Ages ago, I read Jo Walton’s reviews of the Vlad Taltos books and resolved to read them immediately. I did pick up this first book, but after that failed to carry on, even though the first book is good and Jo’s reviews fascinating. There’s a lot going on in this world, and I really want to read more of the books to get a better grasp on it. In the meantime, Vlad Taltos himself is snarky, moderately capable, and definitely capable of getting himself into trouble. A winning combination – even without Looish, his jhereg companion.
It’s a fun beginning, which leaves a lot of questions unanswered (and sometimes even barely posed). This time, I mean it; I’ve gotta get on and read the rest!
This week’s theme for Top Ten Tuesday is “Top Ten Authors I’ve Only Read One Book From But NEED to Read More”, which… I’m not quite sure if I can do, since I tend to go on sprees. Let’s see what I can manage.
Steven Brust. I’ve only so far read Jhereg, though I know I’m gonna read the rest of the series.
Laura Lam. I’ve read one of the short Vestigial Tales, but not the main series.
Phyllis Ann Karr. I loved Idylls of the Queen (and wrote part of my dissertation on it). Lucky for me, I have a few more of her books waiting in my queue.
Steven Erikson. I’ve got almost the whole Malazan series to go. I might have to reread Gardens of the Moon by the time I get round to that, though.
Philip Reeve. I’ve read Here Lies Arthur, and have a bunch of others on my list.
Jorge Luis Borges. This is more because, much as I wanted it to, The Book of Imaginary Beings didn’t wow me.
Italo Calvino. Same goes, with Invisible Cities. There’s a lot I wanted to love.
James Morrow. I haven’t actually quite finished This is the Way the World Ends yet, but it fascinated me the way he managed to draw me in, despite my usual aversion to comic novels of any kind.
Kameron Hurley. I’ve actually only finished reading her book of essays. I really need to read God’s War and Mirror Empire.
Lucius Shepard. I’ve only read The Dragon Griaule, and that was just fascinating, the weirdness of the world and the way he built it up.
Oh, I could manage after all. What about everyone else?
You know how I was talking about only three books, this week? Well, it’s a multiple of three? — Why are you looking at me like that? I just felt like an adventure, okay, and my adventures involve books (and awesome second-hand bookshops). And… you couldn’t expect me to leave a bookshop without buying anything, right? Right?
So yeah. Big haul; twenty-seven books in all, counting books from publishers, not counting comics, though Ms Marvel and Captain Marvel both came out in the last week (eee!).
Wait, I just redid the total. Twenty-eight? Man, I dunno. Just look at the pretties.
I’ve heard good things about the middle two, particularly City of Stairs, and I’ve read some of Lukyanenko’s work before. Plus, with a title like The Genome, no one’s surprised my ears pricked up. I’ve read other work by Helen Castor and enjoyed the way she writes. And Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling are just… legendary editors and it’s high time I read their anthologies.
I’ve been hearing a lot of good things about Benjanun Sriduangkaew, so when I was alerted to this being a freebie, off I went at speed. And that’s the end of the modest sections: onto the rest of my acquisitions!
The Diving Bell and the Butterfly was mentioned a lot in the neurobiology class I took on Coursera (a class I recommend if it comes round again, by the way). Lots of classics, otherwise; stuff from the 101 best SF novels list I’m reading; Steven Brust and Patricia McKillip are tried and true for me…
Most of these, though not all, are for the aforementioned 101 best list I’m reading my way through. I swear.
That Captain Marvel cover had better make a lot more sense in context, because I am not a fan of Carol Danvers looking like a cringy heroine from a horror movie who is about to get eaten. The lady kicks ass, people. Steve Rogers is disapproving of you right now. Right now.
Anyway! Anyone been sticking to resolutions better than me?
I’m gonna have to prepare this week’s Stacking the Shelves post (a la Tynga’s Reviews) pretty quickly, as my partner is visiting and she needs looots more sleep than me, and it’s already getting late. But hey, it’s been a good week: my 25th birthday was on Wednesday, and a shopping trip was had with my partner, my sister, and one of my closest friends. Books ensued, as you might’ve guessed if you’re around here often; some bought by me, some by them for me. Plus, the week started with a day at Worldcon, although admittedly I only bought two books — one of which was just so I could get it signed. (That one isn’t included here, but for bragging rights, I now have Jo Walton’s Lifelode and Among Others signed, and Tanya Huff’s The Enchantment Emporium.)
