They were a terrific bunch, very likable and smart and thoughtful.  These kids today.  I didn’t always feel at the top of my game, especially on bad hamstring days, but they usually had something interesting to say.  Their unfavorite book, by a wide margin, was Snow Crash—even worse than Neuromancer in years past.  Forever War was once again the class favorite, though Boneshaker was a strong second.  They were quite enthusiastic about Boneshaker the first day we discussed it, when a construction worker accidentally set off the wrath-of-God alarm system, ending that discussion.  When we returned the next day, the spark had gone, but I would definitely teach the book again.  One thing the class especially liked about the book was Briar, a strong female character.  The one thing most liked about Snow Crash was the character of Y.T., another strong female character.  Some of the best papers were definitely on Boneshaker.  They liked the book better than I did (I wearied immediately of the sullen whiny adolescent boy), so I learned a lot about it from them.  I love it when that happens.  Monday Urban Fantasy begins, and I’m spending the weekend with Anansi Boys.  We’re practically old friends.  Throw me in that briar patch, Neil!