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What Are You Reading Part 3


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Unpacked most of the books and only four more boxes left. Whose content will have to go into other bookcases. New house is now a home. Sadly as I packed I gave away some of the paperbacks I knew I was

I've been reading, but I don't remember exactly which books I've read lately. There's been a lot on my mind. (I'm sure I'm not the only one.) I was checking out Sue Grafton books from my library's ap,

I currently have Tombland by CJ Sansom going on audio. It’s taking me forever to get thru this (it is rather long at 37 hours).  I recommend the author for Tudor history fans.  Historical mystery.  Al

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onekidanddone

Unpacked most of the books and only four more boxes left. Whose content will have to go into other bookcases. New house is now a home. Sadly as I packed I gave away some of the paperbacks I knew I was never going to read. 

On the upside I made room for new ones. 

B9B63310-C12F-4A8B-A698-7EFE6015EEA3.jpeg

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elf1590

Since the last post I've read

Girls' Night Out (Mystery/Thriller)
Summer People (Adult Contemporary)
The Bride Test (Adult Romance)
The Royal We (Adult Romance)

Currently Reading: Turtles All the Way Down (YA Contemporary)

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Ozlsn

I paused reading The Mechanism when some of my library holds came in. Still enjoying it, but think it would help a bit if I knew more of the names and the gossip about them!

The holds were:

1. "Shell Game" by Sara Paretsky.

Spoiler

I really enjoyed it, it kept me guessing for most of the book. Although I am still wondering just how long Warshawski can keep going given she'd have to be late 50s/early 60s by now. And Lotty Herschel must be in her 90s by now, and still practising!

2. "The Impossible Climb" by Mark Synnott.

Spoiler

Follows the first free solo climb of El Capitan by Alex Honnold. I am never likely to climb anything that big, and certainly not free solo anything. It's an interesting look into that world though.

3. "Pop goes the murder" and "Assault and buttery" by Kristi Abbott.

Spoiler

Quite good, reasonsbly wtitten and very light. Does anyone actually eat popcorn for breakfast, and are there popcorn only shops? How do they stay in business? Also bacon and pecan with popcorn.. is not something I would ever have considered.

Now I do need to finish the Brazilian crime book!

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elf1590

After Turtles All the Way Down I read:

Heart of Mist (YA Fantasy)
Without Merit (YA Contemporary)
This Life I Live (Autobiography)
Sugar Queen (Magical Realism)
Pretty Little Liars (YA Mystery)
Stepsister (Adult Fairy Tale Retelling)
Royals (YA Contemporary)
Heaven (Adult Family Drama)
I Know Who You Are (Psychological Thriller)
Dark Angel (Adult Family Drama)
Fallen Hearts (Adult Family Drama)

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CTRLZero

Thanks to @Ticklish for recommending "The Frame Up" by Meghan Scott Molin.  (I've put some of your description in italics below.)

It's a fun geeky mystery about a female comic book writer who gets pulled into an investigation as a consultant when someone decides to play vigilante and copy a comic book superhero. She has a meet cute with the detective on the case and he uses her as a consultant. It has a ton of nerd culture references and the romance is somewhat Hallmark movie-ish, but it's a really fun read. A sequel comes out in a few weeks and I'm looking forward to reading it too. 

It was such a great summer read.  I enjoyed how the main character valued her friendships, but sometimes screwed things up in her rush to solve the mystery.  I just downloaded the sequel, "The Queen Con (The Golden Arrow Mysteries Book 2)" and hope it continues in the same madcap way.

 

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clueliss

A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms by Martin - for me this was a bit meh.

And now reading (on audio) How the Light Gets in by Louise Penny (and is really good)

 

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Ticklish

@CTRLZero, I'm so glad you liked it! I really enjoyed The Queen Con too. Not quite as much as The Frame Up, but pretty darn close. I'd like to hear what you think!

@clueliss, I adore the Inspector Gamache novels by Louise Penny. Have you read the others? How the Light Gets In is such a good one.

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clueliss

I’ve read the ones written before this.  In order.  

