Somewhat Mighty, Not Despairing

The first session of Tenebrae, the vampire LARP I am helping run, is this coming Saturday so for the past several days I have been Dave-deep in rules, story, and safety procedures. Half because I am thusly somewhat tapped out for interesting thoughts and half as a sigil to keep my humble as I take … Continue reading Somewhat Mighty, Not Despairing

Load of Balls

In one of many controversies surrounding the current men's football World Cup, the BBC chose to show the opening ceremony as additional content rather than as a primary broadcast. Gary Lineker's defence of the decision seems more than reasonable to me. But then my perspective is somewhat different from those who are complaining. My hobbies … Continue reading Load of Balls

Women in the Martial Arts, ed. Carol A Wiley

Focusing not on a single statement of what women’s martial arts is but on multiple perspectives on how martial arts isn’t the domain of male fighters that popular imagery portrays, this book will speak not merely to women with an interest in the martial arts but to anyone interested in diversity as a whole. Wiley … Continue reading Women in the Martial Arts, ed. Carol A Wiley

Shadow Stitcher: An Everland Mystery by Misha Handman

The mean streets and crumpled suits of crime noir intermingle with icons of a children’s classic, creating a detective tale where the endless joy isn't completely gone but has become frayed and dirty. Decades ago, the adult world reached Neverland. The glorious war between the pirates and the Lost Boys has been replaced by politics, … Continue reading Shadow Stitcher: An Everland Mystery by Misha Handman


Betimes the curious traveller comes across a thing of sublime beauty: for me, one such is Keiko Masumoto's Kitsch Kogei collection, ceramics that combine traditional Japanese ceramics with octopuses. Of course, if that traveller is also experienced in matters of true consequence rather than the ephemerality that passes for discourse amongst what is known as … Continue reading Oc-Tea-Puss

Until the Ink Dries by Jordan Elizabeth

Elizabeth combines a gritty encapsulation of mundane life with a potentially unreliable narrator to create a chosen-one narrative that focuses more on the escaping a current situation than struggling with a new one. Poor and bullied, fourteen-year-old Zuby Bloom’s only escapes from life of poverty are her diary and sketchbooks. However, after years of being … Continue reading Until the Ink Dries by Jordan Elizabeth

Primordial Earth: The Prequel by Baileigh Higgins

Higgins presents three moments from her protagonist’s life, each showing a different obstacle arising from being cast into the prehistoric. Note: while the author is blessed with a spiffing surname we are unrelated by blood or marriage. For thirteen-year-old Seth, it was supposed to be a joyous journey bringing his mother home from hospital. However, … Continue reading Primordial Earth: The Prequel by Baileigh Higgins