January 1st, 2015


Another book about machine learning, in Python this time, which was more a manual of using a particular bit of software rather than actually explaining very much, didn't get very far with it.
Constellation Games - Leonard Richardson. This, as you know professor, is a novel about alien contact with Earth through the eyes of a game developer / reviewer. The protagonist gets access to millions (?) of years of video games from various civilisations - the alien ship has representatives of most species found in the manner of Anathem - the schtick here is that most of the civilisations they encounter are dead. It is obvious from early on in the novel that there wasn't going to be a very profound ending and indeed there isn't. I liked it though. Smartphones and beyond: Lessons from the remarkable rise and fall of Symbian - David Wood. Liked this, reviewed it at the time.
Undercover Mormon: A Spy in the House of the Gods - Th. Metzger. Intended to be funny but wasn't particularly. I was hoping he would get further into Mormanism than he did.
The Accident - Chris Pavone. This is sort of a sequel to The Expat, except that the protagonist of The Expat turns out to be a minor character and ***SPOILER*** her boss turns out to be a bad guy. I remember essentially nothing about this other than I didn't think it was nearly as good as The Expats.
Raspberry Pi RISC OS System Programming Revealed Part 1- Bruce Smith. Demonstrates clearly why we are not all using RISC-OS, and that I have no desire to run it on a Raspberry Pi.
The Violent Century - Lavie Tidhar. A parallel world in which superheroes are created by an 'event', set in WW2. Very good but very grim, rather stalled on this.
The Last Day of Christmas: The Fall of Jack Parlabane (short story)- Chris Brookmyre. Completely without merit. Presumably a prequel to a forthcoming novel. The Parlabane books were black comedies whereas this was a tedious angry rant. Slightly odd as the Jasmire Sharp novels have been a return to his early form.
The Peripheral - Bill Gibson - Drones and trailer trash. We have been here before. Stalled on this too.
Being for the benefit of Mr Kite - Douglas Lindsay. Now, this was bizarre. This was recommended by Amazon so I bought it, having forgotten that I bought one of his earlier books via an Amazon recommendation and absolutely hated it. A time travel fantasy more than SF involving someone wishing himself out of a crashing plane. Rather good actually though somewhat inconsequential and no attempt to explain the paradox.
Foxglove Summer - Ben Aaronovitch. Come on someone, give the man a TV series.