Hey guys! I’m back from my holiday, which included a trip to Amsterdam to ABC (mostly for me) and Stephen and Penelope (mostly for Lisa). I was good and stuck well within budget, but I do have some new shinies! I also have a new ereader: I’ve switched back to Kindle, since I didn’t like some of the design choices for the Kobo Clara, so I have a Kindle Paperwhite (2018 edition) now. By next week, my personalised case should have arrived to be shown off, too…
Good morning, folks! I missed my STS post last week due to sporadic posting, which was mostly because my WordPress install (or rather, the security enabled by my host) occasionally decides to not allow me to insert images into my posts. But here I am again!
Also, I know I’m doing badly at returning comments and dropping by people’s blogs. I’m still adjusting to some schedule changes with work, and doing a bad job of keeping everything balanced. I haven’t forgotten you all!
Books received to review:
Books read in the last two weeks:
Reviews posted since the last roundup:
–How the Irish Saved Civilization, by Thomas Cahill. Rather misleadingly titled: it’s more about how Irish monasteries copied Greek and Roman works so they weren’t lost. So a very specific definition of civilization. 2/5 stars –Beauty, by Robin McKinley. A relatively simple retelling of Beauty and the Beast, but effective! 4/5 stars –The Etruscans, by Lucy Shipley. Not a subject I knew much about, and this book makes a beautiful introduction to various Etruscan objects and what we understand about the people. 4/5 stars –The Lost Girls, by Sarah Painter. I’m honestly still pondering the review and rating, even though it’s already posted. There’s definitely interesting stuff, but I found the ending kind of unsatisfying, and the romance particularly so. But then, that’s not really what the book was doing, in the end… 3/5 stars –A Memory Called Empire, by Arkady Martine. This didn’t quite work for me, partially because it’s very like two series I really love and admire. 3/5 stars –T. Rex and the Crater of Doom, by Walter Alvarez. Engaging and surprisingly riveting for me, given I knew the theory in quite a bit of detail. Alvarez is great at explaining the evidence. 4/5 stars –The Golden Thread, by Kassia St Clair. A history of fabric, from Viking sails to modern high performance fabric. Pretty riveting, from my point of view! 4/5 stars
Good morning, folks! It’s been a good week for finally catching up on the reviews I’ve needed to write for a while; I’m really getting somewhere! And it felt like a good week for reading, even though I finished fewer books than I thought.
Almost forgot to set this up — in fact, have snuck out of bed because I know I’ll forget in the morning! 2019 continues with me being very good about book purchases, and better about what I ask for to review — only one new book this week, from Pan Macmillan!
I’m not sure whether I want to reread Sorcerer to the Crown first. Hmm…
This post is prepared well in advance, as I’m away this weekend! I’ll pop by and see everyone as soon as I’m back, though: pinky-promise! We’re just off to Wales to see some of my friends from university (*waves*) and my aunt. Road trip time!
Books read this week:
–Gaudy Night, by Dorothy L. Sayers. It’s a lovely book that is the culmination of so much in the other books, while being unlike them in some ways. (For instance, it’s largely Harriet’s point of view, and it’s mostly not a crime story but a story about a long process of trying to prevent a crime… but mostly coming to terms with personal and philosophical pros and cons of married life vs vs a job vs academia.) It’s well worth it for people who are fans already, but I wonder how interesting it is to new folks. 4/5 stars –Breaking the Maya Code, by Michael D. Coe. Really fascinating history of how the Mayan glyphs were finally, finally decoded. 4/5 stars –Mystery in White, by J. Jefferson Farjeon. Rather incoherent and reliant on coincidence, actually; I turned out not to be much of a fan, despite enjoying Farjeon’s other work. 2/5 stars –The Cobbler’s Boy, by Katherine Addison and Elizabeth Bear. A historical fiction/mystery about how Kit Marlowe first became a spy… I really enjoyed it, though the decision to render the dialogue somewhat realistically for the time period might throw people off. 4/5 stars –Ninja, by John Man. Eminently skippable. Bleh. 2/5 stars –Molecules at an Exhibition, by John Emsley. Kind of interesting but got boring fast as the novelty wore off. 3/5 stars
Hey folks! Another week, another… total lack of new books?! What’s wrong with me??
Anyway, so that was January, I guess. I read 15 books, bought only a handful, and generally behaved myself pretty well.
Books read this week:
Reviews posted this week:
–The Nine Tailors, by Dorothy L. Sayers.Beautifully atmospheric, and always one of my favourites of the series. I love how much work Sayers did to integrate change ringing into the fabric of the story. 4/5 stars
–Seahenge, by Charlie Watson.Definitely a good primer on what Seahenge was and what was done to preserve it; Francis Pryor’s book does more work on interpretation, though, if that’s your interest. 4/5 stars –Styx and Stones, by Carola Dunn.Okay, one aspect of this book really annoyed me: that stupid scene where Daisy and Alec briefly break up. What’s the point? Otherwise a fairly standard entry in the series, with a couple of twists you may not expect. 3/5 stars
–NEAT Science: ‘Is there any (intelligent) life out there?‘ My answer is ‘I really don’t know, and I don’t think anyone else has any idea how likely it is either’ — and I touch a little bit on why I think so and why other people think it might be likely or unlikely.
So that’s this week. How’s everyone else been doing? Any good books? Anything you’ve been dying to get your hands on finally fall into your lap?