rmc28: Rachel standing in front of the entrance to the London Eye pier (Default)
What I've read
I still haven't been reading books much.  I had a migraine yesterday and read the entirety of Talyn by Holly Lisle which I bought my own copy of this year.  I wrote a short review of it in 2010, based on the library copy.

What's next
I have a vague plan to reread Watership Down but I think that will be its own set of posts.  Mirror Empire is still sitting where I put it when I unwrapped the parcel.  It's three more weeks until Ancillary Sword comes out so I hope I unstick my reading by then. (I did devour the first chapter free on Orbit's website).  Maybe I'll reread Ancillary Justice for bookclub tomorrow.

Books acquired
I got Rivers of London, Moon Over Soho & Whispers Under Ground, all by Ben Aaronovitch, at a very reasonable price from the Angel Bookshop on Bene't Street.  This is a local independent bookshop that stocks the sort of books I like to buy, so I suspect we'll be back.   Charles has figured out that I am a pushover when it comes to buying him books so he got Diary of a Wimpy Kid which I'm hoping he'll read with me.

rmc28: (books2010)
I have not read any books, electronic or otherwise, in the last week.

Instead have two recs for fanfics for Captain America / Avengers / Winter Soldier, both of them doing what I think of as 21st century epistolary form:


User Since (3848 words) by rageprufrock
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: Major Character Death
Summary:

To: PC (loyaltothedream@hushmail.com)
From: Buck (bucky1956@yahoo.com)
Subject: Report!
Date: May 10, 2012

Phil — where the hell are you, man? Let us know if you're all right, or if there's anything we can do to help. HQ's freaking the fuck out.


tin soldiers (19743 words) by idrilka
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Summary:


In his 2009 book on Captain America comic books, war photography, and American propaganda, Everett claims: “There is nothing to suggest that either the graphic novels issued during the war or the photographs taken during Rogers’ stay with the Howling Commandos can serve as a basis for a queer reading of Rogers and Barnes’ relationship. But even more importantly, there is nothing to suggest that such a relationship ever existed in the first place, and as such, those queer readings are not only misguided, but also libelous” (197).


[from: Lynn E. Anderson, Captain America: Behind the Mask. Steve Rogers and the Contemporary Hero Narrative (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2012), p. 242.]

In the aftermath of Steve's return to the world of the living and the battle of New York, the academia and the Internet react.
rmc28: (books2010)
Books read

I've read through several kindle samples based on recs from Worldcon.

Oblivion Storm by R.A. Smith
Opens with a rags-to-riches heiress on the streets of 19th century? London and then switches to modern day London, sudden peril on the Underground and something magic- or time-travel related going on.  Not bad, but didn't especially grab me so I'll not continue.

Huntress by Malinda Lo
Two young women are chosen by magical? prophecy to go on a diplomatic mission to the queen of the faries.  I was sufficiently engaged to order a dead-tree copy, which sadly seems to be taking a while to get to me.

Noughts & Crosses by Malorie Blackman
This is the first in a YA trilogy about racism, in particular with the relative power of black and white people inverted.  It was recommended at the Diversity in YA panel, and the author is a black British woman who is open in the foreword about this being a book allowing her to express a lot of anger over the racism she's personally experienced.  I'm prepared for it to make me uncomfortable, either because it is a simplistic Message Novel, or more subtly because it makes me more aware of my biases.  But the first two chapters were page-turny and not Messagey, and the library has it in stock so I'm waiting for my reservation to come through.

I then decided I needed to stop reading samples because I'd start getting confused by having too many books in progress simultaneously.

A Bad Spell in Yurt by C Dale Brittain
I put this down for a while after finding it hard to stay interested when being interrupted every few paragraphs.  I managed an uninterrupted hour or two while we were off work, and whooshed through it.  As [personal profile] skygiants made clear, it's a generic Eurofantasyland where Our Hero saves the day by the power of friendship and reading his textbooks really carefully.   If that's what you want to read, it does it very well and I enjoyed it, but I'm not often in the mood for that so won't rush to get the sequels (which I initially typed as SQLs oops work).

Night School by C J Daugherty
This is a YA story, first in a series, about a teenage girl who gets sent away to a boarding school in the British countryside by her parents to stop her getting in trouble.  It is kind of rife with tropes of the genre, right down to instant-friendship-bonding and secret societies and mysteries uncovered, and the inevitable hetero love triangle.  But it performs them well and the characters feel like people rather than placeholders, and I found myself reading it avidly and wanting to find out what happens next.

The Secret Mistress by Mary Balogh
This is the last of Balogh's back catalogue in the county library system, which I may write up separately at some point. This one is a rather sweet portrayal of a young, moderately naive heiress and her romantic pursuit of the man her family and his wants her to marry anyway.  It's clever enough to make me sympathise with said heiress rather than want to shake her for being so silly, and I'm glad I read it.

