Books! What are you currently reading or just finished?


Just finished this:

Good writer, a bit long-winded at times, but excellent xmas-break reading.

Now reading ‘A strange manuscript found in a copper cylinder,’ 1888 Science Fiction. So far, pretty dark but good.


Just finished this story of 1500 years in what’s now Istanbul.

It was a bit like going on a Kon-tiki holiday as it rarely settled for long and provided plenty of beaut snapshots to talk about.

Fidler does a beaut job of linking history to the present too. I learned a bunch of interesting tidbits, like the folklore behind the Starbucks logo and other things I’ve written about here.


Mimesis and Alterity is heavy and I want to absorb it so I’m only reading little bits at a time. As per the recommendations on here thought I’d cut it with Kafka on the Shore. So far digging both and I have to say the pairing works :slight_smile:


Awesome! At the behest of a few friends on Facebook, I decided to re-read 1Q84. I’m really enjoying it a lot more than the first read for the exact opposite reason perhaps Angela: I read it in small chunks and it took forever to get through (900 pages). I’m reading more like 50-75 pages a day over my mid-year break and the narrative is much more cohesive and I’m more emotionally invested than I remember being the first time. It’s technically broken into 3 chapters and I’m about to start the third. School starts back up Tuesday and I’m going to have to figure out how to find the gusto and time to keep pushing hard to finish before it starts breaking up.


Currently reading Neal Stephenson’s Seveneves.


I’m rereading a few classics because they were what was available at my local library. Just finished Fahrenheit 451, and about halfway into Native Son


Been on my want list for ages, but the first edition sold out ages ago and now fetches stupid expensive collector prices…I finally got the new edition, been waiting for the Xmas/New Year’s holiday to dig in. Good fun!


That book is gold. I waited to buy the first edition and regretted it selling out by the time I tried for years. Thankfully a buddy had it so I read it around the release, but I was very glad to have a copy. It’s one of the reasons I often pounce on hardcovers even if I could wait. Sometimes they’ll never come out in paperback and you miss your chance. That whole scene is so fascinating and I’m a huge fan of some Nurse With Wound material in particular.


Fantastic! Missed the first time around and just ordered. Thanks for the nudge.


I just finished reading Dune, what a fantastic book that is. Currently chewing my way through The Call of Cthulhu and The Poisonwood Bible (the latter being for school)


I received ‘Gerhard Richter. Text’ for Christmas. It’s a collection of interviews, notes, letters etc spanning 1961-2007. Have thoroughly enjoyed his personal thoughts on process/painting/art in general.

Also ‘Too like the lightning’ by Ada Palmer for a hit of science fiction. So far so good…


NWW: HUUUGE fan, and big influence. Sylvie and Babs is a 20+ year fave: always a rewarding listen, and pure comedy genius, Soresucker/I am the Poison is a trip through cartoon hell, A Missing Sense turns all of my other senses up to 11, and of course, Soliloquy for Lilith is a masterpiece, ghostly magic…


i really enjoyed reading ‘H is for Hawk’! great book


I read it last year. Be interested to know what you think of it. His latest (co-authored with Nicole Galland), The Rise and Fall of D.O.D.O. is up for pre-order for release this summer. Looks interesting:

1851 England
The Great Exhibition at London’s Crystal Palace has opened, celebrating the rise of technology and commerce. With it the power of magic – in decline since the industrial revolution began – is completely snuffed out. The existence of magic begins its gradual devolution into mere myth.

21st Century America
Magic has faded from the minds of mankind, until an encounter between Melisande Stokes, linguistics expert at Harvard, and Tristan Lyons, shadowy agent of government, leads to the uncovering of a distant past.
After translating a series of ancient texts, Melisande and Tristan discover the connection between science, magic and time travel and so the Department of Diachronic Operations – D.O.D.O. – is hastily brought into existence. It’s mission: to develop a device that will send their agents back to the past, where they can stop magic from disappearing and alter the course of history.

But when you interfere with the past, there’s no telling what you might find in your future…

After all the recommendations for Murakami on this thread I thought I’d pick one, so I’ve just started reading Norwegian Wood.


Yeah it was pretty good. I only realized after I read it that it was based on her life. Here she is with Mabel:

It was just at the right level to help me with a hectic house moving period. I hadn’t gotten into any routines yet and shit was a mess, so I couldn’t get into anything too heavy. This book provided that sort of escape.
At some points though, I thought her descriptions were too purple. Like, everything is so magestic all the time so it seems like there was an emotional distance. She obviously knew her stuff and a lot of research went into this book (I learned a few interesting things about T.H. Lawrence!), but if it did deal with her emotional instability (and I think this was one of the things she was going for) the language really didn’t reflect that breakdown. But maybe this is exactly what made it easy reading.

I liked it too.
(It’s very easy to criticize things.)


Have just finished H is for Hawk, too! (Excellent book, loved the effusive prose, myself.)

If you like hawk books (niche interest, I know), but are interested in another angle (more stately), then this book is an excellent choice. An all-time favorite of mine. (Written by this dude).

Now, done with that, I’m onto this book. So far, I’ve read great essays against the cult of exercise and food snobbery.

The catch that makes it worth reading: Greif says he doesn’t criticize things he doesn’t do, but things he does do. Which are, not coincidentally, things that many of us also do.


Probably my favourite book I read in 2014.


Interesting - I found, for me, the language very much did reflect that, in particular her willingness to separate past-tense-Helen from the narrator - she’s writing about events c. 2007-2008 - and thus make it clear what was happening without necessarily saying it. Also: for me, it captured the sticky, tarry nature of grief: the giant thing that is the explanation for many events, without itself being the cause of them.

As for the florid nature of it: I guess I’m just fine with the poetic end of language (and HM’s previous publications were a) a non-fiction book on falconry and b) poetry).


I could totally see her being a poet. Reading where she wrote “Ah” was pretty great…hadn’t really seen that done before.


finally read maggie nelson’s bluets. highly recommended, in agreement with basically everyone here.

(also agreeing that h is for hawk and the peregrine are both wonderful)