FF: Pretentious? No Thanks!

What You Got, Mei-Ling?

As I mentioned last week, I was questing for a new audiobook to listen to.  I tried one, non-SF/F, much praised a few years back and found it so pretentious that I dumped it.  Then I found some old friends instead.

Yes.  I was an English Major.  Yes.  I read classics and even poetry for fun.  But any book that starts with a writer talking about writing and writer’s block and other self-indulgent twaddle loses me right off.

For those of you unfamiliar with this column, the Friday Fragments lists what I’ve read over the past week.  Most of the time I don’t include details of either short fiction (unless part of a book-length collection) or magazines.  The Fragments are not meant to be a recommendation list.  If you’re interested in a not-at-all-inclusive recommendation 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 bit of description or a few opinions tossed in.

A reminder that I’m always happy to hear what you are reading!

Recently Completed:

The Last Hunt by Bruce Coville.  Fourth book in the Unicorn Chronicles.  Audiobook.  Coming in on the last few chapters, with revelations coming fast and thick.

Look to the Lady by Margery Allingham.  Third book in her Albert Campion series.  Mysterious secret societies, chalices, monsters…  What more do you need in a non-fantasy mystery?

In Progress:

Might As Well Be Dead by Rex Stout.  Audiobook.  A Nero Wolfe.

Policemen At the Funeral by Margery Allingham.  Fourth book in her Albert Campion series.  Introduces continuing secondary character, Uncle William Farraday.


The most recent Archeology, still, and, of course, my own work-in-progress.

6 Responses to “FF: Pretentious? No Thanks!”

  1. Beverly Martin Says:

    I finished Expecting Someone Taller in Omnibus #5 by Tom Holt. It was fun and funny. Just what I needed. I will save the second tale in the book (Ye Gods!) for another time when I need joy.

    Now, I am reading Dark Age (Red Rising Saga #5) by Pierce Brown. It has been a while since I read #4, so I am a bit hazy on some of the details of the continuing story, Lots of battles and death in this class war!

  2. James Mendur Says:

    About the Nero Wolfe books – as I understand it, Stout basically kept his characters the same age and just updated their settings each year, but is there any sort of continuing arc in the stories or is each really a stand-alone? Or do later books give away the end of earlier books so it’s still better to read them in order?

    Oh, and I’ve finished “A Study in Scarlet” and “The Sign of the Four” by Arthur Conan Doyle. Currently reading one of the anthologies. I’d gotten way too influenced by the recent TV shows and movies, because the Holmes of the stories (so far) is quite different than recent portrayals, and it’s refreshing. I also love how Holmes thinks Watson is an unreliable narrator because he includes so many “irrelevant” details of the cases.

    • janelindskold Says:

      Yes. There is an arc in characters. Events that happen in their lives are referenced later. You can do w/o but, for example, Lily (who is the closest Archie has to a steady girlfriend) has nicknames for people that reference earlier stories. More series references, too, but they would involve spoilers as to the fate of some secondary characters, so I’ll spare you.

      The Jeremy Brett Holmes was very close to the stories, from what I’ve heard from later versions the resemblance can be slim to non-existent. Such irritates me, which is why I rarely watch adaptations of stories I love.

  3. Jone Says:

    One of my favorite non ssf audiobooks was The Secret Life of Bees. Really well done.

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