"Cloud Cuckoo Land" Anthony Doerr. 3.5 stars. Three time periods are braided together by an ancient Greek tale: 15th century Constantinople, the modern day, and a space-faring future. Elaborate but tenuous. On their own each story has potential, but together they don't quite make a whole. Like Cloud Atlas but less enthralling.
Reading time 7 days, 89 pages/day
Very excited to have paper copies of my new favorite books, the Dragon Blood series! It's been a while since I bought any physical books but these were worth it. Even though I already had all the ebooks 😁
Look. All I want is to read eruditely written high fantasy romance in the vein of early Jacqueline Carey but that stick the landing better than something like Deborah Harkness’s All Souls novels. And maybe make it sapphic or at least lgbt coded. Is that too much to ask? Am I the problem here? Because I have been wildly disappointed by the last few smutty books I’ve read and I need a highbrow but hot palate cleanser and PLEASE could I get some boosts to get some recs #books #romance #bookstodon
The battle against the Kingdom goes into full throttle! Check the newest #ChronoWars at https://infinitenoveltranslations.net/records-of-chronos-wars-volume-4-chapter-4-conflagration-part-3/
Seeing book recommendations!
I *love* the writing of Ellen Ullman, the literary tech essayist and novelist: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ellen_Ullman
This includes her essays ("Close to the Machine," "Life in Code") as well as the lovely novel "The Bug."
What are some other similar books I should check out?
As a programmer, queer women, and San Franciscan, she's writes incisively about the culture and inner lives of techies, rather than only on the business/politics of tech. Where can I get more?
@dohappybelove I've really been enjoying bookmaking as a hobby. Here is a previous post form some I made in Spring 2023. Thanks for looking and I look forward to sharing more!
@dohappybelove Both of these were Coptic stich books with some flaws on the cover. For both, I found some cool things to put on the cover. The larger has an image is from a map for the Art Institute in Chicago (Alma Thomas' "Starry Night and the Astronauts) and the other is a postcard from the Portland Saturday Market!
I made this book a while ago. This sticker is from one of our favorite #coffee shops in #Delhi. We go every time we visit #India. When I looked at a bag of coffee, I did not realize that there was a sticker from the shop there. It seemed like it was made for the cover. For more about the place, see this post I made with @dohappybelove
Finally got around to some more bookmaking projects! This was my first attempt at doing cloth covers, and I tried making an accordion book with thicker paper and a Coptic stich sketchbook. I'm really proud of them and feel like each time they become a bit easier.
A few fun stories about some of them below.
My review of Persephone in Bloom: An Olympus Inc. Romance by Kate Healey
For once, a romance I enjoyed! 😮
on page 284 of Every Man for Himself and God Against All by Werner Herzog 📚
"But this inability to keep up doesn’t make me breathless; I acquiesce to it."
Werner Herzog; on accepting that he will never be able to complete all the projects he wants to complete
Difficult challenges require innovative solutions. Check out the latest #overpoweringmyopwife at https://infinitenoveltranslations.net/overpowering-my-op-wife-in-bed-volume-1-chapter-5-authentic-records-part-10/
@bookstodon Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern is probably my favorite book this year. It didn’t always make sense, but it also didn’t have to.
This book has some of the best setups and payoffs I have read in a very long time! Something innocuous mentioned in the first half can have a massive result in the second. ￼
Above all, it made me feel so cozy.
But even though my comprehension was minimal, I found that the act of reading was in itself valuable. It sounds obvious to say, but it was like exercising a muscle, where even if you struggle in the exercise you’ll still find that you feel the benefits later on.
68. Roots and Branches: Your Starter Guide to Becoming a Family History Detective by John Elcik. I have a passing interest in genealogy, so reading this for an early review was interesting... however, I expected more to it than just the collection of tips in here. It certainly does take you through from the beginning through various spots in an organized fashion, but I wish it was more in-depth on any given subject. https://www.librarything.com/work/31162101/
#AdventOfBooks Day 9: Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons
I read this last year, and it's one of the funniest books I've read. It was written in the 1930s but it holds up incredibly well
A modern woman moves temporarily in with distant relations on their farm, and shenanigans ensue. The Starkadders are hidebound and old-fashioned, and generally incredibly weird. Flora sets about improving and reorganising their way of life, and the clash of cultures is both riveting and hilarious.
