WFTM Podcast Episode 18.1: Robots Hate Their Boss, Too

Robots! So many robots! This week Leslie and Fernando discuss some of the short stories from Robot Uprisings along with Last Song Before Night, a potential sequel to the original Civil War comic event, Locke & Key becoming a free audio play, Patrick Rothfuss’ Lionsgate deal, and another bizarre project from Mark Z Danielewski.

Download it from the iTunes store here!

We’re now on Stitcher as well!! If Stitcher is your chosen app of podcasting choice, listen to the Working for the Mandroid podcast here

So what’s in Episode 18.1?

Where we just talk about books and comics!

News:

Locke and Key has been turned into a radio showand it’s currently FREE!

Patrick Rothfuss signs deal to turn The Kingkiller Chronicles into a Movie, a TV Show and a video game

Mark Z Danielewski’s The Familiar - a 12 part serialize book, part 2 comes out on October 27 (read a review of part 1 on NPR here)

New Civil War comic event in Spring 2016?

What We’re Reading:

Robot Uprising edited by Daniel H Wilson

·         Complex God by Scott Sigler

·         Cycles by Charles Wu

·         Lullaby by Anna North

·         Eighty Miles an Hour all the Way to Paradise by Genevieve Valentine

Last Song Before Night by Ilana C. Meyer

What We’re Reading This Week:

Fernando: Robot Uprisings

Leslie: Uprooted by Naomi Novak and Robot Uprisings

Follow us on Twitter @WorkforMandroid and @fernborrego

Email your questions, concerns, thoughts and comments to WorkingfortheMandroid@gmail.com


Intro & Outro Music is “Robot Army” by Quiet Music for Tiny Robots, provided via freemusicarchive.org through a Creative Commons License

 

Leslie's Top 10 Books Read in 2014

I’m always bothered by people who do best of lists before the year is over. What’s to say you aren’t going to read the best book of the year on the very last day of the year? That’s why I always wait until January, at which point people probably don’t care anymore because they’ve already seen a million and one best of lists. Well, here is one more.

Last year I only read 79 books, including many comics. This is partially due to a lethargy that took over the last quarter of the year that made me slow at everything and partially due to a giant leap in job duties that took up some free time. Despite that, I read 24,701 pages last year, which isn’t nothing to frown on. Of the 79 books, I rated 20 of them 5 stars on Goodreads and another 42 as 4 stars. Not too shabby of a year. I ended up re-reading 3 books (all graphic novels) and they all landed on the 5 star pile.

So which were my favorites?

The Girl with all the Gifts by MR Carey
I want everyone in the world to read and love this book as much as I did. I was so in awe of Carey’s writing and plotting, so surprised by plot twists that I had a happy post-read afterglow for days afterwards. I want more books like this in the world – standalones full of heart and surprises and emotion and not skimping on the action either.

Cress by Marissa Meyer
Marissa Meyer is my favorite YA author hands down. I think there’s no way this series can get any better and then, somehow, it does. Meyer was juggling a ton of characters in this third volume and yet I didn’t feel as though any one character was jipped. I wanted to spend more time with everyone and continue their space adventures and fight against the Evil Queen Levana. This is a series that I think about a lot between books and can’t wait to get a double dose this year with Fairest and Winter. But then it will be over and I will be sad and I will buy anything she ever writes for the rest of time.

Locke & Key by Joe Hill & Gabriel Rodriguez
I’m pretty certain this is the best comic series I have ever read. Gabriel Rodriguez’s art astonished me from beginning to end, and together with Joe Hill, gave me nightmares for days. I’m thankful Fernando suggested I read the last volume t home instead of on an airplane to Comic Con because, by the end, I was full on ugly sobbing. These guys deserve all the accolades that can be given to them and then some.

Robogensis by Daniel H Wilson
Speaking of nightmares, Daniel H Wilson once again manufactured many of mine this year. I never dreamed a sequel to Robopocalypse would exist, but man, am I glad it does. It feels real and surreal and crazy all at the same time. I would not want to live in Wilson’s world, but I really love visiting it and revealing in the victories and commiserating in the defeats.

The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski
Forget Song of Ice & Fire. Give me Marie Rutkoski’s romantic fantasy realm of a general’s daughter and her mysterious slave boy getting in above their heads. Rutkoski’s writing was beautiful in its descriptiveness while pacing rarely let up. With so many series ending in 2014, I’m so glad this one started.

Prisoner of Night & Fog by Anne Blankman
In 400 pages, Blankman reignited a love of historical fiction in me that I had forgotten for nearly a decade. This is a delicately weaved tale of family and love and doing what is right when it’s by no means easy. I’ve always been fascinated by stories of the home front during World War II, but this gave me a fictional glimpse at what it was like on the other side before everything exploded. I can’t wait for the sequel.

Free to Fall by Lauren Miller
Ignore the title and ignore the cover. What is between the pages of this book is so much more than the sum of its exterior. I had such a hard time putting down this near-future sci-fi standalone full of mystery, weird secret societies and an app that makes every decision for you. Life at a freaky elite boarding school and the technology ruling the students’ lives makes for one compelling read.

Strange & Ever After by Susan Dennard
I was disappointed with one series ender after another in 2013. Luckily that wasn’t the case in 2014. While it’s the only book on the list that is a series ender, man, what an ender it was. There were tears and cursing and white-knuckle gripping of the book. I still can’t believe what Susan Dennard did to me through her characters. I don’t know if I will ever get over that ending, though she has officially landed on my list of “automatically buy all the books no matter what”.

The Rule of Three by Eric Walters
My favorite books either leave me dreamy for a fictional world or leave me clutching the blankets in terror it seems. The Rule of Three was too realistic in its depiction of how society will fracture after a catastrophe like the complete loss of electricity. It stuck with me for a year and has made me both eager and terrified to read the sequel. If the world as we know it ends, I hope a level-headed kid like Adam lives in my neighborhood.

Love in the Time of Global Warming by Francesca Lia Block
Who knew coming home could be so fulfilling? I might not be an emo, manic depressive teen with dreams of great adventures anymore, but returning home to Francesca Lia Block was just as exciting and welcoming in its subversive weirdness as it ever was. Block is not to everyone’s taste, especially anyone who doesn’t like weird drug-fueled psychedelic dreamscapes filled with manic pixie dream girls, but it still feels like home to me.

 

Runner Up in Comics:

All the Marvel NOW books I picked up, particularly Young Avengers, Captain Marvel and Hawkeye
I read a fair amount of comics in 2014, but my reading timeline shows a strong turn towards the Marval NOW! line of books around mid-summer after reading tons of DC comics that left me feeling bleak and mildly disgusted in some cases. First came Hawkeye then Captain Marvel then Guardians of the Galaxy, Young Avengers, Loki: Agent of Asgard, Black Widow and more. I might not always know what’s going on because I lack background, but I always have fun with Marvel’s latest lines so far. I already have a long list of Marvel books to pick up this year. Compared to DC, the Marvel universe is full of so much fun and adventure and no one is trying to chop Batgirl’s legs off or skin the faces of everyone Batman loves. Sunshine can happen to superheroes too, you know.

 

Just Didn’t Get the Hype

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
I called the big “reveal” mid-way through chapter 2 and just ended up hating all the people in this book to the point that I wanted everyone to end up at the bottom of the river. I’m definitely not the target audience and I might have to stay away from this sort of “marital crime” sort of books in the future because it just made me grumpy and angry for awhile.

 

Of course a lot more books came out last year, so what are the glaring omissions from my list? What 2014 book should I bump up on my TBR list this year?

Review: Locke & Key Volume 3: Crown of Shadows

Locke & Key Volume 3: Crown of Shadows
Joe Hill & Gabriel Rodriguez

IDW (2010)
152 pages
Comics / Dark Fantasy / AWESOME

Purchase a copy from Amazon

Sam Lesser may be dead and gone, but Dodge still has uses for him, and in the first chill days of October, will make contact with him again. The dead know things the living may not, and Sam's restless spirit has had time to discover the thing Dodge wants to know most of all... where to find the key to the black door.

A few weeks ago, I posted a mini-review of volume 3 of the absolutely brilliant Locke & Key series by Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez. At that point I was so shell shocked by how gorgeous Gabriel Rodriguez that I couldn't put my thoughts into words. Now that I have regained my senses, here goes a real review.

Locke & Key quickly became one of my favorite comic series of all time within a couple of issues. The combination of Joe Hill's black humor, creepy horror and charm combined with the astounding art from Gabriel Rodriguez makes it one of the most expressive and detailed series out there. With this third volume, the characters become more defined, stakes get higher (which I didn't think was even possible) and new keys are introduced to interesting results.

The story focuses equally on each of the three kids. Oldest brother --- is the designated protector of his two younger siblings though he does it seemingly against his will until someone is really threatened. Middle sister --- is still running away from her former self and getting herself into tight situations due to her lack of fear. And of course Bodie is just roaming around the house, having keys more or less fall into his lap everywhere he turns.

