Cyborgs: Heroes Never Die

Cyborg_(film)Cyborgs Heroes Never Die (Кiборги Герої не вмирають). It is a movie about the battle for Donetsk Airport during the first year of the Russian invasion o

 

I’m a bit late with a post today, because I got home late last night and wanted to write about where I’d been. Also, the wine was free-flowing at the function, and I wasn’t in the mood to type when I got back!

At the invitation of the embassy, last night I attended the first Australian screening of the movie Cyborgs: Heroes Never Die (Кiборги: Герої не вмирають).

It is a movie about the battle for Donetsk Sergey Prokofiev International Airport (named after the Ukrainian composer) during 2014, the first year of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Cyborgs is the nickname given to the Ukrainian Army units who fought, lost, and died in the conflict.

When the battle began the airport was brand new, and had just been built for the Euro 2012 Football Championship.

Here is drone footage of the place after the battle (about twenty seconds in). It’s total destruction:

 

 

At the moment, the major Ukrainian city of Donetsk has fallen to the Russians and is allegedly now part of the Kremlin-invented “Donetsk People’s Republic”. I have family who lived there who – like a few million others in the region – had to flee. Why this humanitarian crisis never makes the news is beyond me.

The film is entirely about the battle, which I’m sure was a little disturbing to some of the guests who attended! Think Black Hawk Down, with a bit less gore. Cyborgs is a brilliant movie because it utterly refuses to work as propaganda. I’d heard from Western journalists who’d already seen it in Europe that it was surprisingly balanced in its portrayal.

This is in stark contrast to most war movies that paint one side as perfect and the other evil. Right now in Australia they are showing WW2-era movies late at night, and they’re all ridiculous. The pre-Pearl Harbor ones – imported to America from Britain – have all war things edited out of them, and the post-Pearl Harbor ones are blatant propaganda, where the US singlehandedly saves the world a million times over.

I don’t know what more Ukraine can do to get anyone to give a damn about the ongoing Russian invasion. It’s ironic that the day I attended this function was the same day it was confirmed it was the Russian military who shot down MH17 (duh!). Imagine this war was happening in any other country in Europe. Imagine how different the international reaction would be.

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Now “Forever”?

The trademark wars continue, with another author attempting to steal another word out from under everyone in publishing.

While the trademarking of the word “cocky” did set a dangerous precedent, the trademarking of the word “forever” seems even more worrying, and certainly more restricting. However, that’s exactly what seems to be happening as I type.

Despite what every article under the sun said, cocky is hardly a common word in book titles. Forever, on the other hand…

I’m not sure what has Heidi McLaughlin convinced she owns the word, but surely most people associate forever with a certain hit from Judy Blume in 1975, not any recent romances!

Judy Blume Forever 1975 Young Adult Romance Vintage

It’s All About the Duke (The Rakes of St James #3) by Amelia Grey

It's All About the Duke (The Rakes of St James #3) by Amelia Grey

Nearing thirty, the Duke of Rathburne is finally ready to make amends for the wager that caused him and his best friends such scandal―but taking on a ward who needs a husband is a feat he’s not sure he can manage. The last he saw of Miss Marlena Fast, she was a spirited little ruffian, not the sort of bride most bachelors on the marriage mart sought. But one glance at the lovely lady she has become is enough to convince him otherwise…

Orphaned young and shuffled from family to family, Marlena counts on her fierce independence and quick wits to keep herself content. Being the responsibility of a notoriously wicked duke who upended so many lives is an unexpected challenge when she realises he arouses her decidedly feminine desires. Marlena must be careful. She has her own scandalous secret to protect. If he finds out, will it shatter her chances of a happily-ever-after with the notorious rake?

It’s All About the Duke (The Rakes of St James #3) by Amelia Grey

Something was niggling at me when I downloaded It’s All About the Duke. It wasn’t until I got into chapter three and the hero and heroine still hadn’t finished the conversation they began at the start of the book that I remembered: Amelia Grey’s writing style just doesn’t work for me.

I actually enjoyed the opening, even though it includes a trope I dislike: the heroine who secretly writes scandal sheets. I liked the characters, enjoyed the dialogue…

However, the conversation just kept going. The first scene of the book takes three chapters and 16% of the text. It’s FAR too long to hold a reader’s interest.

I read the first book in this Rakes of St James series last year, and had a similar reaction. The conversation that opened that book also went for three whole chapters. The pace was far too slow, and with each conversation taking up such a huge chunk of the book, there wasn’t any time left for character or plot development.

I admit: I didn’t finish this one. Scenes that would have been witty and fun if they’d been edited just made my mind wander. I simply couldn’t find the motivation to devote any more hours to the book.

This is Regency (? – I didn’t see a date) romance for people who enjoy writers who use a lot of dialogue, and for readers who like a book that moves at a slower pace. Unfortunately, I don’t have the patience for it.

 

Review copy provided by NetGalley.

Library and Information Week

For Australia, this week is Library and Information Week, which you can read about HERE.

Below is a picture the National Library (which is here in Canberra) shared on Twitter. It’s the interior of the Hume Repository, which I drive past about half a dozen times a week. From the outside it’s just a big shed opposite a farm, and I had NO idea what it looked like inside until now. SO many shelves of books!

Library and Information Week National Library of Australia Canberrra Hume Repository 2018

Why would you even want to?

Trademark Symbol.

The more I think about this insane trademark saga in the publishing world (actually, now there’s more than one word at stake), the more I think some authors are totally misguided.

Why would you want to steal a word from everyone else? Even if you write twenty books using the word in the title, people aren’t only going to want to read YOUR books.

People want variety. Even when they’re sticking to a particular genre, they still want variety! If I read a great book with a certain theme, I go looking for books by other authors with similar themes.

So, what if someone else has the word “cocky” in their book title? So what if I read another “cocky” book first? What if once I’m finished reading that one I search for the word and discover yours?

It’s a GOOD thing to have many options. Readers (and romance readers more than others) read so many books they go to social media platforms to beg for help finding MORE of the type of book they want!

I don’t just want ONE romantic suspense book about a reunited couple; I want THOUSANDS. I don’t want ONE historical romance about a Victorian self-made man; I want THOUSANDS.

Literally the only reason to trademark simple words and force others’ books to be removed from sale is greed. But it’s counterproductive.

The Week: 14th – 20th May

It was a gorgeous week here. I could go on about all the horrible things that happened in the world, but you know what they are…

We had a late lunch in Manuka yesterday afternoon. On the way home we had to drive past St Christopher’s Cathedral. Such blue sky. It looks a bit like it’s a Tuscan town in this picture! The trees around it were full of hundreds of cockatoos.

RT Book Reviews Closes

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Little Women 2017 – Cast

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No more library fines for most young readers in L.A. County

Libraries in Los Angeles are letting kids read off their debt.

Out Now: Dater’s Handbook

A novelisation based on a movie starring Meghan Markle, Dater's Handbook by Cara Lockwood cover

Romeo and Juliet Manga?

Manga Classics Romeo and Juliet by Crystal S. Chan (Adapter) and William Shakespeare and Julien Choy (Artist) Cover

The Best Trademark

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