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OyToTheVey

I'm reading Zelda by Nancy Milford. It was her college dissertation. I read F. Scott Fitzgerald in high school. I think everyone read Great Gatsby at one point. But this biography is really eye opening. I love a good biography if anyone has recommendations.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I was stuck on what to read so I decided to re-read the Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins. I've forgotten how much I enjoy these books. Finished HG in two days, and currently working on the second one, Catching Fire. 

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In May I watched Altered Carbon on Netflix and kept thinking that this series would also make a great novel, and then in June I found out that it was actually based on a novel. I then found Broken Angels by Richard Morgan (author of Altered Carbon) in a bookstore and bought it because I loved Altered Carbon so much. And it did not disappoint! Loved it. Very fast paced, lots of action. I would have liked some more discussion/exploration of the possible effects of sleeving and re-sleeving on a person's sense of self, but even without that I still really liked it.

Prior to Broken Angels I read Chasm City, by Alastair Reynolds. Totally different, not only in topic but also in pacing. Great novel. I Love Reynolds's world and character building. It is a space opera, but has hard-SF elements as well (most importantly: Reynolds doesn't believe in the possibility of FTL-travel). Chasm City takes place in the same Universe as Reynolds's novel Revelation Space (It's part of the so-called Revelation Space series), but I read on multiple websites that you can read it as a stand-alone novel. If you are very versed in SF jargon and have read more of Reynolds's work, it is possible to read it as a stand-alone novel, but I will say that having read Revelation Space makes it much easier to understand Chasm City.  
I also read his short story/novel Permafrost. Pacing and character building is characteristic of his style, same goes for the narration. Topic is different, has to do with time travel, and the story takes place on Earth. Would have made a good, longer story as well. Still unsure how I feel about the ending, but I did really like his take on the workings of time travel.

And I just finished Elizabeth Bear's Ancestral Night. New Space Opera. Very, very different from traditional space opera. I kind of had to get used to her style and her jargon, but I really liked the story. Her style is kind of reminiscent of Becky Chambers's style, at least as far as NSO style goes. Slower paced, much less violence, no white savior/hero, exploring what it means to be sentient/be a sentience, what it means to be human. I want to pay more attention to female voices in Science Fiction, and Elizabeth Bear did not disappoint. I would definitely recommend this novel. 

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CTRLZero

I've been learning to love audio books, so for a change of pace I've been listening to short stories by Mark Twain.  He has some rather profound things to say on such topics of war, slavery, and greed, all presented with a biting sense of humor. 

@Marly - thanks for all the sci fi recommendations.  I'll look into all those novels soon as I transition from my lighter summer reading fare. 

most importantly: Reynolds doesn't believe in the possibility of FTL-travel - this should be interesting.  I'll have to see how a space opera is accomplished without this.  :pb_ubergeek:

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Since my last post I've read....a few. lol

Gates of Paradise (Adult Family Drama)
Web of Dreams (Adult Family Drama)
Queens of Finnbirn (YA Fantasy)
Three Dark Crowns (YA Fantasy)
Two Dark Reigns (YA Fantasy)
One Dark Throne (YA Fantasy)
Illuminae (YA Sci-fi)
Wilder Girls (YA Sci-fi/Fantasy)
The Rest of the Story (YA Contemporary)
The Murder List (Adult Mystery/Thriller)
Our House (Adult Mystery/Thriller)
The Unhoneymooners - twice lol (Adult Rom/Com)
The Perfect Mother (Adult Mystery/Thriller)
The Silent Patient (Adult Thriller)
We Set the Dark on Fire (YA Fantasy)
A Grown-up Guide to Dinosaurs (Nonfiction)
The Next Pandemic (Nonfiction)
The Mister (Adult Romance)
Southern Lady Code (Nonfiction)
Stranger Things (YA Scifi)
Five Dark Fates (YA Fantasy)
Darkness on the Edge of Town (Police Drama)
Red, White, and Royal Blue (New Adult Contemporary)
Miss Spelled (Cozy Mystery)
The Girl the Sea Gave Back (YA Fantasy)
Well Met (New Adult Contemporary)
There Will Come a Darkness (YA High Fantasy)

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Finished the Hunger Games trilogy and am now reading The Goldfinch in anticipation of the movie. 

