books!

Jun. 29th, 2016 09:04 am
ursula: (Default)
[personal profile] ursula

  • What did you recently finish reading?

    Listing back a little ways, since these books are thematically akin:

    Full Fathom Five and Last First Snow by Max Gladstone, Night Flower by Kate Elliott, The Winged Histories by Sofia Samatar, and Fire Logic by Laurie J. Marks.

    I read the first of Gladstone's Craft books, and found it interesting, but a little too aggressively weird for me to relate to any of the characters. Full Fathom Five, on the other hand, drew me in quite quickly. This could mean that I connect with hopelessly noble finance nerds, or that a postcolonial Polynesian setting is easier for me to deal with than a bunch of skeletons. The book starts out looking as if it's a thinly veiled meditation on the machinations that led to the Great Recession, and ends up being about faith. Recommended.

    Last First Snow is about, variously, war, gentrification, and choosing to be a parent. Heroic efforts mean that a doomed plan results in only about 95% of the expected carnage. Meditations on the nature of manhood & fatherhood aren't a theme that I connect with, particularly; if those themes matter to you, I suspect this book will be fascinating/ gripping/ horrifying. I read it in small increments while moving, and had to rush to finish the last ten percent before my library ebook expired.

    Night Flower continued the colonialism theme, and features another Kate Elliott heroine who is really good at selling fruit. Does not emphasize the horrors of war & its aftermath, which was a nice break.

    I read The Winged Histories in one sitting, on a flight to England. I associate Stranger in Olondria with sobbing in a hostel in Toronto; I didn't quite have tears running down my face on my intercontinental flight, but it was a near thing. My thumbnail description for Stranger in Olondria was 'if Ondaatje wrote fantasy novels'. At WisCon, I went to Samatar's talk on influence; she did indeed namecheck Ondaatje, and read excerpts from War and Peace. If you cross that book with The English Patient and then imagine the protagonist as a teenage girl with a sword, you will have some idea of what reading The Winged Histories feels like.

    I'm not entirely convinced The Winged Histories stuck the ending: it's an astonishingly beautiful doomed moment, but the book is complicated enough that I want to know about the messy things after the last page. I should note, also, that while meditations on fatherhood never quite draw me in, meditations on siblinghood always do. Still thinking about that strand, among many strands.

    Fire Logic felt rather a lot like the Steerswoman books in style; if you thought that that series would've been improved by more women kissing, this is definitely the book for you. Oddly, Karis reminded me of my maternal grandmother.

  • What are you currently reading?

    I started The Child Garden by Geoff Ryman, which like all Ryman books is fascinating, brilliant, and very, very weird. It's also an excruciatingly realistic portrayal of how awful it is to be a teenager. I am not quite ready for another amazing literary novel just now, and may put this aside until I'm ready to stop thinking about The Winged Histories.

  • What do you think you'll read next?

    The new Laundry Files book. I'd hoped to find this while at a conference in England, but was thwarted by the paucity of airport bookstores.

(no subject)

Date: 2016-06-29 06:44 pm (UTC)
wild_irises: (reading)
From: [personal profile] wild_irises
I can't tell if you liked Fire Logic. I love that series.

I also connected fairly quickly with the narrator in Three Parts Dead. Her life is weird, but I found her pretty familiar. I haven't yet gotten to Full Fathom Five.

The Child Garden is probably a good book to put down while something else fabulous is bouncing around in your head. But do pick it up again sometime.

(no subject)

Date: 2016-06-30 05:03 am (UTC)
thistleingrey: (Default)
From: [personal profile] thistleingrey
On one hand, books that muse upon fatherhood solidly are pretty rare in my casual exposure, and on another, despite my being a parent who does not feel especially maternal, the fatherhood stuff didn't click for me much either. I'll read the next one, at any rate.

I keep putting off the Logic books and the Steerswoman books from a fear that I won't like them as well as friends have assured me I will. Someday!

Bounced off Child Garden. I don't remember why--the attempt was soon after it was published.
Edited (grammatical tweak) Date: 2016-06-30 05:04 am (UTC)

(no subject)

Date: 2016-07-01 12:45 am (UTC)
thistleingrey: (Default)
From: [personal profile] thistleingrey
Hmm, seems that there have been several re-releases. 1999 for me.

(no subject)

Date: 2016-07-05 11:59 am (UTC)
katerinfg: (Default)
From: [personal profile] katerinfg
My reading has mostly been light fantasy -- the new Guy Gavriel Kay, Mercedes Lackey (Elemental Masters) and Naomi Novik novels as they have been released (usually in a single sitting each), plus re-reads of the conclusions of the Pink Carnation (Lauren Willig) and Holts (Dana Fuller Ross, which is really a pen name for assorted contract writers) series.

November 2016

S M T W T F S
  12345
678 9101112
13141516171819
20212223242526
27282930   

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags