Age of Death by Michael J. Sullivan My rating: 3 of 5 stars It pains me to write this but I didn’t really like “Age of Death”. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not a bad book per se. It’s just that it feels flat and – ironically – lifeless. That’s probably why it took me almost a month to finish it. “Age of Death” starts where Age of Legend, the previous book, left off with a huge cliffhanger. Now our heroes move on into...

The Darker Arts by Oscar de Muriel My rating: 1 of 5 stars I read one book at a time, always. I simply cannot just “switch” from one book to another anymore. So, if I hit a rotten tomato I tend to actually read less. I’m typing this on my iPhone. A minute ago, I found myself wondering and thinking, “I usually read at a time like this.” – while I was playing a game. Then it began to dawn on me: ‘How much must you despise a book t...

A Bitter Feast by Deborah Crombie My rating: 5 of 5 stars Wow, we’re already at the 18th instalment of this great series. When I picked this book up, I was slightly worried how I would like it, considering that I haven’t exactly had much luck with long-running series this year; the latest Dupin a disappointment almost as badly as the latest Bruno (review here). Would Deborah Crombie let me down as well? Would she make me wish for Duncan and G...

Fallen by Benedict Jacka My rating: 3 of 5 stars Let me state clearly where I stand when it comes to Alex Verus: I think he’s the greatest Urban Fantasy protagonist ever. I’ve enjoyed every single book in the series and I enjoyed this latest instalment as well – just not as much as most of the others, unfortunately. Why though? The trademark humour is there, Luna is there and so are Anne, Variam, Arachne and others. Sadly, they mostly take ...

Sword of Destiny by Andrzej Sapkowski My rating: 5 of 5 stars “‘Who the hell are you?’ Geralt asked again, leaning forward. ‘What are you doing… in this forest? How did you get here?’ The girl lowered her head and sniffed loudly. ‘Cat got your tongue? Who are you, I said? What’s your name?’ ‘Ciri,’ she said, sniffing.” Once more we return to Geralt of Rivia, the eponymous Witcher, and his deeds. Mostly, though, “Sword of...

Der blaue Lotos von Hergé My rating: 3 of 5 stars “Der Blaue Lotus” entstand im Jahr 1934 und wurde bereits 1946 erneut überarbeitet und es wurden wiederum auch inhaltliche Änderungen vorgenommen. Auch hier versucht Hergé wieder eine “runde” Geschichte zu erzählen, doch leider mißlingt ihm das gründlich: Die Story besteht in wesentlichen Teilen aus Tims fortgesetzter Flucht und Wieder-Inhaftierung. Ein Entkommen ist dabei absurder ...

Her Silent Cry by Lisa Regan My rating: 3 of 5 stars In this sixth instalment of Regan’s Josie Quinn series a child is abducted in a rather complex way and more “surprises” await Josie and her team during the investigation because not everything is as it looks at the beginning… At least it’s not like it looks to Josie or anyone on her team because very early on there is a horrible give-away as to the reasons of the abduction which made ...

Die Zigarren des Pharaos by Hergé My rating: 4 of 5 stars “Hurra, ich spreche elefantisch!” Der vorliegende Band, “Die Zigarren des Pharaos”, entstand im Jahr 1932 und wurde 1955 überarbeitet und koloriert. Dabei wurden auch geringfügige inhaltliche Änderungen vorgenommen, die aber der Geschichte keinen Abbruch tun. Tatsächlich ist dieser Band der erste, der eine konsistente und unterhaltsame Geschichte erzählt und nicht meh...

Burning Alexandria by Michael J. Sullivan My rating: 4 of 5 stars Basically, the blurb says it all – a (book) hoarder in a post-apocalyptic world lives among his tons of books and realises he’ll have to burn some of them. Unfortunately, he’s not the brightest bulb (not even in a world without power!) and, thus, disaster happens. This is a nice-ish short story without any connection to Michael’s other works. It pretty much lives from the s...

A Better Man by Louise Penny My rating: 5 of 5 stars Two years ago, I somehow came across “Still Life”, the first in a series about Chief Inspector Armand Gamache of the Sûreté du Quebec, Canada. It was a good book, no doubt, and I was quick to catch up with the series which I greatly enjoyed. What I expected to be a standard police procedural turned out to be so much more. Gamache isn’t the young, enthusiastic investigator but a man in h...

