January 27th, 2010

usa

Linkspam for 27-1-2010

  • The only hope you have of ever seeing another pay raise is if Congress passes health care reform. Without health care reform, the increasing cost of your health insurance will swallow this year's raise. And next year's raise. And pretty soon it won't stop with just your raise. Without health care reform, the increasing cost of your health insurance will start making your pay go down.
    (tags: ushealth)
earthsea

January Books 23) The Turing Test, by Chris Beckett

As a fan of Beckett's stories back when I still read Interzone (must pick that up again) and a booster of his first novel, The Holy Machine, I was delighted to hear that this collection had won a major prize, and made sure to get my hands on a copy. As I had hoped and expected, it is very good; I like Beckett's writing for the same reason I like Brian Aldiss, that very English way of looking askance at the world as it is and as it could be. Particular gems here include the fading provincial horrors of "Monsters", "Karel's Prayer" which is a Philip K. Dick piece for our times, and "The Marriage of Sky and Sea" whose unpleasant protagonist gets exactly what he asks for. There's also a flattering introduction by Alastair Reynolds. Well worth hunting down.
rebus

January Books 24) Let It Bleed, by Ian Rankin

Another good one from Rankin, where three bizarre suicides unlock a festering mess of corruption and evil within the Edinburgh political scene. I was not quite convinced that as smart a guy as Inpector Rebus should have so little knowledge of the way the Scottish political system works, even in the obscure days before 1999, but I suppose this was a bit of "as-you-know-Bob" for Rankin's wider readership. There are some memorably horrible moments as well involving the Scottish weather, and the gruesome fate of Lucky the cat.

Top LibraryThing Unsuggestion: Mythology: Timeless Tales of Gods and Heroes by Edith Hamilton