What are we reading in November 2023?
Entre no LibraryThing para poder publicar.
J G Ballard - The Wind From Nowhere ✔
C J Cherryh - Brothers of Earth
Andre Norton - Redline the Stars ✔
Liz Williams - Snake Agent✔
K M Shea - Crown of Moonlight✔
K M Shea - The King's Captive ✔
K M Shea - The King's Shadow ✔
K M Shea - Queen's Crown ✔
Jilleen Dolbeare - Splintered Magic ✔
Stephen Leather - Midnight
Jack Vance - Book of Dreams
Henry Kuttner - The Salem Horror ✔
from other genres
James Riordan -Seven Voyages of Sinbad the Sailor ✔
Patricia Wentworth - The Clock Strikes Twelve ✔
Sun Xuegang - Chinese Fairytales ✔
(Not that I’ve read much of anything lately.)
Just finished Firefly - Coup de Grace by Una McCormack. The beginning was a blatant rip-off of Charles Portis's True Grit, but then it settled down into an entertaining yarn of off-world meddling, local baddies, and our big Damn' Heroes wading in on the side of the little guys.
Started The Origin of Species and other stories by Bo-Young Kim - a new author to me, discovered in one of Lavie Tidhar's "Best of World SF" volumes. So far interesting and slightly off-beat stories, though I've only read a couple.
So now I turn to J G Ballard's The Wind from Nowhere. I have read the other 3 in his disaster series - The Drowned World,The Burning World ,The Crystal World,and need this one to complete the series. Also will read Andre Norton Redline the Stars
I commiserate on the world's habit of interrupting, preventing, fragmenting, and otherwise obfuscating efforts to actualise a solid reading life. May you persevere.
A pretty mundane story with none of the philosophical subtexts and undertones to be found in his otherworks,but a reasonable straightforward adventure read.Bit hard to sustain belief in the over the top premise though,and the tale ends very annoyingly. It just says ''The Wind was dropping''
No wonder Ballard sort of repudiated the book,claiming it as a kind of joke or wager,and that The Drowned World should be classed as his first real book :0)
I mostly enjoyed The Seventh Bride, a bit of a twisted fairy tale with darker elements. The humour/sarcasm did not always ring true but overall, a decent enough short novel.
I'm now a few chapters into Hopeland, which is off to a good start.
Also going to crack open A Desolation Called Peace tonight.
It's also interesting to compare Stevenson's The Body Snatcher with Val Lewton's excellent movie version. It's faithful in many ways, including a scene-stealing performance by Boris Karloff in a tavern with Henry Daniell with dialog straight from the story, but Stevenson's story is as much a dark screed against doctors as it is a story about grave robbers.
Now reading Shark Agent an Inspector Chen book. A bit weird and the print is very very small,its a bit difficult to read,so it will be alternated with C J Cherryh's Brothers of Earth
In the blurb Ann Leckie calls it a space opera, but I think that both the plot and the worldbuilding is way to deep and detailed for that genre.
I just re-read it after posting it here. It reminds me of the unique psychological advantage offered to SF readers -- acceptance. With science fiction, everyone associated with the story is accepted, even if they are an alien ... cool. It's a great pity that its author died a short time after this novella was published. His most famous novel was The Sand Pebbles, an action adventure story later filmed, starring Steve McQueen.
And then in the last eighty pages, the scene switches from a grungy London to somewhere far more exotic, and adds in hip street hacker kids from out of any early cyberpunk novel; and yet the denouement still manages to take place in a half-finished office block building site. And that was a cliché in 2001, let alone now.
I guess it depends on how one defines "space opera". For instance, I would call Dune space opera for sure, and it has deep & detailed plot & worldbuilding. But if Space Opera means Buck Rogers, almost nothing is too shallow.
I hadn't noticed the shift, and probably will continue to stick with the original meaning for a while before I can retrain my mental mapping. And from an etymological point of view, the original definition still makes the most sense to me, so it won't be easy.
It is a fun story so far, although not quite up to my initial expectations. It is a self-published series, and you can see the lack of polish here and there in the prose. There is still a ways to go in the story, however, and the main character hints at upcoming plot twists. (It is told as a retrospective - 1st person past tense POV)
>49 Sakerfalcon: I hope A Door Into Ocean works as well for you as it did me. I need to schedule a re-read and then continue with the rest of the Elysium Cycle.