Samba has no maintainer on Exherbo any more
Exherbo / October 19, 2013

After having worked with Samba for almost 20 years, I'm giving up now. I have submitted patches upstream when Samba (and I :) ) was young, I've proof-read books on Samba and NTLM but where they're going, I can't follow them any more. - Samba 4.1.0 doesn't even build for me any more and I'm too frustrated to figure it out. - In Samba 4.1.0, SWAT (the configuration web interface) seems to have been removed. I might be missing something bu...

Gerrit for Core-Devs
Exherbo / September 29, 2013

There have been a few questions and potential misunderstandings I’m going to try to address here. I’ll update this post if new stuff comes up. Getting the foo Or: How do I become a Core-Dev on Gerrit? Simple: You register with your GitHub or Google account, then you ask any other core dev to add you to the group. At least Bo “zlin” Ørsted Andresen and I know how to do it and every member has the necessary pri...

Gerrit Code Review for Exherbo
Exherbo / September 15, 2013

This post is outdated and only kept for historical reasons. I’ve installed a Gerrit Code Review instance on my server for use with Exherbo. Gerrit is a code review tool and allows for discussing patches and keeping the results for future reference get notified by email about changes (if you want) easily work on every Exherbo repository contributors to get their repositories added to Gerrit as well (optional but strongly recommen...

Summer’s End by Lisa Morton
Advance Review Copy (ARC) , Book Review / September 1, 2013

Summer’s End by Lisa Morton My rating: 1 of 5 stars Occult nonsense and boring at that Let’s instead start at the very beginning: The cover. It looks cheap and badly done. Tons of artifacts, especially around the arms. The text looks like it belongs to some romance novel, not a wanna-be occult horror “novella”. And, oh, yes, it certainly is a “novella” which is good because much more than the about 24...

The Hitler Diaries by Jim Williams

The Hitler Diaries by Jim Williams My rating: 2 of 5 stars This certainly isn’t a bad book. Unfortunately, it shows that this book was its author’s first novel. The story is fairly convoluted with a lot of characters most of which are expendable and don’t really add much to the book. The decision not to do additional work  before this re-publication was, in my eyes, a mistake since the story could have benefited g...

Travels in Elysium by William Azuski
Book Review / June 16, 2013

Travels in Elysium by William Azuski My rating: 1 of 5 stars Have you ever read a book by Umberto Eco? Then you’ll know that Mr. Eco is an extremely smart person – and he loves showing that to his readers. His books are well-researched, full of reference to historical facts, other works, etc. They might not all be nice to read and some are outright annoying but at least they’re well-written. Now imagine Eco without pro...

Code of Thieves by Joyce Yarrow

Code of Thieves by Joyce Yarrow My rating: 2 of 5 stars Another book I got from the “Early Reviewers” program on LibraryThing which I’m grateful for, thanks. Unfortunately, “Code of Thieves” has a lot of flaws.I’ll skip the summary which others have already done well. The problems start with the characters – none of them, including the hero, are believable human beings. In fact, they don’t...

The Bourbon Street Ripper by Leo King
Advance Review Copy (ARC) , Book Review / December 15, 2012

The Bourbon Street Ripper by Leo King My rating: 4 of 5 stars Just when I was thinking nothing really good would ever come out of giveaways, I got “The Bourbon Street Ripper” (BSR). Put off at first by the lurid title, I quickly got drawn into the book. As usual, I’ll skip summarising the story as others will have done this before. In short, it’s basically a well-done mystery novel and, in contrast to the author&...

Die Weihnachtsliste by Sophie Kinsella
Book Review / December 7, 2012

Die Weihnachtsliste by Sophie Kinsella My rating: 1 of 5 stars Groschenhefte hatten mehr Inhalt und geistigen Tiefgang… Wer sich noch an die Groschenhefte von früher erinnert, die kurz, schmalzig, niveaulos und wenig intelligent waren, der wird es einzuordnen wissen, wenn ich hier feststellen muß, daß diese Ultra-Kurzgeschichte (zumindest verringert das den unweigerlich auftretenden Leseschmerz) tatsächlich eben diese Groschenheft...

The Third Day by Mark Graham
Advance Review Copy (ARC) , Book Review / November 27, 2012

The Third Day by Mark Graham My rating: 2 of 5 stars Unfortunately, this is another book I finished for two reasons only: a) I always finish a book. b) I felt a moral obligation to do so. The problem with “The Third Day” is that it tries to do/show a lot of things in parallel and doesn’t succeed in any. Take two people dissatisfied with their lives; a depressed agnostic widow and a faithful scholar. Their lives basical...