67. Unnatural Death by Dorothy L. Sayers. Another Lord Peter Wimsey mystery which was interesting. I enjoyed it in general, but parts of it were definitely of its time (when dealing with some racist languages and treatments). I listened to it as an audiobook, and it was superb in treatment,.. recommended in that form at least. https://www.librarything.com/work/16482
66. A Prayer for the Crown-Shy by Becky Chambers. Another short and sweet Monk & Robot story where they discuss how to find contentment in what their life purpose is... a quick and honestly uplifting read. Recommended! https://www.librarything.com/work/24794656/book/253880033
@davbatz I've just read Kathleen Broome Williams biography of Hopper -its very good, my review here https://ianhopkinson.org.uk/2023/12/book-review-grace-hopper-admiral-of-the-cyber-sea-by-kathleen-broome-williams/ #bookstodon
Fetching the metadata for all my books downloaded via Google Takeout is nice! Calibre is such a great program that I like to support often.
As they are the key to releasing books from their walled gardens. I will probably use a mix of Apple, Kindle, and directly supporting authors via purchases from their sites going forward. It will fragment my reading experience a bit...It wouldn't be too terrible of an experience for me though.
I'm sometimes really surprised about how off the synopsis for a book can be. There are times where I come across something in a synopsis that moves me to read the book, only then to find that this thing is present in such small measure that having it a paragraph-sized summary of the whole book makes no sense.
Worse than that is when I’ll go back and read the synopsis of a book I've already read and really liked, but I'll feel that if I had read that synopsis first I probably would have never chosen to read the book at all.
I think that has the potential to be quite unfortunate.
Hey, #Bookstodon, so far “A Literary Christmas” is a marvelous collection of stories. Raymond Carver, Thomas Wolff, Frank O’Connor, Paul Auster, Patricia Highsmith, Ntozaka Shange…
Yes, “Literary” translates into “melancholy.” So not cozy cheery holiday fare. So far right up there with the “Penguin Book of Christmas Stories” (with which it shares a few stories).
This was a lovely book where writers discuss books they love and admire.
The only downside is that this book made me buy five other books, but I decided to see that as an upside.
ICYMI: Here are just some of the books that Ronald McGillvray & I talked about on "The Post Mortem Report" this year. Makes you wonder what else you might have missed, doesn't it? 🙂
Official Site: http://postmortemreport.com
New sapphic book review: Lost in Paradise by Rachel Lacey, narrated by Ellie Gossage
When the hunter becomes the prey. ‘The High Road’ is a fast-paced contemporary thriller set mainly in central Scotland and the far north-west.
At the beginning of the story the central character is staying at Houstoun House Hotel in West Lothian. At the heart of the hotel is this magnificent tower house dating back to 1598.
Find out more on my website:
Audible recommended Kitty Cat Kill Sat to me. I was pretty sure it was a blatant attempt to get cat lovers to part with their credits and will be a sycophantic attempt at fan service. But, it was on sale and I decided to give it a go.
I was very pleasantly surprised. The cat antics are mostly kept at a low volume and Argus employs a novel approach to the problems faced by a cat "manning" a space station built for humans, approaching it as an accessibility issue.
Lily is a lonely immortal uplifted cat. As she tackles an unending series of technical issues with her space station, while trying to fight off an endless series of attacks by old tech junk left in orbit and around the solar system, as well as emergent events spewing monsters that threaten what little is left of Earth's population. It's a post apocalyptic tale of constant jerry rigging of old tech in an attempt to survive.
However it is more than that, it is a first person account of Lily's journey to deal with her loneliness and pain, to find companions that will help her get out of the rut of constant trouble shooting and find out the secrets lying at the heart of the disaster that befell the solar system.
It is not a perfect book, there is some repetition and perhaps it could have been shorter. But it was very enjoyable and the long setup pays off very nicely. It is much more than just: Cat in Space.
@runoutgroover I've yet to read a #book by Claire North and her alter egos (Kate Griffin and Catherine Webb) that wasn't well written! Some themes appeal more than others, for example I liked her urban fantasy #books more than her magic realism ones but all worth a go!. #bookstodon
A new solarpunk murder mystery just dropped!
"Murder in the Tool Library" by A. E. Marling
"We survive capitalism. Evolving into a library economy, we flourish in a garden city powered by the sun. People no longer need to kill themselves working or each other, with all of our needs met. And yet, malice lives on in paradise.
