March 2019: Reading Thread

Status
Not open for further replies.

Randy M.

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 7, 2012
Messages
1,325
"Bloodchild" is a terrific story, Brian. I've read it a couple of times and should reread it again as it holds up under rereading.

Currently about to finish Available Dark by Elizabeth Hand. Excellent and brutal, hard-boiled thriller. Not supernatural fare, exactly, but if you read and enjoyed Adam Nevill's The Ritual or the Stieg Larsson novels about Lisbeth Salander, you might find this one of interest.


Randy M.
 

dannymcg

The Mackerel of the Cornflake
Joined
Sep 9, 2016
Messages
3,100
Location
Cumbria UK
Also read Octavia Butler's short story Blood Child. OMG, that's a science fiction story I'll not forget! Quite brilliant in the premise and telling
This was very reminiscent of another SF short story but the full details escape me just now.
I'll probs do a post in Book Search (it always entertains 'em when I'm the one asking a question!)
 

HareBrain

Smeerp of Wonder
Staff member
Supporter
Joined
Oct 13, 2008
Messages
10,305
Location
West Sussex, UK
Not sure what to think of The Eagle of the Ninth. It was well written, but after a brilliant opening, just felt a bit thin. The plot was very simple, with few surprises, and relied too much on chance for my taste. And one character who felt like she was going to be important could have been left out without changing anything. Probably a 7/10.
 

Stephen Palmer

author of novels
Supporter
Joined
Dec 22, 2009
Messages
4,401
Location
Shropshire
I'm still on the new Yuval Noah Harari, 21 Lessons For The 21st Century.
It's excellent so far - a return to form.
 

farntfar

She turned me into a newt.
Joined
Oct 26, 2013
Messages
2,184
Location
France.
Currently reading The Gripping Hand, by Niven and Pournelle.

The sequel to The Mote in God's Eye; it hasn't gripped me like its predecessor yet, but to be honest, TMiGE didn't really get going until half way through. So there's hope yet.
It hasn't been a slog either.
 

dannymcg

The Mackerel of the Cornflake
Joined
Sep 9, 2016
Messages
3,100
Location
Cumbria UK
Currently reading The Gripping Hand, by Niven and Pournelle.

The sequel to The Mote in God's Eye; it hasn't gripped me like its predecessor yet, but to be honest, TMiGE didn't really get going until half way through. So there's hope yet.
It hasn't been a slog either.
I've read this a few years ago, TBH I thought it was a bit meh after the first one
 

HareBrain

Smeerp of Wonder
Staff member
Supporter
Joined
Oct 13, 2008
Messages
10,305
Location
West Sussex, UK
Just started Lanny by Max Porter. Unusual in terms of form, but down-to-earth rather than "literary".

Did anyone read his Grief is the Thing With Feathers? I quite liked it, but two friends, both avid readers, loathed it.
 

Ian Fortytwo

Be Idle, be cool, and everything will be okay.
Joined
Dec 30, 2018
Messages
172
Location
Somewhere on this mortal coil.
As I recently wrote that I had finished reading The Man in the High Castle, by Philip K Dick, my score is 5 out of 10. I had read it sometime ago and this time I was disappointed. I know it's not the book that changes, it is me.
 

williamjm

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 28, 2006
Messages
676
I finished Ian Esslemont's Kellanved's Reach. I enjoyed reading it, but at the same time it felt like it wasn't as good as it could have been. Some of Steven Erikson and Esslemont's previous Malazan novels have sometimes felt too long, but this one felt too short for the number of major events happening in it and it often felt a little bit rushed. Since this is a prequel to the main Malazan series and is focusing on some of the most significant events in the backstory of the series I did know a fair amount about how some of those events were going to turn out, but Esslemont does throw in some interesting additional details (such as Kellanved's relationship with the 'Army of Dust and Bone'). However, some of the climactic events in the book feel like they are resolved a bit too easily, particularly some of the battles in the latter half of the book. I feel that if Erikson had written this book rather than his fellow Malazan author then he might have made the more epic moments in the story more compelling, although it would probably have been twice the length and parts of the story may have been more difficult to follow. I think Esslemont's characterisation has improved since his earliest books and despite the number of characters being a bit excessive for a relatively short book they do generally get some good character development, and it is interesting to see the younger versions of many of the major characters of the wider Malazan series. Overall, it's a good addition to the Malazan series but I think falls some way short of the best books in the series, I thought Esslemont's first book in this prequel series was significantly better.

