So this week—and last week, and the week before that, and the week before that, and for several weeks yet to come—I am reading one of those novels for which the term “doorstopper” was invented: Infinite Jest, by David Foster Wallace.Continue reading “Teaser Tuesday: Surely You “Infinite Jest””
So not long ago I was reading The Yiddish Policeman’s Union, by Michael Chabon.Continue reading “Teaser Tuesday: “The Yiddish Policeman’s Union””
A few months ago—before the shelter in place started, but not long before—I started watching The Expanse. This is an adaptation of the science fiction book series of the same name; the first season (mostly) follows the plot of the first book, Leviathan Wakes, which I read last year during my recovery from The Event. I say it “mostly” follows the plot of Leviathan Wakes because it includes characters and subplots I’ve never seen before, which is what’s making me a little reluctant to watch too much of the series just yet, because …
When adaptations are involved, I usually try to read the book before watching the adaptation, so that I can properly position the adaptation somewhere on “the book was better”* spectrum. (By this measure, The Expanse is pretty good.)
So this week I was reading The Atomic Sea by Jack Conner:
So this week I’m continuing my recent spree of reading translated works* with The Three-Body Problem, by Cixin Liu (or Liu Cixin, depending). As you may be able to guess by the author’s name, this is a Chinese science fiction novel.
It’s been quite a while since I reached into my giant pile of rejection letters, so today I spun up random.org and it told me to pick the third letter from the “L” folder. As it turns out, this is a rejection from the magazine The Leading Edge for my short story “Draw”, a science fiction Western, previously excerpted in a Teaser Tuesday.
It’s probably not a surprise to anyone that I watch the Netflix dystopian anthology series Black Mirror regularly, although not frequently, because, seriously, who can stand to binge that much plausible dystopia*? Not me, man. Not me. *shudder*
Anyway, recently I was watching one of the more acclaimed episodes of Black Mirror, “Nosedive”, which is about a woman named Lacie, played by Bryce Dallas Howard (yes, Richie Cunningham’s daughter), who is obsessed with improving her social media ranking. Because, you know, if you don’t have a good enough ranking, you might not be able to get into the apartment complex you want. Or into an exclusive restaurant. Or into the office building where you work. Or … well, you get the idea.
So this week I was reading All the Birds in the Sky, the Nebula and Locus award-winning pre-apocalyptic SF/Fantasy mashup by Charlie Jane Anders, in which a small group of witches goes to war with a small group of techies as each tries to save the world in its own particular idiom, which are, unfortunately, sort of diametrically opposed. Or at least that’s what they think.
So this week, I’m still reading Great North Road, the science fiction murder mystery by Peter F. Hamilton that I was reading two weeks ago.
So this week, and probably for a week or two more, I’m reading Great North Road, a science fiction murder mystery by Peter F. Hamilton. As far as I know, this book, like the excellent Fallen Dragon, is a standalone novel, unrelated to and not set in the same universe as the “Commonwealth” novels (the also-excellent Pandora’s Star and Judas Unchained, the what-most-people-seem-to-consider-better-but-I-consider-only-pretty-good “Void” series, of which I’ve so far only read the first one) or the “Night’s Dawn” series, of which I’ve so far read, uh, nothing. It’s also, being Peter F. Hamilton, a doorstopper, or would be if it weren’t an eBook, which is why I’ll probably still be reading it next week. Fortunately, like most Hamilton books, it’s shaping up to be―you guessed it―excellent.