Microblog: A very long article Wikipedia article on the orientation of toilet paper [Jun 7th, 22:52] [R]

Wednesday, March 26th, 2008

The Fifth Elephant

Categories: [ Books/Discworld ]

ISBN: 0552146161

© Amazon.fr

A copy of the Scone of Stone, an import dwarf relic, has been stolen from the dwarf bread museum at Ankh-Morpork. Soon after, a maker of rubber goods is found dead. Then Vetinari sends Vimes as an ambassador to Uberwald to represent the city at the coronation of the Low King. Vimes soon discovers that the situation in Uberwald is quite tense, where traditionalist dwarfs try to prevent the more liberal king to become the king. The plot involves werewolves (from Angua's family, who are nothing like her), vampires and of course the two factions of dwarfs. Although nobody would admit it to Vimes at first, the original Scone of Stone has been stolen, even though it was physically impossible. The Scone is of course an essential item in the coronation ceremony. While Vimes slowly finds elements of answer to the mysterious theft, he is imprisonned by the dwarfs for an alleged attempt against the life of the future Low King, escapes thanks to a vampire, ambushed by Wolfgang, Angua's brother, and saved in the nick of time by Angua and Carrot who came to Uberwald on their own. Vimes then forces Angua's mother to give him the copy of the Scone and brings it back to the dwarves, where it is authenticated as the real Scone, to Vimes' amazement. The future king explains that the relic had been destroyed an re-baked sevaral times over the past centuries (it would not have resisted the passage of time anyway), and that this copy is as good as the original (which had been reduced to dust in order to make make dwarves believe it had been stolen).

[ Posted on March 26th, 2008 at 23:54 | 1 comment | ]

Saturday, March 15th, 2008

Carpe Jugulum

Categories: [ Books/Discworld ]

ISBN: 0552146153

© Amazon.fr

The newly born princess of Lancre is going to be baptised soon, but Granny Weatherwax's invitation got stolen by a magpie and the old witch, believing she is not invited, decides to leave Lancre forever, since Nanny, Magrat and Agnes make a perfect trio of witches. Meanwhile, Verence trying to be a modern king has invited vampires to Lancre, and the vampires have decided to stay and take over the kingdom. And to make it harder, the old recipes againts the vampires (garlic, daylight and so on) don't work on these modern vampires. The three witches manage to find Granny and convince her to help them, but she got bitten by one vampire and is going to turn into one herself. Or is she? Granny knows how to conceal part of her mind in anything living. Nanny believes she hid in the baby, Agnes believes she did in her own mind… Since even a good old fashioned mob doesn't succeed in getting rid of the vampires, the witches must flee from Lancre and, with the help of Igor, the vampires' servant who doesn't like his too-modern masters, arrive in Uberwald, in the vampires' family castle. The witches fight the vampires in the every corridor until Granny finally arrives at the castle and explains that she hid part of her mind in the vampire Count's blood, effectively Weatherwaxing him, instead of her being vampirised. A phoenix (natural predator of vampires), found by Granny in Lancre gets rid of the modernist count, and finally everything is well that ends well.

[ Posted on March 15th, 2008 at 22:05 | 1 comment | ]

Tuesday, March 4th, 2008

Manifold: Origin

Categories: [ Books ]

ISBN: 0345430808

© Amazon.fr

Third volume of the Manifold trilogy, Origin has been published in 2002 by Stephen Baxter.

The moon has been mysteriously replaced with another one, much larger, red and covered with water, land and a breathable atmosphere. At the same time, a blue ring has appeared in the sky in front of Malenfant and Emma's jet plane. Emma is sucked into the ring just after ejecting and is transported to the surface of the Red Moon. She encounters strange hominids, Homo Erectus called the Runners, and Homo Neanderthal called the Hams who both speak some English, if only single words for the Runners (there are also other, more primitive hominids called the Elves and the Nutcracker). Life is hard but she manages to survive. Meanwhile on Earth, Malenfant manages to convince NASA to send him and Nemoto to the Red Moon in a rocket. After landing, they meet an Englishman from a parallel Earth who has been there for years, living with some of his friends and Hams. All hope of going back to the Earth disappears when the Red Moon shifts again from one parallel universe to another. But from this new Earth comes a group of Homo Superior (later nicknamed Deamons) who want to understant who is behind the Red Moon's travel, and what is its purpose. Nemoto meets them first, after splitting with Malenfant who wanted to find his wife. In the meantime, Malenfant has met another group of Homo Sapiens called the Zealots who have organized around a religious fanatic who wants to expand and conquer the whole Moon and use Hams and Runners as slaves. Malenfant is prisoner of the Zealots and has been tortured to death when Emma finally goes to his rescue with the help of her Ham friends, but he dies soon after. With Nemoto and the Deamons they enter the crater of the giant volcano, obviously artificial, and they learn that the Red Moon has been made by humans from the future who have forced the creation of mutiple universes. In every universe where there was no intelligent species, they have used the moon to take samples of homonids from one universe and move them to another one.

[ Posted on March 4th, 2008 at 12:15 | no comment | ]

Sunday, February 10th, 2008

Manifold: Space

Categories: [ Books ]

ISBN: 0345430786

© Amazon.fr

Second volume of the Manifold trilogy, Time has been published in 2001 by Stephen Baxter.

2020. Reid Malenfant, a former NASA astronaut discovers with the help of Nemoto, a Japanase astronomer living in a lunar colony, the presence of aliens in the asteroid belt. A probe sent there proves their presence, and Malenfant conjectures that they must have arrived into the solar system through a gateway, which is most probably located at the focal point of the Sun's gravity field. He launches a solo mission to this point, where he actually finds a gateway, goes through it, and meets the aliens called the Gaijin. They take him for a long journey across a large portion of the galaxy, using the network of gateways to show him many worlds, most of which have either a rudimentary form of life, or have been sterilized by an unknown cause. A gateway jump is no faster than lightspeep, and Malenfant therefore spends hundreds of years travelling. Meanwhile, on Earth, Nemoto charges Madeleine Meacher, a weapon smuggler, to be the next star traveller with the Gaijin. The Gaijin again take her to many worlds, without her really understanding what they want to show her. Most of the story decribes the evolution of the solar system, first the lunar colony finding oxygen and other vital elements by digging to the core of the moon, the Earth regressing and eating up most of its resources while the Gaijin fiddle with DNA to re-create extinct species. Some time later, the Earth suffers from a new ice age, while the moon colony is dying. Meacher takes australian aboriginals to colonize Triton. Malenfant comes back to Earth where he discovers that Nemoto is still alive and manipulating him again. Malenfant ends up on Io with a colony of Neanderthal before disappearing again. Finally, Meacher is contacted by Nemoto (now 1700 years old) to warn the inhabitants of the solar system that another alien specie called the Crackers are on their way to turn the Sun into a supernova, their way to get enough energy to expand and fly to the next star, where they will do the same and so on. Now the remnants of human descendants (and Nemoto) are on Mercury, the last human colony, and manage to defeat the Crackers before they distroy the Sun. Meacher leaves to Io and finally finds Malendant. They are both (along with Neanderthals) dematerialized and stored on a 10 cm long ship heading for the center of the galaxy. The Gaijin have discovered that binary star systems turning into neutron stars explode at more or less regular intervals, delivering a huge amount of gamma and cosmic rays, sterilizing all life in a radius of thousands of lightyears, preventing any life form to evolve enough to actually become able to colonize the galaxy. Before a previous sterilization took place, an unknown species had started to build a device that would prevent one specific binary star to sterilize this quadrant of the galaxy. A coalition of current species is working on the device, but internal dissensions prevent them to complete it. The Gaijin need human's sense of self and therefore of self sacrifice for a greater good in order to unite the coalition long enough to complete the task.

