June Reading Thread

Technically finished in May just forgot to add.

The Elfstones of Shannara - Terry Brooks

Went straight onto this after finishing the Sword of Shannara. Really enjoyed it, fast paced, not challenging and nice to dip the toe back into more fantasy. A little child like at times but a good and easy read. 8/10.
 
I thought Elfstones the best of all his books. I was a teenager when I read it, but it had interesting characters and it was original. And it was fun. And it had a dog...
 
I wondered about that, too. Depending on when the story was set Dr. Spock would make sense, as he was quite famous. But if it was set in a later decade, then it could be assumed someone had written Dr. Spock when it should be Mr. Spock, which would be an annoying mistake.
It's set around the time 1995 - 1997.
By the way, even though she'd been in The Wrath of Khan with him, Kirstie Alley still got it wrong after he died!


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Finished The Angel of Indian Lake by Stephen Graham Jones, last of his Indian Lake trilogy. The protagonist of the trilogy, Jennifer "Jade" Daniels, references movies, mostly slasher flicks, because she found a comfort zone in slashers after stumbling over a VHS tape of Bay of Blood. Too much plot over the three books to go into here, but if you're interested in horror novels and not put off by themes drawn from and threaded through with reference to slasher movies, this is a very good trilogy charting the maturation of Jade from 17 years old to 24 years old. Note, though, that there is some intense, gory violence, made more intense by Jones's ability to draw fallible, understandable, relatable characters.

Also finished 101 Horror Books to Read Before You're Murdered by Sadie "Mother Horror" Hartmann. Because it concentrates on books published in the 21st century, it's not as thorough as either Stephen King's Danse Macabre or Grady Hendrix's Paperbacks from Hell, but probably belongs on the same shelf as those and Horror: 100 Best Books and Monster, She Wrote as fan-written and fan-oriented non-fiction offering an array of readings for someone new to the genre or for someone familiar with the genre, but looking for suggestions beyond their own experience.
 
In the case of the Twitter post, if one Is inclined to be charitable (and in this case, what is to be gained by being anything else?) it could be the equivalent of a slip of the tongue (a slip of the typing fingers?) and be regarded as an innocent mistake. In a book or article where there should be editors and proofreaders to catch such slips one wonders about the quality of the editing and proofreading that this could get by them. (Although, to be fair, even when the greatest care is taken sometimes embarrassing typos and similar slips do sometimes get through.) What would annoy me is the suspicion that in the book none of the editors or proofreaders recognized it as a mistake because they thought the Star Trek character's name was Dr. Spock.
 
Not sure why "Mr. Kempe" is under supernatural. It's been years since I read it, but I don't recall anything supernatural in it.
 
Once There Were Wolves by Charlotte McConaghy [literary fiction?]
I found this to be a suspenseful, atmospheric, multifaceted and surprisingly compelling story about love, birth, death, and well, just life in general - the nice bits, the horrific bits and the sad bits. McConaghy writes well, has interesting story ideas, and fascinating, multidimensional characters, and I don't mean just the wolves! The wolves are adorable and suitable wolfy. The humans are... human. The environmental theme came across as a bit preachy, but since I like wolves more than most people, this book pushed buttons and I ended up enjoying it a lot more than I thought I would.


I also listened to the ArchAngel audio rendition of Henry VIII, a historical play alternatively titled "All Is True", which was a collaborative effort between William Shakespeare and John Fletcher. The play is noted for having more stage directions than any of Shakespeare's other plays. Shakespeare and Co. squashed together the timeline and jumbled the order of events that actually occurred over approximately 20 years. Unlike Shakespeare's early history plays titled with a king's name, this play is not so much concerned with Henry VIII's rise and fall as with the successive demise of the court figures of Buckingham, Katharine, Cardinal Wolsey, and, nearly, Cranmer. I like that Queen Katharine gets more page time. But ultimately, this is an unmemorable play.​
Random factoid: During a 1613 performance of Henry VIII at the Globe Theatre, a cannon shot employed for special effects ignited the theatre's thatched roof and beams, burning the original Globe building to the ground.
Well, that would definitely have added to the excitement of a rather bland play.
 
I at last started Donkey Boy, book 2 of Henry Williamson's 15-volume saga about some bloke. But a mention of one of the characters appropriating the coat of arms of supposed noble ancestors put me in mind of Thomas Hardy's Tess of the D'Urbervilles, which I haven't read since school. So I started that too.
 
What would annoy me is the suspicion that in the book none of the editors or proofreaders recognized it as a mistake because they thought the Star Trek character's name was Dr. Spock

I thought the same, apparently the book was cobbled together from "almost finished" manuscripts after the writers death, so we don't know who was involved in finishing the project for her.

Note: I set off to do a bit of digging for info online but I then got rabbit-holed by learning about her time, years earlier, as Miss Nude UK.
 
I'm currently reading two books This Is How You Lose the Time War, by Amal El - Mohtar and Max Gladstone.

And then the start of an epic series starting with. Prelude to Foundation, by Isaac Asimov.

Prelude is more of a prequel written after the fact. I would really reccommend starting with the original Foundation book! Forward (which bridges Prelude and Foundation) was the last book Asimov wrote, I think..

Just finished A Psalm for the Wild Built by Becky Chambers. My first by her. An interesting novella -- more of a philosophical discussion set in an ecologically healthy society, involving a monk who journeys into the wilderness and is greeted by a robot who wants to know how humans are getting on without them. Will follow with A Prayer for the Crown Shy, this book's sequel.

In the case of the Twitter post, if one Is inclined to be charitable (and in this case, what is to be gained by being anything else?) it could be the equivalent of a slip of the tongue (a slip of the typing fingers?) and be regarded as an innocent mistake. In a book or article where there should be editors and proofreaders to catch such slips one wonders about the quality of the editing and proofreading that this could get by them. (Although, to be fair, even when the greatest care is taken sometimes embarrassing typos and similar slips do sometimes get through.) What would annoy me is the suspicion that in the book none of the editors or proofreaders recognized it as a mistake because they thought the Star Trek character's name was Dr. Spock.


Nimoy wrote in I Am Spock that even back then people ocassionally confused the names.
 
Looking forward to reading old issues
Of 'Mad' ,'Cracked' ,'Creepy',Eeire',Omni,'
'Penthouse' and 'Playboy'.
 
Just finished Jerusalem: The Biography by Simon Sebag Montifiore. Probably the best history I've read in the last few years, it's an epic, violent, fascinating and comprehensive story, beautifully written and painstakingly researched. I loved it and would highly recommend the book, particularly for anyone seeking an even-handed account of the history of the city and the region in general.

Next up is Giles Milton's latest book, The Stalin Affair: The Impossible Alliance that Won the War.
 

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