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Saturday, August 27, 2011

What Are You Reading? Inquiring Minds Want to Know

In the interest of giving all of you the floor to talk about books, I'd like to know what you all are reading and what you think of it (anything counts, from articles to audiobooks).

I am currently smack dab in the middle of the following:

  • Down the Mysterly River by Bill Willingham (and Mark Buckingham)
    • Loving it!
  • The Uncertain Places by Lisa Goldstein
    • Interesting, but I need to get deeper before I can make a valid judgment.
  • Gateways edited by Elizabeth Anne Hull
    • Some really smart stories in here!
  • Future Media edited by Rick Wilbur
    • Just started!
  • When the Great Days Come by Gardner Dozois
    • So far:  loving it!
  • Imperial Eyes:  Travel Writing and Transculturation by Louise Pratt
    • Just started!  But I've read it before, and it's an interesting text.
  • Maps of Englishness by Simon Gikandi
    • Just started!
  • The English in the West Indies by Froude (can't remember the the first name)
    • Just started!
  • The Portable Harlem Renaissance Reader
    • Just started!
  • The New Negro:  Voices of the Harlem Renaissance
    • Just started!
I also finished a few short stories by Mary Robinette Kowal ("Clockwork Chickadee" and For Want of a Nail -- the latter won the Hugo and is quite good).  And yes, I realize that is a lot of reading.  I'm a grad student.  So sue me...

So what are you reading?

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  1. I just started Embassytown by China Mieville. I love his work, so I'm really excited to read something by him that's straight up sci-fi.

    I also just finished Southern Gods by John Hornor Jacobs. It was pretty good. I guess I find modern books that use stuff from the Lovecraft mythos kind of kitschy. It didn't feel like it brought much new to the table other than setting mythos stuff in the 1950's South.

    And I also just finished Leviathan Wakes by James S.A. Corey. It was really good for about two thirds. Then zombies showed up and things kind of got bogged down. The plot wrapped up pretty nicely at the end, and I'll read the hinted-at sequel.

  2. Oh, I need to read Embassytown. I have it, but haven't had the chance to read it yet.

    Was there an explanation for the zombies in the Corey?

  3. I just started reading "Cyclonopedia: Complicity with Anonymous Materials" by Reza Negarestani the other day. I'd heard a lot of praise for it - from the likes of China Mieville, for example - and I'm always looking for weird shit, so I thought I'd give it a go.

    So far, I love and hate it in equal parts - though I'm liking it more as I learn to read the subtext/supertext/metatextual components of the story. I think there are moments where you are meant to experience the words visually, not cognitively, for example, but before I realized (or assumed) that, I thought I was just reading really bad, unclear, poorly theorized and impractical philosophy (of topology, no less). Anyway, it's a very strange book.

    Before this, I read Tom Rachman's "The Imperfectionists" - good ol' middle class white folk fiction - and "The Narrator" by Michael Cisco, another trippy weird tale. Reviews on my blog in equal measures praise and put-down!

  4. Wow you are reading a lot of stuff at the same time! I'm lucking if I can keep two books going at once.

    Right now I'm reading Bitter Angels by C. L. Anderson, it's a hard scifi thriller, it's really good. I've only been able to read it snippets at a time, and I know I'd enjoy it more if I could spend an hour or so at a time with it.

    Bed Godbey - I've been hearing all sorts of great things about Reza Negarestani, maybe i'll have to give that Cyclonopedia a try.

  5. Stephen Dixon's Interstate

  6. Ben: I've heard of that one (the Negarestani). I may have to read it when I have the mental capacity to do so.

    And the Cisco is on my "I want to read this" list. One day...

    Redhead: Science fiction thrillers are fun :). I don't get them very often for review, though, which sucks.

    Bradley: Do you have an opinion on that one?

  7. jeff h8:33 AM

    American Gods by Neil Gaiman. I started it several years ago and couldn't get into it. Loving it so far.

  8. It's interesting how that happens, no? I tried reading Game of Thrones a long while ago and couldn't get into it. Then I tried again and loved it.

  9. Liked it a lot. One section was unnecessary. Probably not a good Dixon book to start out with if you haven't read him before. Frog is my favorite, but it's massive. I'd recommend "I." to start with, which McSweeney's published (since it's very good and on the shorter side). Or maybe Old Friends since that's the first book that I read and how I got into him. Came across it randomly in brother's bookshelf and read it since I didn't really have anything to do.

  10. Bradley: Thanks for the advice. I'll take that under advisement for later :).