[ Posted on February 10th, 2008 at 21:39 | no comment | ]

Tuesday, January 22nd, 2008

Diplomatic Immunity

Categories: [ Books/Barrayar ]

Diplomatic Immunity was published in 2002 by Lois McMaster-Bujold.

While on their way back home from their honey moon, Miles, accompanied by Ekaterin, is sent to Graf Station in Quaddie-space to diplomatically solve an incident involving soldiers from a Barrayaran ship escorting a Komarran transport. On the station, Miles meets his old friend Bel Thorne, who is working as an official there as well as an ImpSec agent under cover. Bel helps Miles in his attempt to solve the mystery of the disappearance of the Barrayaran ship's security officer, which is the source of the whole mess. Miles' attention is soon attracted by a mysterious Betan hermaphrodite, using the Komarran transport to carry a thousand foetuses in uterine replicators. Just after meeting it, Miles, Bel and the herm barely escape an attack by a mysterious person. The perpetrator is found later, and happens to be a smuggler who helped the herm to transport the uterine replicators from one ship onto the Komarran transport. The herm poisoned his crewmates, and the smuggler seeks revenge. Miles then discovers that the Betan herm is actually a Cetagandan Ba who has stolen a part of the yearly production of Cetagandan made by the Star Creche. His goal was to create his own empire with him as an emperor. Miles manages to prevent a war between Cetaganda and Barrayar, where the Ba had planted fake evidence of Barrayar's involvment in the plot. Eventually, Miles and Ekaterin go back home, just in time to witness the birth of their children.

[ Posted on January 22nd, 2008 at 22:08 | 1 comment | ]

Tuesday, January 15th, 2008

La vengeance de Gutenberg

Translation: [ Google | Babelfish ]

Categories: [ Books ]

ISBN: 9782913990814

© Amazon.fr

Un roman historique de Bernard Fischbach publié en 2002.

Gutenberg rentre à Strasbourg après avoir passé près d'un an à Avignon où il a rencontré un maître du poiçon, dans l'espoir de résoudre ses problèmes liés à la mise au point de l'imprimerie. À son retour, il apprend que son associé, Lorentz Beildeck a disparu sans laisser de traces, son logement a été saccagé et un menuisier avec lequel il avait travaillé est mystérieusement assassiné juste avant que Gutenberg ne puisse le rencontrer. Gutenberg reçoit des fioles contenant du sang humain, probablement celui de son associé en guise d'avertissement. Il finit par apprendre que Beildeck est un hussite (de Jean Hus, réformateur d'avant la Réforme), dont la communeauté ne cesse de grandir à Strasbourg et dont les membres sont pourchassés par l'Inquisition. Cette dernière s'est associée avec la corporation des enlumineurs et copistes pour tenter d'empêcher l'avênement de l'impression, dont la plupart des acteurs sont justement des hussites. Parmi les inquisiteurs se trouvent un espion du roi de France qui parvient à les convaincres de ne pas exécuter sommairement Beildeck, mais ce dernier est finalement retrouvé mort par Gutenberg, probablement assassiné par la corporation des copistes. Dépité, Gutenberg quitte Strasbourg et retourne à Mayence pour continuer son travail et finalement imprimer sa première Bible.

[ Posted on January 15th, 2008 at 17:45 | no comment | ]

Sunday, January 13th, 2008

A Civil Campaign

Categories: [ Books/Barrayar ]

A Civil Campaign has been published in 1999 by Lois McMaster Bujold.

Gregor's wedding is coming soon. Mark comes back from Beta through Escobar with a new friend, a mad scientist who has invented butter bugs, eating any kind of organic waste and producing both human-edible food and compost. Meanwhile Miles tries to court Ekaterin without her knowledge (because she is still in mourning) and invites her to a family dinner. The dinner turns into a nightmare when the guests are told they are eating bug butter based food, while the mad scientist tells the Koudlekas about their daughter's relationship with Mark, followed by Illyan asking loudly to Miles how long he has been courting Ekaterin, and ends with Miles proposing accidentally to Ekaterin. Ekaterin storms out just when Miles' parents are coming back from Sergyar earlier than expected. Meanwhile, two political schemes are going on within the counts for the control of two Districts, and one faction starts rumors about Miles' role in the death of Ekaterin's husband on Komarr. Some amount of scheming and one deceased count's sister changing gender surgically in order to become a legal male heir later, Ekaterin proposes to Miles during a session of the Counts' assembly in order to disprove Miles' responsibility in the Komarr incident, and Gregor finally gets married.

[ Posted on January 13th, 2008 at 22:01 | 1 comment | ]

Tuesday, January 8th, 2008

Knife of Dreams

Categories: [ Books/Wheel of Time ]

ISBN: 0812577566

© Amazon.fr

Eleventh book of the Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan, published in 2005. In this book, Mat Cauthon gets married to Tuon, daughter of the nine moons and probably future Empress of the Seanchan. Perrin rescues Faile and others from the Shaido, who, after losing Sevanna to the Seanchan, decide to go back the the Three-Fold Land and never leave it again. Rand and others get attacked by thousands of trollocs and myrdraals; soon after Rand falls into a trap set by one of the Forsaken and looses a hand (but the Forsaken is made prisonner). Elayne manages to end the siege of Caemlyn, rally enough Houses to her in order to become the new queen, and to arrest several black ajah aes sedai. Finally, Egwene, who had been kidnapped by Elaida's followers is back in the White Tower as a novice, but slowly plants seeds of discord between aes sedai and Elaida.

[ Posted on January 8th, 2008 at 18:39 | no comment | ]

Friday, January 4th, 2008

Le secret des Dolphantes

Translation: [ Google | Babelfish ]

Categories: [ Books/Comics/Troy ]

ISBN: 9782302000315

© Amazon.fr

Septième volume de Lanfeust des étoiles, publié en 2007. Thanos tente de corrompre Glin, le fils de Lanfeust et Cixi, en le rendant accroc à la toxine. En même temps, Lanfeust, Qam, Hébus et l'orgnobi sont sauvés de la destruction de leur vaisseau par les mystérieux Dolphantes, controlleurs des portes du subespace, qui ne sont autres que les Ghomos que Lanfeust avait sauvés 4000 ans dans le passé. Avec leur aide et celle de Cixi, nos héros se lancent à l'assaut de la planète qui sert de repaire à Thanos dans le but de sauver Glin. Ils y parviennent, mais la flotte des alliés est complètement détruite et ils n'ont plus aucun refuge.

[ Posted on January 4th, 2008 at 18:13 | no comment | ]

Friday, December 21st, 2007

Révélations gastronomiques

Translation: [ Google | Babelfish ]

Categories: [ Cooking | Books/Herve This ]

ISBN: 9782701117560

© Amazon.fr

Deuxième ouvrage de gastronomique moléculaire d'Hervé This, publié en 1995. Contrairement au livre précédent et aux suivants, il ne se contente pas ici de décrire les principes physico-chimiques qui font la cuisine, mais le livre est un livre de recettes où chaque étape de chaque recette est commenté du point de vue du scientifique.

[ Posted on December 21st, 2007 at 20:20 | no comment | ]

Sunday, December 9th, 2007

Wintersmith

Categories: [ Books/Discworld ]

ISBN: 9780552553698

© Amazon.fr

Without really controlling herself, Tiffany Aching, a thirteen years-old witch apprentice, stepped into the Dark Morris dance, replaces partly the Summer Lady, and catches the attention of the Wintersmith. The latter falls in love with her, for as much as an elemental god can fall in love with a mortal, and starts building itself a human body. Tiffany continues to learn witchcraft with Miss Treason, and after her death, goes on at Nanny Ogg's, sill trying to hide from the Wintersmith. Tiffany is also acquiring some of the powers of the Summer Lady. When winter the becomes very hard and extends when sprint should already have arrived, she returns to her parent's place. Meanwhile, the Mac Nac Feegles, who have sworn to protect Tiffany, their wee big hag, following the instructions of Granny Weatherwax, go find Roland, Tiffany's not-exactly-boyfriend and soon-to-be heir of the local castle, train him to be a hero, and lead him to the Underworld to bring back the real Summer Lady. While fighting the Wintersmith, Tiffany is taken by the Wintersmith who takes her to his castle. She manages to vanquish it by kissing it and melting its body and its castle, just at the same time as Rolands comes out of the Uderworld with the Summer Lady. Spring finally arrives, the Morris Dance takes place, and everything's well that ends well.

