Sunday Status Update: January 14, 2018

Lots of reading for FanLit this week!

Jana: This week had a much slower reading pace than last week, but still felt pretty productive. I read Rati Mehrotra’s Markswoman and Adrianne Finlay’s Your One and Only, two post-apocalyptic YA novels with drastically different protagonists and plotlines. I finished Alex Marshall‘s A War in Crimson Embers and should have a review put together in the next couple of days. I haven’t quite decided what I’m going to read next, though odds are good that it’ll be Melissa Albert’s fairy-tale-inspired The Hazel Wood or Jo Walton‘s short story collection Starlings. And I’ve started watching The Orville, which I’m liking a lot more than I expected to. I enjoy the concept of taking Gene Roddenberry’s 20th-century morality plays and updating them for a 21st-century audience. My tv-watching companion calls it “The Bad News Bears in space,” which I think is pretty accurate.

Kat: I’m reading Melanie Rawn‘s DRAGON PRINCE trilogy because it’s currently being released on audio. The first book, Dragon Prince, was pleasant but not spectacular. I should finish book two, The Star Scroll today.

Marion: This week I read The City of Brass by S.A Chakraborty. The story becomes complex in the second half, with various groups jostling for influence, mixed lineages, mixed loyalties and people who just flat-out aren’t what they seem. The breezy urban-fantasy narrative tone assumed by the female MC jarred me a bit in this allegedly 18th century tale (Ray called it the “sassy underdog” voice and I would agree.) I enjoyed it though.

Sandy: Moi? I have just finished reading Stanton A. Coblentz’s beautifully written lost-race fantasy When the Birds Fly South (1945) and hope to get a review ready for you soon. Next up for me will be Jack Williamson’s novel Golden Blood, which first appeared in the pages of Weird Tales magazine in 1933. I have heard great things about this one and eagerly look forward to getting into it…

Stuart: After finishing Lois McMaster Bujold‘s Shards of Honor, first book in the MILES VORKOSIGAN SAGA, I am almost finished with CITY OF MIRACLES, the final book in Robert Jackson Bennett‘s DIVINE CITIES trilogy. It’s a very unique blend of alternative world fantasy, detective work, dead gods and their descendants, plus great characters, action, and tragedy. Well deserving of its praise from our reviewers.

Recently we were in Soho and I stopped by Forbidden Planet to check out the wealth of comics and books and fan goodies – you could spend your entire salary there in one wild shopping spree! Anyway, I saw they had Volume 8 of Brian K. Vaughan‘s SAGA, my all-time favorite comic series, so I (guiltily) bought the digital version from Amazon that evening and read it on the iPad. It’s so handy to read comics in digital format, though I really want to support independent booksellers. Always a difficult decision, to be honest.

Taya: Still really struggling with this indomitable flu. Read A Charm and a Curse by Jaime Questell. Also reading Peter Beagle‘s The Overneath, which may be kind of setting myself up for disappointment because it’s really hard to follow The Last Unicorn, no matter how good. And it is good

Terry: Having decided that 2018 is going to be the Year of the Big Book for me, I’m right in the middle of The Dragonbone Chair by Tad Williams. It does not allow for skimming — the writing is too beautiful and the style too dense for that (dense in a good way, the way fudge is dense) — so it’s taking me a while to make it through this 700+ page book. I’m also still working on The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett, which is even longer. It’s a book I really enjoy while I’m reading it, but have no trouble setting aside for days or even weeks at a time. I don’t think I’ve touched it since we’re back from our holiday travels! I also recently finished The Library of Light and Shadow by M.J. Rose, in which very little happens, making it a bit of a chore to finish. Otherwise, I continue to read a ton of news, which I should really give up because it’s so incredibly infuriating.

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TIM SCHEIDLER, who's been with us since June 2011, holds a Master's Degree in Popular Literature from Trinity College Dublin. Tim enjoys many authors, but particularly loves J.R.R. Tolkien, Robin Hobb, George R.R. Martin, Neil Gaiman, and Susanna Clarke. When he’s not reading, Tim enjoys traveling, playing music, writing in any shape or form, and pretending he's an athlete.

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One comment

  1. Stuart /

    Taya, sorry to hear you’re still fighting the flu – hasn’t it been quite a long time now?

    Terry, my heartfelt recommendation is to give up news reading and devote your time to SFF instead. I got “triggered” by the election in 2016 and it got me so would up I think it caused my herniated disc in 2017. Since then I’ve been doing SFF therapy ever since and it has been great for my mental health and happiness. I just know that being informed makes no difference whatsoever if I’m not going to take political action anyway.

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