A Few Quick Reading Notes

Nothing significant here, but just for fun…

In the second half of each year, I typically read a lot more (mostly fiction), since I’m not working on OA scanning. Until last year, I also watched a lot more old TV and movies–but so far, as was true last year, I haven’t felt the urge to do that. That could change, but…

Anyway, I just went through an odd mix of four library books and had odd reactions to each. I rarely write Goodreads reviews (I’ve done that, but it’s rare), and these definitely are not reviews.

That said…

China Miéville, Perdido Street Station

This is an acclaimed novel–Hugo- and Nebula-nominated, winner of other awards, a Big Book. And, trying to read it, I could credit its stature while finding that it just didn’t work for me. So, more wisely than usual, I set it aside after about 40 of 710 pages. Will I try another Miéville novel? Quite possibly. Will I try this one again? Unlikely. There are no books, no matter how good, that are must reading for everybody.

Sara Paretsky, Critical Mass

I’ve read a bunch of Paretsky’s V.I. Warshawski mysteries, not always in chronological order, and always enjoyed them, while grumping here and there about aspects of them. The one I read before this (but was published after it), Fallout, was by far the most satisfying of the lot. And this one’s also satisfying. V.I. still seems to be too frequently at death’s door by her own doing, but–as with Fallout–this was just plain first-rate. Why? Dunno.

David Baldacci, Long Road to Mercy

I’ve always enjoyed Baldacci perhaps more than I should, and this one’s no exception. What was interesting about this one, which introduced a new protagonist (that I hope has appeared in later books) was that it would have seemed a little too improbable to be coped with…except that it was published in 2018. That made it a little too plausible. (Safe to say that it would be wildly implausible, I think, before 2017 or after 2020…but that all bets are off after 2024.)

Isaac Asimov, Extraterrestrial Civilizations

In my youth I loved Asimov’s fiction and a fair sampling of his nonfiction, so I picked up this 44-year-old nonfiction book on a whim. I would not speak ill of the dead, but Asimov’s style (or lack thereof) has not aged well for me. The book has been a great soporific, but a slog to get through–and I became aware that Asimov was “proving” things that he maybe should have been a little more circumspect about. For example, he embarked on an absolute proof that there can’t possibly be any water on the moon. His reasoning seems bulletproof. But, well, he was wrong. Not the only case, to be sure.

And now I’ll do the next in my second reread of the Discworld books. I know that will be fun. [Moving Pictures, if you’re wondering. Oh, and I finally purchased and read/looked at The Last Hero. Which was, of course, just lovely.]



Comments are closed.