I’m still working my way through Black Leopard, Red Wolf, and I actually feel like I’ve got a bit more of a handle on it. I don’t like it very much, I’ll admit, but I’m finding my way with it and no longer so disinclined to finish.
I’m also about 70% of the way through rereading Mira Grant’s Deadline, which feels more middle-book-y than I remembered.
What have you recently finished reading?
A bunch of things all in one go, but the most-most recent was Heidi J. Larson’s Stuck, about vaccine rumours and why they stick around. I can summarise the book for you in one sentence: “vaccine rumours are the fault of public health for not explaining things to people nicely enough, and the fix is for public health initiatives to be nicer.”
That’s about as good as it gets. Preeeetty disappointing.
What will you be reading next?
Well, I have a few different books on my ‘next up’ shelf, including Mary Dobson’s Murderous Contagion, which should be fun for me. But I’m not sure; the shelf isn’t a hard commitment, more ‘hey, remember these books you were keen to read?’
It’s Wednesday again! So here’s the usual check-in. You can go to Taking On A World Of Words to chat with everyone else who has posted what they’re reading right now!
What are you currently reading?
Oh, far too much at once! Non-fiction: still working on Michael Pollan’s How To Change Your Mind: The New Science of Psychedelics. Mostly the point so far is that the science isn’t so very new at all; psychedelic drugs were originally expected to be useful in treating mental health disorders, and go figure, now we’re figuring out that that was probably true.
Fiction: I’m rereading Mira Grant’s Deadline, in the firm hope that one day I’ll actually get onto Blackout and finish the whole book. It’s not that I don’t like the trilogy — I’ve read the first book several times! It just hits hard, and especially so at the moment, given the themes the zombie pandemic raises in the book…
I’m also reading Black Leopard, Red Wolf, and I kinda hate it. I can’t get into the narration, and it’s hard to find a story past the narration. I know, I know, I hear everyone on Twitter shouting at me that I’m just asking for all books to be typical European narratives, and that probably has a part to play. But… I don’t know, I’m not a fan of any of it so far; what I do understand is that there’s a lot of violence, including sexual violence. Just not the sort of thing I enjoy, without other high points.
That’s not all I’m reading, but that’s enough to be getting on with!
What have you recently finished reading?
Non-fiction: Entangled Life, by Merlin Sheldrake. I had been really looking forward to this, and it is really fun. I enjoyed all the facts about fungi! I think Sheldrake loves his subject a lot, and that always helps. Need to ponder my review a bit more, though. Obviously this had some odd parallels with How to Change Your Mind, since Sheldrake also mentioned psilocybin mushrooms!
Fiction: I finished my reread of Feed, basically all in one go now I’m not so dang anxious!
What will you be reading next?
Not sure, but I ordered Stuck: How Vaccine Rumours Start and Why They Don’t Go Away by Heidi J. Larson, and that just arrived today, so maybe I’ll get stuck into that before I shelve it and it goes out of sight, out of mind! Larson’s a professor at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, where I now study, so it especially caught my eye — and public health initiatives like encouraging vaccine uptake are something I’d be interested in getting involved with myself.
Other than that, rereading The Goblin Emperor for a book club reminds me I really need to get round to reading The Angel of the Crows.
This week’s Top Ten Tuesday is a nice broad one: what’s on your fall TBR? Well, I don’t strictly have a TBR for fall, and honestly these days I try not to be too strict and just follow my whims. However, here are some books I’m planning to pick up really soon, for one reason or another…
Black Leopard, Red Wolf, by Marlon James. I’m a little worried from the reviews that this isn’t going to be my thing, but it’s my bookclub choice for October, and I plan to give it a good solid try. Other parts of it sound really great — like the influence from African mythology — so we’ll just have to see!
This is Kind of an Epic Love Story, by Kacen Callender. This is the November book club choice, if I remember rightly, and I’ve been meaning to read it for a while now. I’m particularly interested in how the sign language is handled (because one of the characters is deaf).
Catherine House, by Elisabeth Thomas. Aaand this is December’s book club choice, which sounds weird and kinda creepy. Looking forward to it.
Raybearer, by Jordan Ifueko. I swear my sense of object permanence is lacking, because I was dying to read this but now I’ve put my copy away on the shelves in the other room, I keep forgetting! I heard a lot about this right when it came out, but haven’t actually seen many reviews…
Cemetery Boys, by Aiden Thomas. I’m super excited for this, and I should be getting my copy soon. (Thank you to the person who bought me a preorder! <3)
Phoenix Extravagant, by Yoon Ha Lee. I loved the Machineries of Empire books so much, and I’m excited for this new book by Yoon Ha Lee! I have an eARC, but I should also hurry up and make my preorder… there, done! I was sold at “mighty dragon automaton”.
The House in the Cerulean Sea, by T.J. Klune. This sounds so warm-hearted as a read, from everyone’s reviews? I am a sucker for the families you make yourself in stories, so I’m excited for it.
The Wolf of Oren-Yaro, by K.S. Villoso. I’ve peeked at the first few pages and my eyebrows rose and I’m eager to give this a try.
Black Sun, by Rebecca Roanhorse. I’m hearing so much excitement about this one, and I know I’ve enjoyed Roanhorse’s writing, so I’m quite eager to see whether this works plot/character-wise a bit better for me than her other books.
The City We Became, by N.K. Jemisin. Not sure if I’ll get to this, actually, because I’m finally catching up with The Fifth Season and sequels. But it’s N.K. Jemisin, so I don’t want to leave it lying too long!
So what’s on your autumn TBR, folks? Do you even have a TBR? Let’s be real, we know I probably won’t finish all of these… chances are, I won’t even read half. That’s okay by me. Something about the anticipation is sweet too!
Sorry I missed last week, folks! It was a heckuva week, for sure. Anyway, this week is a bit like a scavenger hunt for me, because I’m not sure I can actually think of books I like with colours in their titles… so I’m going to survey my shelves for whatever I can find.
Red, White & Royal Blue, by Casey McQuiston. I haven’t read this one, and I really really want to.
The Silver Branch, by Rosemary Sutcliff. This I have read, of course, though I wish I could find the editions I had as a kid. I read ’em to pieces, though The Eagle of the Ninth was my favourite.
The Boy in the Red Dress, by Kristin Lambert. A recent acquisition, so one I haven’t read yet. It looks so fun, though!
Black Leopard, Red Wolf, by Marlon James. I haven’t read it yet, and I’m not entirely sure it’s going to be my thing based on reviews… but I’m eager to give it a go.
Black Sun, by Rebecca Roanhorse. Okay, this is actually on my wishlist and not on my shelves because it’s not out yet.
All Systems Red, by Martha Wells. Oh, Murderbot. <3
Redemption in Indigo, by Karen Lord. I’ve been meaning to reread this, I remember loving it but not much about it.
The Black God’s Drums, by P. Djèlí Clark. Loved this novella so much!
The Ballad of Black Tom, by Victor LaValle. I was less of a fan of this Lovecraft retelling, but it kinda sticks in my head!
A Pale Light in the Black, by K.B. Wagers. Another one that’s on my TBR but which I haven’t read yet…
As you can see, I have a TBR problem, insofar as that can be considered a problem!
How’d everyone else do with the scavenger hunt? Or could you think of enough books with colours in the title that you could pick out your favourites? I’m looking forward to seeing all the obvious ones I’ve missed…