FF: Before Dreaming

Coco Admires Momin Physique

I haven’t quite finished Hide Me Among the Graves because not only is it quite long, I can’t read it before bedtime.  Not scary in a slasher sense, but in the fact that many of the characters are essentially addicts, and so their own worst enemies.  I need something less fraught before bed or I have nightmares!

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.  And it’s also a great place to tell me what you’re reading. 

Recently Completed:

The Moomins and the Great Flood by Tove Jansson.  Translated by David McDuff.  The first Moomin book.  You can see her feeling her way into the characters.  This edition contains an introduction by the author, talking about how she began the story in 1939 when “it felt completely pointless to try to create pictures” and how, instead, “I suddenly felt an urge to write down something that was to begin with ‘Once upon a time.’”  Her take on that trope was remains unique…

Moominsummer Madness by Tove Jansson.  Translated by Thomas Warburton.  Much later in the series.  Oddly enough, once again, a flood is what forces the Moomins out of their cozy lives.

In Progress:

Hide Me Among the Graves by Tim Powers.  A semi-sequel to The Stress of Her Regard, focusing on the son of characters from the previous novel and his interactions with Christina, Dante Gabriel, and others of the talented Rossetti clan.  I had no idea until I read this that John Polidori was their uncle.  Truth is phenomenally weirder than fiction.  Then, when Tim Powers gives his twist to the material, I end up believing his “secret history.”

Ikenga by Nnedi Okorafor.  Audiobook.  Hamlet meets The Incredible Hulk in the person of a twelve year-old boy whose police chief father is murdered.


A few scattered magazine articles.



8 Responses to “FF: Before Dreaming”

  1. Beverly Martin Says:

    Coco has a beautiful coat! Thanks for the photo.

    I returned to an author I hadn’t read in a while. I read Piers Anthony’s Cube Route (Xanth #27). It was funny (or “punny,” if you will). The main character is a girl, nicknamed Cube, who wants to be beautiful. Her adventure leads us through much of Xanth where we meet lots of the characters from earlier books.

    Then, I read The Galactic Gourmet (Sector General #9) by James White. The plots are all a bit similar – main character saves the day by his unique insights and ideas. I am still impressed with the non-human characters. The are not humans in alien suits. They have different habits, customs and needs, but are still relatable. I am enjoying the books in this series.

  2. James Mendur Says:

    “The Relentless Moon” by Mary Robinette Kowal

    Up next:
    First, a couple of Hugo-nominated movies, and then the 5th of 6 Hugo-nominated novels: “Harrow the Ninth” by Tamsyn Muir

  3. James Mendur Says:

    I know I won’t get to see everything, and there are some categories I won’t be voting in at all, but with at least these main Hugo story categories (and probably the YA and New Writer awards, and probably the series awards), I could do worse than at least TRY to read the nominees. Besides, they gave me like 3 dozen novels and a whole bunch of shorter works, fanzines and such for the $50 voting membership. The least I can do is try to read them and vote on them.

    (Note: this does not mean I’ll FINISH every story; with two nominees so far, I didn’t finish the story, for different reasons. Those stories will rank last in my voting.)

  4. Harried Harry Says:

    Congrats to all of you for continuing to read during this time of “idiocy”. I’ve completed a few books but all are in the Sci-Fi & Fantasy genre. Dragons, seeress’s, and people of different ages. One series is full of challenges to my imagination but the stories are decent and full of humor. “High Mages Plight” by D.H. Aire is a series of seven e-books which are full of interest for readers with some of the books reading like a farce.

    James Brazee has written a number of Sci-Fi stories which have a good basis in military doctrine. Interesting stories.

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