Khadaji's Whatcha Readin' - March 2014

I finished A Room with a View by E. M. Forster. It was pretty good, but I have to lump it in the category: “Books where the main love interest is the least interesting character in the story” (See: The Woman in White, for instance.)

Ha! I once attended a meeting of a local chapter of the Cheshire Cheese Club.

I finished “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time,” which is my book club selection for March. I’m still trying to sort out my feelings about it and am looking forward to discussing it with others. Has anyone else here read it? What were your impressions?

I’m also reading “Gathering Blue” by Lois Lowry, but am having a difficult time getting into it. I also started “Bliss” by Kathryn Littlewood on a whim, and it’s fun so far. Up next are “The Things They Carried” by Tim O’Brien, which was selected for a community reading program I’m participating in, and “A Farewell to Arms,” which is our book club’s selection for April. I want to get started on them soon, since I am planning on doing Camp NaNoWriMo next month.

I also just finished The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. I liked its insight into how an autistic mind works. I found the explanation of how and why the dog was killed to be less than satisfactory.

Also finished* Dearie: The Remarkable Life of Julia Child *which I found very interesting, and The Jefferson Key by Steve Berry which was ok.

I’m now on Ken Follet’s A Dangerous Fortune. It seems quite different, and not quite as entertaining as the other Ken Follett’s I’ve read. It’s the story of a Victorian-era family of bankers with requisite intrigue and romance.

My current car book is Lisa Scottoline’s *Final Appeal *. Very enjoyable.

Did you know there’s a stage version of TCIOTDITNT?:

On my bedside table these days:

The New Adventures of the Mad Scientists’ Club by Bertrand R. Brinley. A group of science and math whizzes in a small town pull off sophisticated stunts… and also catch some bank robbers. I’m re-reading these wonderful kids’ stories with my youngest.

Wild Thorns by Sahar Khalifeh. A tale of despair and hope in the Palestinian occupied territories in the Seventies. A friend recommended it, and I can’t say I’m digging it, but I’ll probably finish it just as a courtesy to her.

Nine Men of Power by Roy Jenkins. A 1974 collection of political biographical essays by a leading British liberal parliamentarian; wry and witty.

I finished The last Coyote by Michael Connelly Friday… just in time for the board to go down for maintenance :smiley: I liked it, there wasn’t a lot of action but the end was satisfying. I’m glad it wasn’t just another cookie cutter whore killed book.

I have started The Messenger by Daniel Silva… but only three pages.

Does Manga count? I’ve read about 5 of them this week end :smiley:

I checked out Hollow City from the library recently. It’s Ransom Riggs’ follow up to * Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children* which I quite enjoyed when I listened to the audiobook back in 2011 (yes, I realize that I missed out on the photos & I’ve since rectified the matter).

I wish I had re-read the first novel beforehand though, as Riggs dumps us right back in where we left off and I found myself floundering a bit, much as Jacob and his friends in their small boats, crossing the strait from their island to the mainland. After the invasion and destruction of their loop, and the conversion of their protector to her bird-form, the children’s only hope is to find their way to London and another ymbryne. However, travelling across a war-torn country is difficult enough, without the hollowgasts and wights in pursuit.

While the novelty of the peculiar children and their world has rubbed off a bit, Riggs still manages to keep a clear focus on his characters and move the larger story arc along as well as provide additional world building. The photos chosen for this novel were perhaps not quite as striking as the original novel, but still supported the story nicely. The children continue to veer from one perilous situation to another, and (fair warning) this installment ends on quite the cliffhanger. I’ll have to re-read the first two novels before the next one drops, but I’m pretty sure I will be reading it when it arrives.

Of all the Harry Bosch books – indeed, of all of Michael Connelly’s books – The Last Coyote is my least favorite. The self-angst seemed a little over the top for me. Still a good book, but I think the next installment picks up noticeably.

Yeah, there was rather a bit too much of it for 33 years of loss, but I enjoyed it nevertheless… once I stopped wanting to knock the psychiatrist through a wall. And soon as she mentioned the gold and silver thing I went “OMG! BINGO! OF COURSE!” :wink:

Finished Atlas a few days ago.

Before that it was Promise of Blood, the first book in the Powder mage series.

If you like military SF or fantasy with a ‘gunpowder vs magic’ vibe both are very good and I’m looking forward to the next ones in both series.

Just started The Thief-Takers Apprentice which is looking pretty good at this stage.

I finally finished Dan Simmon’s The Abominable and it’s the last of his books I’ll ever bother reading :mad:

I loved his Hyperion books and his descriptive writing in both *The Abominable *and Terror is top notch but he completely screws up the endings in the latest ones.

The MacGuffin in *The Abominable *is:

really, major book ending spoilers ahoy:

[spoiler]pictures of Adolf Hitler fucking underage jewish boys. Which end up on Mt Everest because the british agents trying to smuggle them out of India figure that *that * is the best and safest way to do it. The epilogue all but states that the it was the recovery of the photo’s which allows Churchill to prevent the invasion of the UK 20 years later during WW2 by blackmailing Hitler. :rolleyes:

After a lot of ‘teasers’ during the story about mysterious figures on Everest and the warnings about the ‘demons’ of the mountain being restless - not a single damn bit of Yeti action.[/spoiler]

I am reading A Royal Affair: George III and His Scandalous Siblings by Stella Tillyard. Another look at the man away from his madness and his loss of the American colonies. She focuses on his role as head of his brothers and sisters after his father dies young.

I finally got hold of a copy of The Best of Philip K. Dick It’s the last of the “The Best of …” books from Ballantine/Del Rey books issued in the 1970s that I haven’t read. I’ve wanted to read this one for a long time, in part because of the introduction by John Brunner and the afterword commentary by Philip K. Dick himself.

Yes, I agree. At times it was a very frustrating book to read, but I think that’s why it’s so effective.

I gave up on “Gathering Blue.” Instead I got started on “A Farewell to Arms” (a re-read for me), and started reading the “Walking Dead” series. I’m on Volume 3.

You might also like Iron Tears by Stanley Weintraub, about the British monarchy, politics and society during the American Revolution. George III was a very hands-on monarch. He regularly tangled with and/or pressured Parliament (even funding the campaigns of politicians who agreed with his policies), and drafted but never signed a letter of abdication when Great Britain lost the war, so closely was the country’s military policy associated with him. A very interesting book.

I have added bot of those books about GeorgeIII and the American Revolution to my Goodreads queue… maybe I’ll actually get to them before I die! :wink:

I finished reading Howard’s End by E. M. Forster. I liked it better than A Room with a View; the characters seemed more like real people and less like Ayn Rand-style caricatures that just exist to demonstrate differently philosophical failings.

As it turns out, Fennel and Rue is about a mother’s hold on her son. She’s very good at it. She urges him toward women she knows he won’t like, and damns with faint praise the women who might be good for him. Sneaky.

Started Tros of Samothrace, suggested by Evil Captor in the thread about ancient history novels. I’m liking it, and it was cheap on the Kindle.

I finished Only Forward, by Michael Marshall Smith. It was a weird one…it’s categorized as sci-fi, but might be fantasy as well. A private investigator type takes an assignment to find a missing person, then things go right off the deep end. This author can really conjure up nightmare, but the writing has some great humorous touches as well. I will be looking for more of his work.

Next up, Panic, the new one by Lauren Oliver. The writing feels a little clumsy, but the premise is interesting and I’ve enjoyed some of her other books. This one’s about high school seniors playing a risky game in hopes of winning a bundle of cash.

NO NO NO! Don’t tell me there are threads on historical fiction! :smiley: