30 April 2009

What I am reading: April 2009

  1. Your Hate Mail will be Graded by John Scalzi: A compendium of selection's from 10 year's of Whatever. Amusing.
  2. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly by Jean-Dominique Bauby: Already discussed. Wonderfully moving.
  3. The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova: Very interesting and intricate vampire story, harking back to the original archetype and Vlad Tepes. Mukti-layered and well-written, both epistolary and dramatic, moving back and forth through history with the overriding theme being research and puzzle solving. So much better than Dan Brown's tripe that they can't really be mentioned together.
  4. Zen and the Art of Vampires by Katie MacAlister: with the sequel (in May) being Crouching Vampire, Hidden Fang. Looks like a duology, which is always annoying- I like my frothy paranormal romances to be stand alone. But it was fast and funny, as I find all of MacAlister's work.
  5. The Shadow Queen by Anne Bishop: I loved her Black Jewels series and I always enjoy other novels set in that world.
  6. The Audacity of Hope by Barack Obama: What a well-written book. I continue to be overjoyed that in this time, our President is an intelligent, well-read and thoughtful person. He has clearly read all the original works that I have, and far more. When he quoted from The Two-Income Trap (which quite clearly explains why we decided to move to Germany for a job) I felt as if someone finally understood what a trap America has become for the middle-class.
  7. Red Thunder by John Varley: I really enjoy Varley's work. Like Scalzi, he reminds me of updated Heinlein juvenilia. I am only sorry that his output is so sparse: every few years is not enough.
  8. March by Geraldine Brooks: for my book club. What a wonderful book. Well researched and well-written. I have Brooks' other works waiting on my TBR shelf, Little Women will be read tomorrow to help me fill in some of the background. (This novel is the story of Mr. March while he was at war, while Little Women was taking place, and March is based on Bronson Alcott- a fascinating man- as Jo and her family were based on LMA and her family).
  9. The Last Frontier by Alistair MacLean: One can always rely on finding Bagley and MacLean in European used bookstores. This was an oldie and although not in MacLean's best period, at its cusp. I wonder if Americans without my background can actually understand the feelings were, if my age or younger? I also noted how lightly touched upon was the immediate past, with the emphasis being on current events in Prague and the repressed satellites.
  10. The Jane Austen Book Club by Karen Joy Fowler: Well, it's a charming book but in my opinion a slight one. The most amazing thing was that Thomas M. Disch, a fascinating and interesting writer (just deceased) wrote a blurb for this novel: KJF should be immensely proud that her found her work worthy of his encomium.
  11. A Bite to Remember by Lynsay Sands: Another paranormal romance. The Argenaus are a family of vampires, remembering that vampires were created by a nanotechnology experiment gone awry before the fall of Atlantis. Always a fun and frothy read and my goodness, what a contrast to The Historian above.


honeypiehorse said...

I loved The Audacity of Hope and it also made me feel good about President Obama. I read The JA Book Club and agree it wasn't very important. The Historian was very impressive but I had trouble getting through the part where Helen had to leave her daughter.

honeypiehorse said...

Oh, and I LOVE the name Your Hate Mail Will Be Graded. If I ever write a book I hope I can come up with that kind of name.