Book Review: Aurora by Kim Stanley Robinson

I am a huge fan of Kim Stanley Robinson’s Mars Trilogy, his epic tale of the first 100 colonists on Mars.

(Still waiting anxiously as of this writing for the TV adaptation. Hello, hello–any news on casting yet?)

I’ve read some of his other books, but none of them have captivated me in quite the same way as the Mars books.

Until now.

Continue reading “Book Review: Aurora by Kim Stanley Robinson”


5 Things That Bug Me About Post-Apocalyptic/Dystopian Fiction

Dealing with some family issues so I have no time to write something new this week. I am reaching into the archives and reblogging this post. Hope you enjoy and that I’m able to post something brand new next week!


First, let’s define post-apocalyptic and dystopian:

Post-apocalyptic refers to a work of fiction that deals with a global disaster so profound there are few survivors. It may include a period of time leading up to the disaster, or it can take place years afterwards, but mostly it’s about the immediate after-effects of a disaster–war, environmental disaster, plague. The disaster can have a fantastical element, like zombies or vampires, or a sci-fi one, like an alien invasion.

Dystopian usually takes place far into the future. It may be post-apocalyptic or not. Society has in some way changed profoundly, most noticeably the system of government.

There is some disagreement over the definition of dystopian. Some believe it should only be defined as societies where people believe they are living in an ideal society, when in truth it has some oppressive or horrific element to it.

I think it’s O.K. to…

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The Hanukkah Invitation – Part 4


This is Part 4 and the conclusion of my Hanukkah story set in Regency England.

Please click here for Part 1 of The Hanukkah Invitation.

Please click here for Part 2 of The Hanukkah Invitation.

Please click here for Part 3 of The Hanukkah Invitation.

In spite of every effort to enter the house quietly, her uncle saw them as he came out of his library carrying a book before they could slip upstairs. He naturally voiced strong disapproval over Rachel’s choice of gown and requested they talk of it in his library. She thought he would not mind so much when he found out that she had been invited to the home of Sir Robert Westbrooke, but he did.

He put his book down on a table with a decisive thump. “I should not like for you to go. Certainly, not if you mean to dress like that.”

Continue reading “The Hanukkah Invitation – Part 4”

The Hanukkah Invitation – Part 3


This is Part 3 of my Hanukkah story set in Regency England.

Please click here for Part 1 of The Hanukkah Invitation.

Please click here for Part 2 of The Hanukkah Invitation.

“Oh, my love, what wonderful news!”

Rachel, who had been sitting in her uncle’s massive library, looked up from her book. “Mama! What could it be? You look quite beside yourself!”

“I am, my dear, I am!” She sat next to her, waving a paper. “I knew you were wrong about Mr. Parnas.”

“Whatever do you mean?” She took the note from her mother and read it. When she finished, she clucked and gave it back to her with a dismissive gesture. “Oh. Is that all.”

“Is that all? My child, this means . . .”

“Absolutely nothing, Mama, except that Mr. Parnas is a well-bred gentleman who returns his social engagements.”

Continue reading “The Hanukkah Invitation – Part 3”

The Hanukkah Invitation – Part 2


This is Part 2 of my Hanukkah story set in Regency England. Please click here for Part 1 of The Hanukkah Invitation.

Oh, he was quite marvelous! So handsome, so imposing! She had never seen a man so tall. Nor, she thought, with a sinking feeling in her stomach, so fastidiously dressed. The cut of his black coat, the snow-white waistcoat and skillfully tied cravat were perfection. He was sure to despise her as someone lacking taste and elegance.

He also had a deep, rich voice, but what it said was alarming. “I regret I must make apologies the moment I arrive, but my visit will have to be quite short. I am engaged elsewhere this evening for dinner . . . an obligation I could not get out of.”

Continue reading “The Hanukkah Invitation – Part 2”

The Hanukkah Invitation – Part 1

regency2The Hanukkah Invitation is a short story I wrote about fifteen years ago that was published in an anthology called The Winter Holiday Sampler. It was a collection of romantic short stories set in Regency England with a winter holiday theme.

The book is long out of print and was really a vanity press thing, so rights have certainly reverted to me by now. I’ve decided to share it here, since Hanukkah is starting this week (December 16).

Some background: my mother’s family are Ashkenazi Jews, which means they came from Eastern Europe. When I did my research for the story, I found that the Jewish population in Regency England was mostly Sephardic. This means they hailed from the Mediterranean countries of Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East i.e. Spain, Portugal, Greece, Morocco, Egypt, etc. Some traditions are a bit different (mainly food) from what I grew up with. I found the surnames for the Jewish characters on a Sephardic geneological web site. Continue reading “The Hanukkah Invitation – Part 1”