God Against the Gods: The History of the War Between Monotheism and ... by Jonathan Kirsch
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God Against the Gods: The History of the War Between Monotheism and Polytheism
by Jonathan Kirsch

p.1 “Religious intolerance was inevitably born with the belief in one God.”
     --Sigmund Freud,
     Moses and Monotheism

p.2 But, fatefully, monotheism turned out to inspire a ferocity and even a fanaticism that are mostly absent from polytheism. At the heart of polytheism is an open-minded and easygoing approach to religious belief and practice, a willingness to entertain the idea that there are many gods and many ways to worship them. At the heart of monotheism, by contrast, is the sure conviction that only a single god exists, a tendency to regard one’s own rituals and practices as the only way to worship the one true god. The conflict between these two fundamental values is what I call the war of God against the gods--it is a war t hat has been fought with heart-shaking cruelty over the last thirty centuries, and it is a war that is still being fought today.

p.3 But the roots of religious terrorism are not found originally or exclusively in Islamic tradition. Quite the contrary, it begins in the pages of the Bible, and the very first examples of holy war and martyrdom are found in Jewish and Christian history. The opening skirmishes in the war of God against the gods took place in distant biblical antiquity, when Yahweh is shown to decree a holy war against anyone who refuses to acknowledge him as the one and only god worthy of worship. Holy war passes from biblical myth into recorded history during the wars of national liberation fought by the Maccabees against the pagan king of Syria and later by the Zealots against the pagan emperor of Rome, which provide us with the first accounts of men and women who are willing to martyr themselves in the name of God. The banner is taken up by the early Christians in the first century of the Common Era, when they bring the “good news” of Jesus Christ to imperial Rome, where the decisive battle in the war between monotheism and polytheism is fought.

10-11 Monotheism, for example, cruelly punishes the sin of “heresy,” but polytheism does not recognize it as a sin at all. Significantly, “heresy” is derived from the Greek word for “choice,” and the fundamental theology of polytheism honors the worshipper’s freedom to choose among the many gods and goddesses who are believed to exist. Monotheism, by contrast, regards freedom of choice as nothing more than an opportunity for error, and the fundamental theology of monotheism as we find it in the Bible threatens divine punishment for any worshipper who makes the wrong choice. Against the open-mindedness of the pagan Symmachus, who allows that there are many roads to enlightenment and salvation, Bishop Fulgentius (468-533) insists that only a single narrow path leads to God.
     “Of this you can be certain and convinced beyond all doubt,” declares Fulgentius, “not only all pagans, but also all Jews, all heretics and schismatics will go into the everlasting fire which has been prepared for the Devil and his angels.”
     Here is the flash point of the war of God against the gods. The deity who is worshipped in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam is described in the Bible as a “jealous” and “wrathful” god, and he is believed to regard the worship of any god other than himself as an “abomination.” The deities who populate the crowded pantheon of classical paganism, by contrast, were believed to be capable of thoroughly human emotions, including envy and anger, but they were never shown to deny one another’s existence or demand the death of someone who worshipped a different god or goddess.
     “The pagan gods, even the gods of mysteries are not jealous of one another,” explains historian and anthropologist Walter Burkert. “ ‘Envy stands outside the divine chorus,’ as the famous saying of Plato’s puts it.”

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the Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling
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The Jungle Book
by Rudyard Kipling


Raksha, the Demon
Mowgli, the Frog
Akela, the Lone Wolf
Rikki the Mongoose
Shere Khan the Tiger
Limmershin, the Water Wren
Scoochnie! Ochen Scoochnie! -- I'm lonesome, very lonesome!
Baloo the Bear
Oodeypore -- a village
Kaa the Python
sag -- dog
Mang the Bat
Bandar-Log -- Monkey People
Hathi the Wild Elephant
Chi the Kite
Kala-Nag -- the Black Snake
Radha Pyari -- Radha the Darling
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The Long Season of Rain by Helen Kim
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The Long Season of Rain
by Helen Kim


changma -- long rainy season
komooshin -- traditional footwear made of rubber
Uhnni -- (written like another name, e.g.. Changhee Uhnni) -- used for older (than the speaker) unmarried woman
Opa -- (written like Uhnni) older male relative
chung -- deeper than and different from love. An attachment that that grows with time and sharing. Even if you don't like someone you can still have much chung for them
bulgoki -- marinated beef
han -- sorrow and grief
chul -- maturity and wisdom

p.16 As all traditional houses in Korea, our house had very little privacy. If we wanted to play loudly or talk away from adults' ears, we had to move away from the main section where the living area joined Grandmother's room and our big room that we shared with Mother and Father.
     The wooden lattice sliding door covered with rice paper in Grandmother's room and our room didn't let much noise out.

