June 30th, 2015

Recent Activities Include: movie, aquarium, a week off of school

The kids have IEPs so their summer program at school starts on the Monday after the 4th. In the meantime, we have been attempting to entertain them. T. went to the aquarium yesterday with the sitter. Today, he is going to try to see _Max_ (war dog movie) altho I don't know if that is actually working out or not. The sitter has a thing she has to do in the middle of the day that was going to interfere with an early showing, and the kids have swim lessons in the afternoon (today and tomorrow) interfering with a later showing. A. has been watching _Home_, and is now playing the associated mobile game, Boov Pop!

In addition to finishing up laundry from the weekend, I've been working on Duolingo (trying to get through the Dutch offering before we go there again later this year). I'm starting to feel like it might be worth getting out the Dutch grammar I have upstairs and just reading through parts of it again.

I've been getting out before R. leaves for work, to get one of my walks. When the sitter arrives, I go for another walk with my walking partner M. And then when R. gets home, I get a third walk, somewhat longer. This isn't quite as nice as what happens when the kids are in school (notably, there is no post lunch walk and boy am I missing that one), but it is an okay holding pattern.

Ilona Andrews, Kinsmen Series books 1 and 2

For the last few months, I've been rereading JAK novels. I've now read so freaking many of the damn things that I'm seriously entertaining writing a monograph on her development as an author, with a focus on how she has reused material from earlier novels in later series. I've been doing this because I want to read something, and I don't have the energy for anything particularly demanding (nothing bad -- I've been doing a lot of walking, mostly). When a book in a series I follow shows up, I read it (ok, I totes stalled out on the latest Charlie Davidson by Darynda Jones, I'll get to it eventually). And I decided to try some other Ilona Andrews books as well. I couldn't get into The Edge series (altho I may try it again, now), but the shorter Kinsmen books worked well for me.

Set several hundred years in the future, on other worlds, the first two books are loosely connected (the primary couple in the first book, _Silent Blade_ appear as friends of the guy in the second book, _Silver Shark_). The books are/were published by Samhain and I have no idea whether there are more coming in the series. There are some real copy editing issues (wrong word, extra word, missing word type stuff). Both books involve a woman who is pretending to be something other than she is, and killing job lots of other people, so you know how much I'm gonna love that.

In _Silent Blade_, the backstory is soap opera like: 10 year old Meli is betrothed to 16 year old Celino by their families for financial reasons. She throws herself into the project of getting to know every aspect of him; he balks and builds an enormous personal fortune to force his family to break the betrothal. No one else will risk marrying Meli for fear Celino might change his mind, and she gets so annoyed that she Excises herself from the family, using her HEY SPOILERS GET THE FUCK OUT OF HERE RIGHT NOW where was I? Oh, yeah, special melder talent as an assassin for her family. After she retires in her late 20s, Dear Old Dad sends her after Celino as One Last Assignment. They have a hot little fling (he has no idea who she is and she's presenting as an adorable country lass) and she declines to kill him but then disappears, which he is Not OK with. There's a briefly written but years long He Earns Her Back and HEA.

In _Silver Shark_, Claire Shannon was a psychic soldier on the losing side of a war. Deported to the same planet that was the setting for the previous book, she gets a job with Venturo, who runs a psychic security firm. She's busy pretending to not be at all psychic no, definitely not her, because she'll be deported/killed/wtf if detected as a soldier (she got to leave alive because she was pretending to be a civilian -- it's clearly a bloody awful universe in a lot of ways, with the losing side of the war offing a lot of their own soldiers at the end). Talent will out, tho, partly as she attempts to help some of her fellow refugees who have gotten into trouble, and partly because the Escana family quickly recognizes how valuable an employee she is for them.

While I would happily read more in this series, I'd rather have the next Hidden Legacy book. It was interesting reading these, however, and seeing how the Ilona Andrews writing team experimented with billionaire-like heroes with special powers before they started Hidden Legacy.

Oh, I meant to say, what is it with underwear that shimmers in romance novels? JAK refers to the shimmer of her undies (<-- okay, undies isn't the word used) and so does Ilona Andrews (ditto). What does that even mean?

From _Silent Blade_: "and the thin shimmer of her underwear to cup her butt"

Still trying to get the reference out of _A Coral Kiss_. Will edit this when I find it. *sigh* And of course now I can't find it at all. Maybe it was one of the ones I read before.