[ Posted on December 9th, 2007 at 21:54 | 1 comment | ]

Feet of Clay

Categories: [ Books/Discworld ]

ISBN: 0552142379

© Amazon.fr

An old priest is found dead, a note written in an ancient language tucked between his lips and arsenic impregnated grease under his fingernails. The curator of the Dwarf Bread Museum is found dead as well. And the Patrician is being slowly poisoned with arsenic. The Watch is investigating, while the head of the guilds scheme together to find a new ruler, a ruler they would control (and it seems that Nobby Nobbs is the right choice, since he is an (illegitimate) descendant of the Earl of Ankh). A bit later, the golems of Ankh-Morpork start to behave weirdly, some of them trying to destroy themselves, leaving notes about being ashamed. Three investigations are being led at the same time by Commander Vimes and his men. They finally discover that the golems had tried to build a king for themselves, they baked it in the large oven of the Dwarf Bread Museum and went to the priest for the words to put in his head. But they put too many commands and the golem became crazy, starting to get rid of evicence of his creation, hence the two first murders. He then had been sold to a candle maker who was involved in making arsenic candles sold the the palace of the Patrician; the candles where meant to be used exclusively by Lord Vetinaro in his office. The brain behind this scheme is a vampire, the head of the heraldic society of Ankj-Morpork. People are to him like cattle and his genealogy books like stock registers. He wanted to better control the breeding of the influencial families.

[ Posted on December 9th, 2007 at 21:53 | 1 comment | ]

Hogfather

Categories: [ Books/Discworld ]

ISBN: 0552145424

© Amazon.fr

The Auditors hire Mr. Teatime the assassin to kill the Hogfather. On Hogswatchnight, Death replaces the Hogfather, because someone has to fill the stockings, drink the sherry and leave sooty footprints in front of the fireplace. Meanwhile, at Unseen University, strange gods or fairies appear when someone mentions their existence, particularly the Verruca Gnome, the Eater of Socks and Bilious, the God of Hangovers. They appear because since the disappearance of the Hogfather, there is free belief around, materializing in any kind of plausible divinity. Susan, Death's granddaughter, meets Bilious while she's trying to understand why his grandfather is playing the role of the Hogfather. While investigating with his help the disappearance of Violet, one of the Tooth Fairies' employees, she discovers that Teatime has found a way to enter the world of the Tooth Fairy (following the man who delivers the collected teeth to the Tooth Fairy) and uses the childrens'teeth to control them (that's how, I suppose, he has made them disbelieve in the Hogfather and made him disappear by lack of believers). Teatime was trying to reach the real Tooth Fairy when Susan stops him and returns him to the real world. She then meets the Tooth Fairy who is actually the promordial Bogeyman, who reconverted in collecting children's teeth in order to keep some amount of control over them and continue to instillate fear in their hearts. Then Death comes to pick her up and asks her to save the Hogfather (gods never really die) before the Auditors delete him for good. Once she has saved him, Death takes her back to the real world, where she manages to kill Teatime before he kills Death (he planned to use Death's own sword that he stole form Susan in the house of the Tooth Fairy). After that, all the extraneous fairies disappear.

[ Posted on December 9th, 2007 at 21:52 | 1 comment | ]

Wednesday, December 5th, 2007

Les enfants perdus

Translation: [ Google | Babelfish ]

Categories: [ Books/Comics/Golden City ]

ISBN: 9782756004907

© Amazon.fr

Septième volume de la série Golden City, racontant le passé des plus jeunes protagonistes, ainsi que l'enlèvement du garçon sauvé par Banks des griffes de trafficants d'organes, puis la prise d'otage de Golden City par un groupe mystérieux.

[ Posted on December 5th, 2007 at 00:14 | no comment | ]

Friday, November 30th, 2007

Le Maître d'armes

Translation: [ Google | Babelfish ]

Categories: [ Books/Comics/De cape et de crocs ]

ISBN: 9782756003184

© Amazon.fr

Huitième volume de la série De cape et de crocs où nos héros trouvent enfin le Maître d'armes, bretteur au long nez parlant en alexandrins, qui finit par accepter de reformer son régiment de cadets (ils sont seulement trois mais valent chacun dix hommes) pour aller défendre la capitale de la lune contre l'assaut prochain par les troupes du Prince Jean, aidé du capitan Mendoza. L'assaut est terrible et laisse nos héros dans une situation desespérée.

[ Posted on November 30th, 2007 at 00:00 | no comment | ]

Thursday, November 29th, 2007

La version irlandaise

Translation: [ Google | Babelfish ]

Categories: [ Books/Comics/XIII ]

ISBN: 9782505001317

© Amazon.fr

Dix-huitième volume de la série XIII, La version irlandaise est un aparté qui raconte la relation entre Seamus O'Neil alias Kelly Brian, membre de l'IRA et réfugié aux États-Unis et Jason Fly, son meilleur ami. L'IRA voulait forcer Brian à espionner pour eux à Cuba après avoir éliminé Fly (qui va se faire embaucher par le FBI et qui connaît trop bien Brian), mais c'est lui qui se fera tuer. Giordano, patron de la CIA force alors Fly à endosser l'identité de Brian (sous peine de le faire accuser du meurtre de Brian qui n'a eu pour témoin qu'une seule personne, elle aussi agent de la CIA).

[ Posted on November 29th, 2007 at 00:08 | no comment | ]

Le dernier round

Translation: [ Google | Babelfish ]

Categories: [ Books/Comics/XIII ]

ISBN: 9782505001300

© Amazon.fr

Dix-neuvième et dernier album de la série XIII, Le dernier round voit les protagonistes rentrer aux États-Unis après la révélation par un journaliste de la véritable identité de XIII, des liens entre Giordano et l'ancien président. Giordano tente de les faire assassiner, mais la tentative échoue et c'est lui qui se fera assassiner, non sans avoir été auparavant entendu par une commission d'enquête.

[ Posted on November 29th, 2007 at 00:08 | no comment | ]

Sunday, November 18th, 2007

Jingo

Categories: [ Books/Discworld ]

ISBN: 055214598X

© Amazon.fr

When the island of Leshp suddenly surfaces in the middle of the Circular Sea, it is immediately claimed by fishermen from both Ankh-Morpork and Klatch. Klatch sends very soon after to Ankh-Morpork a diplomat, Prince Khufurah, who is nearly killed by an unknown murderer. Vimes investigates and finds the assassin, but the latter is already dead, and the profusion of clues make it clear that it was a setup. Very soon, Ankh-Morpork and Klatch are preparing for war. The Patrician is evicted and replaced by Lord Rust, who reformes the regiments in order to invade Klatch, and disbands the Watch. Meanwhile, Vimes is still investigating the attempted murder and sails to Klatch with his faithfull ex-watchmen. At the same time, the Patrician enrolls Colon and Nobbs for manning a submarine made by Leonarod da Quirm. The Patrician discovers that the island is floating on a giant pumice, and is soon going to disappear into the sea once again. He then lands incognito in Klatch in order to gather intelligence about the situation. Meanwhile, Vimes catches the man he was following, 71-hour Ahmed, bodyguard of Prince Khufurah, who also happens to be a Klatchian copper. Ahmed tells Vimes that Prince Kadram, ruler of Klatch, had organized the assasination of Prince Khufurah, his brother, in order to provoke a war between his country and Ankh-Morpork. Ahmed cannot arrest his own ruler, that's why he attracted Vimes to Klatch, hoping the descendant of Old Stoneface would get rid of Kadram. Ahmed and Vimes finally manage to reach Kadram and keep him at point blank, undecided about what to do. Just at this moment, the Patrician appears and announces that Ankh-Morpork surrenders unconditionnaly before the war actually begins. He agrees that a treaty, containing numerous benefits for Klatch, will be signed on Leshp, a neutral territory. But Leshp disappears just before the treaty can be signed, suppressing all legitimate reasons for the war and making the treaty impossible to sign.