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Fell Down by M. E. Kerr
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Fell Down
by M. E. Kerr


p.416 "I'm not in love...Do you know how pointless everything is when you're not in love?"

p.428 Poor little tyke was all alone in the world... almost... almost (Presque, as they say in Paris, and in Madrid they say casi. See how many languages you can say "almost" in.)

p.435 I couldn't really give either one of them a hard time. It was as though Central Casting had picked them to be The Nice Parents... He even smoked a pipe, which gave him a sort of philosophical air: the thoughtful type. A pharmacist by profession, you could imagine him ministering to people, wearing one of those short white coats people wear when they can't have the long one that means MD.

p.456 Algernon Charles Swinburne. (Never heard of him, right?)
     This twisted poet of yore (a lush, yes; none of them are ever happy) inspired Nels to underline so many passages!
     One afternoon Lenny took a good look at what it was that captured his pal's attention.
     I wished we were together today,
     Lost sight of, hidden way out of sight, Clasped
     and clothes in the clothes in the cloven clay,
     Out of the world's way, out of the light.
     Oh, yes, and how about this one?
     At the door of life, by the gate of breath,
     There are worse things waiting for men than death.
     Sick, sick sick... and he was all Lenny's.

p.458 "Jazzy, I know it's hard to get used to get used to, but Mommy has a right to go out. Daddy's in heaven."
     "Daddy's not. He's rolling over in his grave."
     "What?"
     "That's what Aunt Clara said. She said Daddy's probably rolling over in his grave."

p.470-471 Keats shoved an old tape of Tracy Chapman singing her songs of social conscience.
     I mumbled something about wondering if a Mercedes Benz was the ideal place to listen to lyrics about homeless people and police brutality.
     "Don't ruin everything, Fell," she said.
     "Remember that old Billy Joel song--'We Didn't Start the Fire?'"
     "We don't have to fan the flame, thought," I said, but she turned up the volume.

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Dinky Hocker Shoots Smack! by M.E. Kerr
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Dinky Hocker Shoots Smack!
by M. E. Kerr


p.10 "Bosch, Hieronymous: A Dutch painter known for his scenes of nightmarish tortures in hell at the hands of weird monsters."

"bespectacled"

p.19 "There's an old Chinese saying: Man is what man hears he is, though keyhole." -- Tucker's Dad

p.22 "To ask someone like Dinky to go into Woerner's Restaurant just to pick up pies for her mother was to ask a wino to drop in at a vineyard just to watch the bottling process." --Tucker, narrating

p.35 Hydrocephalics, or people with hydrocephalus: "People with water on the brain. They have oversized heads. Their heads are so big they can hardly carry them on their shoulders. They don't live long." --Dinky

p.57 "I should sit on a rock off Cornwall and comb my hair. I should wear tiger pants, I should have an affair. We should meet in another life, we should meet in air, Me and you."

p.66 What's a bordello?
     "It's a place where gracious ladies sell their favors to bashful gentlemen." -- Jingle
     "It's a place where ignorant women sell themselves to desperate men." --Tucker's Dad
     "You mean a whorehouse... I get it." --Tucker

p.67 "I have never been dismissed from a job," said Jingle.
     "You never held a job long enough to get canned," said Tuckers father.

