Tag: Judith Flanders

WWW Wednesday

Posted May 26, 2021 by Nicky in General / 2 Comments

Here we are again, it’s Wednesday already. I think it’s my fault: I have an exam coming, so time is doing weird things.

At least I’m close to being caught up on my backlog of reviews to write! 26/28 done… (I won’t be posting them all at once, don’t worry.) Anyway, for now let’s stick to the usual Wednesday update.

What are you currently reading?

Cover of Phoenix Extravagant by Yoon Ha LeeFiction: Let’s see… quite a few things at once. I’m still reading Plain Bad Heroines (emily m. danforth), and I’m now onto the second Kate Daniels book, Magic Burns (Ilona Andrews). I’ve also picked up Phoenix Extravagant (Yoon Ha Lee), which I’ve been meaning to read forever — yes, okay, I even had the ARC, this is a peril of being a mood-reader — and am enjoying so far, though I’m not very far into it. I’m also reading The Cheltenham Square Murder (John Bude); I normally find Bude’s books solid but not remarkable, and so is proving to be the case with this — but a little Golden Age crime does hit the spot right now.

Non-fiction: I’ve started on Food: The History of Taste (ed. Paul Freedman), which… I have some mixed feelings about, given the first essay-writer got some stuff wrong (there is no area of your tongue dedicated to tasting sweet things), and just… made me worry about the quality of their other research and whether they leaned too much on received wisdom. I’m still reading Dark Matter and the Dinosaurs, too, which has finally got round to some dinosaurs.

What have you recently finished reading?

I finished a couple of the other books I’ve been talking about for a bit, like The Invention of Murder, but also went off-piste a bit and read the fourth Whyborne & Griffin book by Jordan L. Hawk. I’ve been meaning to for a while, and it was a very satisfying Saturday read — it was my day off, so I could start the book in the morning and polish it off by night.

Now to avoid waiting so long to read the fifth…

Cover of Behave by Robert M. SapolskyWhat will you be reading next?

I don’t know, as ever. However, I have been trying to line up some possibles and just keep them well in sight. So that list includes Tasha Alexander’s third Lady Emily book, A Fatal Waltz, and Robert Sapolsky’s Behave, which I’ve had for quite a while… though as always, I’ll let whimsy be my guide as well. Possibly even literally Wimsey, since I do need some beloved books to pamper my brain through this exam. Medical statistics, bleechhh.

What’re you currently reading?

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WWW Wednesday

Posted May 20, 2021 by Nicky in General / 0 Comments

Hey folks! I’ve been spending the unskippable cutscenes of a particular dungeon in Final Fantasy XIV to catch up on my reviews, and I should soon start scheduling those. Right now, all my energies are focused toward my exam… but maybe I’ll be around here more soon, at this rate! In the meantime, though my arm is sore from my first shot of the Pfizer vaccine, I can still wield a keyboard, so here’s the Wednesday update!

Cover of Magic Bites by Ilona AndrewsWhat are you currently reading?

Fiction: Magic Bites, by Ilona Andrews, for a start. It’s a reread, but I’ve had a lot of joy from this series, I’d really like to read the more recent books someday, and it felt like ideal light reading while my entire body stresses out about my upcoming biostatistics exam. I’m also still reading Plain Bad Heroines, and I’m finding it super awkward-feeling right now with the apparently deliberate baiting of Merritt. I’m intrigued about where it’s going, but also apprehensive that it’s going to be annoying.

Non-fiction: Still on both The Invention of Murder (Judith Flanders) and Dark Matter and the Dinosaurs (Lisa Randall). I’m enjoying the former, and probably planning on finishing that next; the latter is still doing Planet Formation 101, and there’s very little new to me, so I’m biding my time and finding it a bit slow.

What have you recently finished reading?

I just finished The Library of the Dead, by T.L. Huchu, and I wish I loved it more than I did. The narrative voice doesn’t work for me, and the cover puts me too much in mind of Ben Aaronovitch’s books not to (fairly or unfairly) compare it to those books. Not so much in terms of overall quality, where I don’t particularly feel Aaronovitch is one of the genre’s great craftspeople, but in terms of plots, themes and settings.

I also finished Murder’s a Swine, by Nap Lombard, which was pretty fun.

Cover of The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet by Becky ChambersWhat will you be reading next?

I’m in the mood for lots of rereading, but as usual, I’m really not sure what I’ll actually pick up. Maybe The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet (Becky Chambers) again(!) because playing Mass Effect is kinda giving me that urge. Or even Ancillary Justice (again again).

What are you currently reading? And how are you all?

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WWW Wednesday

Posted May 6, 2021 by Nicky in General / 1 Comment

Well, folks, it’s been a while! I’m still really tired and not quite sure about what I want out of blogging and reviewing, but I am working on sorting out my review backlog and trying again. I seem to say this all the time, though.

How’s it going?

In any case, I thought I’d do the weekly reading update this week, since I’ve written it up for Pillowfort!

Cover of Snowball in a Blizzard by Steven HatchWhat are you currently reading?

Non-fiction: The Invention of Murder, by Judith Flanders, and A Snowball in a Blizzard, by Steve Hatch. The former is a discussion of how murder stories in all branches of entertainment (tabloid newspapers, ballads, novels, plays, poems, etc) developed during the Victorian period, and is fairly dense but enjoyable. The latter is a discussion of uncertainty in medicine and how important it is to understand that most things in modern medicine are not certainties but are instead what we hope for based on the balance of the evidence — for example, digging into the fact that screening mammography actually probably does more harm than good in a large demographic.

Fiction: A Murderous Relation, by Deanna Raybourn, and The Library of the Death, by T.L. Huchu. The former is ticking along great: maybe a bit less compulsive and attention-grabbing for me than some of the previous books in the series, but fun. The latter… I’m not yet clicking with the narrative voice, but I’m not very far in and haven’t got a good feel for the setting yet (e.g. how magic is viewed within the story).

Cover of White Bread by Aaron Bobrow-StrainWhat have you recently finished reading?

I’m having trouble calling to mind what the last fiction book I read was, which is not a great sign for whatever book it was, but I think it’s mostly that I’m kind of in a non-fiction mood. The last non-fiction book I finished was White Bread: A Social History of the Store-Bought Loaf, by Aaron Bobrow-Strain, which was actually recommended for me by someone else on Pillowfort who likes this kind of non-fiction, and which I really enjoyed. I’d love to read a blog post or review that relates the themes surrounding white/brown bread in the US to the situation in the UK, which I’m sure shares many similarities and some differences. It’s amazing how the stuff we take for granted can open up huge topics — not just healthy eating but racism and issues of class. I love it.

Cover of What it Means When A Man Falls From The Sky by Lesley Nneka ArimahWhat will you be reading next?

As usual, I don’t have a very strong idea. Next month’s choice for the book club I run on Habitica is What it Means When A Man Falls from the Sky by Lesley Nneka Arimah, so I should probably pick that up… or I’m being very tempted by the third book in Tasha Alexander’s Lady Emily series, or a few potential rereads, or… there are so many options.

What are you currently reading?

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