Oh, and re: that month of not-buying-books I had: it was successful, and in more ways than one, really. As well as just stopping me buying books and spending too much money, it seems to have changed my attitude a bit. I’m not (currently) buying books for the sake of it; only books I definitely want and intend to read.
Bought for myself
Lady Lazarus is the only really impulsive purchase on this list; it grabbed my attention because of the setting (Budapest). Stephen Baxter is a new author for me, but his books are part of a list of “best SF” I’m trying to read.
Bought for me by my partner
I’ve enjoyed the Guardians film, so between that and the opening pages where Tony singularly fails to impress Gamora, I decided to continue on with the comic. And the Avengers Assemble ones are by Kelly Sue DeConnick, therefore an inevitable buy for me. One thing about Worldcon that amazed me was that on a panel where the promo picture was Ms. Marvel, and it was supposed to be talking about new and exciting things in comics, it took forty minutes to mention a female character, forty-five to mention something with characters of diverse sexual orientations and ethnic backgrounds, and no female creators were mentioned at all.
Fuck that, I’mma talk about Kelly Sue and Gail Simone ’til I’m blue in the face.
Bought for me by my sister
I felt like reading some more Michael Moorcock, since I read Gloriana… My sis obliged.
Received to review
For the first one, Lies We Tell Ourselves, I’m super-grateful to a friend who works at the publisher who managed to get me an ARC. Re: Amy Lane, I think I’ve read something of hers before, but it still weirds me out slightly since I went to school with someone of that name…
I really need to catch up with actually reading this run of Ms. Marvel.
So, what’s everyone else been up to? Any great hauls? Anyone been resisting most amazingly? Comment, link, share!
This week’s Top Ten Tuesday prompt from The Broke and the Bookish is ‘top ten books everyone’s telling me to read’. Which really isn’t hard, because everybody’s always on at me to read something, heh.
Republic of Thieves, Scott Lynch. I love Scott Lynch’s first two books, and I actually got this one back when it was an ARC. I’m just terrible. I’ve bought it since and still… Mum and my partner both reaaaally want me to get on with it.
The Vorkosigan Saga, Lois McMaster Bujold. Again, so many people want me to read these. I’ve actually read Cordelia’s Honor, and I wasn’t that impressed? But I was also cranky and feeling a bit harassed. If nothing else, Jo Walton’s recommendations mean I should really get on with it…
Throne of Glass, Sarah J. Maas. I read the prequel short stories way back before the first book was out, and wasn’t really interested enough to read more. But I hear so much about the trilogy, and Leah was urging me to read it, so.
Pantomime, Laura Lam. I’m going to read this reaaaally soon, or that’s the plan at least. It’s the only book I can think of, other than arguably The Left Hand of Darkness, with an intersexed protagonist.
The Enchantment Emporium, Tanya Huff. This has been recced me a couple of times, and it’s the book I happened to pick up for Tanya Huff to sign for me at Worldcon, so there y’go.
A Song of Ice and Fire, G.R.R. Martin. My first rec for this came from Robin Hobb when I was about fourteen, and I still haven’t got round to it — and the recs are mounting up. It’s actually one of the books in a reading challenge I’m doing, so I’ll get round to it soon.
The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making, Catherynne M. Valente. I’ve been meaning to read it since it came out, and now there’s a whole trilogy. Also in my challenge list.
Fangirl, Rainbow Rowell. I’ve read part of it. I have the special edition, signed. I’ve read Attachments and Eleanor & Park. And yet. I’ll get there eventually. Sorry, Leah, and everyone.
Yendi, Steven Brust. I read the first book of the series at Jo’s recommendation, promptly bought a whole bunch of the omnibuses, and then… got distracted by so
The Healer trilogy, Maria V. Snyder. I like Snyder’s work as a casual fun read, and my sister will kick me if I don’t hurry up and read these. And probably many other books too; she likes kicking me.