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  • 2 weeks later...
CTRLZero
On 9/10/2019 at 5:51 AM, Marly said:

Elizabeth Bear did not disappoint.

I have been listening to a couple of different science fiction anthologies, one of which contained Bear's short story "Covenant."  It had a very thought-provoking plot.  It seemed a simple story to begin with, but got ethically complicated and turned into a bit of a thriller.  Very good, and now I am looking forward to getting my hands on more of her works.

Note:  Trying to outline it without spoiling is difficult! 

Also, one of the anthologies I listened to was titled "New Space Opera."  Is that a different designation than just "Space Opera?" 

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On 9/27/2019 at 11:39 PM, CTRLZero said:

Also, one of the anthologies I listened to was titled "New Space Opera."  Is that a different designation than just "Space Opera?" 

Yes, it is! I actually wrote my graduate thesis on the New Space Opera (NSO) last year, very interesting. 
This is from the abstract of my thesis:  "NSO is a renewed, innovative form of space opera that arose during the second half of the 1980s. The NSO uses space opera’s core elements of adventure and conflict to both entertain and address serious contemporary social, political, and economic issues".

I would say that the main difference between NSO and CSO (Classic Space Opera) is that the NSO uses the speculative freedom that the form of space opera provides , to explore and provide commentary on contemporary social justice issues (i.e.  problematic dichotomies such as mind-matter, man-woman, human-non-human, and the oppression and dehumanization of (cultural) Others). The NSO is a form of space opera that provides the "larger-than-life" aspect of the CSO with a critical edge, which in turn opens up a space for social commentary. (Sorry for the very formal language, I've taken this last sentence directly from my thesis).

Examples of NSO's/NSO authors: Iain M. Banks' Culture series, Ann Leckie's Imperial Radch series (I analyzed two of Banks' works and Leckie's series in my thesis), Alastair Reynolds (Poseidon's Children trilogy, Revelation Space Series. Afaik, most of his space operas are NSO's), Peter F. Hamilton (interesting point here: while most (British) NSO's are quite clearly written from a left-wing perspective, Hamilton embraces a more conservative view– in line with the British Tory party and in favor of market and competition based economics and societies. ), Nnedi Okorafor's novella Binti, Elizabeth Bear, Becky Chambers, and much more, but this is what immediately came to my mind.

Does this make sense? I'm happy to (try to) answer more questions about the NSO if you'd like to know more!

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CTRLZero

Thanks for the explanation, @Marly - I'm glad I asked!  I followed and understood most of what you wrote, but I see I need to steep myself in a few more authors to understand the finer distinctions between NSO and CSO.  It's great that you suggested some authors.

6 hours ago, Marly said:

(Sorry for the very formal language, I've taken this last sentence directly from my thesis).

It's all good.  My daughter is a college professor, so I'm used to reading her papers and publications.  😄  I'm so excited to know you have such an interest and expertise in the sci fi genre, and I'll be back with questions and observations from time time.  Thank you!!!!

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SilverBeach

Hard-core science fiction was my mother's favorite genre, with Stephen King type horror being a close second. Although she would read practically anything, really lightweight stuff like romance novels weren't her thing.

I am presently reading The Testaments by Margaret Atwood.

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CTRLZero
5 hours ago, SilverBeach said:

Hard-core science fiction was my mother's favorite genre, with Stephen King type horror being a close second.

I think I would have liked your mother. 😊 Right now I am listening to an audio book of short stories by Stephen King, and reading Under the Banner of Heaven, but science fiction is my first love.  I'm looking forward to reading The Testaments, but first I need to find time to re-read The Handmaid's Tale.