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Douglas Adams's Starship Titanic by Terry Jones
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Doublas Adams's Starship Titanic
by Terry Jones


p.17 The moment he saw that figure he knew, deep in his bones, with that certainty that comes of being absolutely without any doubt whatsoever that something was about to go terribly, fearfully wrong.

p.51 *It may seem odd that a civilization that had never even heard of planet Earth and certainly had no idea of its existence should use French champagne for such an occasion. The explanation is rather complicated and involves a lot of stuff about time warps and black holes and an Intergalactic Smuggling Ring. If I were you I simply wouldn't worry about it and just get on with the story.

p.62 "All robotic functions on this ship are equipped with infraviolet translation sensors which automatically scans the brain impulses of passengers for language patterns. These patterns are then rearranged inside your head so that you can understand and speak intelligibly with the ship.. You are actually speaking and understanding Blerontinian. Pretty convenient for writers of science fiction, huh?"

p.73 "But we've got to be sensible," said Dan, adopting his "I'm in charge" manner that never fooled anyone.

p.87 "Workplace Chum of Victorious Athletics Coach!"
"Persipacious Lady Orthodontist!"

p.101 "Shit!" he said. The actual Blerontinian phrase was: "North of Pangalin," which was a particularly unpleasant suburb of Blerontis, the capital of Blerontin, but the meaning was: "Shit!"

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Pay it Forward by Catherine Ryan Hyde
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Pay it Forward
by Catherine Ryan Hyde

p.7 More than three minutes later she emerged from the principal's office, smiling too widely. Too openly. People often display far too much acceptance, he'd noticed, when they are having trouble mustering any for real.

p.9-10 At his former school in Cincinnati, Reuben had a friend named Louis Tartaglia. Lou had a special way of addressing an unfamiliar class. He would enter, on that first morning, with a yardstick in his hand. Walk right into the flap and fray. They like to test a teacher, you see, at first. This yardstick was Lou's own, bought and carried in with him. A rather thin, cheap one. He always bought the same brand at the hardware store. He would ask for silence, which he never received on the first request. After counting to three, he would bring this yardstick over his head and smack it down on the desktop in such a way that it would break in two. The free half would break up into the air behind him, hit the blackboard, and clatter to the floor. Then, in the audible silence to follow, he would say, simply, "Thank you." And he would have no trouble with the class after that.

p.16 When I was little I asked my mom why we have pain. Like, what's it for? She said it's so we don't stand around with our hands on a hot stove. She said it's to teach us. but she said by the time the pain kicks in, it's pretty much too late, and that's what parents are for. And that's what she's here for. To teach me. So I don't touch the hot stove in the first place.

p.21 It was like a map, i decided. You know, with red lines to divide up the states, and blue lines for the rivers, and brown folds for a mountain range. Which is more important: This deal we all make that Idaho stops being Idaho right here, or the mountains and rivers were there before anybody took to tracing?

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Farewell to Manzanar by Jeanne Watatsuki Houston and James D. Houston
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Farewell to Manzanar
by Jeanne Watatsuki Houston and James D. Houston

p.7-8 They got him two weeks later, when we were staying overnight at Woody’s place, on Terminal Island. Five hundred Japanese families lived there then, and FBI deputies had been questioning everyone, ransacking houses for anything that could conceivably be used for signaling planes or ships or t hat indicated loyalty to the Emperor. Most of the homes had radios with a short-wave band and a high aerial on the roof so that wives could make contact with the fishing boats during those long cruises. To the FBI every radio owner was a potential saboteur. The conspirators were often deputies sworn in hastily during the turbulent days right after Pearl Harbor, and these men seemed to be acting out the general panic, seeing sinister possibilities the most ordinary household items: flashlights, kitchen knives, cameras, lanterns, toy swords.
   If Papa were trying to avoid arrest, he wouldn’t have gone near that island. But I think he knew it was futile to hide out or resist. The next morning two FBI men in fedora hats and trench coats--like out of a thirties movie--knocked on Woody’s door and when they left, Papa was between them. He didn’t struggle. There was no point to it. He had become a man without a country. The land of his birth was at war with America; yet after thirty-five years here he was still prevented by law from becoming an American citizen. He was suddenly a man with no rights who looked exactly like the enemy.

p.58-59 That's how I remember him before he disappeared. He was not a great man. He wasn’t even a very successful man. He was a poser, a braggart, and a tyrant. But he had held onto his self-respect, he had dreamed grand dreams, and he could work well at any task he turned to: he could raise vegetables, sail a boat, plead a case in small claims court, sing Japanese poems, make false teeth, carve a pig.

p.83 When a soldier goes into war he must go believing he is never coming back. This is why the Japanese are such courageous warriors. They are prepared to die. They expect nothing else. But to do that, you must believe in what you are fighting for. If you do not believe, you will not be willing to die. If you are not willing to die, you wont fight well. And if you don’t fight well you will probably be killed stupidly, for the wrong reason, and unheroically.

