2016 Reading Review – Part IV

In this (final) segment: Novels. (See the full list of my 2016 reading here.) While these novels didn’t make it into the neat little categories of the earlier entries, there were some great reads here. And I’ve kept up with some past categories I love, notably books with that “small town feel” and those by […]

2016 Reading Review – Part III

In this segment: Non-Fiction and Religion. (See the full list of my 2016 reading here.) My non-fiction reading is a bit eclectic, usually recommendations from others. This year was no different. We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie | This was really just a short essay. And while I like Adichie’s reading, I don’t really remember […]

2016 Reading Review – Part II

In this segment: Science Fiction and Young Adult Literature. (See the full list of my 2016 reading here.) I don’t read a ton of traditional Science Fiction and this year’s readings were no exception. But they were both great reads. *The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Claire North | This might be my top recommendation from […]

2016 Reading Review – List

A friend’s recent post prodded me to finally write up last year’s reading. My plan is to break this into a few posts, starting with the list here. In borrowing from my friend’s post, I’ll asterisk my favorites. You can read my thoughts the books by following the linked genre titles. African American Literature The Autobiography […]

Pete’s Dragon, Trigger Warnings, and Safe Spaces

I took my son to see the new Pete’s Dragon movie. (It was good.) It got me thinking about trigger warnings, but not in the way you might think. (Mild spoilers ahead.) Just before Pete’s parents die, his mom says something complimentary to him. Then, years later, the new mother-figure in the movie says almost […]

“Such a Jason Book”

I grew up on Garrison Keillor’s “News from Lake Wobegon,” often enjoyed on summer trips up to the small town where my parents grew up. The combination instilled in me a love for stories set in small town America. Now I have a dedicated shelf in my living room for “books with that small town feel.” […]

The Extraordinary in the Ordinary Life

A friend recommended Stoner by John Williams in her 2014 book roundup. I was sufficiently intrigued by her description to order a copy for myself. I, of course, did not read the review in the New Yorker (since I prefer to enter new books with as little prior information as possible). The book itself did not disappoint. […]

Hild by Nicola Griffith

The front of my copy of Hild has this quote from Neal Stephenson: “Extraordinary … [Hild] resonates to many of the same chords as Beowulf, the legends of King Arthur, The Lord of the Rings, and Game of Thrones.” The problem: Hild is neither myth nor fantasy. There are no monsters, magic, or elements of […]

Future Fiction

I’ve been thinking lately about the need for a new way to describe a certain sub-genre I enjoy. Usually these books are classified as Science Fiction because they involve a post-apocalyptic future. But I think we need some way to separate them from versions that revolve heavily around space, robotics, aliens, genetics, etc. Station Eleven […]

Writing in Series

I kicked off January by reading MaddAddam by Margaret Atwood and Lila by Marilynne Robinson. Each book is the third in a series, each released 10 years after the first book in the series. Among other things, these works got me thinking about the reason for writing in a series and what a third book […]