All Men of Genius by Lev A.C. Rosen
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
This book stands on its own, but as you've no doubt read in other reviews / previews, it's also a mashup of Twelfth Night and The Importance of Being Earnest. Related to Oscar Wilde's personal issues, and the masquerade / hidden (sexual) identity in Twelfth Night, All Men... has alternate sexuality as plot points. None of it is "R" rated, I think, but perhaps a strong PG-13.
Readers with tenaciously held convictions regarding traditional sexuality may be more or less offended. Readers with less concern with those matters will not be bothered.
The story involves Violet Adams who wants to attend the premier science institution, Illyria College, where only men are accepted as students. She pretends to be her brother (the names of the character and the college are deliberate, not to say obvious allusions to 12th Night). All Men of Genius is not a pioneer after 12th Night using sexual disguise as a plot device. For example, in the first Alanna book in the series by Tamara Pierce, the plot point is exactly the same with all the complications involved for a teen girl trying to pass as a teen boy.
Along side the difficulties and confusions of Violet's progress in science academics is also the couples / mating "rituals" in an alternate Victorian England. This too, is well done. Like much of science fiction, it speaks to issues of today's culture through a lense of an alternate time.
The struggles involved in invention, discovering and fighting an elitist scientific club's plan to take over England and then the world provide page turning thrills. Many readers will finish quickly to appeaase their desire to discover "what happens next".
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Thursday, October 17, 2013
All Men of Genius by Lev A.C. Rosen
Saturday, October 5, 2013
First of all, I get distracted by words like shiny objects or the exclamation, "Squirrel!" I was walking along and I saw the phrase, "100 years ..." and then I was past it.
Although I confess, I have not read the book, the first thing that came to me as I thought on the flashed phrase was "100 Years of Solitude." Then I thought of plays on that title--100 Years of Attitude, 100 Years of Certitude, etc.
So I looked for a rhyming dictionary online to help me come up with other amusing word mash-ups to see what meanings might result. RhymeZone rhyming dictionary at http://www.rhymezone.com/ is woefully inadequate. I'll just say it. Even if you ask it to search for near rhymes, if finds fewer words that I can think of off the top of my head.
The WriteExpress Online Rhyming Dictionary at http://www.writeexpress.com/online2.html works much better and came up with words I was expecting to see, including one syllable words that you could add to a phrase as well as the three syllable words that fit exactly into stress and rhyme pattern of solitude.
Oh. And another spoof title thought up by a colleague: 100 Years of Running Nude.
Saturday, August 31, 2013
I submit for your consideration, "I Think We Are Closed, Now," wrenched from Tommy James and the Shondells' "I Think We're Alone Now," also covered in the 80's by Tiffany.
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That's what we say when we are closing
And don't let's delay
Let's close like we planned
And so we're checking out as fast as we can...
Giving to you a helping hand
Trying to get away into the night
And then you gather up your items and you wander to the door
And then we say, "I think we are closed, now
There doesn't seem to be anyone around.
"I think we are closed now,
The beating of our hearts is the only sound."
The song ends there, because when you're making closing motions, people really don't want a two or three minute radio ditty. About a minute is enough inflict on people without rousing their annoyance beyond having been interrupted in their task and being asked to leave in the first place.
Tuesday, June 25, 2013
science news stories making the meme rounds.
Let me imagine that the following is suitable for any debate using behavior of animals in nature to support any advocated human behavior in society. I'm not getting all caveman flame by any means. However, I do wonder does this mean anything that shows up in nature is appropriate for some analogous behavior in human society, or only ones that seem sensible to the people looking at it? How is that different from the majority or the most vocal doing what is right in their own eyes? If we get to claim support from this natural phenomenon, does not anyone else get to claim support from any other natural phenomena they find that support their opinion on some issue? To be entirely fair, I do think God should be credited and charged with the saves and the losses in natural disasters: I just don't think it is rhetorically useful to cherry pick part of an evidence while discounting similar evidence that doesn't fit the position. At that point, just say you're right and events in nature don't justify nor condemn anything in human society.
Sunday, June 23, 2013
"Sprained ankle of the heart"--certainly sprains ache and hearts ache. And the way that sprained ankles can keep paining you for months or years after the initial injury fits how an heart ache can do. So it seems to me that it should work as a metaphor, but it just doesn't. It' lacks that "Aha!" moment that the best metaphors have. Maybe, you could have a working metaphor if you just referred to "sprained my heart," but I'm still not convinced. It would have the immediate relation to "break my heart." So, like you can sprain a joint or break its bone--sprained ankle, broken ankle--you could have "sprained heart," "broken heart." I'm just not sure if that works or works enough.
Friday, June 21, 2013
It's funny how one thing can lead to another. I was practicing finding, checking out and reading on line magazines from the library's Zinio service. This is work related, because I have to be able to show patrons how to do all the steps and get it downloaded to their tablet, ereader, or smartphone. And let me tell you, it's complicated to annoy even me, so you can imagine it's not going to be, shall we say, "intuitive" for many patrons fresh on the Internet.
Anyway, I was looking at Mental Floss, which is one of the available free to check out and keep magazines on the library's collection of Zinio magazines. While looking at the pages, one of the letters to the editor said something about pg 64 in a previous issue. Page 64 was a link, and I clicked it to see if it would take me to the past issue. No such luck. What it did do was take me to page 64 in the current issue.
While that was not a useful link to see what the letter writer was referring to, it was a page that had a small article about The Exquisite Corpse Project, which is a movie based on a parlour game with a twist. From the article (on pg 64 of the July-August 2013 issue of Mental Floss): A segment called The Rules done by Ben Popik and his sketch comedy group might go like this--pick 3 of the worst experiences in your life, write a sketch based on them, you have 5 minutes, start NOW. The article says that the results were usually (always?) horrible, but watching the process made it great and funny.
For The Exquisite Corpse Project, Popik asked his former comedy team to write 15 pages of script after seeing only 5 pages of the script section before the section each member was to write. According to the movie webpage, they'd only agree if he committed to making the movie if they scripted it that way. He did; they did; it's out there.
Page 64 of Mental Floss (remember when we were there?) included a link to a blog where one can download the movie (for $5.00). At the blog is a link to Tugg or something that has a make a reservation for a movie theater showing link If you're near Portland, Oregon, in time, it'd be great to go. (Plus they need 43 more reservations to actually have the screening take place there. Search for other screening appearances if PDX is too far away. But the venue is really cool!
Join me at this @Tugginc screening of The Exquisite Corpse Project!: Join me at this @Tugginc screening of The Exquisite Corpse Project!
Saturday, June 8, 2013
|The names have been hidden to protect the guilty.|
Perhaps the corporate sponsor was 3M.
Attention to Detail Deficit Disorder.