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Month in review

Reviews:
Affinity by J.N. Williamson
Ashenden or the British Agent by W. Somerset Maugham
At Play in the Fields of the Lord by Peter Matthessen
Auntie Mame by Patrick Dennis
To Bathe in Lightning by Anne Gay
The Bird Shaman's Girl by Judith Moffett
Birthday Card, Where Are You? by Harriet Ziefert
Black Swan Green by David Mitchell Bleach 4 by Tite Kubo
Cam Jansen and the Mystery of the Carnival Prize by David A Adler
Chain Letter by Christopher Pike
Class President by Johanna Hurwitz
The Diamond Shadow by Fred Chappell
Feet of Clay by Terry Pratchett
Fortunately by Remy Charlip
The Great Ringtail Garbage Caper by Timothy Foote
Honesty: Zach's Tall Tale by Shelagh Canning
Journey to the Orange Islands by Tracey West
Knuffle Bunny Too by Mo Willems
Lucky You by Carl Hiaasen
M is for Malice by Sue Grafton
The Mysterious Island (Secrets of Droon 3) by Tony Abbott
Mystery of the Moaning Cave by William Arden
National Velvet by Enid Bagnold
The Prisoner of Zenda by Anthony Hope
The Recreation Room by Albert E. Cowdrey
Responsibility: Annie Shows Off by Shelagh Canning
Seeing a Large Cat by Elizabeth Peters
Sock at Work by Shelagh Canning
The Star to Every Wandering Barque by James Stoddard
Ten Timid Ghosts by Jennifer O'Connell Thundershock in Pummelo Stadium by Tracey West
Zombies of the Gene Pool by Sharyn McCrumb

Nanowrimo
Thoughts on Writing
Thoughts on Stereotypes
Finished on a Cliffhanger

Miscellaneous
Blogging Rituals
The Butt Ugly 1970s
Car Keys
Change of Plans
Harriet's Crib
The Long Drive Home
Mount Diablo and My Inner Surveyor
Reading Bones
Saturday
Spider-man 3
A Visit

Previous month

Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

Reading Challenges

My Kind of Mystery Reading Challenge 2017 February - January 2017-8


Comments for The Diamond Shadow

F & SF"The Diamond Shadow": 11/10/07

The second story in October/ November issue of Fantasy & Science Fiction is a novelet by Fred Chappell called "The Diamond Shadow." The premise is that light and shadow have forces that can be controlled for magical purposes. A trio of men, a shadow mage, his apprentice and a servant are called before a countess who has a diamond that has developed a disturbingly dark shadow. She wants it taken care of no matter what.

I liked the premise but the execution left me wanting something different. First there are the awkward names chosen for the main characters: Astolfo, Falco and Mutano. Then there is the Countess's ornate style of speaking which doesn't flow as well as it should. Finally there is the lack of explanation as to why the narrator is apprenticing. Without a good sense of where he is coming from and what his view of his world is, it's hard to understand the world in so few pages.

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