Next books
Mirror Empire by Kameron Hurley arrived in today's (Thursday's) post, so I expect that is next up.

rmc28: (books2010)
I've still had a file listing books read and acquired and that list is behind a cut below.  I thought it might be more interesting to put here my post-Worldcon list of new authors/books to try (additional recommendations welcome!).  I'm going through and tracking down kindle samples or library copies for now - my to-read pile being perpetually too big.

Diversity in YA panel:

Malinda Lo - Huntress
Nalo Hopkinson - The Chaos
Robin McKinley - The Hero & The Crown
Malorie Blackman

We Have Always Fought panel:
N.A. Sulway - Rupetta (Tiptree Award winner)
Richard Morgan - Altered Carbon (fanf has this & others on our bookshelves)
Justina Robson - Quantum Gravity series
Django Wexler
Alice Nunn - Illicit Passage (this is the one about sisters and hackers, and I can't find a website for the author)
Carol McGrath - The Handfasted Wife (historical romance rather than SF, about Harold's not-official wife and the Norman invasion)

Other authors who said interesting things, either that I saw directly or through others' writeups:
Rochita Loenen-Ruiz
Mary Anne Mohanraj
Kate Elliott
Rebecca Levene
Liesel Schwarz
R.A. Smith
Zen Cho
Tobias Buckell
Candas Jane Dorsey
JY Yang
Max Gladstone

Long lists of books read and acquired since the last Reading Wednesday post are behind the cut.

Read more (why, yes I did) )
rmc28: (books2010)
Finished in the last fortnight
Moon over Soho by Ben Aaronovitch
Prisoner by Lia Silver
The Rhesus Chart by Charles Stross
Longbourn by Jo Baker
The Suffragette Scandal by Courtney Milan

Currently reading
I just finished The Suffragette Scandal, I haven't made progress on either Bad Spell in Yurt or Infidel in weeks.  So right now - nothing!

New acquisitions
Prisoner by Lia Silver
The Rhesus Chart by Charles Stross
The Suffragette Scandal by Courtney Milan
Unveiled by Courtney Milan
Unclaimed by Courtney Milan
This Wicked Gift by Courtney Milan
Proof by Seduction by Courtney Milan
Trial by Desire by Courtney Milan
Star Wars: Hard Contact by Karen Traviss

Next books
Saga and/or the rest of the new Courtney Milan acquisitions

I really liked The Suffragette Scandal, as I have the others in its "Brothers Sinister" series.  They're slightly AU historical romances, set in the ~1870s, with women being awesome at maths, science and politics, and with Cambridge settings for at least three of them.  (And Oxford settings for two.)   I also like that I can buy them from Smashwords without DRM. 

The other five Courtney Milans I bought are on offer at 99c (which appears to translate to 72p on Amazon) until 25th July, and are "enhanced" versions of her first five books, of which I think I've read one at the library some time ago.  Sadly they aren't available through Smashwords so it's your choice of DRM-infested sales venues.



rmc28: Rachel standing in front of the entrance to the London Eye pier (Default)
Missed a few weeks, been ill. Didn't read many books while I was ill.

Finished since last time
Avalon High by Meg Cabot
The Proposal
by Mary Balogh
The Arrangement by Mary Balogh
The Suitor by Mary Balogh (e-novella)
V is for Vengeance by Sue Grafton

Currently reading
Moon over Soho by Ben Aaronovitch
A Bad Spell in Yurt
by C. Dale Brittain
Infidel by Kameron Hurley

Newly acquired
Star Wars: Triple Zero by Karen Traviss
The Suitor by Mary Balogh

Next books
Saga vol 1 & 2 by Brian K Vaughan & Fiona Staples
Storm by Eric Jerome Dickey, David Yardin & Lan Medina
Women of Marvel


rmc28: (books2010)
Finished this week
Parasite by Mira Grant

Currently reading
A Bad Spell in Yurt by C. Dale Brittain
Infidel by Kameron Hurley
Avalon High by Meg Cabot

Acquired this week

Butterfly Swords by Jeannie Lin
The Dragon and the Pearl by Jeannie Lin
My Fair Concubine by Jeannie Lin
Her Hesitant Heart by Carla Kelly
Marrying the Royal Marine by Carla Kelly
The Surgeon's Lady by Carla Kelly
Neptune's Brood by Charles Stross (paperback version)
Talyn by Holly Lisle
plus ~20 Star Wars books

So of course I spent most of my reading time this week on fanfic ...