Next up I think I'm going to read Tim Powers' Alternate Routes.
 

dannymcg

The Mackerel of the Cornflake
Joined
Sep 9, 2016
Messages
3,100
Location
Cumbria UK
Adrian J Walker
'The last dog on Earth'

I'm only a few chapters in so still working through the world-building and trying to fathom out the breakdown of society. (Edit: nukes, but I dunno why yet)
The chapters (so far!) alternate between Lineker the dog and fat Reg the owner
 
Last edited:

Ian Fortytwo

Be Idle, be cool, and everything will be okay.
Joined
Dec 30, 2018
Messages
172
Location
Somewhere on this mortal coil.
I'm reading The Wooden Horse, by Eric Williams, apparently when this was first written as a fictional account it is only recently that the author declared that it is a true account, however he left in the fictional names to keep the story coherent.
 

dannymcg

The Mackerel of the Cornflake
Joined
Sep 9, 2016
Messages
3,100
Location
Cumbria UK
I'm reading The Wooden Horse, by Eric Williams, apparently when this was first written as a fictional account it is only recently that the author declared that it is a true account, however he left in the fictional names to keep the story coherent.
Wow!
I first read it aged 12 and always thought it was true, I didn't realise it was published as fiction...the film was good
 

thaddeus6th

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 15, 2007
Messages
6,422
Location
UK, Yorkshire
I'm about 700 of 1,200 pages into the third Stormlight Archive entry. Surprised I'm reading it so fast, to be honest, but I am rather enjoying it. Correspondingly, making slower progress with After the Ice.
 

Bick

A Member of the Forum
Supporter
Joined
Jul 26, 2012
Messages
2,058
Location
Auckland, NZ
Just started Guards! Guards! by Sir Terry, book 8 in my reading of the Discworld novels. High hopes for this one, as I've heard good things about it. Its started very well, in any event.

Engaging the Enemy, book 3 in the Vatta's War series by Elizabeth Moon was really good, by the way - I rate her highly among modern space opera authors now. In some ways, these books remind me of Cherryh's Chanur series with all the flitting from one space station to another, but (saying it quietly as it may be heresy) these are more enjoyable and better constructed.
 

dannymcg

The Mackerel of the Cornflake
Joined
Sep 9, 2016
Messages
3,100
Location
Cumbria UK
Moving right on my reading binge now with a change of genre.
Blood Sympathy by Reginald Hill, the first of the Joe Sixsmith P.I. books.

This is somewhat tainted, in light of modern day knowledge, by it's references and near hero worship of Gary Glitter as a rock God.

Nevertheless a good and enjoyable light read so far
 

vanye

Human, c.o. Earth
Joined
Mar 18, 2012
Messages
717
Location
Germany
Engaging the Enemy, book 3 in the Vatta's War series by Elizabeth Moon was really good, by the way - I rate her highly among modern space opera authors now. In some ways, these books remind me of Cherryh's Chanur series with all the flitting from one space station to another, but (saying it quietly as it may be heresy) these are more enjoyable and better constructed.
He said Jehova!

I‘ve read both series and while I enjoyed Vatta‘s War, I would never think it compares to Chanur. The worldbuilding, character development, the writing - while Moon‘s stuff is good, it is nowhere near Cherryh’s in my opinion. But that‘s opinions for you. Everybody‘s got some, even me.
 

Bick

A Member of the Forum
Supporter
Joined
Jul 26, 2012
Messages
2,058
Location
Auckland, NZ
I‘ve read both series and while I enjoyed Vatta‘s War, I would never think it compares to Chanur. The worldbuilding, character development, the writing - while Moon‘s stuff is good, it is nowhere near Cherryh’s in my opinion. But that‘s opinions for you. Everybody‘s got some, even me.
Yes, different views which is great. I struggled a bit with Chanur in books 3 and 4. Cherry seemed to write the same books over and over in that series. The first one is terrific though, and I do like Cherryh genrally, I just feel she can be a bit hit and miss. Her writing has a detail and density to it that can work extremely well (Downbelow or Morgaine for instance) or it can turn into pretty turgid stuff (I really struggled with Invader). Moon's writing seems effortless, which is actually a very clever trick and her story arc is much better handled than Chanur I think (not that the Chanur plot itself isn't good).
 

biodroid

Expensive Gadget User
Joined
Oct 11, 2007
Messages
2,484
I have read The Talisman by Stephen King and Peter Straub about 12 years ago and loved it but never read Black House, its indirect sequel. I have just started it and the first few pages is like reading a geography exam as it explains where all the shops and streets and buildings are. I hope it picks up, how does it compare to The Talisman? Is it a good book?
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top