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Books with a Beu

Jamie Beu, owner and co-author (with his wife) of CatholicFamily.info, is a "cradle Catholic", devoted husband, and father of two girls. He is a regular contributor to his parish newsletter, as well as an impassioned defender of the faith who is able to both support and challenge others as necessary -- all in an effort to build-up Christ's Kingdom on Earth. To this end, he does a lot of reading - not just of religious books (for education and research), but also of secular books, both to decompress as well as to keep a finger on the pulse of pop culture (the better to relate to others, as well as to help restore the culture).

Currently reading

Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters: 10 Secrets Every Father Should Know
Meg Meeker, Meg Meeker
Dan Simmons
Boundaries: When to Say Yes, How to Say No to Take Control of Your Life
'John Townsend', 'Henry Cloud'
Boundaries Face to Face: How to Have That Difficult Conversation You've Been Avoiding
Henry Cloud
Jesus of Nazareth
Pope Benedict XVI, Adrian J. Walker
Permutation City
Greg Egan
Truth and Tolerance: Christian Belief and World Religions
Pope Benedict XVI
Is Jesus Coming Soon?: A Catholic Perspective on the Second Coming
Ralph Martin
Prelude to Foundation (Foundation: Prequel, #1)
Isaac Asimov
Autobiography of a Saint: Therese of Lisieux
Thérèse de Lisieux, Ronald A. Knox, Vernon Johnson

The New Space Opera 2: All-new stories of science fiction adventure

The New Space Opera 2: All-new stories of science fiction adventure - Gardner R. Dozois, Jonathan Strahan, Neal Asher, Garth Nix, Sean Williams, Bruce Sterling, Bill Willingham, John Meaney, Elizabeth Moon, Tad Williams, Justina Robson, John Scalzi, Mike Resnick, John C. Wright, Robert Charles Wilson, Peter Watts, John Kessel, Cory Doctorow Well, the stories had to do with space, so I'll give it that. Aside from being stories about space, there were only a few stories in this collection that I would say were worth my time to read (e.g., "The Lost Princess Man", "The Tale of the Wicked", "Utriusque Cosmi", and "To Go Boldly").

So many of the stories were trying so desperately hard to be poignant or meaningful or "current" that they ultimately just ended up being confusing, depressing, and/or pointless. The biggest wastes of time (the ones I thought were especially bad) were "The Island" and "Punctuality".

On the bright side, there were two good things about this book:

1) it reminded me of how much I enjoy Scalzi John's stories. As a result, I stopped reading this anthology and instead picked up Fuzzy Nation, a book I enjoyed much more than this collection.

2) The adequate (which is above-the-average for this collection) story "Catastrophe Baker and a Canticle for Leibowitz" once more piqued my curiosity about the real A Canticle for Leibowitz that I finally broke down and read it (after having it on my to-read list for quite some time) - a decision I do not regret in the least!