Originally from Kentucky, Ty Johnston is a former newspaper journalist who now spends his days writing fiction in North Carolina along with memories of his loving wife. When not writing or reading, he enjoys longswording, tabletop role-playing games, and hiking.
Notes: Still in a philosophical state of mind, I now turn to Eastern thought, a rarity for me. This 1909 book isn't a complete listing of absolutely everything Confucius was thought to have said, but it should be enough for me to get a gist of the man and his philosophy. These writings were apparently originally compiled by students of Confucius a number of years after his d
Traditionally, Unearthed Arcana books offer new and extra rules for D&D games, yet we don't have one for Fifth Edition, though there are some online options. In my Nerdarchy article this week, I say it's time for a UA book.
Notes: I'm in a philosophical mood, so I turn to Hume. It's been a long while since I've dipped into any serious philosophy, though I've never been a big fan of the Empiricists as writers, though I don't have any hangups concerning their actual ideas. It's not impossible I read this 1757 piece in college lo those many decades ago, but I don't recall having done so.
Notes: I've read this one a couple of times over the decades since its original release in 1990, but back then it was a Writer's Digest book and now apparently the rights have reverted to the author and he has published it on his own. I don't know if he has updated or changed it in any way, but regardless, I've always enjoyed this book and feel it wouldn't hurt for a refresher.
Notes: I recently watched an interview with actor Cary Elwes in which he mentioned a memoir he had written a few years ago about the making of The Princess Bride movie. I had not heard about this and thought it would be interesting as the film is one of my favorites, as it is with many people.
Mini review: This was a charming book filled with Elwes' recollections of making the movie, as w
Notes: So I was in a line at the grocery store and got sucked into buying another of this History books. Sue me. These books, more like thick magazines, obviously are not meant to be deep, but they can provide a casual read for when one is in the mood. This one caught my eye not so much because of lost treasures from history, of which I'm guessing I'll be mostly aware, but because of more recent lost treasures.
Notes: I'm not familiar with Carriere, but I have enjoyed reading a number of Eco's works over the years, and while I cannot stomach Eco's hints of anti-Semitism and his flag waving for all things European, I do find enough genius in his material to consider him worth reading. This book is another example. On its face it is about the fate of print in the digital age, but it apparently goes i
This week my Nerdarchy article is somewhat of an opinion piece in which I point out that imagination is likely more important for this most recent edition of Dungeons & Dragons than any of the earlier versions.
Notes: This e-book was a big boost to the indie writing community when it first came out about five years ago. I skipped it then, but more recently I thought I would check out its updated version. Maybe I'll learn a few things or pick up some tips, or maybe it'll simply act as a push for me to get off my butt and work more.
Mini review: As expected, there wasn't much new here for me, so for myself th
Over at Nerdarchy.com, this week my article suggests that RPG players shouldn't limit themselves by not allowing their characters to change. And I'm not talking about long character arcs, but from session to session.
This week over at Nerdarchy, I create a D&D version of the infamous Al Swearengen, crime boss, runner of whores, knife fighter, throat slitter, and all around nasty guy from the HBO TV show Deadwood. If you don't know Al, then you should. He's great.
Notes: As I do from time to time, I like to try out authors unfamiliar to me, especially indie authors. So, I'm giving this one a go.
Mini review: Once every century the doors of an ancient city open to allow adventurers to enter and search for loot. It sounds like a bad Dungeons & Dragons adventure, but it actually all fits together quite well, even though it's obvious the world is based up
Notes: To be honest, I've not heard much good about this late addition to the Harry Potter series, but maybe that's to be expected since this is actually a play and not another novel. Either way, I've read all the other Potter books, so I thought I'd give this one a go.
Mini review: I don't know what all the grumbling is about, because I thought this was a pretty good
For those who don't know, back in the early '80s there was an animated Dungeons & Dragons TV show on Saturday mornings, back when Saturday morning cartoons still existed. Find out more at my weekly Nerdarchy article.
Notes: Been a while since I've read any Konrath, and my recent King readings have me in the mood for some darker material, so here goes.
Mini review: An FDA agent finds himself embroiled with crooked cops, crooked FBI agents, the mob, a serial killer, and more, all sicced on him (to some extent or another) by a pharmaceutical company seeking approval for a drug that allows people to go months withou
Notes: Since I recently finished Mr. Mercedes, the first book in this King series, I thought I'd go ahead and delve into the next book in this series.
Mini review: The plot is more convoluted than is usual for King, but I'll take a stab at breaking down the basics. Back in 1978, a famous author is murdered and numerous notebooks of his go missing. No suspects are ever caught. Decades later a 13-year
Notes: I've not read a lot of Sabatini, but what I have read I've enjoyed immensely, sort of like a slightly more modern Alexandre Dumas. It had been a number of years since I've read any of his work, so I thought it time I got back to him. I've also seen an old black-and-white movie version of this tale, but it was years ago and I remember little of it.
Fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons doesn't have nearly the magic items as earlier versions of the game, so to help with that, Scott Fitzgerald Gray of Insane Angels Studio has released The Emporium of Uncanny Magics -- Lost Potions. Find out more in my weekly Nerdarchy article.
Notes: My associate pastor at church lent me this book, suggesting I read it, so I'll give it a go and find out what it's about.
Mini review: Basically, this is a solid, basic breakdown of what it means to be a protestant Christian in today's world (at least from a somewhat but not totally conservative viewpoint). The casual Christian or the secular reader will probably not find much