Monday, June 29, 2015

Fandom Classics Part 115: What I've Become

To read the story, click the image or follow this link

Remember to pop over here and answer a few questions for me, if you're so inclined!

I'll be leading with that for the next couple of posts, by the by; I've gotten about 30 answers already, but I want to make sure I catch any semi-regular visitors--I know some folks pop by weekly, for example, and I want to make sure they have a chance to tell me stuff, if they're interested in doing so.

Anyway, on to reviewing!  My thoughts on Knight Breeze's What I've Become, below the break.

Friday, June 26, 2015

A Short Poll

In lieu of reviews, today I'd like to ask y'all to answer a few questions for me.  Nothing too tricky or time-consuming; just a few questions about reviews you've particularly liked or disliked, and about my reviews in general.

I realize asking you all to tell me what you think of my reviews is kind of self-indulgent, but I've been wondering for a while what people thought of my reviews, beyond stuff like "I agree/disagree with this review because [reasons]" or "I enjoy following the blog."  Which are awesome comments to get, mind you!  But there are a few more specific things I'd like to get into, hopefully in the name of continuing to improve as a reviewer.

Every question in the poll is optional, so feel free to skip any questions you don't have strong opinions on or just don't feel like answering--some information is better than none.  I'm the only person who'll see what you wrote, though I'll probably share any interesting results (stripped of identifying information, as necessary) on this blog later.  And, although an encyclopedic knowledge of my reviews is in no way required, you may want to refer to the review links in the header (6-star, Fandom Classics, and Mini-Reviews)--they're all updated as of Wednesday.  In any case, thanks in advance for indulging me a bit!

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

First Sentences In (Fan)Fiction the 6th

I'm home!  Or at least, I will be when this goes up; depending on when I get in, odds are I won't have had the time or energy to check up on the blog yet.  Let's go ahead and pre-emptively say it was a nice break.  Thanks for keeping the noise down while I was out!

Now, on to some first sentence goodness!  My thoughts on the openings of some of the recent fandom classics selections, below the break.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Mini-Reviews Round 88

Less talking, more reviews!  Hurry, fic links and recs below!  Get them while supplies last!

Friday, June 19, 2015

Fandom Classics Part 114: Changelings, Changelings Everywhere

To read the story, click the image or follow this link

By the time you read this, I'll be in almost on my way to New York!  Visiting some friends for a few days, should be fun.  No worries for you guys; my post buffer's up enough that there oughtn't be any interruption to the normal posting schedule.  If you live in New York City, keep an eye out for me!  I shouldn't be hard to find; I'll be the guy from out of town.

Speaking of impeccably blending in, check out my review of Benman's Changelings, Changelings Everywhere, below.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Mini-Reviews Round 87

If you've been keeping up with the NHL playoffs, you'll know that they're now over.  And, if you're just wondering which fanfic won (see hereherehere, and here, in order), the answer is...

Monday, June 15, 2015

Episode Talk: S5E9, Slice of Life

We'll be doing something a little different, today.  Instead of talking about whatever little things I noticed or favorite/least favorite scenes (let's face it, this episode's been analyzed to death already, and it only aired two days ago), I'm just going to talk about how I felt about it, and what, if anything, there is to take away from it going forward.  My thoughts, below the break.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Fandom Classics Part 113: Magical Pony Lyrical Twilight

To read the story, click the image or follow this link

So, who's ready for episode 100?

...Yeah, I imagine I'm going to have some stuff to say about that come Monday.  At this point, I'm not even sure whether I'm miffed or grateful that Carrot Top doesn't seem to have made the "surrogate main character" cut.  We'll see how it goes.  But before the manure hits, let's take a moment to talk about fanfics!  My review of Purple Prose's Magical Pony Lyrical Twilight, below.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Mini-Reviews Round 86

I discovered yesterday that the word "quite" has very different meanings in certain sentences, depending on whether one is American or British.  Since I'm the former and a fair number of the regular visitors here are the latter, let me clarify: any story which I've previously described as "quite good," "quite enjoyable," or what have you, I meant in the American way, i.e. "very good" and "very enjoyable."  Apparently, across the pond "quite" is a negative modifier when the adjective it modifies is gradeable, while over here it's a straight intensifier.  Update your understanding of my opinions accordingly, and consider learning to speak the way God and/or George Washington intended.

Quite right, then!  On to some mini-reviews, below the break.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Fandom Classics Part 112: The Brief Reign of Princess Twily

To read the story, click the image or follow this link

No time for wittiness, I'm finally getting my SUMMER on!  Hurry down below the break for my review of Forthwith's The Brief Reign of Princess Twily--the days may be long, but they sure do hurry past.

Friday, June 5, 2015

The Latest in Stories in which Chris is Peripherally Involved

A couple of days ago, DannyJ came out with the first part of a new story, To Keep the Fire Burning.  I say "first part," but with close to 20,000 words already, it's not like he's scraping FiMFic's minimum wordcount to get it out.

Anyway, as the title probably suggested to you, I'm helping with some of the editing/pre-reading on this one.  It's a crossover with a video game, but don't let that scare you off--I can pretty much guarantee I know less about the source material than you (yes, you), and DannyJ's done a lot of work to make this accessible.  It's also a dark, dystopian-future adventure which moves quickly without abandoning the pony-(or changeling-)ness of its characters; if that sounds like your sort of thing, go give this a try, and see what you think!

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Fandom Classics Part 111: All the Mortal Remains

To read the story, click the image or follow this link

I don't know exactly when I first watched Aladdin and the King of Thieves, but it was probably around the time when it was released on VHS, (1996).  As part of a compare-contrast lesson (and so that the kids can watch a movie at the end of the year), a couple of my classes are watching it this week.  There's a lot of referential humor in it that I definitely didn't get when I first saw it, and I was pleasantly shocked to discover that "that familiar voice" was John Rhys-Davies.  But one thing leapt out at me: in the movie, one of the palace guards discovers the password to the Forty Thieves' lair, and brings a crew to ambush and arrest them in their cave... then proceeds the flub the line, crying "Open... caraway!"

It took me almost twenty years to get that joke, and it was in no way worth it.  Whatever; my review of Cold in Gardez's All the Mortal Remains, below.

Monday, June 1, 2015

For a Change, Let's Talk About Actual Books (Part 18)

For those of you keeping track of the NHL/Fanfic bracket (explained here, updated here and here), we're now officially down to two: the Chicago Blackhawks (Fallout:Equestria) overcame the Anaheim Ducks (My Little Dashie) out west, while the Eastern conference saw the Tampa Bay Lightning (Friendship is Optimal) knock out the New York Rangers (Fall of Equestria).  Chicago and Tampa will now face each other in an epic battle to determine which story has the best extended universe who gets to hoist the Stanley Cup.  Game one is Wednesday!

In the meantime, though, let's talk about some of the stuff I'm reading right now.  I haven't had a lot of for-fun reading time over the last few weeks, but I'm still in the middle of more than a couple of books; what I think of them so far, below the break.