Books! What are you currently reading or just finished?


I just finished Stoner by John Williams. I’m embarrassed that I’d never heard of it until Javier of Wild Detectives bookstore (and venue I played) in Dallas gave it to me. It is a magnificent novel. Understated and yet deeply moving.


This book really affected me when I read it a couple years ago. Very emotional, and wonderfully written.


I bought a copy of this on your recommendation, despite/because it’s totally unlike anything I would normally read.

It arrived today and I’m really enjoying it so far. What a life - dining, drinking and dancing their way across Europe with a lot of sightseeing and jousting thrown in for good measure!


after seeing several good reviews here i picked up Three Body Problem for my kindle. due to some glitch in the tablet it jumped me straight from the table of contents to chapter 19 without my knowing. since i thought it was the beginning of the book i didn’t question the content (i figured it would all be explained eventually) or “unconventional” chapter numbering. i got suspicious after 2 chapters when i noticed that I was 60% done the book after less than an hour of reading. after a minute of rage at jeff bezos i re-started from chapter 1.

loving it so far despite having some weird out-of-context knowledge from the middle of the book that still doesn’t make any sense! also I read this morning that amazon is apparently developing a series based on the trilogy of books, which means that i have to read the sequels!


Honestly the sequels improve on the first book in ways that really complicate and unfold the narrative in wide-ranging ways. I liked the first book, really enjoyed the second, but was blown away by the conclusion. The entire trilogy is a crescendo.


hey, Glad to hear you’re enjoying the book.

I found it doing research on John Mandeville, a medieval liar and plagiarist (or fictional personage).

Mandeville stole a bunch of work from Friar Odoric, who wrote a book on his travels to China.

The Odoric book is put out by the same press (Hakluyt Society) as the Rozmital book - which I really just stumbled on while poking through the library catalog where I work.

The Hakluyt Society puts out some nutty stuff. Good fun!


One of the threads I actually make an effort to read on MW is the reading thread. Someone posted about this and so far I’m really enjoying it :slight_smile:


shoutout to two great nonfiction books I just finished and highly recommend. both un-put-downable!

  1. short nights of the shadow catcher, by timothy egan, about photographer & ethnographer edward curtis

  2. bad blood, by john carreyrou, about the rise and fall of ‘theranos’, that blood-testing startup


I just finished this a few months ago - it’s so good! Love all the familiar and unfamiliar names that come up - and it kind of recontextualizes some artists as well given the time period/genres of the time.


my reading these days is very lame as compared to what it once was. but i am currently reading a bunch of self help books mostly aloud with my wife but also some david sedaris books on tape and "The Highly Sensitive Person How to Thrive When the World Overwhelms You.


I started this on a whim this week. Enjoyed the first couple chapters, got to the third and found it really tedious and confusing, but made it back to Neith and beyond and I think I’m back on board with it!


That sounds perfect for me. The world has been really overwhelming lately.


so, i have so much to say about this topic if you’d like to chat please please please feel free to do do do!

the book itself isn’t written perfectly but the topics are so on point for me. i’d gone 38 years in life not knowing there was a whole subset of people that i squarely fell into. normally i don’t try to draw delineations between human experiences but i answered some questionnaire and was awestruck at how accurate some of my life difficulties could be summarized. i’ve actually been autobiographically studying it with my music these days and have a new tape coming out soon called hsp with asmr vol 1 or


I was intrigued by this (quickly discovering the exhibition had taken place in 2012) and found this nice article written about it earlier in 2018:


ah beautiful writing - much-needed context for some of the content in the book. thanks for sharing that, now i wish I’d caught the exhibition in person.


It will… continue to sprawl, and then slowly snap back into focus. The first section with Athenais feels a bit out there, but in its final pages snaps back and things start lining up. I finished it on holiday; it feels about 100-200 pages too long, and one section at the end drags, but the final 80-100 pages are suitably exhilarating and somewhat mindbending.


I am reading Tade Thompson’s Rosewater. It’s an sf novel set in mid-21st century Nigeria, and I’m loving it; it’s rich, well-written, thrilling in parts, and its take on telepathy (namely, a biological infection possibly derived from the arrival of weird alien life on earth) and that alien life (mysterious, squishy, vast and microscopic all at once) is really strong. It’s also great to read sf written from such a different perspective and culture. Recommended even if you’re not an sf fan.


Had a weekend away, and was reading Reassembling Rubbish, which is a fantastic book about electronic waste and the vast clouds of wrongness that surround it:

However, it was hard work for a weekend in Wales so instead, I read

Michael Crichton: Andromeda Strain
Eric Ambler: The Mask of Dimitrios
JG Ballard: The Drowned World

Which are all short and entertaining and silly in a variety of good ways.


Recently started Orhan Pamuk’s The Black Book and it definitely looks like the kind of book I’d enjoy. The only other novel of his that I’ve read was My Name is Red which I highly recommend.


I’m a big fan of the LRB and it’s left leaning sensibilities resonate. In that I typically agree with much that is written. I also recycle my copies so I have nothing immediate to check against.

Why this is important is that in the television coverage of the Grenfell Trial, it has been reported that the person in whose flat the fire started is in hiding, and that one of the reasons his lawyer is quoting is that he LRB / O’Hagan piece mentions him leaving ‘with a suitcase’. Which is unsubstantiated.

This might be for a whole other thread, and I’ve no idea of the rights/wrongs of the matter, but it is really interesting how, whether true or not, this has been seized on.