This week’s Top Ten Tuesday is “how many books do you own the most from”. I’m gonna be totally unscientific here and just take some wild guesses.
Jo Walton. I own all her books, often in several formats. I think this one’s a safe bet.
Ngaio Marsh. I have all those omnibuses. Omnibii?
Robin Hobb. I’ve been reading everything she writes since I was, uh, thirteen ish?
Guy Gavriel Kay. Again with the multiple formats.
Ursula Le Guin. I don’t own everything she’s done, and I don’t usually have multiple copies, but I think she might still outnumber eveeeryone else. She’s just so good, I’m willing to try anything she’s done.
Steven Brust. This is Jo Walton’s fault. I haven’t even read most of them yet.
Tanya Huff. This is a guess, but I’m pretty sure I’m right. I’ve bought most of her books, though I haven’t read them all yet.
J.R.R. Tolkien. Everything bar the twelve volume history of Middle-earth, I think. Multiple editions.
The Gawain-poet. Whoever he (or she?) was. I own so many translations — probably at least nine?
The Beowulf-poet. I’m not quite as big a fan as I am of the Gawain-poet, but still. I’ve got a facing translation one, Heaney’s, Tolkien’s… the list goes on.
So, what about everyone else? Strangely, Dorothy L. Sayers does not make the cut, because I borrowed my copies to read.
What have you recently finished reading?
Uh. God. I think the most recent thing might be Attachments (Rainbow Rowell), which is lovely and warm and I love surprisingly much. Wow, that’s not a good sign — I’m not reading as much as I should. On the other hand…
What are you currently reading?
A lot. I started Patricia A. McKillip’s The Riddle-master of Hed while waiting for my grandmother to get an x-ray, and nearly finished it all in one go. I’m still reading My Real Children (Jo Walton), because I don’t want anything bad to happen to the characters in either timeline and I’m a little worried something will. I’m also reading Six Feet Over (Mary Roach), which is about what might happen after death from an attempted objective point of view. So far, not sure what I think of that. And then there’s also Eleanor & Park (Rainbow Rowell), which sucks me in as much as Attachments, but which I’m a little unsure about because of all the criticism I’m reading about it re: racism. Oh, and I’ve started reading Yendi (Steven Brust), and am still in the process of finding my feet, narrative wise.
What will you read next?
Ahaha, does anyone believe a word I say about this, honestly? But the idea is: more Patricia A. McKillip, a reread of The Night Circus (Erin Morgernstern), finally finishing Fangirl (Rainbow Rowell). More Steven Brust. And getting round to Rachel Bach’s books. I think that about covers my immediate, laughably unlikely plans!
Time for the Stacking the Shelves meme hosted by Tynga’s Reviews. Busy week! These actually came in an assortment of omnibuses, but seeing the individual books with their old covers seems more fun to me.
Also received my print ARC of Carrie Patel’s The Buried Life! <3
Oh, and some comics…
Oh, and one final review copy…
I’m not a big fan of Emma Rios’ style, but I do enjoy Kelly Sue DeConnick’s work, so I’m excited. And yes, this post is pretty much the Steven Brust and Kelly Sue DeConnick show.
What did you recently finish reading?
Most recent was The Twelve Caesars (Matthew Dennison), which was disappointing in its total inability to make any concrete statements. Like being wrapped up in wool. Ugh. I’ll stick to getting round to Suetonius. Before that was The Door into Summer (Robert Heinlein), which I liked well enough but didn’t blow me away (and creeped me out in the place it usually creeps people out).
What are you currently reading? My Real Children (Jo Walton). I gulp it down when I get a minute, but I haven’t been in the mood to read as much so I haven’t been making the minutes. Also The Buried Life (Carrie Patel), same issue.
What will you read next?
For once, I’m fairly certain: it’ll be Steven Brust’s Yendi. Otherwise, I’m still going to work on the endless currently reading list, though I am for some reason very tempted to try Jim Butcher again, and to try reading more Vorkosigan (Lois McMaster Bujold). Because it’s not as though I have enough on the go already, right?