Weekly Roundup

Posted August 4, 2018 by Nicky in General / 12 Comments

G’morning, all! I’m back in the UK. For a few days it was blissfully cool, but the temperatures are climbing again, alas. And in just three weeks (less now), I’ll be bringing our bunnies across the channel with my wife — we’re finally going to be settled here in the UK! Well, me and the bunnies, at least: the wife is following for good a little later.

But for now, of course, there’s the obligatory away-from-bunnies pic. Here’s Breakfast gearing up to come with me, before he was gently evicted, and another pic of him sporting some new bunny fashion… and Hulk, who would really like some banana now, please.

My babies. <3

Anyway, it’s been a busy week, so as I’ve been doing a fair bit lately, I’m going to split this haul into multiple posts. Maybe that will encourage me not to add to it in the meantime. This week’s is the SF/F section (featuring stuff to review from Tor.com as well as books I bought).

(By the way, this weekly post is now the ‘weekly roundup’, though I also participate in Stacking the Shelves, courtesy of Tynga’s Reviews and Reading Reality.)


Cover of Rogue Protocol by Martha Wells Cover of Descent of Monsters by JY Yang Cover of Dreadful Company by Vivian Shaw

Cover of Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse Cover of A Study in Honor by Claire O'Dell Cover of An Unkindness of Ghosts

All of these are pretty exciting, and I’ve been anticipating them for a while, so yay!

Finished reading this week:

 Cover of The Battle of the Sun by Jeanette Winterson Cover of The Z Murders by J. Jefferson Farjeon Cover of Subliminal by Leonard Mlodinow Cover of At Amberleaf Fair by Phyllis Ann Karr

Reviews posted this week:

Crooked Kingdom, by Leigh Bardugo. Found this a bit of a slow starter, but once it picked up the pace — whoa. 4/5 stars
The Battle of the Sun, by Jeanette Winterson. Just really slapdash (at least it felt that way) and disappointing, albeit with some nice turns of phrase. 2/5 stars
The Murder of My Aunt, by Richard Hull. Despicable characters trying to outwit one another. Fun, if not entirely comfortable to spend time with. 3/5 stars
The Zoo, by Isobel Charman. Not totally focused on the founding of the zoo (it gets distracted in a whole chapter about Darwin, who was rather tangential), but mostly interesting stuff. A little too fictionalised for me at times, maybe. 3/5 stars
The Gallows in the Greenwood, by Phyllis Ann Karr. A Robin Hood retelling with a female sheriff, this has a cute if somewhat sudden romance plot and tries to work with the original ballads in an interesting way. 4/5 stars
The Planet Factory, by Elizabeth Tasker. Lots and lots of information, reasonably well presented. Could’ve done with some more diagrams, in my opinion. 3/5 stars
The Invisible Library, by Genevieve Cogman. It’s a madcap mixture of all kinds of things, and that works well for me. There’s mystery, sci-fi, fantasy, folktales, and the kitchen sink as well. It’s incredibly fun. 4/5 stars

Other posts:

Discussion: The Rights of the Reader. Building out of Daniel Pennac’s ten rules, a post about the things that should always be permitted for a reader.
WWW Wednesday. The usual weekly update, in which I’m reading far too much at once.

Out and about: 

Once Upon A Blue Moon: ‘A Mile From The Castle’. A short story set in a fairytale world, but following those outside the story. I’m really proud, actually — Aliette de Bodard tweeted about liking this, Genevieve Cogman liked the tweet where I posted it, and Stephanie Burgis said some really sweet things. (Not to mention the stuff my friends have said, because they’re biased, but also sweet.)
Once Upon A Blue Moon: ‘Message in a Bottle’. Humanity’s been reaching out to the cosmos for a while now. This story is about when someone wants to reach back.
Once Upon a Blue Moon: ‘Mrs Gawain’. If you’ve ever read Carol Ann Duffy’s The World’s Wife collection, this poem was very much inspired by the intent and style of that collection. Dame Ragnelle has her say on the issue of ‘sovereignty’ and what all women really want…
NEAT science: What’s with this heatwave? Answer: global warming. Yes, really, what a shock — but this is one of those longer term effects that we’re now starting to really see.
NEAT science: A crack in creation. What is CRISPR, and why does it look like a good answer to all our gene editing dreams?

As I said, it really has been a busy week! Remember that the titles above are links which will let you jump to a given review (or post, or in the case of the new ‘Out and about’ section, story/poem/etc).

How’s everyone doing?

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