FF: Histories — Fictional and Non

For those of you who are new to this feature, the FF feature lists of what I’ve read over the past week.  They are not meant to be a recommendation list.  If you’re interested in a not-at-all-inclusive list, you can look on my website.  It’s currently under reconstruction, but look for “Neat Stuff.”

Sirenity Reads

Sirenity Reads

As I say every week, this is not a book review column.  It’s just a list with, maybe, a few opinions tossed in.

Recently Completed:

Komarr by Lois McMaster Bujold.  Audiobook.  I really liked this. The addition of another fully-realized point-of-view character was a good choice for expanding the complexities of the tale.

Unexpected Magic: Collected Stories by Diana Wynne Jones.  I loved this book.  It makes me want to go on a Diana Wynne Jones jag.  I think I will…

Escape from Botany Bay: The True Story of Mary Bryant by Gerald and Loretta Hausman.  I’d read about the conditions under which Australia was settled, but knowing in advance didn’t make this first person account of the horrors that drove Mary Bryant, her husband, and a small group of allies to seek escape any easier.  The authors’ choice of a distant narrative voice puzzled me at first, since this is story that would seem to invite intimacy.  After a while, I realized how well that slight distance worked very well to convey the sense of someone who can hardly bear to talk about what she’s gone through.

In Progress:

Heroes of History by Will Durant.  Audiobook.  I’ve listened to this one before, but the compact survey is very enjoyable.  We started in possibly mythical China, moved through Egypt and the Middle East, and are now up to Leonardo DaVinci.

Dark Lord of Derkholm by Diana Wynne Jones.  Just started.  Don’t let the title deceive you.  Diana Wynne Jones never does anything the way you’d expect.


Sea of Dreams by Dennis Nolan.   No words, but the beautiful pictures tell a far more thought provoking story than you’d imagine.  Jim read it and said he thought the seagull was crucial.  I agree, but I also draw note to the young castle-maker’s swimsuit.

This one was a gift from Steve (S.M.) and Jan Stirling.  They have very good taste!

So, what are you reading?


3 Responses to “FF: Histories — Fictional and Non”

  1. Eric Says:

    Just started reading Alone on the Ice by David Roberts, the story of the Australasian Antarctic Expedition. It promises to be “The Greatest Survival Story in the History of Exploration!” I’ve been on a bit of a wilderness exploration jag ever since reading Into the Wild late last year.

    I recently finished an old book called Wilderness Champion by Joseph Wharton Lippincott. I found it in a box of really old books in the basement of my local library, and it turns out I discovered a treasure! It’s so hard to find the author’s other books. Everything seems to be out of print.

    Dark Lord of Derkholm has been sitting on my bookshelf unread for a long time! Thanks for the reminder that I need to crack that one open.

  2. Paul Dellinger Says:

    Remember how classic Star Trek (and to some extent, the second movie) channeled what happened with the Botany Bay?
    Still reading a western (!) by John Shirley (!), “Wyatt in Wichita” (most authors only do the Tombstone part); it’s pretty good.

    • janelindskold Says:

      Indeed. Was that “Whom Gods Destroy”? It’s been a long while.

      And certainly THE WRATH OF KHAN — the only Trek movie that I felt was completely comprehensible for someone who had seen none of the TV shows.

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