Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Book Review - The Wish List

A few days ago I read my sister’s Christmas gift, a book titled The Wish List a short novel by Eoin Colfer, the acclaimed writer of the ingenious (in my opinion) Artemis Fowl series.

The Wish List tells the story of a Meg, a fifteen-year-old girl, who, for the most part, hasn’t been that good. However, one last act of goodness, (a pretty big one), has given her the chance to evade eternal damnation in Hell, but it wasn’t big enough to get her past those Pearly White Gates of heaven. While stuck in limbo between Heaven and Hell she discovers that she has a chance to get to heaven. She goes back to help the old man she saved, a man who has had a pretty rotten life and is currently dying of heart disease.

As with the Artemis Fowl novels, Mr. Colfer does a great job of creating a sarcastic, annoying, protagonist, as well as adding a annoying computer genius who is to important to kill. While the character types are great, when looking back, one realizes that they were not unique, and were more or less the same characters with slightly different names (and races and genders). I’m not saying this is a bad thing, but when reading a novel, especially one that is not a sequel or continuation of a series, I expect it to have its own uniqueness, which The Wish List lacks.

This can go both ways however, Colfer’s characters, though perhaps cliché, are real, and though the book is short and his characters are, for the most part, pretty 2d, Colfer manages to make you like the protagonists right from the start.

The book was short. It had large print and barely 200 pages, though perhaps longer than most pocket-book novels. I read it in a day, in perhaps 3-4 hours. I’m not sure what the price was, and I know that it was inflated due to the important taxes we pay on books here (Bangladesh, for those who forgot), still, I have a feeling that you might consider buying this book before doing so, especially if you haven’t read any of the Artemis Fowl books.

The Wish List, though short, and perhaps did not live up entirely to my expecations, was still a great novel. Colfer manages to, in a short time, develop several entertaining characters, and put them in perhaps unreal, but nonetheless funny siduations.

Final Rating 7/10

Friday, February 16, 2007

My Thailand Trip

Yes, I left Thailand over a week ago… still, I might as well tell you guys (I hope I can use plural here) what I did there.

First off, the airport in Dhaka was packed, fog had backed up the entire airport, and all the flights were delayed. When we finally got on the plane I enjoyed my meal and my novel (Inheritance by Steven Savile, a vampire story).

Then we flew to Bangkok, and then to Changmai, where we were going to have our Conference (I can’t say what conference it was for security reasons… we called it the “Family Conference”).

It was fun, worship ROCKED! (Like when 4him play at church, only for 4 days in a row). And the childcare was great… the best thing though was that there were kids (okay, teens) there my age (Dave 17, and Sam 12 I think) were the two guys I hung out with. They were both really, really fun. I had met Sam a few years ago at another Conference, and Dave was awesome.

One of the cool things about being in Changmai was that I got to see Matt Scott and Caleb, it was neat, and I saw Caleb several times because his dad was there, but I only saw Matt once.

The best thing about the Conference was Paintballing. We went paintballing with this Local YWAMer, Shaun, and it rocked, 2 teams of 6 with good guns (not like the crap things that were super heavy we used here). However, my team wasn’t that good, it was sorta a bit of bad luck, but we didn’t win any of our 3 games (though I would say only the 3rd game was really “even”). I got hit on the upper leg once and the face mask several times (like 4). After those games I played against Shaun with the remaining bullets while everyone else rode ATVs… which they all enjoyed.

Oh, we also went to this cool natural waterfall for my sister’s birthday… that was pretty fun.

Anyways… don’t know what my next post will be on… maybe a little about Warhammer Fantasy Role Play, my latest obsession.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Leman Russ

Well blog, its been awhile. Sorry I haven’t worked on you for a while, WAY to many things have been happening, including school. Anyways, here’s that thingie on Leman Russ I said I’d do.