Library pile
Ballad by Maggie Stiefvater
Longbourn by Jo Baker
Moon over Soho by Ben Aaronovitch
V is for Vengeance by Sue Grafton
Storm by Eric Jerome Dickey, David Yardin & Lan Medina
Women of Marvel


Next books
Saga vol 1 & 2 by Brian K Vaughan & Fiona Staples
The Checklist Manifesto by Atul Gawande
rmc28: Rachel standing in front of the entrance to the London Eye pier (Default)
Finished this week
Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie - third time through and I still love it
your blue-eyed boys by laleitha - very satisfying, I will be rereading
The Admiral's Penniless Bride by Carla Kelly - surprisingly lovely/absorbing historical romance; am getting my own copy for rereading
One Night For Love by Mary Balogh
A Summer to Remember by Mary Balogh

Did not complete
Warbound by Larry Correia - this did better than Wheel of Time in that I stuck with it well into chapter 2 before giving up.  It was pretty unimpressive though - gore, wooden dialogue and infodumps galore.

Currently reading
A Bad Spell in Yurt by C. Dale Brittain
Infidel by Kameron Hurley
Parasite by Mira Grant

I'm a bit stuck on all three of my books in progress - both Yurt & Infidel are doing badly under tiny-bites-frequently-interrupted which is what my attempts to read both have hit thanks to unpredictable children.  (The romances both stand up better to interruption, and have had the luck to fall in some of my longer uninterrupted reading times).  As for Parasite, I've started it and I'm engaged enough to want to continue, but it's literally a bit visceral and disgusting, and I don't want to read it while eating, or just before sleeping - which rules out about 90% of my reading time. 


Nothing acquired this week

not strictly true - I had this great idea while sleep-deprived on Sunday morning to hunt down all the no-longer-canon Star Wars Expanded Universe books by authors I actually like and don't already have.   This is not going to help my to-read-pile issues AT ALL.  But none of them have arrived as of writing this post so they don't count yet.

Also [personal profile] ceb kindly lent me Parasite and Saga for Hugo reading.


Library pile
Ballad by Maggie Stiefvater
Longbourn by Jo Baker
Avalon High
by Meg Cabot
Moon over Soho
by Ben Aaronovitch
V is for Vengeance by Sue Grafton
Storm by Eric Jerome Dickey, David Yardin & Lan Medina
Women of Marvel
- I shall not let the PINK cover put me off reading this collection of first issues

Next books
Saga vol 1 & 2 by Brian K Vaughan & Fiona Staples
The Checklist Manifesto by Atul Gawande
rmc28: (books2010)
Finished this week
Fifth Year Friendships at Trebizon by Anne Digby
Secret Letters at Trebizon by Anne Digby
The Unforgettable Fifth at Trebizon by Anne Digby
No Dominion (The Kickstarter Edition) by C.E. Murphy

Currently reading
A Bad Spell in Yurt by C. Dale Brittain
Infidel by Kameron Hurley
your blue-eyed boys by laleitha (novel-length Captain America: Winter Soldier fanfic: it counts)

Acquired this week

Fifth Year Friendships at Trebizon by Anne Digby
Secret Letters at Trebizon by Anne Digby
The Unforgettable Fifth at Trebizon by Anne Digby
A Brilliant Little Operation by Paddy Ashdown
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R Covey
Agatha Raisin: Hiss and Hers by M.C. Beaton

Library pile
I'm on holiday and I left all the library books behind

Next books
A Brilliant Little Operation by Paddy Ashdown
Batwoman: Elegy by Greg Rucka / JH Williams III

rmc28: Rachel standing in front of the entrance to the London Eye pier (Default)
Finished this week fortnight
Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie (second time, I love this book enormously)
Rivers of London
by Ben Aaronovitch (excellent, have reserved next one through library)
Slightly Sinful by Mary Balogh
Slightly Dangerous by Mary Balogh
The Duke of Midnight by Elizabeth Hoyt (this is a Batman Regency Romance AU, I am convinced)
A Secret Affair by Mary Balogh
Marvel's The Avengers Prelude: Fury's Big Week by Christopher Yost, Eric Pearson
Thus Was Adonis Murdered by Sarah Caudwell
Into the Fourth at Trebizon by Anne Digby
Neptune's Brood by Charles Stross (liked this a lot more than Saturn's Children, will write more for Hugo discussion, sometime)
Rodeo Nights by Patricia McLinn

Bounced off
Hot Shot by Kathryn Shay
Wild Wind by Patricia Ryan
From Glowing Embers by Emilie Richards

Special argh mention
One Good Turn by Judith Arnold
I got most of the way through this fairly enjoyably before geting completely squicked out by the handling of a past traumatic rape.  I later realised I'd read something else by Judith Arnold which was a fun story apart from the way a police surveillance operation was run completely implausibly.  So this is a note to self not to pick up anything else by this author.

