skunk/human that writes semi-pointless blogs once a week. Mhari and I are doing well this week, and while my work-stress continues to be thick… I’ve made it to Friday without to much further loss of hair.

City of Heroes: Yup. I’m playing it. Did it Monday and Wednesday as usual. Dabbled with it last weekend, will play it some more tonight and this weekend. I can’t really say I am doing anything different or have anything new to report. Characters progress in experience, the Open Beta of Issue 13 continues with more improvements and refinements that seem to help decrease the amount of whining happening on the forums… of course, part of THAT perception might be from my not reading them as much as I was in past weeks or something. And the reason for that is I was getting -sick- of said whining and didn’t want to deal with it any more. Which might also have something to do with my not spending as much time on the beta.

I just thought about it for a minute there… and I think I am starting to agree with one of my CoH buddies that doesn’t want to touch the beta… Going over there and playing characters who’s progress is mostly pointless is not really all that fun. I’d rather wait until all of that new stuff goes live and be able to play it ‘for real’ and have the progress and play ‘mean something’. I -do- think I understand… but it does bring up a point: Just what -is- the point of it all… Not something I am going to write about here at this time… but something to think about. Feel free to write your feelings on the subject in the comments to this blog if you like.

Other Things
Last night Mhari and I sat down and finally watched some more Heroes. We’re not yet caught up to this past Monday’s episode… but we are down to wondering… has the show ‘jumped the shark’? (For those that don’t understand the term, go to the Wikipedia Article here.) I really think it may have. Heroes are turning into Villains, people we wanted to save are heading out and trying to save people, and they are pulling things out of their back pocket to make twists and turns into the plot. Of the things I am ENJOYING about this is that they are turning ‘The Face of Evil’, Syler, into a hero this season. And that is enjoyable as it is fun to see the actor play good as well as he did bad.

But this season seems all about twisting things around in upon itself. Is Peter’s father really a worse villain than Syler ever was? Has Mohinder really been corrupted by the powers he’s researched and found? I think, in many ways the only character that has kept ‘true’ is Hiro (thought for a little there in the first couple of episodes, I wasn’t so sure). I’ll say this for the show… it’s deep… it’s wild… and I do keep coming back for more. It’s just that rather than feeling that I ‘Just have to see the next episode’, it’s more of the feeling that makes one look at the things that man was not meant to know about. You go by the accident and you just HAVE to look to see what happened, even if you are afraid you are going to see something grisly and awful that will hurt your mind. You just HAVE to look.

Has Heroes jumped the shark??

Books of the Week
I am sort of working to catch up here. The first book I read last week, and the other two are from this week.

Moon in the Mirror by P.R. Frost

This is book 2 in this series about Tess Noncoire, a fantasy author who is also a guardian for the forces of light. She has an imp for a sidekick and weapon, fights windigos and lawn knomes from another dimension and loves to listen to filk music. It’s a very enjoyable little series with a very likable main character who really, really just wants a vacation!

P.R. Frost is also known as Irene Radford or C.F. Bentley and writes a wide range of fantasy and science fiction in a very readable manner. For Moon in the Mirror and the first book, Hounding the Moon she has created Tess Noncoire who seems very much similar to the author… with extra powers.

I’m going to be looking into her other books and see what I think…

Omega Games by S.L. Viehl (also known as Jessica Hall, Lynn Viehl, Gena Hale and more.) For those interested, her blog is at paperback writer and she talks about all her work there.

Omega Games is the 8th book in the Stardoc series, and is, what I consider to be the 3rd book in the 2nd story arc in this series. Two books ago in Rebel Ice seemed to start off with a completely NEW character in a new situation and didn’t seem to be the Cherijo that we had expected. As it turned out, it was Cherijo, but after a major nearly life-ending event. The character almost completely changed, and the author made it work, but it was Very jarring for me the reader.

Well, in this book, the author has me really appreciating the change, as this new Cherijo is all that the original was without a lot of pointless resistance and arrogance. She’s still somewhat arrogant, but I spend less time wishing I could slap her and get her to see what’s right in front of her face in her relationship with her soul mate. This book finds Cherijo and Duncan leaving their daughter back at ‘home’ and heading off to find out who just put a HUGE bounty on Cherijo’s head… and they end up crash landing on a planet and hunting down a killer.

It was a good mix of character development, displays that Cherijo is still an amazing doctor and surgeon and that the author is good at writing adventure mysteries and making them pleasant to read. While it is not a fantastic book, it was enjoyable to read and makes me very interested in reading the next one, Crystal Healer coming next year.

Swallowing Darkness by Laurell K Hamilton

This is the seventh book in the Meredith Gentry series and just might be the final book. It is, at the least, the last in the ‘current’ story arc that was begun in the first book, A Kiss of Shadows that came out in 2000.

This book follows Meredith in her continuing battle with the rest of the political powers in Faerie as she tries to protect herself, her bodyguards/consorts and further the cause of the God and Goddess in bringing the lands of Faerie back to ‘health’. It’s a wild ride from her hospital room she ended in after the prior book, back into the lands of Faerie and out again. And this time, unlike a few books back, sex does NOT take center stage. This book is about furthering the plot(s) and making things really happen. And as I said at the beginning of this review, it could easily be the end of the series, or at least the end of the current plot line. That’s not to say that there are not loose ends left dangling. It’s just that you could easily see things ending at the end of this one and it wouldn’t hurt things in the least.

But I strongly doubt that Hamilton is going to leave it here, and I am more than sure that her publisher and her fans won’t let her.

The book was fun to read, I love the strength of Princess Meredith’s love for the men in her life and her growth as a person and a power. For anyone that enjoys Laurell Hamilton’s writing, you really won’t be disappointed. I wasn’t.

Thanks for reading… I’ll be right over there… around the corner…. A week or a few minutes from now… I keep getting those two mixed up.