When a painter is murdered in a library of things, citizen detectives use crowdsolving to catch the criminal. A Native-American crime-scene investigator pools his expertise with a full-time dad, an ex-cop bloodhound handler, and a femme fatale."
Good news: My book totally sold out from a warehouse! 🙌
Bad news: That temporarily shut down getting signed/personalized copies as a gift for the holidays 😧
Good news: We got more copies and you can now buy a signed book in time for Xmas if you order by Dec. 14th! 🎄
Book lists: should we still trust their recommendations?
Explore the trustworthiness of book lists and discover how to pick the palatable from the unpleasant as 2023 comes to a close.
Yeah, you. Do you like reading books?
Do you like reading indie books?
Do you have time to read 5 books in 6 months in the first half of next year?
We're looking for more reader judges for the #IndieInkAwards so if you want to read #IndieBooks and score using our internal scoring system and rate them based on tropes and inclusivity, apply now! No blog required!
More information: https://indieinkawards.com/be-a-judge/
I've started E. M. Anderson's The Remarkable Retirement of Edna Fisher , and I already love Edna so much, I sneaked at the end, if she will be still around. The older I get, the less I like getting my heroes killed.
#Fantasy #femaleprotagonist #dragons #oldwoman #cozyfantasy #bookstodon #womenwriters @bookstodon
tfw you get to the end of book 1 only to find that it's a standalone.
Just one week until the Better Angels arrive at The Truck Stop at the Center of the Galaxy for their Tour de Force! https://truckstop.waterdragonpublishing.com/product/better-angels-tour-de-force/ #books #bookstodon
¿Alguna sugerencia para una adolescente de 13 años que ha leído más que algún adulto en toda su vida? Nuestra hija nos ha salido rara y solo quiere libros para Navidad y Reyes 🤣. Nos ha pedido la trilogía de Caraval, pero queremos regalarle algo más.
Es fan de las trilogías y las sagas, su género favorito es fantasía/acción, y si puede haber dragones, elfos y magia mejor que mejor.
Os dejo parte de la lista de lectura consumida, para que os hagais una idea:
- Harry Potter
- Las crónicas subterráneas (de Suzanne Collins)
- Los juegos del hambre
- Memorias de Idhun y casi todos los de Laura Gallego
- El ciclo de la Luna Roja
- Todos los libros de Rick Riordan
- Embrujo de espinas
- Encantanmiento de cuervos
- La leyenda del hechicero
- El Señor de los Anillos no cuenta, lo intentó con 10 años y no pudo, pero lo tiene en pendientes 😅
Se aceptan sugerencias, muchas gracias.
En cuatro horas nos habeis recomendado lectura para varias vidas 😅. Muchas gracias, no esperaba esta respuesta. Da gusto estar en esta red social. Un saludo.
@fringemagnet If you read Hungarian or German, you might appreciate this work - it´s a single sentence, running over hundreds of pages:
(English translation upcoming, apparently)
Kristen Patterson writes beautifully about Emily Wilson’s new translation of the Iliad and the controversies surrounding it. She contends with the continuing appeal of Ancient Greece as an artifact of “past glory”, arriving (via LeGuin!!!) to the lasting meaning we find in these stories. Meaning which Wilson’s more accessible translation brings out.
Recommended morning read.
Hey mastodon, would you like to see this promo I made for my new book while I was extremely tired?
It’s a small publisher so it feels like a lot of promotion is up to me, and I’m sure this is what they imagined and wanted.
anyway this is (somehow) my job and I'm genuinely very proud of the book, so boosts always appreciated
Babel (R.F. Kuang) – In an alternate Oxford where the British Empire is founded upon silver, enchanted by the act of translation; two words in different languages on each side sharing the same root but with slightly differing meanings. These silver bars make ships faster, factories more efficient and bridges more stable. Those put out of work are just collateral malcontents.
But to power its silver industrial revolution, Britain not only needs to plunder the world’s silver but also its languages for new translations and translators who are fluent enough to dream in multiple languages.
Enter the students of Babel, Oxford’s translation institute. Robin is taken from his home in Canton, his family dead from Choelra which could have been cured by the enchanted silver England hoards, by an Englishman who trains him up to serve at Babel. To put his language and culture at the service of the Empire.
