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Last night I was reading Marie Rutkoski’s so-far fabulous The Cabinet of Wonders and I ran across a reference to Archimedes continuing to draw in the dirt as he’s attacked by a Roman soldier (and then a little while later a character started to talk about the concept of zero, which Petra, our heroine, had never heard of before)  But the smartness of the book isn’t my point.  My point is that I’d never heard that story about Archimedes until a few hours earlier – when I was at work listening to that shining star in the firmament of historical fiction, The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, Traitor to the Nation, Volume 1: The Pox Party. At least, I’m pretty that’s where I heard it, because it’s the most logical place for anyone to be talking about Archimedes.  But since I was listening to it, that makes it trickier to flip back and double check.

Petra was disturbed by it – she sees it in a frieze above the castle’s library doors, and she wonders whether he’s meant as a warning or a role model.  I might have to grab a copy of Octavian Nothing if it’s in at the library, just to double check, because now I’m curious about Octavian’s comments on the story.  What’s funny is that now this is really the only thing I know about ol’ Archimedes…

For about the millionth time since I packed up my books and put them in storage, I’ve wanted to check or reread something I own.  This is driving me crazy.  I have a lovely copy of Octavian, in a box.  I’ve also wanted my copies of a few of the Vicky Bliss books, Ballet Shoes, some assorted Newbery medalists, my L.M. Montgomery paperbacks, and probably a few other things.  Not like I can’t get them out of the library easily, but there’s a reason I have my own copy of things.  And it’s been less than 2 months.  Of course, if they weren’t in boxes, I’d probably have no interest in rereading them.

September 2008

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