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...

A Better Man (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache #15), by Louise Penny
Book Review / September 17, 2019

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 ...

Tim in Amerika (Tim und Struppi, Band 2) von Hergé
Book Review / September 17, 2019

Tim und Struppi, Band 2: Tim in Amerika by Hergé My rating: 3 of 5 stars Entstanden in 1931 wurde dieser Band 1946 und 1973 jeweils überarbeitet. Mir liegt die 3. Auflage aus dem Jahr 1974 vor. Tim räumt mit der Chicagoer Unterwelt der 1930er-Jahre auf. Ein netter Band mit netten Ideen, aber sicherlich kein Höhepunkt der Reihe. View all my reviews...

Bedrock Linux now supports Exherbo (Beta channel right now!)
Exherbo / September 12, 2019

Due to the attempts of an Exherbo user to get it supported in Bedrock Linux, I got curious about it myself. So, what’s Bedrock? “Bedrock Linux is a meta Linux distribution which allows users to utilize features from other, typically mutually exclusive distributions. Essentially, users can mix-and-match components as desired.”(Source: https://bedrocklinux.org/) To me, that was immediately interesting as I simply cannot ...

The Bear and The Nightingale (Winternight Trilogy #1), by Katherine Arden
Book Review / September 9, 2019

The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden My rating: 2 of 5 stars “That evening, the old lady sat in the best place for talking: in the kitchen, on the wooden bench beside the oven.” In the street of the small village I grew up in, there lived (and lives to this day even though she is very, very old now!) a lady of sheer infinite kindness. During the 1980’ties she still used an old oven that burned wood in her wonderfully ol...

Tim im Kongo (Tim und Struppi, Band 1), von Hergé
Book Review / September 8, 2019

Tim im Kongo by Hergé My rating: 3 of 5 stars “Tim im Kongo” wird üblicherweise als der erste “wirkliche” Tim-und-Struppi-Band angesehen, da der eigentliche Vorgänger, “Tim im Lande der Sowjets” von Hergé lange Zeit als “Jugendsünde” abgetan wurde. Auch hat er diesen später meist als “Band 0” bezeichneten Comic nie mehr überarbeitet (im Gegensatz zu den meisten anderen Bänden). Insofern darf der vorliegen...

Tim im Lande der Sowjets, von Hergé
Book Review / September 7, 2019

Tim im Lande der Sowjets by Hergé My rating: 3 of 5 stars Nach vielen Jahren habe ich auf Empfehlung von Akash diesen “Tim und Struppi”-Comic mal wieder gelesen. Es ist das allererste Werk in dieser Comic-Reihe und sein Alter (Entstehungszeit 1929 bis 1930) ist unverkennbar. Die damalige Sowjet-Union, die als Heimat der gefährlichen kommunistischen Horden gesehen wurde, hat so natürlich nie existiert und der gesamte Comic leidet ...

The Last Wish (The Witcher, #0.5), by Andrzej Sapkowski
Book Review / August 31, 2019

The Last Wish by Andrzej Sapkowski My rating: 5 of 5 stars I’ve first read “The Last Wish” in 2011. It was recommended to me by my friend Ingmar (who still has to read it, I suppose!) who – as it turned out later – used me as a guinea pig for books he intended to read but didn’t know if he would enjoy them and, thus, enticed me into reading them first. Little did that scoundrel know that he had involuntarily introduced me to...

The Game, by Michael J. Sullivan
Book Review / August 26, 2019

The Game by Michael J. Sullivan My rating: 4 of 5 stars This is another short story by Michael which he published separately as part of one of his Kickstarter campaigns. It’s about Troth, a previously minor Non-Player Character (NPC), who “lives” in a Massively Multi-player Role Playing Game (MMORPG) and suddenly develops sentience. The premise is interesting and the story well-told (how could it not be, it’s a Sullivan!). It’...

Bretonisches Vermächtnis (Kommissar Dupin #8) von Jean-Luc Bannalec
Book Review / August 25, 2019

Bretonisches Vermächtnis by Jean-Luc Bannalec My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars Vive la France! – auch wenn sich das etwas merkwürdig anfühlt, wenn man weiß, daß sich hinter dem Pseudonym Jean-Luc Bannalec der deutsche Literat Jörg Bong (schon eine Weile nicht mehr) versteckt. Merkwürdig fühlt es sich auch an, nach längerer Zeit der “Abstinenz” einmal mehr in meiner Muttersprache gelesen und, jetzt und hier, auch geschrieben ...

Magic Bites (Kate Daniels #1), by Ilona Andrews
Book Review / August 20, 2019

Magic Bites by Ilona Andrews My rating: 2 of 5 stars I’ve read this book because it sounded a bit like Jim Butcher’s “Dresden Files” which I like. And, indeed, there are similarities – the most important one for me was that I didn’t really like either series’ respective first book. “Magic Bites” was a confusing read much of which is due to the messy style of storytelling employed here. There’s a knightly order that...