[ Posted on November 18th, 2007 at 00:17 | no comment | ]

Friday, October 19th, 2007

Roald Dahl's Book of Ghost Stories

Categories: [ Books ]

ISBN: 0140071784

© Amazon.fr

A compilation of ghost stories by Roald Dahl, originally for a TV series project that was finally aborted.

W.S. (L. P. Hartley) Walter Streeter is a novelist. His hateful character, William Stainforth, comes to him as a ghost to take his revenge from having been created so bad a person.

Harry (Rosemary Timplerley) Christine is an adopted daughter. Her brother, who loved her and died saving her life when she was a baby comes as a ghost to take her back.

The Corner Shop (Cynthia Asquith) A man buys for a low price a very valuable object at a gloomy antique shop, from a very dusty looking shop owner. He wants to return part of the money to the owner, but the shop actually belongs to the daughters of the owner, and their father has been dead a long time.

In the Tube (E. F. Benson) A man sees the ghost of another one in the London underground, meets the real man later, and learns about his death in the underground some time later.

Christmas Meeting (Rosemary Timperley) A woman spends Christmas with a neighbor who disappears strangely, and happens to be a ghost. The neighbor, before dying many years ago, had mentionned spending Christmas with a female neighbor who disappeared strangely.

Elias and the Draug (Jonas Lie) Elias is a fisherman who had injured the Draug (a sea demon) confusing him with a seal. Years later, the Draug kills Elias and all his family but his son and adopted daughter.

Playmates (A.M. Burrage) A lonely, adopted girl lives in a former girl's school. She plays daily with the ghosts of the girls who died there of disease years ago.

Ringing the Changes (Robert Aickman) A couple spends their honeymoon in a small village just the day when the villagers ring all the bells to wake the dead. The bride is taken away by the crazy villagers/risen dead and saved by an old sailor who lives there.

The Telephone (Mary Treadgold) A man divorces his wife to go with a younger girl. Later, the ex-wife dies, but the man manages to reach her ghost on the phone at their old house. The new wife asks the ghost for forgiveness and peace and obtains it.

The Ghost of a Hand (J. Sheridan Le Fanu) A ghost of just a hand frightens a whole household.

The Sweeper (A. M. Burrage, as Ex-Private X) Years ago, in order to earn some food, a tramp died sweeping the alley leading to a lady's house. Since then, his ghost comes back sweeping every autumn, each time closer to the house, when he reaches the house, he takes the woman with him.

Afterward (Edith Wharton) A couple lives in a haunted house where the ghost is never to be seen. Only long afterwards one knows it was the ghost. One day, a man comes to the house, and the husband disappears. The man was the ghost of a businessman who commited suicide because he was ruined by the husband. Only long afterwards does the wife understand it was a ghost.

On the Brighton Road (Richard Middleton) A tramp meets a young boy along the road. The boy claims to have died many times already. He's sick, taken to the next city by a driving-by doctor, dies at the hospital. The tramp meets him again on the road the next day.

The Upper Berth (F. Marion Crawford) The upper berth of cabin 105 on the Kamtschatka is haunted by the ghost of a drowned man, driving to suicide all the passengers who sleep in the berth. A man on the lower berth wants to solve this mystery, but the ghost is a real ghost.

[ Posted on October 19th, 2007 at 22:28 | no comment | ]

Saturday, September 22nd, 2007

The Younger Gods

Categories: [ Books/Eddings ]

ISBN: 9780007157693

© Amazon.fr

Fourth and last book of The Dreamers series, The Younger Gods was published by David & Leigh Eddings in 2006.

The Vlagh has decided to attempt a last time to take over the world, this time launching all her bug-children through the Long Pass in Aracia's domain. In order to keep Aracia out of their way, the allies pretend that the attack is going to take place on her temple, and Sorgan and his Maags are sent there to build makeshift forts, while Narasan and the Trogites build real forts in the Long Pass. Sorgan discovers that a woman-looking bug has become a priestess very close to Aracia, and discovers that she tries to compell her to kill her dreamer. Aracia eventually complies, but ceases to exist, because she tried to break the Law forbidding her to kill living being. Meanwhile, Omago discovers that he is not a simple farmer, but a God, the mate of Ara (who is also a Godess), and has erased his memory and started to live as a human to try and understand mankind. In order to get rid of the Vlagh once and for all, he takes Rabbit and Longbow with him to the nest of the Vlagh, impersonates her Voice, and tells all her bug-servants to eat her newborn children, while preventing her to procreate anymore. The Vlagh will then cry the loss of ther children forever. Finally, Omago and Ara change the past so that Longbow's girlfriend is not killed by the Vlagh's servant, and erase the whole story from History.

[ Posted on September 22nd, 2007 at 19:36 | no comment | ]

Tuesday, September 4th, 2007

Masquerade

Categories: [ Books/Discworld ]

ISBN: 0552142360

© Amazon.fr

Eighteenth volume in the Discworld series, Masquerade has been published in 1995 by Terry Pratchett.

Agnes Nitt (who'd rather call herself Perdita X. Dream) doesn't want to become the third witch along with Granny and Nanny (although she has the necessary talent) and leaves to Ankh-Morpork, where she finds a position in the chorus of the Opera. Recently, the phantom of the opera has started to kill people, but even though people are frightened, the Show Goes On. Meanwhile, Nanny and Granny come to Ankh-Morpork in order to recover royalties on Nanny's cookbook. They notice the presence of Agnes in the city, go to the opera, notice that something is wrong, and decide to meddle. Thanks to the money the witches took from the publisher, Granny buys posh clothes and pretends to be a patron of operas, donating a small fortune. They soon discover that the odd job man, Walter Plinge, who is simple minded, actually becomes the ghost as soon as he wears a mask. But the killer is another person and actually the director of music who has been embezelling money for years (which explains why the opera never makes any benefit) and started to get rid of people who discovered his scheme. The witches unmask the killer during a performance, while the audience still thinks it is part of the show. Walter had written musicals while he was hiding in the cellars, the manager loves them, and decides to change the orientation of his opera. The two witches go back to Ankh-Morpork, and Agnes joins them soon and becomes the third witch.

