Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Singularity Sky

Ahhh, back in my office, with the big fat pipe. I'm finishing a script, but I will briefly sing the praises of Canadian bookstores.

Specifically, contrasting chain stores. I live a block from a Borders, here in LA. Not a week goes by when I hear about something cool, go look, find nadam and wind up on Amazon. Now Chapters ... ah, Chapters in Canada. Yes, it's a chain bookstore. But the difference can be summed up in one sentence:

The Science Fiction books and Fantasy books ... are in two separate sections.

For many of you, that is meaningless. For those who know the code, you know the beauty of which I speak.

I can literally lose a day in a Chapters. So it was there I finally picked up Charles Stross' Singularity Sky. Conclusion: Oh. I'm an idiot then, for waiting. Go read all his stuff right now, please. The rest of his books wing their way to me.


1031 said...

Yeah, I love his stuff. Haven't had a chance to pick up Sky yet, but his previous stuff, some short fiction, and his articles, great, great ideas.

Did you see the link on Warren's site about Richard Kadrey's new book? You can download the whole thing as a .pdf file. I haven't started it yet, but am planning on it as soon as I'm done with The Da Vinci Code.

Honestly, I don't know what all the hype is about this book. It's well-written and all, but I think soem people are taking it way too seriously.

Anonymous said...

Let me premise things first. You're a hot shit and a brilliant talent. You're a friend as well. Yet you were born American and depite the pathetic way our country works you are well as Canadian. Ok you're a little to crazy liberal (either extreme is not a good thing) but what the heck. With all that said my question to you is, "White kind of pipe were you smoking from?" More hints to my identity to come.......

Anonymous said...

have you ever been to powell's bookstore in portland, oregon?

new and used books intermingled, the store takes up a city block, they have maps directing you to the correct color-coded rooms on various floors, the humor section split into categories by type of humor...

it's worth a trip to portland for this store
also for restaurants, but this post was about books

myq kaplan

Rogers said...

Went to powell's when I was doing stand-up -- that city was my hyome base for quite a while when I was doing colleges and clubs in the Northwest. Harvey's was a great comedy club, just over the river if I remember correctly.

It is indeed magnificent. Unfortunately, it's also rare. My point was rather that I was surprised to realize that you can, indeed make a chain store enjoyable and useful, as Chapter's is for the slightly more bibliophilic. Their poli-sci section is also light years ahead in selection of a comparable Borders. However, it may be the increased presence of British authors which makes a difference.

Rogers said...

"A little too crazy liberal"

Man, I'm for balanced budgets, giving the troops the arms they need to get the job done and waging war based on facts, not hope; a decent minimum wage; national health care; and independence from foreign oil.

Twenty years ago, everything but the health care would have made me a Reagan conservative. Thirty years ago, that was NIXON's platform, INCLUDING the health care. When a frame of reference makes Nixon a "crazy liberal", then it ain't me who's gone too far.

Oh, and regardless of ANY policy, the Right's complete dismissal of being pro-science in current times would drive me away from them. God didn't give us these big noggins for nought.

Anonymous said...

Fair enough and well put. Just choking your chain - and it worked a little(what do you know!)! Heck I voted for a Dem myself in the last 2 elections though I'm in the middle....albeit ticking slightly right. We're in a rough world and we are obviously desensitized to the reality of things. God gave us big noggins though as a whole they're not being used well. Eww I'm not being very optimistic and I usually am. Yes I am a massive conspiracy freakazoid.

wessa said...

If you really wanna check out an amazing bookstore in Canada, sometime when you happen to be in western Canada (say, Calgary or Winnipeg) you MUST visit McNally-Robinson. It's a very small chain (as chains go) but the stores are incredible. Chapters has a thousand copies of a hundred different books...McNally-Robinson has a hundred copies of a thousand different books (not literally, just a means of describing the difference). I've spent entire weekends at McNally. If you have the opportunity, I highly recommend checking one out.

Thad said...

Thirty years ago, that was NIXON's platform, INCLUDING the health care.

Well, uh, except for the whole "waging war based on facts" thing. But otherwise, point taken.

Also, I can't stand people who pretend that (A) moderation = halfway between the two parties, and (B) moderation has some sort of intrinsic value.

And yes, as far as chain bookstores go, Chapters is excellent. They're like what Barnes & Noble would be like if every B&N was like the ones in New York.

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