Read More

Top 10 Tuesday: My TBR List for Summer

Now onto Top 10 Tuesday.  I like lists and every Tuesday Tahleen at The Broke and the Bookish posts a topic for book bloggers everywhere to use in the form of a list.  This week’s topic is:

Top Ten Books On My Summer TBR List


1. Dearly, Beloved by Lia Habel - Despite the fact that it's been the cover image on my "Current Reads" box, I still haven't had a chance to dive deep into Habel's sequel to my favorite read of the year so far. Prior obligations and what not...

2. Shadowcry and Blackwatch by Jenna Burtonshaw - I received Blackwatch from the publisher and have the first in the series from the library, so I hope to get to those in the next week or two.

3. Why Does Batman Need Shark Repellant? by Brian Cronin - Another I received from the publisher and one I plan to feature the week of Comic Con. I have a feeling it will make me giggle.

4. The Time Machine by HG Wells - For July's bookclub read.

5. Insurgent by Veronica Roth - So I was just ho-hum on the Divergent, but it's still a series I'll keep up with.

6. Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo - The publisher sent me an early copy of this only for it to languish on my desk while the chaos of real life distracted me. I've heard fantastic things about it and hope to read it very soon.

7. Locke & Key Volume 4: Keys to the Kingdom by Joe Hill & Gabriel Rodriguez - So I won't be spoiled (at least through this part at least) when I get to Comic Con. And because it's awesome.

8. Blood Zero Sky by J. Gabriel Gates - The Sleepwalkers knocked me unconscious for a short time last year, so when I got confirmed to receive an e-ARC of Gates' newest book (coming out in October), it went on my short list.

9. Innocent Darkness by Suzanne Lazear - It's been on my to-do list for months now. It's time to get to it.

10. Bridger and Traitor by Megan Curd - For a blog tour coming up in August.

 

What are you planning on reading this summer?

In My Mailbox #16: Books All Over the House

There are currently books all over my house. I mean, there are usually books all over the house, but it seems much worse than the usual library books in three places, new review books scattered in the office and on the kitchen counter, and the overflow of books from my personal library. It seems like my couch has been replaced by books and my coffee table and my bed... it's getting ridiculous.

It's been a very long time (three months!) since I did an In My Mailbox post and I know there was some to-do in the blogosphere with The Story Siren, though I have no idea what it was or how it was resolved (if it was resolved). Despite that, I already have a series of IMM posts, so I'm just continuing it here whether I link up on Sunday or not.

I'm not even going to attempt a comprehensive listing of all the books that have crossed my doorstep in the last three months. Instead here are the books that I've received in the last three weeks, excluding e-books. That's a whole 'nother post all on its own.

 

For Review

         

Why Does Batman Need Shark Repellent? by Brian Cronin

The New New Rules by Bill Maher (this one is for Fernando to review)

Waking the Witch & Spellbound by Kelley Armstrong

Tyrannosaurus Lex by Rod L Evans (for my inner English major geek)

Thanks to Plume & Penguin for their generosity.

     

 Doctor Who: Shada by Douglas Adams and Gareth Roberts

Blackwatch by Jenna Burtenshaw

The Darkening Dream by Andy Gavin

Kingdom by Anderson O'Connell (for a blog tour later this month)

Thanks to Penguin, HarperCollins, Anderson O'Connell and Andy Gavin.

 

From the Library

   

 Shadowcry by Jenna Burtenshaw

Insurgent by Veronica Roth

City of Lost Souls by Cassandra Clare

 

Purchased

 

Soulless: The Manga by Gail Carriger

Locke & Key Volume 4: Keys to the Kingdom by Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez

Sort of a Review: Locke & Key Volume 3: Crown of Shadows

I've had a long day and I'm tired of staring at computer screens, so you're getting the shortest review ever for this book:

It is seriously awesome. Gabriel Rodriguez does things with art I didn't think fathomable. Read it.

 

Actual review coming soon. True Blood and giant puppy Viking Vampire Eric calls.

A Week of Random: Random Monday - Meet Norman, On My Kindle & Supernatural

I have a confession. I’ve become an awful blogger. It’s been over a week since I finished a book and I’ve become habitually absent on Fridays because I usually work late and am mentally exhausted upon arriving home. But I will not quit! It’s just taking me a little more time to get adjusted to my new job where I don’t spend copious amounts of time on the internet, my new schedule and my new miles-long to-do list floating around in my head.

Because of this, I think we’re going to have an All Random Week here at Working for the Mandroid. Five days of posts that are just random links, pictures, thoughts and babble. If you have anything you’d like to contribute, send it our way at workingforthemandroid at gmail dot com. We love emails!

Meet the newest member of Mandroid’s crew. His name is Norman. We pay him in cookies.

Read More