Saturday, April 22, 2006

Study, study, study! (And some book reviews)

So I have an econometrics final in two weeks. It's on a Saturday for some mysterious reason (does Harvard even know about Shabbat?). Which means I need to study. But wait, I also have general exams in May, which cover a whole year's worth of material from two courses. Which means I really need to study. Guess what I'm doing today and tomorrow?!

In other news, I read the third installment of the Mr. and Mrs. Darcy mystery series, North by Northanger. The author actually managed to sort of explain why she named the book that (it appears in a line of the text). The wierd thing about this series is that it doesn't deal with murder mysteries. This is odd because I would say the bulk of mystery novels are about murders. I don't mind the change, but it does feel different. This installment bounced between some odd conspriacy involving Northanger Abbey and the drama of Elizabeth's pregnancy. The balance between the two wasn't always there. But the characterization remained compelling. I am still wondering if this series will have to end when they run out of Austen books to spoof in the titles. I give it a 6.5 overall. My previous reviews of the first two books in this series are here.

(This paragraph will mean nothing to you unless you read mainstream comics.) I also read DC Comic's Identity Crisis. Damn that thing is wordy. Almost Bendis wordy, but without that extra polish. It was good, and a nice set up for the current havoc in the DC Universe (ie Infinite Crisis). The art was enjoyable too. I think Mike is trying to get us to buy the 52 year-long special super extended series. At this rate, it might happen. Might.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Good News



I have something to do over the summer! I got a job with a great research project at the Boston Federal Reserve, so I am excited. But, I have to pass my general exams first. It's time to study!

In crafty news, I have continued with the crochet, and I made the "Fit to be Tied" purse from the Happy Hooker book. It took about one skein of Lion Brand Woolease worsted. Plus, I lined it with patterned fabric for once (as opposed to felt). I like it a lot.

Friday, April 07, 2006

A Book Review and a Movie Review

I finished up the last two entries in the Jane Austen mystery series by Stephanie Barron. #7 is Jane and the Ghosts of Netley Manor and #8 is Jane and His Lordship's Legacy. Spoiler....




As you can guess from the second title, something tragic happened to Lord Trowbridge in these installments. This saddened me greatly, but I hardly expected him and Jane to live happily ever after. These two books were a fitting and well-crafted end to their relationship. I have to say that the mystery fell a bit by the wayside in #7, eclipsed by the Jane/Trowbridge characterizations. Nevertheless, I found this to be a worthwhile read. #8 was even better. In it, Jane receives a trunk of Trowbridge's papers from twenty years before, which hold the clues to a mystery facing Jane right now. Barron includes the text of several letters, giving readers a chance to examine the evidence themselves. This entry is well-paced, and allows readers to commiserate with Jane over the loss of Trowbridge.

In other news, I saw Thank You For Smoking last weekend. It was CRAZY. But in a good way. Aaron Eckhart plays a wiley Big Tobacco lobbyist who must face down the challenges of Senator Finistirre (William H. Macy), a tree-hugging type politician who wants a skull and crossbones printed on every box of cigarettes. Then a whole bunch of looney stuff goes down. There really isn't a plot, but it doesn't matter. All of the actors embrace the their parts with bravado, reveling in the smarminess. These performances combined with Jason Reitman's spry direction make this film a hilarious and dark look at what goes on behind the curtain in American business and politics.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Stash Flashing