p.89 Kimi ga yo -- Japanese national anthem

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To Sail Beyond the Sunset by Robert Heinlein
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To Sail Beyond the Sunset
by Robert A. Heinlein

p.2 I've shared beds with men before, and women, and cats who demand most of the bed, and (once) with a barbershop quartet. --Maureen

p.17 The Ten Commandments are for lame brains. The first five are solely for the priests and the powers that be; the second five are half truths, neither complete nor adequate.--Ira Johnson

p.26 "You'll be a preacher's wife yet."
     "Oh, God, Father, I'd rather be a whore!"
     "The two are not incompatible."
     --Maureen and Ira Johnson

p.31 "Why is there a rule against coveting your neighbor's wife but not a word about coveting your neighbor's husband? Was it an oversight on Jehovah's part? Or was it truly open season on husbands in those days?"
     "I don't know, Maureen. I suspect it was simply conceit on the part of the ancient Hebrews who could not imagine their wives wanting to jump the fence when they had such virile heroes at home. The Old Testament doesn't place women very high; it starts out with putting the blame on Mother Eve... then it gets worse. But here in Lyle County, Missouri, we do have a rule against it... and if any wife catches you making eyes at her husband here, she's likely to scratch out your pretty little eyes."
     "I don't intend to let her catch me. But suppose it's the other way. Suppose he covets me, or seems to. Suppose he pinches my bottom?"
     "Well, well! Who is he, Maureen? Who is he?"
     "Hypothetical case, mon cher père."
     "Very well. If he hypothetically does it again, you may hypothetically respond in several hypothetical fashions. You may hypothetically ignore him, pretend to a total lack of sensation in your gluteus maximus sinister--or is he left handed?"
     "I don't know."
     "Or you can hypothetically whisper, 'Don't do that here. Meet me after church.'"
     "Father!"
     "You brought it up. Or, if it suits you, you may hypothetically warn him that one more hypothetical pinch will be reported to your hypothetical father who owns both a hypothetical horsewhip and a hypothetical shotgun. You may say this most privately or shout it loudly enough for the entire congregation to hear it. Lady's choice."
     --Maureen and Ira Johnson

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Meredith Gentry Series #1: Mistral's Kiss by Laurell K. Hamilton
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Meredith Gentry Series #5
Mistral's Kiss

by Laurell K. Hamilton

p.5 A woman stood behind me, so close that when the wind blew through the dead trees her hooded cloak brushed against the hem of my gown. I formed my lips to say, Who? but never finished the word. She held out a hand that was wrinkled and colored with age, but it was a small, slender hand, still lovely, still full of quiet strength. Not full of the remnants of youthful strength, but full of the strength that comes only with age. A strength born of knowledge accumulated, wisdom pondered over many a winter's night. Here was someone who held the knowledge of a lifetime--no, several lifetimes.
     The crone, the hag, has been vilified as ugly and weak. But that is not what the true crone aspect of the Goddess is, and it was not what I saw. She smiled at me, and that smile held all the warmth you would ever need. It was a smile that held a thousand fireside chats, a hundred dozen questions asked and answered, endless lifetimes of knowledge collected and remembered. There was nothing she would not know, if only I could think of the questions to ask.

p.32 "None of us has told the younger ones, Queen Andais," Doyle said. "Everyone knows that out followers painted themselves with symbols and went into battle with only those symbols to shield them."
     "The eventually learned to wear armor," Andais said. Her arm had lowered enough for Mistral to be comfortable on his knees again.
     "Yes, and only the last few fanatical tribes kept trying to seek our favor and blessing. They died for that devotion," Doyle said.
     "What are you talking about?" I asked.
     "Once we, the sidhe, their gods, were painted with symbols that were signs of blessing from the Goddess and the God. But as our power faded, so did the marks upon our bodies." Doyle said it all in his thick-as-molasses voice."
     "It is faint and incomplete," the queen said from the far wall.
     "Yes." Rhys nodded and looked at her. "But it is a beginning."

p.47 Mistral raised his mouth from mine and half whispered, half groaned, "Fuck her, fuck her, fucker, please," and the last word was drawn out into a long sigh that ended in something close to a scream.
     Abeloec pushed himself inside me, and only then did he begin to throb with power. It was almost like some huge vibrator, except this vibrator was warm and alive, and had a mind and a body behind it.

