Books! What are you currently reading or just finished?


I’m about a third of the way into it and it’s amazing. Have you read his other books? Anathem is one of my absolute favourite books.


No I haven’t, I read a bunch of synopsis for them after finishing it, but Anathem was really the only one that caught my eye as having a story I’d be interested in. I’ll check it out after I finish Three Body Problem and Ancillary Justice.


Just finished these. Cant wait for #3.


Awesome! I :heart: the Broken Earth series. Apparently the 3rd should be out this year.

I’m currently not reading Fantasy/SciFi (my comfort zone) but Carrie Brownstein’s autobiography.

I’m not too far in but it’s always interesting to read how musicians relate to gear and the idea of “this is something I can do”. Few excerpts below.

“Buying your first guitar in the suburbs does not entail anything that resembles the folklore. There is not an old bluesman who gifts you a worn-out, worn-in instrument, with a sweat-and-blood-stained fretboard, neck dusty from the rails, possessing magic but also a curse. Rather, you go with your mom or dad to a carpeted store that smells of antiseptic…”

“Here I could get close to the players themselves. I could see how the drums worked with the guitars and bass, I could watch fingers move along the frets and feet stomp down on effects pedals, I saw the set lists taped to the floor, and sometimes I was close enough to see the amp or pickup settings. I observed the nature of the bands, their internal interactions, their relationships to one another, as much as I listened. It seem obvious, but it was the first time I realized music was playable, not just performable…”


Reading this at the moment. Highly, highly recommended, especially for fans of the Korg M1, but in general, really substantial conversations with very interesting people.

Also bought the brand new “Sonic Technologies” by Robert Strachan which was recommended by an academic colleague.

And I funded “Push Turn Move”:


The Architecture of Language, which is really just a transcription of a talk from Noam Chomsky.

It’s a painless introduction to the Minimalist Program. The talk only lasts for 38 pages, then it’s about another 40 in audience Q & A. (You can probably get as much out of a 1 hour youtube video.)

There some really cool ideas in there. I think the displacement property of would be of interest to programmers.
The example given is something like this:
If this phrase is uttered: "The book seems to have been stolen"
What is understood is: "The book seems [the book] to have been stolen [the book]"
But at the sensory-motor phase, some of these positions are deleted for legibility. And different languages will delete phrases at different points. That’s one of the reasons there appears to be so much variety among languages.

There’s other cool shit.
I’m definitely going to learn more about the Minimalist Program. It’s pretty comforting in a way because I had a much more suspicious attitude towards language (thinking of it more like a parasite…but these ideas are in direct contradiction to some of the things I was thinking…really from thinking about it primarily as a meme, or memes.)


Palahnuik, Chuck - Rant.


Just finished reading this House of Leaves, by Mark Z. Danielewski

It’s a very unsettling book, that has the power to make you feel kind of not at ease in your own home. It’s also a brilliant multi-layered work that eschews easy interpretation and is hard to associate with known genres and instead borrows from a multitude of literary (and non-literary) languages to tell a story from a multitude of different perspectives.
It’s one of those books that make it hard to describe what it really is…


I love Vonnegut. He never fails to provide a silly yet poignant window on the world. Hi ho.


I have just finished Ancillary Justice and Ancillary Sword, I am very much looking forward to starting (and quickly finishing Ancillary Mercy.)
The story is brilliant, complex and sharply thought provoking about the nature of self, community, justice and order. One Esk Nineteen is such a wonderful character, and so are the others that surround her. It takes all that I love about Ian M. Banks, and refines it in such a way that I feel at home in the story telling.
The language was rather hard to grasp at first, but soon you become acclimated to the use of gender and strange ship/ancillary organisation. I can’t recommend the series enough.


Speak, Memory is brilliant


Haruki Murakami just released a new set of short stories. He’s my favourite author!


I wonder to what extent the title might refer to the John Ford film of the same name.

I haven’t read anything by Murakami in over 15 years, but of the five or six books I did read, I could never shake the feeling that his first volume of short stories was actually his strongest work. I read them twice.


Really enjoyed this series. The Iain M. Banks comparison is right on. As good as the Ancillary series was though, they pale compared to just about any Banks book. What a loss. Really loved his work.

I’m reading Left Hand of Darkness for the first time right now. I can see how Banks was influenced by LeGuin. Such a good book. I read the first two books of the Earthsea books, but am liking her SciFi even more. Speaking of which - Earthsea, Ansible…both from LeGuin books. Whitewhale - Moby Dick. Where does Meadowphysics come from?


i’d say David Foster Wallace ?


Murkami’s short stories are definitely a highlight. I really did enjoy his latest set and I feel it stands up with his earlier work. In terms of novels, they definitely require patience. In particular 1Q84. I always read his novels more than once because they are so quirky and interesting at many levels. I would say Wild Sheep Chase is my favourite in this regard.


Well look at that. Meadow physics.



Just finished Giovanni’s Room by James Baldwin. One of the best books I’ve read recently, and a quick read at only ~160 pages.



I finished reading five books and a heap of graphic novels in May.

The music-related books were: Electri_City: The Düsseldorf School of Electronic Music, an oral history of the 1970s through the mid-80s by Rüdiger Esch. I read it as an ebook, so I’m not sure how big it is (the online descriptions put it at about 450 pages), but it seems very long, not in a bad way, but prepare for a very long read. Also: Reasons for Knocking at an Empty House: Writings 1973-1994, by Bill Viola; and Dreaming the Beatles: The Love Story of One Band and the Whole World by Robert Sheffield. I also read the first two novellas in The Expanse series: Gods of Risk and The Churn.

In graphic novels I read Battling Boy by Paul Pope, Lucille by Ludovic Debeurme, Sandcastle by Pierre Oscar Lévy, IDP:2043 (a group effort overseen by Denis Mina, with Hannah Berry and Irvine Welsh among others contributing), Luke Healy’s How to Survive in the North, Hannah Berry’s Adamtine, Leela Corman’s Unterzakhn, first and second volumes of Tom King’s run on Batman (Batman Volume 1: I Am Gotham, art mostly by David Finch; Batman Volume 2: I Am Suicide, art by Mikel Janin), Batman: Night of the Monster Men (multiple authors and illustrators), The Punisher Volume 1: On the Road by Becky Cloonan and the late Steve Dillon, the second/final volume of Tom King’s The Vision (art by Gabriel Hernandez Walta), Grant Morrison’s Nameless (art by Chris Burnham), Jonathan Hickman’s Secret: Never Get Caught (art by Ryan Bodenheim), Ed Brubaker’s Kill or Be Killed Vol. 1 (art by Elizabeth Breitweiser and Sean Phillips), and volume 2 of Brandon Graham’s Prophet series (Prophet Volume 2: Brothers).