Sunday Salon – What I’ve Been Reading

Good Sunday to you.  The camping trip was a success and all I brought back was this nasty cold!  I guess I’ve been lucky this year as many of my colleagues have been out sick for days with a cold that turns into a cough and lasts for weeks.  By staying in (except for a bit of gardening) and resting this weekend I hope to have it licked for the final few weeks of school…knock wood.  And luckily a friend told me about this.   I have taken care of Mr. G’s next birthday present!

I have just finished two books and hope to review them soon, but there are many books I’ve read over the past couple of months that I know I will never review.  So here are a few of them, with brief comments.

The Testament of Jessie Lamb by Jane Rogers.  I read this because it was on the 2011 Booker longlist and sounded interesting.  Then it actually won the Arthur C. Clarke award.  It didn’t thrill me, I felt no real connection to the characters and was actually quite appalled by the outcome.  I really didn’t buy Jessie’s reasoning.   Then again she’s sixteen,  I remember what it is like being sixteen.  The only other 2012 Clarke nominee I’ve read is Embassytown.  Maybe the committee didn’t feel they could give China Miéville another award…

The Broken Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin.  The second novel in Jemisin’s Inheritance Trilogy.  It’s been ten years since The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms and godlings are free to roam the streets of Sky.  The only problem is that someone is killing them.  Another fun read from this author.  She has just publish the first book in a new trilogy.

A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness from an idea by Siobhan Dowd.  This is a wonderful fulfillment of  another author’s idea.  Siobhan Dowd, author of Bog Child and several other young adult novels, died from breast cancer at the age of 47.  Ness, the author of the Chaos Walking trilogy, was invited to complete her final novel, and he has shown great skill and compassion in doing so.

Through late winter and early spring I also read books for sheer entertainment, including BlackmoorDark Matter1222 and An American Spy, all of which were great fun.  Sometime I read for the joy of it,  books I don’t have to “think” too much about.  How about you?  What do you read when you just want to get lost in a book?

Sunday Salon is a way for book people to share what they have been up to through the week and to share their thoughts about books and reading.  There is  now a Facebook group.


Filed under Sunday Salon

17 responses to “Sunday Salon – What I’ve Been Reading

  1. oh seeing cohen be great ,I finished two books as well this week ,all the best stu

  2. A Monster Calls is such a wonderful book. And I really need to read The Broken Kingdoms! I really loved the first book in the trilogy.

  3. A Monster Calls was really a brilliant piece of work, both in the writing, concept and illustration. I think I get the most lost (? that doesn’t make sense) in either a pure horror book ala Stephen King or murder mystery. It is a little disturbing to me that these are the books that give me comfort and are easiest for me to read!

    • But I do the same thing, Sandy. A good horror book or mystery is great to get lost in. Have you read anything by Fred Vargas?

  4. I hope your cold is gone for good! When it comes to wanting to get lost in a book, I turn to re-reads. They never let me down. Have a great week.

  5. Lovely post, Gavin. I have The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms on my shelf for Carl’s challenge to read, and I am waiting for A Monster Calls to come out in softcover so I can get it! It looks very good.

    I’m having problems with reviews too, I’m trying to get better at doing them consistently. I don’t know why I stop myself, I love reading them! lol

    I hope you feel better soon. I was getting over a cold too, and am still coughing a little. Did you see the eclipse last night where you are?

    • Thanks, Susan. We did not see the eclipse because of the rain (after 10 days of sunshine!) but found the change of light enchanting. I still have a couple of book s I want to read for Once Upon A Time.

  6. Ti

    You have been reading quite a bit, but like me…the writing part is tough sometimes. I am just not feeling it these days.

    How are you feeling? I hope you are better today.

    • Ti, I am much better, thanks for your thoughts! I finished two more books and have no desire to write about them. I can’t figure out what this is about:)

  7. I think what impressed me most about ‘A Monster Calls’ was that it had a life of its own; it was neither typical of Dowd nor of Ness – really quite a remarkable achievement.

  8. I very much want to read A Monster Calls. I’ve heard it was so powerful. I didn’t know it was not fully Ness’s own idea/work.

  9. Oh hey! I never finished the Kingdoms trilogy! And now she has a new book, which means I have two new books by Jemisin to read. I think she’s a really fun author, and I love that she’s so speedy with the writing of the books.

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