What I did Last Week – 4

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One of the things I’ve been doing in the last week is reading the new Guy Gavriel Kay book, River of Stars.

I’m around half way through (it’s a BIG book) and it is wonderful. No surprise there, it’s written by Guy Gavriel Kay. I don’t think he’s written even a mediocre book. This one is in the same Chinese inspired world as Under Heaven but four hundred years later, this time inspired by the Song Dynasty. While the book is long, over 650 pages, there is no filler, everything is there for a reason. While there are two main viewpoint characters (so far), we also see this place and time through the eyes of a number of other characters. This lets us see the effects that the actions of the protagonists cause, both good and bad. Kay’s style fits the period and it often seems as if you are reading an ancient Chinese tale. This is something the the author is an expert at, using the style of the prose to fit the story he is telling. I can’t wait to read the rest of the book. I don’t know where its going to go and I like that.

Before I started reading that book, I was going through the Hugo packet. As someone who is eligible to vote for the Hugos this year, I got a packet of e-versions of most of the works nominated through the Worldcon. I was able to catch up on the nominated novels, novella, novelettes, and short stories on my Nook. How cool is that!

We put up a birdfeeder earlier this spring and I’m very glad we did. It’s been nice to sit at the kitchen table and watch the birds (and squirrels, and rabbits) come by and eat. I find it really interesting. You can tell that they are prey animals, they are never relaxed, always looking around, even when eating. We don’t get any exotic or particularly interesting birds but the variety is nice. The goldfinches are my favorite, they are a lovely bright yellow. They are, however, slobs. When they eat the cracked sunflower seeds we have, they always get almost as much onto the ground as they eat. Thus is helpful to the squirrels and ground feeding birds. This seems to be a quality of all finches since the house finches (with a nice blush of red on their heads), do the same thing. We’ve also had some woodpecker type birds eating the suet we have out.

There are times when there are finches, cardinals, and wrens around the feeders flying in and out to feed. At the same time a couple of squirrels and the rabbit on the ground, eating the spillage. In addition to being fun to watch, the birds are hanging around the trees and bushes in the backyard which means that we have lovely birdsong all the time. Pom (the cat) enjoys this too. It means she has new entertainment – when she is on the windowsill watching through the window, it’s like her TV and when she is on the screened in porch watching through the screens, that’s her live theater.

That’s it for this week.

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