[ Posted on September 4th, 2007 at 23:58 | 1 comment | ]

Sunday, August 26th, 2007

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

Categories: [ Books ]

ISBN: 0747591059

© Amazon.fr

When Harry Potter turns seventeen, the protection charm given by his mother when she died ceases working. The Order of the Phoenix decides to move Harry to a safe location. Ron, Hermione and Harry, according to Dumbledore's will, receive the Deluminator, a book of tales for children and the first snitch caught by Harry. Shortly after that, during the wedding of Bill Weasly and Fleur Delacour, they are attacked by Death Eaters, and Harry, Hermione and Ron flee to London and hide in Sirius's family house, now Harry's property. They discover thanks to Kreacher that the fake locket recovered by Harry and Dumbledore a couple of months earlier has been Sirius's brother's property, and that the real locket was hidden in the house. While the Order of the Phoenix was cleaning the house a year earlier, it had been thrown away, stolen by Kreacher and then by Mundungus Fletcher who sold it to Dolores Umbridge. The three friends then steal the locket from Umbridge, at the Ministry (now under the control of the Death Eaters), and manage to escape miraculously. Their safehouse being compromised, they flee in the countryside, camping and moving all the time. Ron leaves the trio after a fight with his friends. Harry and Hermione decide to go to Godric's Hollow, where Bathilda Bagshot, the great historian of magic leaves, hoping that she would know where Dumbledore had hidden Griffindor's sword, one of the only weapons that can destroy Horcuxes. They fall into a trap and make again a narrow escape. One night, Harry follows a Patronus which leads him to the sword. Thanks to Ron, reappearing just in time, they manage to get the sword and destroy the locket. Later, they go and see Xenophilius Lovegood who knows about a symbol they keep on finding on their path. The symbol represents the Deathly Hallows, which are the Elder Wand, the Resurrection Stone and the Invisibility Cloak. Again, they manage to escape the Death Eaters, warned by Lovegood who is blackmailed through his daughter's life. By mistake, they are later caught by Death Eaters and led to Malfoy's Manor, where they learn that Griffindor's sword is in Bellatrix Lestrange's vault at Gringott's; then they escape and take a few other prisoners with them: Luna, Ollivander and Griphook, a goblin working at Grigott's. Thanks to him, they manage to enter Lestrange's vault at the bank and take Ravenclaw's cup, another Horcrux, but loose the sword. They then go to Hogwarts, where Harry knows that Hufflepuf's diadem is hidden, thanks to his telepathic link to Voldemort. They destroy the cup with a fang of the dead basilisk, still lying in the Chamber of Secrets. Hogwarts is soon under attack by the Death Eaters, but Harry manages to find the diadem and destroy it. He then learns from Snape's memory that he is Voldemort's seventh horcrux, and that he must die in order for Voldemort to become mortal again. He also learns that Snape was in love with his mother, that he left the Death Eaters when Voldemort killed Lily, and was always faithfull to Dumbledore. Dumbledore was dying because of a curse, and Snape had killed him on his own request. Also Snape was the one who lead Harry to the sword in the forest. Harrythen faces Voldemort in the Forbidden Forest, but instead of dying, he meets Dumbledore in a kind of dream, who explains him that Voldemort's body is made partly of Harrys' blood, and that Voldemort could not kill him. Voldemort however killed the part of Harry who was Voldemort's soul. Harry is then taken to Hogwarts as a proof that Voldemort has won, but the defenders of the castle refuse to surrender, and attack the Death Eaters again. Neville Longbottom kills Nagini, Voldemort's snake and last horcrux, then Harry faces Voldemort in a duel and kills him. The epilogue tells about Harry's and Ginny's children going to Hogwarts along with Ron's and Hermione's.

[ Posted on August 26th, 2007 at 22:25 | 1 comment | ]

Sunday, August 12th, 2007

L'immortalité moins six minutes

Translation: [ Google | Babelfish ]

Categories: [ Books ]

ISBN: 2915653372

© Amazon.fr

Tome 0 de la série Quand les dieux buvaient par Catherine Dufour.

Babine-babine est une fée qui s'est laissée envoûter par un miroir magique fabriqué par l'elfe noir qu'elle vient de quitter et qui veut se venger. Pour l'aider, ses deux copines fées Pétrol'Kiwi et Pimprenouche partent dans une quête dans sur la terre qui se trouve entre l'Éther et le Sub-Éther. Dans cette Terre du milieu, elles suivent une compagnie d'aventuriers qui semblent eux aussi poursuivre une quête, dont le but semble aussi être de détruire un artéfact magique. Elles passent la plus grande partie du voyage à observer les autres et à commenter leur comportement irrationel qui leur attire invariablement des ennuis. Vers la fin de leur quête, elles sont distraites par la mort du croque qu'elles avaient rencontré en cours de route et auquel elles s'étaient beaucoup attaché. Dégoûtée par l'injustice du monde, Petrol'Kiwi jette le miroir magique qu'elle a oublié de détruire dans une fosse à purin. Une créature mi-naine, mi-ogre le trouve par hasard, se laisse influencer par le mal qui en suinte, et infecte tous ses semblables, qui commencent peu à peu à ressembler à des humains.

[ Posted on August 12th, 2007 at 15:43 | no comment | ]

Thursday, August 9th, 2007

1633

Categories: [ Books ]

1633 by David Weber and Eric Flint is a sequel to 1632 by Eric Flint.

Mike Stearns is the president of the relocated USA, in 1633 in the middle of Germany. He has sent his wife and his sister as ambassadors to France and to England, trying to guess how Richelieu and Charles I where going to continue the Thirty Years War is going. His sister is imprisonned in the London Tower, under the pretense of being diplomatic guests, while his wife moves to Holland and tries to convice the Dutch that France is going to break their alliance with them in order to let Spain take back the Netherlands. History books telling the future have been spread by someone in Grantville and all the leaders of Europe have read them at least partly. Richelieu's plan is, among other things, to conquer as much as possible terriroty in America, since it is going to be a major political actor in the far future. Meanwhile, people in Grantville are developing their industry and army in order to survive. 19th century style warships are being built in Magdeburg for the Navy, airplanes are built in Grantville and founding a new Air Force. Harbour cities in North Germany are threatened by the Danish fleet, but thanks to the (soon to be dead) american and german heroes, the invasion fleet is repelled. Finally, most German nobles are convicend to give up their nobility titles, and the United States of Europe are being founded.

[ Posted on August 9th, 2007 at 23:56 | no comment | ]

Saturday, July 28th, 2007

Memory

Categories: [ Books/Barrayar ]

Memory has been published in 1996 by Lois McMaster Bujold.

After his Cryo-revival, Miles suffers from random-happening seizures, causing him to injure an ImpSec agent he was saving from kidnappers. He tries to conceal the fact from Illyan, but the latter learns about it anyway, and forces Miles to resign from ImpSec, officially being medically discharged. Some time after that, Miles learns that Illyan, the man who remembers everything thanks to the memory-enhancement chip implanted in his brain, starts to make mistakes, confusing time and events. Illyan finally breaks down completely and is sent to ImpSec's clinic. Miles wants to visit him, Illyan being an old friend of his familly, but he is denied access. Thanks to Gregor, Miles get a temporary Auditor's charge, granting him almost absolute power. Miles then starts to investigate the reasons for Illyan's problems, and convinces Illyan's doctors to surgically remove the chip. Illyan is alive and pysically well, but suffers from short-term memory problems and depression. An analysis of the chip shows that the cause of the malfunction is a very specific bioweapon, designed to destroy these kinds of chips. Miles decide to conduct a thorough internal investigation in ImpSec HQ, and discovers that he is being framed for the attack on Illyan. He manages to get an alibi, and continues the investigation. Next, evidence that a Komarran ImpSec officier, friend of Miles and the son of the man from whom ImpSec took the bioweapon ten years ago, is found and the man is arrested. Miles cannot believe him guilty and goes on investigating. Finally, he remembers the air filters installed in each and every room, which have caught some amout of the bioweapon (which is spore-like). He sets up a trap for the real responsible for this mess, who happens to be the interim head of ImpSec. He finally confesses that he wanted to be head of ImpSec, whereas Illyan had planned to put Miles to the job.

[ Posted on July 28th, 2007 at 14:02 | 1 comment | ]

Wednesday, July 25th, 2007

Les prionniers du Darshan

Translation: [ Google | Babelfish ]

Categories: [ Books/Comics/Troy ]

ISBN: 2849468509

© Amazon.fr

Dixième volume de Trolls de Troy, Les prisonniers du Darshan (II) raconte comment Waha s'échappe de sa prison et libère Teträm et Pröfy, avant de s'enfuire, poursuivis par les troupes de Dame Meshantä. Ils réussissent à lui faire donner des peaux d'un troll blanc adulte au lieu de celles des bébés qu'elle avait fait enlever, ce qui a pour effet de réveiller incomplètement Nymethny. Un vieux sage troll invoque alors Swoog, le dieu des trolls, pour combattre Nymethny, qu'il réussit finalement à vaincre.