I’m late to the party on this one and wanted to ensure I’d read this before the end of the year. It’s a beautiful exploration of culture, language and translation; but also a hard-hitting account of colonialism, imperialism, racism and capitalism at its very worst. It strikes a hopeful yet bitter note of revolution and revolt against the seemingly overwhelming and immovable force that is the empire and how it radicalises people against it.
There were so many moments in this book exploring these themes which I adored. Especially around the beauty of language and its relation to our cultural thought and perspectives. But perhaps the hardest being around the dehumanisation of those in the global south and the need for the whites to centre themselves in every debate while participating in or overlooking the racism right in front of them.
But what surprised me the most was that a book of this weight and length never felt slow to me. It was so engaging in what it was saying that I would happily sit through years of lectures at Babel. Maybe not taking the tests though…
This family epic contrives a couple of turns that didn't work for me, but it's a great read, tense and rewarding and with characters you quickly come to care about.
Often when a novel alternates POVs, you resent some for interrupting your favourites, but here you're eager to catch up with everyone.
Why yes, I *will* completely avoid the present this evening by tucking into my nearly 70-year-old edition of 7 Types of Ambiguity. Appropriate that it arrived today when, to rephrase #Shakespeare, I've been feeling quite out of joint in time.
Useless observations: I had already noticed that all my top books of the year have either a yellow, red, or blue cover, but I just realized that both the books I hated this year have their titles written vertically on the cover. :ablobglarezoom:
The Better Angels return to the Truck Stop at the Center of the Galaxy for their "Tour de Force" on December 15! https://truckstop.waterdragonpublishing.com/product/better-angels-tour-de-force/ #books #bookstodon
I recently finished Packing for Mars by Mary Roach (review on my #blog) and I've started A Scanner Darkly by Philip K Dick. It's hard going tbh. Is there anything more cringe than how people in the 70s thought people in the future would speak? 😅 50's and 60's retro-futurism I can totally get behind but I'm struggling with the 70's 😂
Well, darn! I missed my Fediversary. For some reason, I thought it was in December, but I joined this lovely place on November 23rd, 2022. So it's been a year, and I am very happy to be here! I enjoy the #writing prompts, #bookstodon, all the interesting conversations, and always #HashtagGames. Thank you all for making this place special!
Seriously, I need help. Help me #Bookstodon! I want queer and probably nonfiction (though not turning my nose up at fiction necessarily, just I'm much pickier there) and in audiobook form! Most of what I've been wanting to read recently has been graphic novels, and unfortunately those do not translate to audiobook like at all.
Yesterday’s present-buying visit to my “local” (over an hour’s drive, as my little town doesn’t have one) bookstore was quite a sad experience.
They only had one of the books I wanted in stock, phenomenally did not stock the newest Murderbot, and I heard at least four people coming up to the counter to ask for titles, only to be told they would have to order it in, eta two weeks.
Not a single one of those people placed the order — why would they, when they can place the order themselves online and get it directly delivered in two weeks.
I know the turnover for titles is short, and shelf space is tight, but seeing this truly dismayed me. I already had to order some books online because they were old enough (you know, published earlier this year) that I couldn’t guarantee they’d be in stock (they weren’t) but I went in with a new release Christmas list and couldn’t get most of it. It’s the only dedicated bookstore in this town — technically a city, based on population — and I’m not sure how much longer it can survive if that was indicative of its Christmas season.
Cynthia Williams, experienced #editor, has posted to the blog Outside the Book about an issue that needs attention: "what it’s like for people of different linguistic, racial, and ethnic backgrounds to work together, to work in publishing. https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/further-outside-book-cynthia-williams-rfa1c/ #Bookstodon
This guy's good!
Here's a holiday gift for the librarian in your life ;->
A house that walks on chicken legs! A monster that creates murderous hatred wherever he goes! Puppets! Find out more about the absolutely fantastic novel Thistlefoot, by GennaRose Nethercott, in my review at https://abookishtype.wordpress.com/2023/12/04/thistlefoot-by-gennarose-nethercott/
I recently added two featured hashtags to my Mastodon profile: blog and books, for obvious reasons :blobcathappy: :blobcatbook:
I like how you can click on the hashtag and it shows all of the posts using that tag on your profile, pretty cool feature.
A book I very much enjoyed reading this year was Patrick Bringley's 'All the Beauty in the World' about his time as a guard at the Met Museum after the death of his brother. Bringley needed time to heal and get away from the constant grind of getting ahead and thought the most beautiful place he could spend it in was the Met.