Name: Leman Russ

Legion: Space Wolves (Legion #6)

Homeworld: Feris


Leman Russ was first discovered by the humans on the feral and savage world of Feris living among a group of wolves (like Mongli in the Jungle Book), he was name Leman of the Russ (his adopted tribe).

As all primarchs, Mr. Russ soon began to conquer his homeworld, and by the time the Emperor had heard of his exploits, Leman of the Russ was the greatest warrior on Fenris.

The Emperor needed to prove that this man was a primarch, one of his lost sons, so, he disguised himself and went to Fenris saying that he could be any man at 3 competitions of that man’s choosing. Naturally, Leman disagreed, HE was the greatest man alive! So he challenged the Emperor at one of the many feasts in his castle.

Trial Number 1: Drinking! Leman drained his entire cellar of alcohol, something the Emperor couldn’t, or didn’t do. Trial Number 2: Eating! Dear Russ ate three entire deer! Once again, the Emperor couldn’t, or didn’t match him. But, the Emperor was so disgusted with this supposed “great” man that he called him a glutton and a drunk, so angry was Leman at this that he grabbed his sword and rushed at the Emperor, saying that the 3rd trial would be a duel.

So they fought, it only took the Emperor a moment to realize that Leman was defiantly a primarch, but he let the fight continue. Finally, when he desired to end it, with a blow from his powerfist, he smashed Leman Russ against the wall of his castle, a blow that would have killed a normal man. However, Leman simply got up, and then, realizing who the Emperor was, swore an oath of allegiance to him!

Leman was given the 6th Legion of Space Marines, and promptly named them the Space Wolves. Leman threw his Space Wolves into the great crusade, gaining a reputation for being fierce warriors, if not slightly unstable.

Many exploits are told about the Space Wolves and their primarch, like how Leman Russ destroyed a Titan by himself and how he stuck Lion’el Johnson (Primarch of the Dark Angels) across the face when he angered him. To this day there is enmity between those two chapters (they’re now chapters at least).

At the beginning of the Horus Heresy Leman Russ was ordered to bring the Thousand Sons to justice after they and their Primarch (Magnus the Red, a one eyed giant), had refused to give up sorcery. This battle was tragic because, though Magnus did indeed use sorcery, he was, at the time loyal to the Emperor.

Though the Space Wolves won the battle, it left them at the far edge of Imperial Space during the Heresy and thus they were unable to aid the Emperor in the Siege of the Emperor’s Palace on Holy Terra.

During the aftermath of the Heresy, when the Codex Astartes was drawn up, Leman Russ refused to accept it, in particular that the legions be broken up into smaller units of 1000 each, called chapters. In fact, he went the farthest of all the Primarchs who disagreed with it (reportedly Vulkan of the Salamanders, though he had less than a chapter remaining by the end of the Heresy, and Rogal Dorn of the Imperial Fists). Though in the end both Dorn and Vulkan accepted the Codex Leman Russ never did, and though he created the Wolf Brothers second founding chapter, the chapter met with ill luck and in fact no longer exists today.

Leman Russ was last reported seen during the Feast of the Emperor’s Accession on Fenris. During the feast Leman received a vision, after which he gave orders to his Wolf Guard bodyguards, then announced he was leaving and would return for the final battle of Wolftime.

Thus ends the tale of Leman Russ, the most beloved of the Primarchs… oh, one more thing… he’s so cool, he’s got a tank named after him, the Leman Russ Main Battle Tank of the Imperial Guard.

Monday, February 5, 2007

In Thailand

Hey all,

Just wanted to say that I'm in Thailand, and well, enjoyin myself, met an old friend, and I'll call Caleb today, around 4, which'll be cool, I probably invite him to spent the 9th with my family.

Anyways, right now I'm mooching off a wireless conection, writing my novel, and at the same time listening to Kutless, Heart of the Innocent, man, these guys rock!

I'll probably post something on Russ in a few days.

PS Brian, could you send me an email using your Hebron account, I lost it.