[ Posted on July 25th, 2007 at 17:53 | no comment | ]

Monday, July 23rd, 2007

Komarr

Categories: [ Books/Barrayar ]

Komarr has been published in 1998 by Lois McMaster Bujold.

Miles has left the military and has become an Imperial Auditor. He is sent to Komarr to investigate the partial destruction of the soletta, a device orbiting around the planet and concetrate energy from its sun towards the surface. Miles spends some time on the planet's surface time with his co-auditor, at the latter's niece's place. While there, Miles fells in love with Ekaterin (the niece), and learns that her husband (Tien) has been loosing lots of money on bad investments. Miles then discovers that Tien is involved with the people responsible for the destruction of the soletta, taking bribes from them while they embezzel money from a terraforming project under Tien's supervision. Tien being an insufferable husband, Ekaterin decides to leave him, just when the Auditors discover about the embezzelment and Tien's involvment. Tien decides to tell Miles all that he knows, but dies in an accident. The Auditors then discover what hardware had been bought with the embezelled money, and manage to infer its purpose: the four Komarrans involved have built a device that will close permanently the wormhole linking Barrayar to Komarr, its only path to the galaxy, as a revenge for Barrayar's invasion of Komarr several decades ago. The four conspirators are nowhere to be found, since they disappeared concurrently with Tien's death. Meanwhile, Ekaterin has gone to the space station where passengers and goods transit from Barrayar, in order to welcome her aunt. She is seen by one of the Komarran conspirators who takes her hostage with her aunt. Ekaterin manages to destroy the device shortly and call for help, leading Miles to the station. He manages to negotiate with the Komarrans, free the hostages and catch the conspirators. At the end, Ekaterin accepts his invitation to Vorbarr Sultana.

[ Posted on July 23rd, 2007 at 20:18 | 3 comments | ]

Saturday, July 14th, 2007

Cetaganda

Categories: [ Books/Barrayar ]

A novel by Lois McMaster Bujold published in 1994.

Miles and Ivan are sent to Cetaganda as representatives of Barrayar at the funeral of the late Empress. During a weird incident, Miles puts his hands on a mysterious object, and discovers later that it is the Key that opens the genetic database of the Cetagandan nobility, which in turn is necessary for deciding the genomes of the future noble heirs. Miles is contacted by a Lady who wants to get the Key back, but she immediately notices that it is a fake. Miles wants to help her finding the real Key, sensing that this whole story is a plot aiming at creating a diplomatic incident between Barrayar and Cetaganda. The Lady is the chief geneticist of the Empire, and she tells Miles that the late Empress wanted to backup the genetic database by giving copies to the eight planetary governors, each of them believing that he is the only depositary. The plan was only half implemented, and now one of the governors is trying to get it all for himself. After a difficult investigation and several attempts on his life, Miles discovers who the thief is. He goes onto his ship and manages to retrieve the Key. He finally gets the Cetagandan Medal of Honour.

[ Posted on July 14th, 2007 at 23:28 | 1 comment | ]

Wednesday, July 11th, 2007

La sinsé gravite au 21

Translation: [ Google | Babelfish ]

Categories: [ Books/RC Wagner ]

ISBN: 2910899055

© Amazon.fr

Un roman de Roland C. Wagner republié en 1998. Viper est un transporteur spatial indépendant. Achernar VI est une dépendance de la Terre et la seule planète de la galaxie où l'on peut produire des biopuces grâce à son absence de micro-organismes. Suite à une maladresse, Viper contamine la planète puis s'enfuit avec Ganja, une biopuce expérimentale unique en son genre capable de servir d'interface entre n'importe quels systèmes, électroniques ou biologiques. Sur Terre, il est comdamné à payer pour les dégats occasionnés. La Ligue Secrète pour le Désarmement le contacte ensuite pour faire évader un de ses membres de Spirit of America, la planète de Clowns gris, réputés pour leur esprit belliqueux, leur régime totalitaire, leur xénophobie et leur autacisme. Les Clowns gris sont les seuls fabricants d'armes en dehors des terriens, et ils s'apprêtent à envahir, dans un but encore inconnu, une planète voisine de la leur, Nieuw Amsterdam, qui est aussi la seule planète où pousse la sinsé, une herbe très en vogue qui est en passe de remplacer l'alcool, le tabac et le cannabis. Comme Viper a besoin d'argent pour payer son amende, il est forcé d'accepter. En transitant par Stellara, une station spatiale située entre la Terre et la Lune, il rencontre une Stelle qui lui propose de lui fournir un moyen d'entrer sur Spirit of America en échange d'un peu de contrebande. Après quelques péripéties, il arrive sur la planète des Clowns gris, mais l'agent de la ligue n'a pas pu venir à son point de rendez-vous. Viper doit traverser la planète pour aller la chercher (car il s'agit d'une jeune femme, la fille d'un des principaux industriels de la planète). Le retour est semé d'embûches, mais grâce à Ganja, ils parviennent à s'échapper. Ils se rendent ensuite sur Nieuw Amsterdam où ils parviennent à faire évacuer la plupart de la population et à sauver quelques rhizomes de sinsé avant l'attaque, qui avait été avancée. Grâce à des indices accumulés auparavant et à Ganja qui lui permet de s'interfacer avec la plante, Viper comprend que la Sinsé est un organisme intelligent, ce qui explique qu'elle est capable de muter pour s'adapter aux métabolisme des humains et devenir moins toxique. Enfin, les Clowns gris attaquent la planète afin de la stériliser complètement, mais leurs missiles se retournent contre eux, encore une fois grâce à Ganja qui a perverti les IA guidant les missiles. Le plan des Clowns gris était de stériliser Nieuw Amsterdam afin de la que la planète soit utilisable pour y produire des biopuces, la vendre à la Terre, puis s'en emparer afin de s'approprier la technologie des biopuces.

[ Posted on July 11th, 2007 at 17:44 | no comment | ]

Sunday, July 8th, 2007

Interesting Times

Categories: [ Books/Discworld ]

ISBN: 0552142352

© Amazon.fr

Seventeent volume in the Discworld series, Interesting Times has been published in 1994 by Terry Pratchett.

A message coming to Ankh-Morpork from the mysterious Agatean Empire requests the Great Wizzard to be sent there. He is identified as being Rincewind, who is then brought back by magic from the island where he was stranded after his last adventure (thanks to Hex, the supercomputer that can say thousands of location spells in a short period of time), and sent the same way to the Agatean Empire. He there meets a horde of seven elderly barbarian heroes led by Cohen the Barbarian (the Silver Horde), and is soon after taken by the “Red Army”, who is fomenting a revolution in Hunghung, the capital city of the Empire. The legend has it that the Red Army, led by the Great Wizard, would once again free the people from the oppressing emperor, or something like that. Rincewind manages, against his own will, to make them enter the Forbidden City, but they are immediately taken prisoner by the guards. In prison, he meets Twoflowers, and learns that the Red Army's cadres are Twoflower's children; the revolutionary movement itself is based on the book he wrote after his holidays in Ankh-Morpork and which caused him to be sent to prison. The doors of Rincewind's cell open mysteriously, he frees the other Red Army prisoners, and he is forced by Twoflower's daughter to go and try to kill the Emperor. But he is already dead, assassinated by his Grand Vizier, who wants to put the blame onto the Red Army and use the counter-revolution to get himself onto the throne. But the barbarian Horde has already taken the throne, using the fact that not many people know what the emperor looks like and that anybody could actually play his role. But the heads of the five great families who are continuously fighting for the power declare war to the Horde, and they will have to meet on the battlefield the next day, seven against seven-hundred thousands. Rincewind manages to flee the battlefield, but only to enter by accident a huge storage where seven thousand golems made of red clay await someone to use them again (there are bits of magical armour dedicated to that purpose). Rincewind puts the armour on, and leads, without really knowing what he was doing, the original Red Army to the battlefield, provoking a panic in the armies and allowing the Horde to take once again the control of the imperial throne. But Rincewind soon disappears, transported magically again by the wizards of Unseen University. But instead of arriving in Ankh-Morpork as expected, Rincewind lands in XXXX.