Currently reading
A Bad Spell in Yurt by C. Dale Brittain (so far, fully living up to the enthusiastic review by [personal profile] skygiants )
No Dominion (The Kickstarter Edition) by C.E. Murphy, which I have read all the individual bits as they were released to kickstarter supporters, but not actually read my own copy all the way through.

New acquisitions
Into the Fourth at Trebizon by Anne Digby
Neptune's Brood by Charles Stross
The Siren by Tiffany Reisz

On the library pile
Star Wars Clone Wars Gambit: Siege by Karen Miller
Ballad by Maggie Stiefvater
Longbourn by Jo Baker

Next books
Batwoman: Elegy by Greg Rucka / JH Williams III
Infidel by Kameron Hurley

rmc28: (books2010)
[written last night, posted this morning, because toddler]

Finished this week

Kushiel's Chosen by Jacqueline Carey
Kushiel's Avatar by Jacqueline Carey
The Sword Dancer by Jeannie Lin
Slightly Scandalous by Mary Balogh
Slightly Tempted by Mary Balogh
The Tennis Term at Trebizon by Anne Digby
The Hockey Term at Trebizon by Anne Digby
The Ghostly Term at Trebizon
by Anne Digby
Anatomy for Runners by Jay Dicharry
Year of Miracles by C.E. Murphy

I started The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan and gave it two goes, but didn't make it past the first chapter.  I thought maybe I was just not in a reading mood but then I accidentally reread about four chapters into Ancillary Justice so I concluded it's just that I don't get on with Robert Jordan.

The Trebizon books are modern (i.e. 1980s) school stories of which I now have almost all the easy-to-acquire paperpacks.  I discovered this wekend that a) there were three more I'd never heard of because they were short print runs and that seem to go for really high prices second hand b) the entire series is now available on Kindle for £2.99 a book.  The covers are terrible, but my inner completionist approves of this use of technology.

Currently reading
Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie (rereading, apparently)

On the library pile
Thus Was Adonis Murdered by Sarah Caudwell
Star Wars Clone Wars Gambit: Siege by Karen Miller

Next books
Batwoman: Elegy by Greg Rucka / JH Williams III
Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch

rmc28: (books2010)
Finished this week
God's War by Kameron Hurley
Kushiel's Dart by Jacqueline Carey
plus I read some Hugo finalists: the four in Best Short Story, four three of the five in Best Novelette (no, I am not going to read the Beale), and one of the five in Best Novella

Currently reading
Kushiel's Chosen by Jacqueline Carey
The Sword Dancer by Jeannie Lin

Bought this week
Infidel by Kameron Hurley
Kushiel's Dart / Kushiel's Chosen / Kushiel's Avatar by Jacqueline Carey
The Mammoth Book of Paranormal Romance: Volumes 1 and 2 edited by Trisha Telep
An Atlas of Love - The Rupa Romance Anthology edited by Anuja Chauhan

On the library pile
Thus Was Adonis Murdered by Sarah Caudwell
Slightly Tempted by Mary Balogh
The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan

rmc28: Rachel standing in front of the entrance to the London Eye pier (Default)
HEY EVERYONE I DID READING THIS WEEK.  For some reason, I had an absolute bumper week for reading actual books (paper and ebook) rather than Random Stuff On The Internet and short fanfic.  I also managed some monster long fics on the AO3 too, it's like I have concentration or something. I hope it lasts.

Books read this week
Battle for Bittora by Anuja Chauhan
Those Pricey Thakur Girls
by Anuja Chauhan
Shades of Milk and Honey by Mary Robinette Kowal
Glamour in Glass
by Mary Robinette Kowal
Without A Summer by Mary Robinette Kowal
Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie

I liked them all; Battle for Bittora I've already reviewed and I'll be writing up Those Pricey Thakur Girls too, but I'll try to write up the rest too (and woah, The Zoya Factor is only £1 on amazon.co.uk and 95p for the Kindle version BARGAIN except I already have it, duh). 

Ancillary Justice was especially amazing and everyone who told me I'd like it was right.  (huh, amazon have put up the kindle price since I  bought it at the weekend, perhaps they've noticed the Hugo nomination too)

Currently reading
God's War by Kameron Hurley, because she helpfully wrote a blog post "if you liked Ancillary Justice and God's War you'll love ..." which includes a bunch of books I already know I love (the Elizabeth Bear and the Octavia Butler, since you ask) so I thought I'd see if the reverse was true.  I think it might be on the edge of a bit grim for me, but it's keeping me engaged so far.

What's next
Not sure, but probably Infidel, the sequel to God's War, unless that does tip over into too grim for me.

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Rachel Coleman

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