Edited by CTRLZero
As always, an oops.
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church_of_dog

since my last post in July (and not necessarily in this order):

Cleo Coyle's Coffeehouse mystery series:

#2: Through The Grinder

#3: Latte Trouble

#4: Murder Most Frothy

#5: Decaffeinated Corpse

 

Sue Grafton's alphabet Kinsey Millhone series: I and J

 

A Better Man, by Louise Penny

The Likeness, by Tana French

 

Non-Fiction/true crime and similar:

American Predator: The Hunt for the Most Meticulous Serial Killer of the 21st Century, by Maureen Callahan (about Israel Keyes)

The Education of a Coroner: Lessons in Investigating Death, by John Bateson (about the long career of Marin County Coroner Ken Holmes)

 

Non-Fiction/history:

Coolidge, by Amity Shlaes (presidential biography)

The Mosquito: A Human History of Our Deadliest Predator, by Timothy Winegard

 

Non-Fiction/personal improvement and psychology:

Decluttering at the Speed of Life, by Dana White

Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World, by David Epstein

In The Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters With Addiction, by Gabor Mate

 

Coming up next:

Bonanza King: John Mackay and the Battle Over the Greatest Riches in the American West

Sue Grafton's "K"

Cleo Coyle's #6 and #7

 

On waiting lists or otherwise searching for :

The Testaments, by Margaret Atwood

The Day the World Came to Town: 9/11 in Gander, Newfoundland, by Jim DeFede

Natural Causes: An Epidemic of Wellness, the Certainty of Dying, and Killing Ourselves to Live Longer, by Barbara Ehrenreich

My Stroke of Insight: A Brain Scientist's Personal Journey, by Jill Bolte Taylor

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  • 2 weeks later...
CTRLZero

After reading "Under the Banner of Heaven" by Jon Krakauer, I became interested in learning more about the Great Basin area of the U.S. 

I can recommend a book by Michael S. Durham entitled "Desert Between the Mountains: Mormons, Miners, Padres, Mountain Men, and the Opening of the Great Basin, 1772-1869."  It was history-lite, but made the progression and issues easily understandable and included references for further study.  This makes it sound like dull reading, but it was really absorbing.   For example, I've heard of the Mountain Meadows massacre, but had not really understood how this horrific incident came to happen.  The author really encourages further study by way of reading a well-researched book by a granddaughter of one of the participants.  Apparently, it was mostly covered up after it happened, until she started hearing rumors about the massacre and she decided to do some research.  Another book for another day...

The author also talks a little about Mark Twain's "Roughing It," which I've read a few times and enjoyed, so I may add that to my reading list.

I'm one of these people that one book leads to another.  Does anyone else do that?  Of course, I'm listening to H.P. Lovecraft stories, so there may not be any method to my madness, lol!

 

 

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Sky with diamonds

I was without cable and Internet for a few weeks, one plus is that I managed to read a few books. I wI'll list them later today.

The two books I loved most of all, was Kristen Hannah's Firefly Lane ( I want to read the following up so much) and Lori Lansens  Rush Home Road.  

^I shed tears with those two books. Very beautifully written. 

I could not finish My Sister, My Love by Joyce Carol Oates...I found it very disjointed near the end. 

I'm currently reading Treyf by Elissa Altman. Just started reading it last night. 

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church_of_dog

@CTRLZero I love letting one book lead me to another!  Especially books that give a history of a geographical area or a time period or a specific subject.

Re the Great Basin, I can recommend three books:

First, "Death Valley in'49: An Autobiography of a Pioneer Who Survived the California Desert" by William Lewis Manly

https://www.amazon.com/Death-Valley-49-Autobiography-California/dp/1634504402/ref=sr_1_1?crid=21SJZE3VQWC3K&keywords=death+valley+in+49&qid=1571069147&s=books&sprefix=death+valley+in%2Cstripbooks%2C243&sr=1-1

 

Second, The Bonanza King: John Mackay and the Battle Over the Greatest Riches in the American West

https://www.amazon.com/s?k=bonanza+king&i=stripbooks&crid=2VGCW61ME68D&sprefix=bonanza%2Cstripbooks%2C320&ref=nb_sb_ss_i_1_7

 

and third, "Basin and Range" by John McPhee, which I haven't read, but it (and he) is a classic.  I've read several McPhee books but just haven't gotten to that one yet.

 

Enjoy!  (or follow a whim elsewhere :changing_color_heart:)

 

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