[ Posted on July 8th, 2007 at 17:14 | 1 comment | ]

Tuesday, July 3rd, 2007

Onze Racines

Translation: [ Google | Babelfish ]

Categories: [ Books/Comics/Les forets d'Opale ]

ISBN: 2849466441

© Amazon.fr

Cinquième volume de la série Opale publié en 2007. Darko et ses amis sont à la recherche d'un village caché appelé Onze Racines, construit dans la racine d'un des deux arbres géants dans lesquels les Titans avaient érigé des palais. Ils y arrivent, prisonniers des habitants dudit village. Ils y trouvent le dernier sage Shelmilis qui doit enseigner à Darko à se servir du pouvoir de la pierre de son bracelet et de son grimoire. En échange, le sage (qui est une petite créature espiègle) demande que Darko aille réveiller la dernière femelle Shelmilis, endormi dans l'autre palais des Titans et que seul un c½ur pur peut aller chercher. Darko accepte et y va en compagnie de Tara, triomphe des épreuves du gardier et accompli sa mission.

[ Posted on July 3rd, 2007 at 16:38 | no comment | ]

Les trois yeux des gardiens du Tao

Translation: [ Google | Babelfish ]

Categories: [ Books/Comics/Largo Winch ]

ISBN: 2800138610

© Amazon.fr

Quinzième volume de la série Largo Winch, publié en 2007. Largo a autrefois réussi à s'échapper d'une prison chinoise au Tibet grâce à une triade chinoise. Maintenant, la triade lui demande de payer sa dette: il doit voler un parchemin précieux à un homme d'affaire chinois avec lequel il doit justement signer un contrat. Il est découvert en plein forfait, arrêté et envoyé au Tibet dans une prison chinoise.

[ Posted on July 3rd, 2007 at 14:53 | no comment | ]

# Dossier # Mensonges

Translation: [ Google | Babelfish ]

Categories: [ Books/Comics/Alpha ]

ISBN: 2803622491

© Amazon.fr

Dixième volume de la série Alpha, publé en 2007. Une BD qui n'en est pas une avec quelques planches entrecoupées de texte et dessins. L'idée est de présenter le passé d'Alpha : il est le fils d'un espion du KGB infiltré aux États-Unis qui a eu une brève liaison avec la mère d'Alpha. Cet espion est le descendant de nobles russo-finlandais.

[ Posted on July 3rd, 2007 at 14:48 | no comment | ]

Sunday, June 24th, 2007

Soul Music

Categories: [ Books/Discworld ]

ISBN: 0552140295

© Amazon.fr

Sixteenth volume in the Discworld series, Soul Music has been published in 1994 by Terry Pratchett.

Susan, a sixteen years old orphan is the adoptive granddaughter of Death. When Death decides to quit its job and try to understand the concept of forgeting, she inherits her grandfather's special abilities and feels compelled to replace him. At the same time, Imp y Celyn, a musiciam from Llamedos, arrives in Ankh-Morpork and meets Lias the troll and Glod the dwarf, musicians too. Since Imp's harp gor broken, they go to a mysterious music shop and Imp buys a mysterious guitar. Imp and his two new friends start playing in pubs for a handfull of dollars, trying to avoid the representatives of the Guild of Musicians who mercilessly track people who dare to play music without paying the guild's outrageously high fee. The guitar has a kind of magical influence on the band and makes them play a new kind of music that they describe as Music with Rocks in. Susan is present at the concert since Imp is supposed to die there, but for some reason, he doesn't. Later, Imp decides to change his name to Buddy (Imp = bud, celyn = holly) and Lias changes his to Cliff. They meet Dibbler, who becomes their manager and organises a concert tour to Pseudopolis, Sto Lat and Quirm. In exchange, Buddy demands a free music festival, because in his opinion, music should be free and people shouldn't have to pay for it. Dibbler finally accepts, after estimating how many sausages and other products he could sell the the audience, as well as with music recording boxes invented by Ponder Stibbons. During the tour, Buddy becomes more and more apathic, and it becomes clear that the guitar is playing the man during the concerts rather than the other way round. At the end of their concert they decide to flee on a cart, but they got an accident on the road. Death appears again, having learned that he cannot learn how to forget, and returns to his duty, explaining to Susan (who witnessed the accident) that Buddy died already long time ago, but only music was keeping him going, which broke the fabric of reality. With the accident, reality comes back and part of what happened ceases to exist, replaced with another of the possible alternate realities. Susan understands that Buddy/Imp is alive, somewhere, and she event learns eventually where he probably is.

[ Posted on June 24th, 2007 at 20:54 | 1 comment | ]

Monday, June 18th, 2007

xkcd – A webcomic of romance, sarcasm, math, and language.

Categories: [ Books/Comics/Webcomics ]

Very geeky, quite funny.

http://xkcd.com/c184.html

xkcd.com (CC-by-nc)

“In fact, draw all your rotational matrices sideways. Your professors will love it! And then they'll go home and shrink.”

http://xkcd.com/c26.html

xkcd.com (CC-by-nc)

“That cat has some serious periodic components.”

http://xkcd.com/c74.html

xkcd.com (CC-by-nc)

“This one is from the Red Belt collection, of 'medium' difficulty.”

[ Posted on June 18th, 2007 at 14:40 | no comment | ]

Friday, June 8th, 2007

Men at Arms

Categories: [ Books/Discworld ]

ISBN: 0552140287

© Amazon.fr

Fifteenth volume in the Discworld series, Men at Arms has been published in 1993 by Terry Pratchett.

An explosion happens at the assassin's guild. A clown from the neighbour Fool's guild is found dead in the Ankh. A dwarf is found dead in his weaponmaking workshop with a hole instead of his chest. The Night Watch is investigating the case, augmented by three new members, representative of ethnic minorities: Detritus (a troll), Cuddy (a dwarf) and Angua (a woman, and a werewolf). And captain Sam Vimes is depressed because he's going to get married in a couple of days, forced to retire, and in top of that, Vetinari forbids him to investigate the deaths of the dwarf and the clown. The guards soon discover that something labeled “Gonne” has been stolen from the Assassin's Guild museum, that the dead clown has been seen leaving the Guild one day after his death, that the document found in the dwarf's workshop is the formula for a firework powder. While Cuddy and Detritus are investigating together, they are attacked by someone they couldn't see and trapped into a warehouse of future porks which is very cold, and makes Detritus much smarter than usual. Meanwhile, the maid of the head of the Beggar's Guild is killed by the same weapon as the dwarf. Later, Cuddy and Detritus, escaping an angry mob of dwarves and trolls, get lost in the sewers of the city and discover the body of the clown (except that it is not the clown but the thief of the gonne, wearing the same makeup as the clown's). At the same time, Carrot falls in love with Angua (although she's a werewolf and he hates the undead), and Vimes is completely depressed; the Watch then starts to rely on Carrot to take decisions, and since the Day Watch got the order to dismantle the Night Watch, Carrot organises a milicia and starts hiring many new recruits. The next day, Vimes is getting married, and but as the men of the milicia are guarding the surroundings. When the Patrician arrives to the wedding, he's attacked by the holder of the gonne who is shooting from the top of the Tower of the Arts. Cuddy, who had been sent to watch that place, is killed by the shooter. Vimes puzzles out that the killer is Dr. Cruces, the head of the Assassin's Guild (although the dwarf and the clown have been killed by Edward d'Eath, an assassin who wanted to restore the monarchy in Ankh-Morpork and kill all the heads of the guilds. He also discovered that Carrot is the heir of the royal family, whose last king had been killed by an ancestor of Vimes. He had taken the gonne from d'Eath and had been overpowered by the gonne's will to kill everyone). Carrot and Vimes finally meet Cruces in his office, and Carrot eventually kills him. Vimes gets married and becomes Commander of the Watch, Carrot is promoted Captain and the Night Watch is expanded and becomes the only Watch.