I agree that most PKD film adaptations are very different from his stories. That said, the Screamers film is one that stays more true to the source than most. Personally, I rather enjoy it more when movies and books don't tell the story in the same manner. They are different media, after all.
Next up: The Saint of Bright Doors.
the blurb - Detective Inspector Chen is the Singapore Three police department's snake agent - the detective in charge of supernatural and mystical investigations. Chen has several problems: in addition to colleagues who don't trust him and his mystical ways, a patron goddess whom he has offended and a demonic wife who's tired of staying home alone, he's been paired with one of Hell's own vice officers, Seneschal Zhu Irzh, to investigate the illegal trade in souls. Political pressures both Earthly and otherworldly seek to block their investigations at every turn. As a plot involving both Singapore Three's industrial elite and Hell's own Ministry of Epidemics is revealed, it becomes apparent that the stakes are higher than anyone had previously suspected.
I enjoyed the trips to various chinese hell levelsI am assuming lots of things were part of chinese mythology,but I am totally ignorant on such things,so I just went with the flow. Quite lively,but the main character,Inspector Chen was rather flat and bland. I may continue with the series if I can find it .
Not able to read much. Sadly Mr Dusty has just survived a stroke,cant communicate,and seems to have forgotten his English,has regressed to his native language. Waiting for appointments for MRI
I've never read it, and I really should. I read Heinlein once said that three of his books summed up his perspective, and a lot of people liked one and hated the others--they didn't get him. Some liked two and bounced from a third, but vanishingly few liked all three. They were:
The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress
Stranger in a Strange Land
Well, I sort of liked Starship Troopers, disliked The Moon is a Harsh Mistress, and never tried Stranger in a Strange Land. But it seems a tad conceited to assume that dislike can only stem from a failure to understand.
(I never read Stranger in a Strange Land simply because neither the school library nor the city one had it. By the time I started to buy books on a regular basis Heinlein wasn't really on my radar anymore.)
I think in this case (my gloss, after all) "dislike" is a sort of shorthand for "ideological aversion."
I think everyone gave up on him there.
I will say this about ST, I do not find it to be a fascist tract, and it's actually more resonant in the wake of the "MIA" politics in post-1975 America. As for the movie, well, Paul Verhoeven always meant to do a satire, having started his film-making career turning out propaganda flicks for the Dutch navy!
All You Zombies was as brilliant as ever. This time travel story was massively influential at the time,and is still a nice work out for the brain.:0)
Totally different,much gentler ,sentimental and very nostalgic for the American past,Travelling in Elephants was one of RAHs personal favourites. It was also a fave of Spider Robinson.
He Built a Crooked House is an amusing tale of an architect who builds a house as a ''shadow of a tesseract.'' Hilarious house viewing when the would be buyers find the experience mindblowingly terrifying,and they only escape because an earthquake destroys the original one story building!.All too complicated sf themes are just served up with humour in the usual RAH way.
One of my fave Heinlein novels is The Door into Summer. Apart from a wonderful tough but cute cat,the chapter near the end which revealed all the time travel back and forth shenanigans of the tale.
Only eyebrow raising aspect of the tale is the love interest ....a 12 year old girl the hero falls for,and he tells she should go into cold sleep till she is 21.
Yup,Heinlein is a bit of a weirdo! :0)
"He Built a Crooked House" is definitely an old favorite of mine.
I also agree with some of the other posters that Heinlein was very uneven. I'm normally a "finish a book at all costs," but I DNF'd Number of the Beast. Ironically, one of my favorites is Time Enough for Love, which was the start of his "dirty old man" phase.
If this conversation inspires anyone to read or re-read Stranger in a Strange Land, I need to offer my carthagodelendaest on the topic: avoid the longer "uncut" version that was published posthumously. It reverted author's edits, added no valuable content, deleted important passages, and destroyed the pacing. It was a crass way to get a massive readership to buy the book a second time, and the inferior experiences that it gave to readers probably hurt public esteem for the author as well as the book itself.
>94 Betelgeuse: Good to know! I’ll see if I can track down a copy of Have Spacesuit Will Travel in our local used bookshop. I wonder what it will be like to return to that as an older adult compared to my teenage self when I started it.
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