WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesday. This meme is from shouldbereading.

To play along, just answer the following three (3) questions…

• What are you currently reading?
• What did you recently finish reading?
• What do you think you’ll read next?

• What are you currently reading?

I’ve just started in on Scatter, Adapt, and Remember, by Annalee Newitz. This is a nonfiction book that looks at mass extinction events throughout Earth’s history, and will eventually consider what options the human race might have if we find ourselves faced with (or the cause of) another mass extinction. So far I’ve found it written in a very accessible style — you don’t have to be a science major to understand it, and there is a lot of background history of the Earth to be gleaned.

• What did you recently finish reading?

Two novels, very different from one another, but both very well done:

T.C. McCarthy’s Germline is military science fiction, but it’s not about glory or heroism or interstellar battles or even tough choices. It’s about the destructive hopelessness of war, even for the survivors, and reminds me a lot of stories set in World Wars I and II.

Helene Wecker’s The Golem and The Jinni is a fantasy novel in which, by strange chance, an artificial woman made of clay — the golem — and a spirit creature founded in fire — the jinni — arrive in 19th century New York City and ultimately find that their paths intertwine. It’s an unusual story that draws a lot of its power from the incredibly detailed descriptions of life in other times.

• What do you think you’ll read next?

I never know until I begin, but possibly Andy Weir’s The Martian, or Karen Joy Fowler’s We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves.

What about you? What are you reading, have you been reading, wanting to read next?

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WWW Wednesday — 13 Comments

  1. Read:
    Astro City Vol. 3: Family Album by Kurt Busiek
    Dealing with Dragons by Patricia C. Wrede
    Searching for Dragons by Patricia C. Wrede
    Calling on Dragons by Patricia C. Wrede
    Reading:
    Life at the Bottom by Theodore Dalrymple
    The Goblin Emperor by Katherine Addison
    To Read:
    Vanished Kingdoms: The History of Half-Forgotten Europe by Norman Davies

  2. I loved Scatter, Adapt, and Remember. Very well done and chock full of interesting ideas for the SF writer.

    And We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves is wonderful.

  3. I just finished Jamie Ford’s Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet. It was selected by one of my book groups. It was a bit too sentimental for me, and there were plot elements that jarred me as unrealistic. I did enjoy the portrait of Seattle in 1942, from the the point of view of a boy in Chinatown.

    I finished Charles Stross’ Saturn’s Children. It’s space opera, in a world where humans have died out and the robots have formed a society. Fun and interesting.

    I saw this list of 25 Essential Graphic Novels and was pleased by the lack of heroes in spandex. I had read about half of them, and really liked almost all of those, so I decided to read the rest of the list. This week I read:

    David Mazzucchelli’s Asterios Polyp. The art in this is gorgeously spare and elegant, and I think the art tells more of the story than the words do. Asterios is as strange a man as his name. In the beginning, I thought he was too cold and creepy for me to like, but it gets moving as you follow him.

    Charles Burn’s Black Hole is about teenage angst, as are so many graphic novels. At this time in my life, I’m just not that interested in adolescence. It’s beautifully drawn, with a lot of stark black, and probably could be categorized as horror.

    Will Eisner’s A Contract with God and Other Tenement Stories is a classic that I’d somehow missed. Very good.

    I’m reading Salley Vicker’s Miss Garnet’s Angel right now. I have no recollection of what prompted me to buy it. When I started it, I thought Oh, dear. Straitlaced British person of a certain age goes to a sunny place on the Mediterranean and finds joy. Not again. It’s definitely got that going on, but it is in the winter, at least, and Julia Garnet’s journey turned out to be more interesting than I expected.

  4. Just finished reading: Grant Hallman’s IRONSTAR (a tale of military SF with metaphysical elements) and UPFALL (unabashed near-future SF/romance). Liked both of those a lot, and reviewed them at Shiny Book Review last week.

    Reading now: LINCOLN’S BOYS by Joshua Zeitz. This is about the two secretaries to President Lincoln, John George Nicolay and John Hay, who wrote a massive biography of him after he passed on (1.2 million words, ten volumes). This will be reviewed, possibly as soon as tomorrow, at SBR.

    Also reading: THE LAST DARK by Stephen R. Donaldson. I am having a hard time getting into this. The language is as evocative as ever, and the storytelling is good, but I have a sense that Donaldson is tired of writing about Thomas Covenant and Linden Avery. Because of that, the story does not seem to have much life. (I’d expected more, as AGAINST ALL THINGS ENDING was much better than this.) This will be reviewed at SBR.

    To be read: Julia London’s THE TROUBLE WITH HONOR, Michael Z. Williamson’s FREEHOLD (his first book, and among his best), and a cast of thousands.