[ Posted on June 8th, 2007 at 21:28 | 1 comment | ]

Monday, April 16th, 2007

Which Discworld Character are you like?

Categories: [ Books ]

http://quizfarm.com/test.php?q_id=82543

© QuizFarm.com

You scored as Carrot Ironfounderson. You are Captain Carrot Ironfounderson of the City Watch in the greatest city on the Disc: Ankh-Morprok! A truly good natured, honest guy, who knows everyone, and is liked by all. Technically a dwarf, but only by adoption. You'd rather not be reminded that you are the true heir to the throne, but that does explain why people naturally follow your orders…

  • Carrot Ironfounderson: 50%
  • Gytha (Nanny) Ogg: 50%
  • Esmerelda (Granny) Weatherwax: 38%
  • The Librarian: 38%
  • Lord Havelock Vetinari: 38%
  • Cohen The Barbarian: 25%
  • Commander Samuel Vimes: 25%
  • Death: 19%
  • Rincewind: 13%
  • Greebo: 13%
Which Discworld Character are you like (with pics)

Thank you Samuel

[ Posted on April 16th, 2007 at 14:35 | 1 comment | ]

Wednesday, March 14th, 2007

Manifold: Time

Categories: [ Books ]

ISBN: 034543076X

© Amazon.fr

First volume of the Manifold trilogy, Time has been published in 2000 by Stephen Baxter.

2010. Reid Malenfant, who had been rejected by NASA as an astronaut still dreams to go into space. Since he cannot do it in the traditional way, he decides to build his own space rockets using available technology in order to go mining the asteroids. His ex-wife, Emma Stoney is still working for him as a project manager. One day, Cornelius Taine approaches Malenfant and convices him using a statistical theory that within two years a major catastrophe is going to occur within the next two-hundred years, provoking the end of the world. He is however convinced that if mankind has survived, it will try to send a message back in time. Using a neutrino-based radiotransmission model that allows waves to travel back in time, they manage to pick up a message that directs them to one particular asteroid called Cruithne. Malenfant decides to change his mission goal from an easy to reach, rich in metals asteroid to Cruithne. The first mission sent there is manned by a genetically enhanced squid and discovers the presence of a blue circle that transports the probe traversing it to the future. They discover eventually that humanity has survived, but that in the very far future, matter in the universe is decaying and that mankind barely survives rather than lives. Meanwhile, prodigiously intelligent and slightly autistic children have been born for several years all over the world and seem to affectionate blue rings. Taine is convinced that they are somehow linked to the ring found on Cruithne. While a manned mission counting Malenfant, Stoney, Taine and one “blue child” called Michael is sent to Cruithne just before being arrested by the authorities, the blue children are being feared by the populations of Earth which view them as a new race going to take over humanity in the future. A group of these children, doing advanced research on fundamental physics manages however to escape to the moon. Meanwhile, the party on Cruithne is stranded there after being attacked by the descendant of the squid, which have taken over the asteroid and prepare to migrate to the Trojans (a remote asteroid cluster). Michael steps into the ring and disappears. Later, Military forces from Earth (mainly trying to show that they still control something) attack Cruithne, but all except one soldier are destroyed by the squids. Our heroes escape the wrath of surviving soldier by stepping into the circle. They are transported through parallel universes where the rules of physics are so different that matter cannot necessarily exist, witnessing their Big-Bangs. Each time they step again into the ring, they come a little bit closer to their original universe. Taine then sends back in time the message that would lead them to the exploration of Cruithne. Just after that, the soldier who has followed them finds them and Taine gets killed trying to protect the other two, providing them with the soldier's equipment and allowing them to survive a bit longer. Malenfant and Stoney manage to finally come back to Cruithne, five years after leaving, just in time for Emma to die. Malenfant, feeling responsible for Emma's death because he forced her to come with him to Cruithne, commits suicide while jumping into the circle. During those five years, NASA has built a base on the Moon next to the one built by the blue children, in an attempt to control what they are doing. Malenfant wakes up in what appears to be a hotel room, and meets there Michael, explaining that his conciousness has been transferred into the giant computer that allows humanity to survive in the very far future. Michael tells him that he can change the past, which he gladly accepts. In the new future, Emma is sent to the Moon to negociate with the children who are building a doomsday machine that would destroy the whole universe and recreate a new one. Their goal is to give a new start to this universe, trying to prevent humanity to surviving in horrible conditions in the far future. Floating in space far above the solar system, Michael and him watch the expolsion on the Moon extend to Earth, to the solar system, before being themselves anihilated by it.

This book is similar to 2001: A Space Odyssey in the sense that it starts like a hard science novel but ends up in a psychedelic way. The end is quite depressing (but the alternative predicted there is not really better).

[ Posted on March 14th, 2007 at 19:02 | no comment | ]

Thursday, February 15th, 2007

Plenty of Pratchetts

Categories: [ Books ]

I ordered on Tuesday morning the first thirteen volumes of Pratchett's Discworld series at amazon.co.uk. I already have them in French, but I wanted to compare Patrick Couton's excellent translation with the original English text.

I got an e-mail at 7pm the same day that the first three ones had been sent using International Mail. Wednesday at 4pm, I got another mail that the remainder of the order had been sent using DHL express. This morning at 8.30am, the DHL guy came to deliver the package, which came from Glasgow. That's faster than light! (on the Disc, of course). Of course, the price of the delivery was accordingly prohibitive, but it seems to have been the lowest possible. The same delivery fees was applied to both halves of my order, even though the second was probably much more expensive than the first.

[ Posted on February 15th, 2007 at 13:29 | no comment | ]

Monday, January 15th, 2007

Le râle du flibustier

Translation: [ Google | Babelfish ]

Categories: [ Books/Comics/Troy ]

ISBN: 2849466417

© Amazon.fr

Sixième volume de Lanfeust des étoiles, publié en 2006. Thanos, pirate de l'espace au service du prince Delhu aborde avec l'aide d'Hébus le troll, enchanté et soumis à Thanos, un transport d'animaux rares pour s'emparer d'un pwoalp, animal qui permet à celui qui s'est fait mordre de voir l'avenir. Pendant ce temps, Lanfeust qui a voyagé seize ans vers le futur doit s'habituer à avoir un fils adolescent qui le déteste et Cixi, devenue une redoutable femme d'affaires, remplaçant la princesse Ophredla qui avait perdu son corps durant une bataille contre Thanos. Les princes marchands se sont organisés en deux factions, ceux qui sont sous la coupe de Delhu et ceux qui s'y opposent. Delhu est un fait un pathaselse, créature polymorphe, qui a pris place du vrai Delhu longtemps auparavant et est en train de remplacer les autres princes marchands par des imposteurs pataselses un par un. Lanfeust a ramené de sa précédente aventure la bectérie gawlax, seule maladie capable de terrasser un pataselse et les partisans d'Ophredla organisent un attentat contre Delhu qui échoue. Ils sont attaqués par les pataselses et parviennent de justesse à s'enfuir. La guerre éclate dans la galaxie entre les deux factions et l'épisode se termine sur l'enlèvement du fils de Lanfeust par Thanos.

[ Posted on January 15th, 2007 at 00:44 | no comment | ]