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Meredith Gentry Series #1: A Stroke of Midnight by Laurell K. Hamilton
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Meredith Gentry Series #4
A Stroke of Midnight

by Laurell K. Hamilton

p.16 "Are the two of you having sex with the princess at the same time?"
     "No." Frost fought not to frown. We were lucky the reporter hadn't asked if they slept together with me. Because we did. The fey sleep in big puppy piles. It's not always about sex; sometimes it's about safety and comfort.

p.18 The cameras and attention turned to Nicca like lions spotting a newly wounded gazelle.

p.28-29 I'd also learned that all bodies are an it, not he, not she--it. Because if you think of the dead body as a h e or a she, they begin to be real for you. They begin to be people, and they aren't people, not anymore. They're dead, and outside of very special circumstances they are just inert matter. You can have sympathy for the victim later, but at the crime scene, especially in the first moments, you serve the victim better by not sympathizing. Sympathy steals your ability to think. Empathy will cripple you. Detachment and logic, those are your salvation at a fresh murder. Anything else leads to hysterics, and I was not only the most experienced detective in the hallway, I was also Princess Meredith NicEssus, weilder of the hands of flesh and blood, Besaba's Bane. Besaba was my mother, and my conception had forced her to wed my father and live, for a time, at the Unseelie Court. I was a princess and I might one day be queen. Future queens do not have hysterics Future queens who are also trained detectives aren't allowed hysterics.

p.39 Ameraudur meant a war leader who was chosen for love, not bloodline. Ameraudur meant that the man who called you this would give his own life before he saw yours fail. It was the word that the Welsh had used for Arthur, yes, that Arthur.

p.40 With Doyle touching me, I could let myself remember that awful day. It's funny how your mind protects you. I saw the bloody sheet and the stretcher. I held my father's hand, cold but not stiff, not yet. I had his blood on my hands from touching him, but it wasn't him. It was just cool flesh. That feeling of terrible emptiness when I touched him was like going into a house that you thought would be full of people you loved, only to find it empty, and even the furniture taken. You walk from room to room, hearing your footsteps echo on the naked floors. Your voice bounces back from the empty walls, where the lines of beloved photos still show like the line around a body at a crime scene. He was gone. My tall, handsome, amazing father. He was supposed to have been immortal, but there are spells to steal even the life of a god, a once-upon-a-time god.

p.47 She turned back to me, and her eyes shone as if there was a light behind them. It was watching the moon behind grey clouds, pushing light up through the colors of her eyes, but the eyes themselves did not truly glow. It was an effect I had never seen in any other sidhe's eyes.

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Meredith Gentry Series #1: Seduced by Moonlight by Laurell K. Hamilton
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Meredith Gentry series #3
Seduced by Moonlight

by Laurell K. Hamilton

p.99 "Most things are logical when they're explained."

p.148 I felt the bed move a moment before I felt Nicca's presence behind me. He wasn't a burning heat now, but it was if he was t he warmth of the earth itself. The warmth that lives down in the rich brown soil, and keeps all the seeds, and all the creatures safe and warm through the winter. When his hands touched my shoulders, it was like being wrapped up in the warmest, softest blanket in the world. So safe, so warm, as if you snuggle down and sleep for months, and wake refreshed, whole, and the earth would be made new again. The magic of spring itself was in the touch of his hands.

p.176 I hugged him. When I pulled away, he was smiling. "For that look in your eyes, I would slay armies. What is a little emotion, to that?"
     Anyone who thought that slaying armies was easier than fixing your own internal emotional mess hadn't had enough therapy.
     But I didn't say that out loud, either.

p.178 Galen had to search Los Angeles over to find an honest-to-goodness tea cozy to keep our tea warm. Most of the men preferred a strong black tea for breakfast instead of coffee--Rhys being the exception. He just didn't think that hard-boiled detectives should drink tea, so he drank coffee. His loss. More tea for me.

p.206 Frost was behind me in a silver fox coat that nearly trailed the ground. When I'd pointed out to him how many animals had died for the coat, he'd informed me that he'd owned the coat for more than fifty years, long before anyone thought badly of owning fur. He'd also touched my long leather coat and said, "Please don't complain to me when you're wearing half a cow."
     "But I eat cow, so wearing leather uses the entire animal; it's not wasteful. You don't eat fox."
     He'd gotten a strange look on his face. "You have no idea what I've eaten."

