Sunday, April 24, 2011

'Getting shot, in a way, was my fault'



I was sitting in the Denver airport for my connection flight from San Diego to Minneapolis when I turned to a sample noir story from Indian Country Noir in my Sony Reader that I use for work. I always think of Western states at the mention of Indians so I was pleasantly reminded that Native Americans are on the East Coast, including some of my ancestors (duh!). Joseph Bruchac's 'The Helper' takes place near Albany, NN in the mid-1930s. This guy, a WWI vet, named the shrapnel in his body his 'helper' that twinges when something is amiss. And is it ever! His childhood sounds worse than serving in WWI, so you know he's a tough dude, and thank goodness for that!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Wild Turkey on Broadway (MPLS)



This little lady was messing with my commute this morning as she was trying to cross the bridge portion of Broadway. We've been watching her outside the office today as she safely made it to the parking lot. It's funny how such wild turkey sitings have become more common within city limits. I think she's too big for the young bald eagle that's roosting up here on the Mississippi, and Kirby the Kestrel at Target Field is too famous and probably too well-fed now that baseball season is back!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

'New York had all but emptied over the last year.'


I was reading The Dewey Decimal System during ALA Midwinter in San Diego, so this full novel noir is apt! You know, librarians! At the time it was a galley but it's out now.

Some years after a terrorist attack on New York City (no, not that one), a man who was messed with at Walter Reed is an assassin with some serious OCD. Granted, it seems to be useful in keeping alive, perhaps a sort of Bushido code only he calls it 'The System.' He's got a gig with a city government official who keeps him in medicine, and he lives in the main branch of the New York Public Library, using his free time putting the books back in order, earning him the name Dewey Decimal.

Readers who love NYC will like this book best with the clever portrayal of near-future dystopia looking back on when times were good -- you know, 2010. Eek.

Actual librarians might be disappointed that he isn't sorting books much, but he is sorting out some mysteries! Get it? Get it? All the action, gunplay, and puzzling back-stabbing is excellent for readers who like things moving fast. Plus, it reminds me of Preparedness Now, a sort of survivalist guide for the rest of us (it is part of a series of books that have had recent sales boosts from the threat of radiation reaching North America from Japan). In fact, I even pictured its author, Aton Edwards as Dewey, only scrawny from years of homelessness. Sorry, Mr. Edwards! You can see him on a clip of 'The Today Show.'

Fun fact about Dewey Decimal System author (& musician if you're thinking his name is really familiar) Nathan Larson: he's married to the lead singer of The Cardigans who an ex-boyfriend of mine was crazy about, a bit to my annoyance. Gee, I was silly!