It's been a while since I updated, mainly because of a concurrence of busy times in my day job and two community/voluntary activities I'm involved in, which have distracted me from writing. What time I've had free for writing has been focused on the first draft of Black Storm, which is coming along nicely, rather than blogging.
So today I'll offer an observation on technology/geek toys and a single review:
My kids are getting into Disney Infinity, a PS3 game that allows them to play in a variety of Disney/Pixar movie worlds (Incredibles, Cars, Monsters University, Pirates, and Lone Ranger [not that we've bothered with that one]). Like Skylanders, Infinity uses the money-raising gimmick of selling the game and base unit, then charging people more to add characters to the world, in 1-, 2- or 3-packs, using real cash rather than in-game currency or achievements to unlock them. This seems to be catching on as a gamemakers' cashgrab, as the new Angry Birds Star Wars also has birds you can "teleport" into the game.
In addition to the Disney Infinity characters out now, the Toy Story gang and Mickey Mouse in his Fantasia outfit are coming soon. Since Disney owns both Marvel and Lucasfilm now, I'd bet dollars to donuts that in 2015 we'll see some Star Wars and Avengers characters coming out too.
Which led me to the realization that this could lead to a very cool 3-pack of characters: Mace Windu, Nick Fury and Frozone - the BMF collection?
The Shadow Tracer, Meg Gardiner, 5 stars
Gardiner's 11th novel revisits the same themes as her first, China Lake: an aunt races to defend her niece/nephew from fundamentalist religious cultists from the other side of the family. In this case, Sarah Keller has raised Zoe since the newborn's mother was killed, using how-to-disappear tricks of the trade to stay hidden, while her day job of skip tracer involves finding others who don't want to be found.
A taut thriller that races around the mid-west, including a stint in Roswell, with a tense climax in an aircraft graveyard. My only complaint is that the resolution seemed a little rushed.
Strangely, while the e-book I bought refers to the author as Meg Gardiner in the text, the cover claims to be written by "M.G. Gardiner" - I'm not sure if this is a mid-career attempt to do a J.K. Rowling and appeal to males, or just a typo by the cover designer that the publisher stuck with!