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Meredith Gentry Series #2: A Caress of Twilight by Laurell K. Hamilton
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Meredith Gentry series #2
A Caress of Twilight

by Laurell K. Hamilton


p.30 I started to laugh. I laughed so hard, I had to sit down on the floor. I held the bloody knife and watched the two guards gaze down at me, worried looks on their faces. Rhys wasn't glowering anymore. Kitto touched my arm, gently, as if afraid of what I'd do. I wrapped my arms around him, hugged him to me, and the tears streaming down my face stopped behind laughter, and I simply cried. I held Kitto and the bloody knife and cried.

p.33 He crossed his arms over his chest, flashing the gold of his Rolex, and looked at me. Among the fey it was impolite to ask why a person was having hysterics. Hell, sometimes it was even considered impolite to notice they were having hysterics at all. usually that was for ruling royalty, though. Everyone had to pretend that the king or queen wasn't bug nuts. Mustn't admit that centuries of inbreeding had done any damage.

p.81 "She tasted like sunshine. And until this second I didn't know that sunshine tasted like anything."

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Meredith Gentry Series #1: A Kiss of Shadows by Laurell K. Hamilton
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Meredith Gentry Series #1
A Kiss of Shadows

by Laurell K. Hamilton

p.6 I stared at him, and finally understood. "You know we should walk away from this one, but you can't bring yourself to pass judgment on them. You can't bring yourself to condemn them to death."
     He nodded. "Yes."
     "What makes you think that I can do it, if you can't?"
     "I'm hoping one of us is sane enough not to be this stupid."
     "I won't get you all killed for the sake of strangers, Jeremy, so be prepared to walk away from this one." Even to me, my voice sounded thin, hard, cold.
     He smiled again. "That's my little cold-hearted bitch."

p.9-10 Some days I was better at it than this. Some days I was worse. I could have tried to get the measure of her psychically, to see if she had more than bone structure going for her, but it was impolite to read another person's magical ability at first introduction. Among the sidhe it's considered an open challenge, an insult that you don't believe that the other person can shield himself from your most casual magic. Naomi probably wouldn't have taken it as an insult, but her ignorance was no reason for me to be rude.

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Return from Luna by D. S. Halacy, Jr.
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Return from Luna
by D. S. Halacy, Jr.


p.6 There was bitter irony in thanking a man for kicking the props out from under him!

p.13 He was a lean, crew-cut flier turned scientist who must have starred on the football field in college, Rob thought. You could spot an athlete from his stride and movements.


p.14 But wouldn't it be wonderful if all our efforts could be directed towards benefits and not destruction?

p.29 "Door coming open!" said the voice in the speaker, and slowly the entryway slid back, revealing the surface of the moon. Rob caught his breath at the sight--like silvery beach sand in the illumination of the moon low in the horizon, he thought, and then caught himself. Not the moon, the Earth! He gaped like an infant at a sight he was seeing for the first time in his eighteen years--Mother Earth riding in the lunar sky, a huge blue-green ball swathed in filmy white.

p.30-31 Jumping on the moon, Rob knew, was the mark of the newcomer. But he didn't let that stop him. With a mighty vertical push-off, he vaulted higher than Munson's head in a leap that brought a cry of pleased surprise from him. So what if you couldn't walk easily? You could leap as if you were wearing seven-league boots! He came down with jolt that surprised him until he remembered something Carpenter had told him. Although weight is slow, inertia is still with you on the moon. If you jump with all your might you land as hard as you would when jumping with all your might on Earth. So it wasn't as dreamy as he had expected, at least not the landing part of it. But that didn't stop him from leaping again like an intoxicated pogo stick. And when he looked back, there was Professor Munson right behind him!
     The two of them met the welcoming committee halfway between the base and the newly arrived craft. The man in the lead stuck out a hand in greeting and his smile was broad.
     "You must be Professor Munson," he said. "And don't feel apologetic, we're all frustrated ballet dancers at heart, I believe."

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