Archive for June 24th, 2010

No, Seriously, I Mean It

June 24, 2010 @ 7:37 pm | Filed under:

No more lists! Enough with the booklists! I just found two more library books on my nightstand, titles I left off this morning’s library list:

For the Win by Cory Doctorow

Cosmic by Frank Cottrell Boyce (I think I heard about this at Semicolon)

(What? Two books is not a list. Okay, it’s a veryshortlist. Fine.)

And the library website informs me I have at least three more books on the way: a Scott Westerfield novel, another by Cory Doctorow, and the about-to-be-released Bamboo People by Mitali Perkins, whose Secret Keeper I liked very much. (Mitali, you may recall, has written the foreword for the upcoming reissue of Emily of Deep Valley, which, along with the double volume of Carney’s House Party/Winona’s Pony Cart, for which I had the pleasure of writing a foreword, will be released this coming October.) Bamboo People pubs next week, and I’m first in line at our library system.

Anyway, you know, that’s IT. I am going to have to swear off book blogs until I catch up. (I will never catch up.) (I will never swear off book blogs.)

I did resist the VERY STRONG temptation to join Detective Girl and Mental Multivitamin in the Neal Stephenson summer reading project—the entire Baroque Cycle for DG, and Quicksilver (part one of the cycle) for Ms. M-mv—largely because I still haven’t finished (yes, I started it!) Stephenson’s Snow Crash, which I bought after Comic-Con two years ago. AND ALSO BECAUSE I HAVE FIFTY BOOKS PILED UP TO READ FIRST.

So that’s exactly how much self-restraint I have. I decided not to read this one book until I read some of the others. I’m sure you’re impressed with my strength of mind.


Speaking of Stephenson, I’m glad I read The Diamond Age before the launch of the iPad. It has been great fun reading all the descriptions of the device with the image of Nell’s Illustrated Primer so fresh in my mind. How prescient of Stephenson. We don’t have his “smart paper” yet, but the iPad isn’t far removed from his vision.

And I feel somewhat chagrined for not picking it up the first time through, but I JUST GOT the connection between Diamond Age‘s Mr. PhyrePhox and, duh, Firefox. At least, I’m assuming (now that I’ve noticed it) that the similarity is no accident. An homage?

Kind of a Boring Post, This

June 24, 2010 @ 6:33 am | Filed under: ,

The cold is passing; has mostly passed. Thanks. I’m cleaning closets and the refrigerator. The Children’s Book still has me in its grip. Last night I didn’t even start thinking about dinner until about ten minutes past dinnertime. I threw together a slapdash meal of the last foodlike substances I could find in the house: some broccoli, some ramen noodles (lightly seasoned, no broth, the world’s cheapest side dish), and thin slices of deli ham fried on the pancake griddle. We had a big laugh, because it turned out to be the tastiest meal we’ve had all week. But then, you can’t go wrong with ramen noodles.

I am going to have to stop making To Be Read lists because they seem to doom the books to limbo. Most of the books named in my summer reading plan are books that appeared on a TBR list here on the blog at some point; all of them are books I actively want to read, or finish reading. I do this meta thing where I talk about wanting to read them but don’t actually, you know, READ them. And then eventually I do.

But anyway, I mention this because the TBR list has swollen again. Phoebe and I read the same James Sturm article at Salon (was it Salon?) and were intrigued by his mention of M. T. Anderson’s novel Feed. I read the first chapter via Kindle-for-iPod’s “sample this” option. Phoebe actually read the whole book, and she recommends it. I’ve got it on hold at the library.

Which is, of course, the reason for my Always TBR, Never R list…the books on that list are books I own. I wind up reading the books I’ve requested from the library, because there’s a time limit on them. Which ought to be a cautionary lesson for me.

My current library stack includes Enchanted Glass (the new Diana Wynne Jones), Magic Under Glass by Jaclyn Dolamore, two Kathi Appelt novels, another Hope Larson graphic novel, the Guy Appelt book we were talking about here the other day, Shannon Hale’s Calamity Jack, and, of course, Black Lamb and Grey Falcon. Which titles, along with the Byatt, themselves comprise a pretty fine summer reading list. Not to mention I have a new Lois Lowry (!) and a new Linda Sue Park (!) in my giant pile of review copies.

(Digital review copies, those two, which can only be read on a computer—since I don’t own a Kindle. The Kindle-for-iPod app is no good, here. This is an annoyance. I badly want to read these books, but I loathe the idea of reading a novel on my laptop. Ugh.)