FF: Finishing and Moving On

This week I finished a lot of unfinished reading

A reminder… The Friday Fragments feature lists of what I’ve read over the past week.  Most of the time I don’t include either short fiction or magazine articles.

Ogapoge Reads About Giraffes

Ogapoge Reads About Giraffes

The Fragments 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 under Neat Stuff.

Once again, this is not a book review column.  It’s just a list with, maybe, a few opinions tossed in.

Recently Completed:

Bluefeather Fellini by Max Evans.  Episodic journeys from mid-1930’s to post WWII, mostly in New Mexico and Colorado.  The bits of mysticism and larger than life characters somehow make the book more real.  It’s not a “fast” book, but it’s a filling one.

Children of Dune by Frank Herbert.  Done.  I may read the next one, but not right yet.

Conrad’s Fate by Diana Wynne Jones.  Audiobook.  I very much enjoyed.  Conrad’s determination to believe he has an evil Fate hanging over him is equal parts frustrating and funny – and very wise, when we remember how easily adults can “program” children’s expectations for them.

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater.  Audiobook.  Jim immediately put the sequel, The Dream Thieves on his reading shelf for as soon as he finishes his current reads (a book on Neanderthal and Cro-Magnon,  and Patrick O’Brien’s The Ionian Adventure.

In Progress:

Authority by Jeff Vandemeer.  Audiobook.  Part two of the much-discussed “Southern Reach” trilogy.  Lovecraft meets conspiracy theory meets spy thriller.  Waiting to see if it adds up to more.

Philip K. Dick is Dead, Alas by Michael Bishop.  A “fairly thorough revision” of the author’s 1987 Tor hardcover The Secret Ascension.  Just started but, between this and Vandemeer, I’m going to have really odd dreams.

Also:

Re-reading some of the Stephanie Harrington material as I work on a short story that might turn into a novelette for the next Honorverse anthology.

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6 Responses to “FF: Finishing and Moving On”

  1. Jay M. Says:

    Which was the first book in the Vandemeer trilogy?

    What’s the title of the Neanderthal & Cro-Magnon book?

    Recently finished:
    Whose Body? – Dorothy L. Sayers (first Lord Peter Wimsey)
    “24 Views of Mt. Fuji by Hokusai” – Roger Zelazny

    Currently reading:
    Eye of Cat – Roger Zelazny (it had been too long since I’d read either of those works, or Zelazny in general.)

    Up next:
    depends on my mood: another Nero Wolfe book, maybe a Miss Marple book, maybe a fourth Jane Austen novel.
    (first, though, I have too many papers to grade)

    • Jim Says:

      The title of the book on Neanderthal and Cro-Magnon is ‘Cro-Magnon: How the Ice Age Gave Birth to the First Modern Humans,’ by Brian Fagan. In general a good book, well-written and understandable for the general public, which is something Fagan does well. Even though the book was published in 2010 its a bit dated, because the Neanderthal gene had not yet been completely sequenced when he initially wrote the book, so the Neanderthal contribution to modern humans of European descent is not factored into his discussion. Despite this, a good read. Just need to keep in mind that the apparent isolationism of the Neanderthals he discusses wasn’t quite as prevalent as he assumes. To Fagan’s credit, in the preface to the paperback edition, which is what I read, he discusses these more recent findings in relation to his conclusions.

    • Jane Lindskold Says:

      ANNIHILATION is the first book in the Southern Reach Trilogy. I found it well-written, but a bit “cold.” A friend’s enthusiasm led me to try the next one.

  2. Chad Merkley Says:

    I think at one point I had Fagan’s Cro-Magnon checked out from the library, but circumstances conspired to keep me from finishing it. I may have to try again.

    Was it Jay M. who recently mentioned Diane Duane? I’ve read So You Want to be a Wizard and Deep Wizardry. Loved them both, especially the second, because of the complexity of the interpersonal relationships (parent-child). The library didn’t have the next one. Does reading the rest out of order matter?

    I also read Stiefvater’s The Raven Boys. The sequels are queued up. Not books I would recommend to my 12 year old nephew just yet. Maybe when he hits high school.

    I also started reading The Iliad, in Robert Fagles’ translation.

    • Jane Lindskold Says:

      Oh, yeah… THE RAVEN BOYS is definitely not “middle grade.” In another age, before all these sub-categories of publishing, it would have been published as just a regular novel, despite the protagonists being sixteen.

      I just realized I forgot to put a book on my “in progress list.” THE PENDERWICKS IN SPRING by Jean Birdsall. Must remember for next week. Remind me!

  3. Paul Dellinger Says:

    Still listening to the latest of Sue Grafton’s Kinsey Millhone private eye books on audio, “W is for Wasted.” Starts out with one mystery and segues into two more. Had to renew it from the library. How soon I’ll finish depends on how much driving I do.

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