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Stack of Books
Posted on Tuesday 27 January 2015 at 11:10 am

I'm Alive & 2014 Reading Bingo

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I got the chapter to my advisor by last Monday like I needed to do. The last few pages I wrote are absolute crap, but I got it done. Tuesday and Wednesday were spent doing everything else for the application for funding for next year. I should hear within 2 or 3 weeks. Here's hoping.

Thursday I suddenly remembered that classes had started and I needed to teach on Friday so maybe I should do something to prep for that. Minor technicality. Friday morning was teaching then Friday afternoon and the weekend I decided to do nothing. Friday afternoon was lovely. Saturday was the local monthly board game group meeting so I spent 12 hours playing games. Yay! Sunday was laundry, grocery shopping, and the like. Now things are back to normal, I think, and I'm moving on to the next dissertation chapter.

A few of you have been posting various memes the past few days that I might join in on in another day or two. Also, I'll go back and read the flist and comment generally. For now, eanor has posted a 2015 reading bingo challenge that I might steal, but it reminded me that failte_aoife posted one in 2014 that I'd sort of done but hadn't posted. So I went back and checked my 2014 read books and even though I only remembered to do about half of them intentionally as I went, I actually managed to blackout the entire board with books read in 2014. So here's that.

2014 Reading Bingo

1 - More than 500 Pages: The New Annotated Sherlock Holmes Vol. 1-3 (4 Novels and 56 Short Stories) by Arthur Conan Doyle
2 - Forgotten Classic: We by Yevgeny Zamyatin
3 - Became a Movie: High-Rise by J. G. Ballard (Movie was filmed last year and should be released later this year)
4 - Published this Year: Ancillary Sword by Ann Leckie
5 - Number in the Title: The Fifth Beatle by Vivek Tiwary
6 - Written by Someone Under Thirty: Patternmaster by Octavia E. Butler
7 - Non-Human Characters: A Night in the Lonesome October by Roger Zelazny
8 - Funny Book: How Right You Are, Jeeves by P. G. Wodehouse
9 - Female Author: Votes for Women by Elizabeth Robins
10 - Mystery: The Red Thumb Mark by R. Austin Freeman
11 - One Word Title: Cain by José Saramago
12 - Short Stories: Machine of Death edited by Ryan North
13 - Free Space
14 - Set on Different Continent: Invisible Cities by Italo Calvino
15 - Non-Fiction: Afrofuturism: The World of Black Sci-Fi and Fantasy Culture by Ytasha L. Womack
16 - First Book by Favorite Author: Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett
17 - Heard About Online: Borrible Trilogy by Michael De Larrabeiti
18 - Best-Selling: Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan
19 - Based on a True Story: Road to En-dor by Elias Henry James
20 - Bottom of To Be Read Pile: The Good Soldier Švejk by Jaroslav Hašek
21 - Friend Loves: Men at Arms by Terry Pratchett
22 - Scares You: Iron Heel by Jack London
23 - More than 10 Years Old: Coriolanus by William Shakespeare
24 - Second Book in a Series: Castle Waiting Vol. 2 by Linda Medley
25 - Blue Cover: Graphic Canon Vol. 1


sunshine304 at 7:52 pm on 27 January 2015 (UTC) (Link)
Great that you managed to be successful with the bingo, no matter how unintentionally! *g*

And go you for sending off that chapter on time. :) I've started to work on my thesis again, finally. So far it's only taking all the notes from the books I've read and it's nice to be able to cross some stuff out already because I now know that I'll not be needing it in my thesis. I want to get a chapter finished this week, although I'm way behind since last weekend was shit and this weekend is also cluttered. 'sigh* But at least I'm doing something.
bratty_jedi at 10:29 pm on 27 January 2015 (UTC) (Link)
I want to get a chapter finished this week, although I'm way behind since last weekend was shit and this weekend is also cluttered. 'sigh* But at least I'm doing something.

Oh, how deeply I know that feeling! I'm always behind where I want to be and always trying to convince myself that doing anything means progress, even if it isn't as much as I'd like. We'll get there eventually!
eanor at 8:38 pm on 27 January 2015 (UTC) (Link)
Wow, you were really successful in your last reading bingo! :-D I'm not very sure I'll be able to fill the whole card, but at least some motivation to pick up a few more books might come out of it. :-) What was your favourite book last year?
bratty_jedi at 10:54 pm on 27 January 2015 (UTC) (Link)
What was your favourite book last year?

Oh, that's a tough one! How about a few favorites?

I reread Good Omens and I love that to pieces, but a seventh / tenth / whatever it actually is reread of a long time favorite doesn't really count.

Of new things that I read (new to me anyway), I probably most loved Invisible Cities by Italo Calvino. Calvino is known as a post-modernist writer and this is very much a post-modernist novel. It is framed as Marco Polo and Kublai Khan having conversations about cities Polo has visited. Most of the text is just one to two page descriptions of a city, all presented in a highly structured and organized manner. It is highly imaginative, evocative, and thoughtful and you have to dive into each city and play around with it in your mind. I truly loved reading it!

For more of a light and fun read, A Night in the Lonesome October by Roger Zelazny is brilliant! It is a bunch of characters like Dracula, Frankenstein, Wolf Man, Jack the Ripper, etc. meeting in a town with half of them as Openers trying to open the gates to bring back the Elder Gods of Lovecraft (so Cthulhu and the like) and the other half are Closeres trying to prevent it, but no one knows who is on which side. It is so much silly fun riffing on so much old Geek culture and the best bit is that each character has an animal familiar and the entire novel is told from the point of view of Jack the Ripper's dog and is more about the animals than the people. SO much fun!

Both of those are older books though. For something actually published this year, I loved the start of Ann Leckie's sci-fi trilogy. The first book, Ancillary Justice came out fall 2013 and the second Ancillary Sword in fall 2014. I read them both in 2014 and can't wait for the conclusion this upcoming fall! They're great fun space adventures with all kinds of military ships and distant planets with alien beings and cultures and all that kind of stuff that borders on hard sci-fi but then the author plays with it all in really deep and profound ways asking serious questions about identity, responsibility, gender and race as social constructs, how we create culture but also how culture shapes and limits what we do, etc. Lots of good stuff.

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