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Old 01-16-2022, 08:37 PM   #30481
issybird
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I’m reading Troubles by J.G. Farrell, set during the eponymous era in Ireland. It won the Lost Man Booker Prize. A lot of black humor if you like that sort of thing, which I do.

Also, Roman Britain: A New History by Guy de la Bédoyère; new as of 2006, the year it was published. On the dry side but illuminating about what conclusions can be drawn from the archeological evidence.
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Old 01-16-2022, 10:05 PM   #30482
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Finished Cytonic by Brandon Sanderson and found myself in a small reading slump.

Picked up The Great Gatsby as a quick pick me up read and enjoying it so far. Will finish it today for sure. Need another short book to read next to motivate me even more...
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Old 01-17-2022, 04:21 AM   #30483
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My reading so far this year...

The Forest Kingdom by Jamie Thomas, second book of the Asperfell Trilogy. A YA fantasy with some romance (or is that a tautology?). The first half felt somewhat drawn out and pointless, but later it begins to make more sense. Not that the turn of events is that much of a surprise, but the way it comes out is neatly done in a way that makes the first half feel more necessary. Something like 3.5/5.

The Loneliest Girl in the Universe by Lauren James. YA Sci-Fi. At times it was rather frustrating watching this teenager fall in slow, slow motion for a trap the reader could see coming almost from the beginning, but it did not seem unbelievable for such an isolated teenager to be this naïve. The various mysteries were neatly exposed as the climax was reached, so despite stretching credibility in places it was a satisfying read. 3/5.

A Wizard's Guide To Defensive Baking by T. Kingfisher. A humorous but also darkish sort of children's tale. I thoroughly enjoyed this. A wonderful array of characters. The medieval setting feels real, and despite the inherent humour to aspects of the story it never falls into farce. Fun but not trivial. 4.5/5.

The Strange Adventures of H by Sarah Burton. This was an interesting and fairly convincing historical fiction, dark at times but never really maudlin. It starts slow but the pace picks up and I did end up enjoying the ride ... although the ending seemed a little out of place - an almost comedic farce. It was pleasing to have some a tidy wrap up, it just didn't feel that convincing from a historical perspective. Something like 3.5/5.

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng. Parts of it are excellent, other parts feel more like a synopsis or writing plan - written in a dry omniscient voice that sees all the way back and all the way forward. There are some well drawn characters and there was enough intrigue to keep me reading. The thing that attracted me most strongly was the portrayal of the artist Mia and her art, this seemed particularly well done. 3/5.

Death's Avenger by Charlotte E. English. A second collection of four novellas in the series Malykant Mysteries. I've only read the first two novellas from this collection so far and think I'll probably stop there. I enjoyed the first collection enough to get these, but there has been very little progression since and these feel like the same stories over again.
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Old 01-17-2022, 11:58 PM   #30484
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Finished The Great Gatsby and boy was it a ride. Nice to revisit it as an adult, considering I only read the cliffnotes version in 10th grade.

Currently reading The Personal Librarian by Marie Benedict and Victoria Christopher Murray, and Gossamer by Lois Lowry.
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Old Today, 07:38 AM   #30485
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Finished Gossamer by Lois Lowry and it was extremely cute and easy to read. Lowry is definitely one of my favorite authors. I will have to continue to read more of her catalog during any reading slumps.

Continuing with The Personal Librarian, and started Fahrenheit 451 today. Already blazed though a 3rd of it - it's hard to put down. This is a reread as it was one of the few books I read in high school that I actually liked.
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Old Today, 09:38 AM   #30486
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I finished listening to Helen Macdonald's Vesper Flights on my post-court commute yesterday. While it was not as strong overall as H is for Hawk, some of the essays were absolutely stellar. Almost all were influenced in some way by brexit/refugees/post-brexit racism, etc., and you can tell how heavily it weighed on them.

This book also met one of my goals of reading more female and nonbinary authors as Macdonald identifies as nonbinary.
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