Monday, April 4, 2016

The Brazen Shark - David Lee Summers, Author



Japanese-Style Beef and Sweet Potato Stew(A requested dish for Legion's friends Ramon & Fatemeh)
Makes 4 Servings

2 lbs boneless chuck cut in 1-inch chunks
2 cups vegetable stock
2 tbsp soy sauce
¼ cup honey
10 slices of ginger (nickel sized)
Salt and black pepper to taste
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 ½ lbs sweet potatoes in 1-inch chunks
6 oz udon noodles (or angel-hair pasta)

Brown meat in the cooking pot over medium-high heat.

Add vegetable stock to the pan and continue cooking over high heat to deglaze and integrate juices from the meat with the stock.  Add soy sauce, honey, ginger, and a couple of grindings of pepper.

Once liquid reaches a boil, cover and turn heat down to medium-low and simmer for 30 minutes.

While meat is cooking, cook noodles/pasta according to package directions then drain and set aside.

When meat is nearly tender, stir in sweet potatoes and cook until tender, but not mushy—about 20 minutes.  Add salt if needed, then stir in lemon juice.

Serve by placing pasta to taste in the bottom of the bowl and covering with meat, vegetables and stock.



The Brazen Shark - Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir Laugh Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; A Book and A Dish

The men took their stations with samurai keeping careful watch. Legion continued to calculate reasons for the airship's capture. A mission to discredit the emperor's power and gain popular support seemed a high probability.  Usurping the throne directly also ranked high.  Either possibility could precipitate further warfare and involve either the United States or Russia.... Legion, you have abandoned me.  Although Mendeleev remained silent, Legion had no problem hearing his thoughts.  Legion considered and after a moment, decided to speak.  "We have not abandoned you.  We have been watching and calculating possibilities."

"Why didn't you stop the samurai from taking the airship? Certainly you can see what a disaster this would be for our goal of world unification."

"We could not stop the samurai without taking over their minds and bending them to our will."

Legion remembered assorted names for himself.  Most were simple combinations of letters and numbers which identified the different machines he once occupied, but some held ancient meanings. Perhaps one had even been his name as a corporeal life form.  He was nothing but a swarm of microscopic machines that reproduced asexually.  Over the millennia he had watched solar systems form as well as thousands of species destroyed in a microsecond.  His main goal in being though was the unification of earth and its people.  This goal has taken him into the minds of a small circle of humans that he has helped by expanding their ability to create items that he feels is needed for them to succeed.  Two of these items became the first air ships and fast moving water ships.

Legion's interference in the creation of these vehicles has taken a turn for the worse.  A group of samurai have captured one of the air ships owned by the Russians.  For some time their intended use for this ship is unknown even to Legion.  When their agenda is made clear, it's up to the humans he contacts to save the world from a major war that will put an end to the unification they all desire.  But can he do this without interfering into the minds of others?

The Brazen Shark was a book that I will say I wouldn't normally have chosen... but... once I started reading I had to continue to see exactly where it would take me.  It took me to a world that is called earth but with an entirely different history.  One that actually had me wondering if there really is a 'Legion' out there that is powering the minds of those who create what most of us can't even imagine.  Could Einstein have been one that was contacted by a being like Legion?  After reading this book it just might be possible.

 
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