23 Following

Writing and Reading and Editing, O My!

I am a writer, reviewer, teacher, and editor. I pick up and discard new obsessions on a regular basis. Right now I'm wild about the work of Brandon Sanderson and Bryce Moore. Longer-running favorites include Patricia McKillip and Mary Gentle. Information about me and my humble scribblings may be found at http://www.leonawisoker.com

Currently reading

Writing the Breakout Novel
Donald Maass, Anne Perry
What Would Aristotle Do? Self-Control Through the Power of Reason
Elliot D. Cohen
Coyote Wisdom: Healing Power in Native American Stories
Lewis Mehl-Madrona
Plants of Power: Native American Ceremony and the Use of Sacred Plants
Alfred Savinelli
Tolkien and the Study of His Sources: Critical Essays
Jason Fisher
The Wizard of Oz as American Myth: A Critical Study of Six Versions of the Story, 1900-2007
Alissa Burger
The Unofficial Downton Abbey Cookbook
Emily Ansara Baines
Oy Vey! Isn't a Strategy: 25 Solutions for Personal and Professional Success
Deborah Grayson Riegel
Caution: Faulty thinking can be harmful to your happiness: logic for everyday living
Elliot D Cohen

Flutter: An Epic of Mass Distraction

Flutter: An Epic of Mass Distraction - Zachary Steele A terrific followup to Anointed; this one had me laughing throughout. Then again, so did Anointed. I understand the author's planning a third book to wrap up the last few loose ends; I can't wait to see it!
The Urban Fantasy Anthology - Charles de Lint, Carrie Vaughn, Francesca Lia Block, Tim Powers, Susan Palwick, Joe R. Lansdale, Thomas M. Disch, Suzy McKee Charnas, Bruce McAllister, Jeffrey Ford, Emma Bull, Steven R. Boyett, Al Sarrantonio, Peter S. Beagle, Neil Gaiman, Norman Partridge, Kelley Armst Full review up on Green Man Review: http://greenmanreview.com/books/beagle-and-lansdale-the-urban-fantasy-anthology/
Tintin in the Land of the Soviets - Hergé, Leslie Lonsdale-Cooper, Michael Turner Full review up at Sleeping Hedgehog: http://sleepinghedgehog.com/graphic-novels-comics/herge-the-adventures-of-tintin-reporter-for-le-petit-vingtieme-in-the-land-of-the-soviets/
Mastering Cheese: Lessons for Connoisseurship from a Maître Fromager - Max Mccalman, David Gibbins Full review posted at: http://sleepinghedgehog.com/edibles/max-mccalman-and-david-gibbons-mastering-cheese/
The Literary Handyman: Tips on Writing From Someone Who's Been there - Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Ty Drago Danielle has a gift for putting writing tips and tricks in simple, straightforward, and reassuring ways. Her vivid, funny personality comes through clearly in this book, as well as in her fiction; I found it an enjoyable read and would strongly recommend it to all my writing-inclined friends.
Baltimore,: Or, The Steadfast Tin Soldier and the Vampire - 'Mike Mignola',  'Christopher Golden' Full review located here: https://leonawisoker.wordpress.com/2011/05/25/golden-mignola-baltimore/
Strange Little Band - Nancy Brauer, Vanessa Brooks I initially picked up this book because I met one of the authors, Nancy Brauer (the other is Vanessa Brooks), at a convention. I liked Nancy as a person; then I attended one of her readings, in which she read the first two chapters of this novel, and I liked what I heard. I decided to pick the book up in eBook format, because I'm always really leery of self-published books.

To my delight, the formatting, grammar and such were all very clean and there were very few typos. Best of all, the rest of the story -- about an unlikely couple, their children, and their fight to control their own lives -- proved to be as good as the beginning. The characters are well-detailed and the plot thoroughly interesting. It's very well-written, but definitely isn't a book for children or for the easily offended.

I enjoyed it very much and would recommend it to those who like dark science-fantasy romances with a hefty dose of fairly explicit sex thrown in. Nancy described this as "probably the least sappy romance you'll ever read", and I have to agree with that assessment. I'm also going to be keeeping an eye on this collaborative pair in the future!
Anthopology 101: Reflections, Inspections And Dissections Of Sf Anthologies - Bud Webster I love this book! The author has a great grasp of the history of science-fiction, and has prompted me to go searching for some of the old stories I'd almost forgotten about, as well as intriguing me into searching out others I'd never heard of. I highly recommend it for anyone who has read the "old" science fiction storie and wants to know some of what lies behind the curtain, so to speak. (Great present for other old-school SF fans too... *ahem*)
The Stories in Between: A Between Books Anthology - Greg Schauer, Jeanne B. Benzel, W.H. Horner, Maria V. Snyder, John Passarella, Gregory Frost, Catherynne M. Valente, C.J. Henderson, Jonathan Carroll, Mike McPhail, Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Patrick Thomas, Lawrence M. Schoen, Lawrence C. Connolly, Don Bethman, Jon McGor This is a very good collection of short stories from up-and-coming as well as established authors. I particularly liked Lawrence M. Schoen's contribution, "The Wrestler and the Spear Fisher" (very mythic-legendary in structure); John Passarella's "Blood Alone" (makes me want to pick up the rest of his Wendy Ward stories); Jonathan McGoran's "Appetite" (well-crafted spookiness); Jeffrey J. Mariotte's "Janey in Amber" (REALLY spooky); C.J. Henderson's "The Wonderous Boundless Thought" (C.J. is so damn GOOD at short stories, I don't know how the man does it!), and of course Catherynne M. Valente's "Proverbs of Hell" (is there such a thing as a bad Valente short story?).

I found all the stories in this book interesting, unusual, and entertaining. I definitely recommend picking this one up!

The Traveler in Black (Ace SF Special)

The Traveler in Black - John Brunner I absolutely adore the stories in this setting I have read; these are probably the ones that got me started on loving fantasy fiction, in fact. I want to get my hands on this book!!

Legends Of The Rainbow Warriors

Legends of the Rainbow Warriors - Steven McFadden Full review at the Sleeping Hedgehog: http://sleepinghedgehog.com/books/tales-of-the-whirling-rainbow/
Cod: A Biography of the Fish that Changed the World - Mark Kurlansky My full review of "Cod" is at Sleeping Hedgehog: http://sleepinghedgehog.com/books/mark-kurlansky-cod-a-biography-of-the-fish-that-changed-the-world-penguin-books-1998/
Create Dangerously - Edwidge Danticat Full review on Sleeping Hedgehog: http://sleepinghedgehog.com/books/create-dangerously-the-immigrant-artist-at-work/

Milk of Almonds, The: Italian American Women Writers on Food and Culture

The Milk of Almonds: Italian American Women Writers on Food and Culture - Edvige Giunta, Louise DeSalvo, Edvige Guinta ,a href="http://www.greenmanreview.com/book/book_desalvo_milk.html"> Review is up at Green Man Review
Ivan and Marya - Anna Kashina Review up at Green Man Review
Hades' Daughter - Sara Douglass Review is up at Green Man Review