1. prelude: josh didn't read anything.
  2. chris: on basilisk station. david weber.

    1. verdict: ++
    2. review:

      "oh, that guy." the first in a series of 13 books "in the main
      storyline," the "honor harrington" series. if you've ever read any of
      the horatio hornblower books, then you've basically already read
      these. (the same initials are not a coincidence.) she's a captain in
      the royal manticorean navy. "enough of this fantasy nonsense, i'm
      gonna read something with a bunch of spaceships and stuff." they read
      very fast. sex? no. spacefighting? yes. "there's some hand-to-hand
      combat in the second book." he will be reading more of these books.

  3. aaron: divergent. veronica roth.

    1. verdict: +
    2. review:

      young adult, dystopian, he wanted to read something like the hunger
      games only good. chicago area author, debut novel. everyone's in a
      different faction based on their abilities, there are some kind of
      virtual reality "tests", i don't really know what for, but yeah, they
      have tests. sounds like an rpg. anyway, the tests reveal that the main
      character (a teenage girl) is one of a few people who are "divergent,"
      i.e., not fitting into a faction. so there's a revolution. i mean, not
      because of this divergence business, but just coincidentally. it's the
      opposite of hunger games in some ways. in the hunger games, nobody has
      inner lives. in this book, it's all inner lives.

  4. interlude:

    hunger games throwdown between adam and aaron, featuring
    interjections from chad and jeff.

  5. chris and chad: 1q86. haruki murakami.

    1. verdict: meh/+
    2. review:

      it's a murakami novel, so it's 25% dissociative females, 10% ears, 5%
      jazz music, ... "he's made great strides in muscle stretching."
      "there's a lot of muscle stretching." "there an incredible about of
      awkward sex." "there's a lot of mother's boobs getting sucked by
      dudes." honestly, i'm pretty saddened that this is what we're
      getting. well, i thought so anyway, but then we got some serious
      comments, and it was boring, so i didn't write it down. what can i
      say, i'm hard to please.

  6. adam and conor: the hunger games, etc. suzanne collins.

    1. verdict: +
    2. review:

      ok, here we go again. "it's very reminiscent of battle royale."
      yep. but she "kinda takes it in a new direction." we've heard about
      this before. anyway, basically adam is just talking straight to
      aaron. chad thinks this was in the first person just because of
      twilight. the exposition was poor. adam didn't like the second
      book. neither did conor. "what i like most about the third book is
      that you really get a feeling for the capital." so, basically, "if
      she's a d-bag, is there a moral center at all?" apparently, the moral
      center is the nice guy. i dunno.

  7. conor: wraeththu, etc. storm constantine.

    1. verdict: ++
    2. review:

      post-apocalyptic early 90s business. starts in the midst of the
      post-apocalypse or the apocalypse or whatever. the young people go
      through some kind of genetic metamorphosis, in which the men become
      both male and female. the old folks try to kill them but they're
      fighting back and have certain powers. living in extremity, the young
      become very tribal, maybe feral. there's sex magik. the character
      development is great, the development of the social organization is
      great. (the editor highly recommends a google image search for
      "wraeththu", a hunch that paid off most handsomely.) basically, seems
      like a rallying post for androgynous goths, no judgement intended.

  8. paul: iron council. china mieville.

    1. verdict: -
    2. review:

      "can i bitch about iron council?" YES. this is the first mieville that
      the reviewer has disliked. he loved the scar, so... but this
      sucked. it felt like a first book. all mieville's personal stuff was
      just laid out on the page, all the socialism and stuff was just so
      overt and heavy-handed. there was no subtext. just bam all over your
      face. discussion ensues. finally, "it's just not as delicate as the
      others." to which, "it's not delicate at all." so if finesse is what
      you like about mieville, i guess this book isn't the place to look.

  9. that's all, folks.