Barb Caffrey's Blog

Writing the Elfyverse . . . and beyond

Archive for May 24th, 2014

Just Reviewed Stephanie Osborn’s “Endings and Beginnings” at SBR

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Folks, I’m glad to pass along a teensy bit of good news tonight, as I was able to review Stephanie Osborn’s THE CASE OF THE COSMOLOGICAL KILLER: ENDINGS AND BEGINNINGS (otherwise known as book four of her Displaced Detective series featuring Sherlock Holmes as brought to the modern-day via the World of Myth hypothesis) tonight over at Shiny Book Review (SBR).

Why?

Well, sometimes it’s refreshing to read a romance, especially when it’s about two unabashedly smart, talented, thoughtful individuals. Much less two romances.

You see, there’s a romance going on between our universe’s Sherlock and Skye Chadwick-Holmes (Skye being the hyperspatial physicist who brought Sherlock to our world in the first place, natch). They’ve recently married, are on their honeymoon, and are also investigating a crime (as that’s what they do).

But the other romance between the secondary universe’s other-Sherlock and other-Holmes isn’t going nearly so well.

And our Sherlock and Skye know this and want to fix things between their counterparts. Which is something you see all the time in romance, but you only rarely see in science fiction . . . but as well as this works, I wish we saw more of it.

To see a couple in deep distress (in this case, other-Sherlock and other-Skye) figure out a way to rectify their distress and fix their relationship is the hallmark of a great romance. Which is why I’m urging you to go read Stephanie Osborn’s ENDINGS AND BEGINNINGS just as soon as you can if you love Sherlock Holmes (as brought to the modern-day), if you love intelligent romances, and/or you love intelligent science right along with your intelligent romance.

You won’t regret it.

Dealing with Frustration

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Have you ever had one of those days where you just wish you could start the day over?

Most of us have, actually. But when we have a day like that — a day where the word “frustration” is written in all-caps, and Murphy’s Law seems to be overly optimistic — it’s hard to remember that other people have suffered the same slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, too.

Or at least, most of them.

My late husband Michael used to say that no one can tell you what you’ve experienced but you. (That was his way of saying that everyone’s different, and everyone’s experiences can’t help but be different as well.) But he also said that because most of us tend to go through the same things, albeit at different times and perhaps in different ways, that helps us realize that we’re not completely alone.

I’ve been thinking a lot about my husband tonight. This isn’t much of a surprise, as I tend to think about him often . . . I can’t bring him back, no, but I can at least remember what he told me, and in that way, at least some of what he was continues to survive.**

Holiday weekends are difficult for me. (If you’ve read my blog for a while, you’ve probably figured this out.) Memorial Day weekend, which is a time to remember our servicemen who died in the line of duty, is a very somber holiday to begin with; as Michael served in the Navy honorably (albeit much more briefly than he would have wished due to a knee issue), I suppose it’s not at all surprising that I’m ruminating on frustration, on things I can’t change, on Murphy’s Law and on the whole issue of how to bear defeat, during this particular weekend.

A fortune cookie, of all things, had a cogent saying about this: “The toughest challenge in this world is in bearing defeat without losing heart.”

I think that’s what we all have to do on our darkest days. We have to believe that something will improve despite it all, and that the meaning that eludes us on days where nothing goes right and absolutely nothing makes any sense will eventually show itself.

So it’s hard — very hard — to keep going when you don’t see anything different on the horizon.

But it’s worthwhile to keep trying, no matter how tough life is, and no matter how many difficulties have befallen you.

That’s yet another thing Michael told me. And I believe it still makes sense.

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**Yes, I know that while I continue to survive, at least some of Michael is alive as well. But it’s a difficult concept for me to ponder.