The OF Blog: October 2010 Reads

Sunday, November 14, 2010

October 2010 Reads

For the second month in a row, it seems I end up waiting until nearly the halfway mark of the following month to list the previous months read.  Read almost 30 books in October, which is one of my worst months in the past couple of years (and so far, November is even worse, although I'll have some reading time around Thanksgiving that'll help me catch up to some extent).  Only the briefest of thoughts on these:

335  Tucker Max, Assholes Finish First (very "politically incorrect," but damn if I didn't laugh out loud several times)

336  Momus, The Book of Jokes (already reviewed)

337  Adrian Tchaikovsky, Salute the Dark (fourth volume in his Shadows of the Apt series; this one was decent, but it and the third volume just were not as good as the second in terms of characterization, pacing, and plotting)

338  Tim Lieder, She Nailed a Stake Through His Head:  Tales of Biblical Terror (this was a lame anthology, as several stories just failed to do anything with the Biblical premise.  Very, very disappointing, probably one of the weakest anthologies I've read in years, with nary a good story to be found within its 100+ pages)

339  F. Marion Crawford, Khaled (this short novel, reprinted in the 1970s as part of the Ballantine Adult Fantasy series, was a decent Orientalist fantasy.  Might re-read/review it next year)

340  Max Mallmann, O Centésimo en Roma (Portuguese; already reviewed)

341  Joy Chant, Red Moon and Black Mountain (decent entry in the Ballantine series, might review next year)

342  Ray Bradbury, The October Country (collection; it's f'n RAY BRADBURY, one of my favorite SF writers and this is perhaps one of his two best anthologies.  What do you think I thought about this collection?)

343  Lin Carter, Imaginary Worlds (1972 non-fiction piece on the history of spec fic; some interesting points, but laced through with some egregious errors of interpretation)

344  Mario Vargas Llosa, ¿Quién mató Palomino Molero? (Spanish; This 1986 murder-mystery, based on actual events in 1950s Peru, was a gripping read, although I consider it a step below Vargas Llosa's greatest novels)

345 Gerson Lodi-Riberio and Luis Filipe Silva, Vaporpunk (Portuguese; I'll have more to say about this 2010 Luso-Brazilian anthology after I finish my translations of four story beginnings later this week)

346  Brian Conn, The Fixed Stars (review forthcoming around Thanksgiving)

347  Arthur Machen, The Great God Pan & The Hill of Dreams (the first was one of the creepiest, weirdest fictions I've read in a while, so yeah, I liked it.  The second wasn't quite as good as the first, but still quite good on the whole)

348  Tibor Moricz, Saint-Clair Stockler and Eric Novello (eds.), Imaginarios Volume 1 (Portuguese; this SF/F anthology had some interesting stories, but outside of it serving as perhaps a sample of Brazilian SF/F writing, there really isn't a theme to it.  This isn't a criticism as much as it is a statement that it's hard to say anything other than "there are some good stories in it, but there's nothing unifying to them in terms of story types.")

349  David Sedaris, Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk (these reworking of fables to represent modern worries and concerns mostly hit their marks.  Plus the thought of a chipmunk worrying what her squirrel beau means by "jazz" was quite amusing to this Squirrelist)

350  Angela Carter, Wise Children (I want to re-read this novel before commenting much on it, but this wasn't a Carter novel that I took to as quickly as I did with most of her other works)

351  George MacDonald, Phantases (I plan on re-reading/reviewing this next year.  It was decent, but not a great read)

352  Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson, Towers of Midnight (I already reviewed it, but for those that missed it, this novel was just a mess)

353  Emma Donoghue, Room (already reviewed)

354  Matt Bell, How They Were Found (already reviewed; collection)

355  Nicole Krauss, Great House (already reviewed)

356  Edward Gibbon, The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, vol. I (already reviewed)

357  Robert Coover, Noir (enjoyed it quite a bit; amusing take on noir)

358  Tibor Moricz, Saint-Clair Stockler and Eric Novello (eds.), Imaginarios Volume 2 (Portuguese; see my earlier comments on the first volume)

359  Brendan Connell, Metrophilias (planning on reviewing this and another collection of his in the next 10 days or so)

360  Mario Vargas Llosa, El sueño del Celta (Spanish; already reviewed)

361  Franz Kafka, The Castle (very good, but I found that I got more out of his The Trial)

362  Norman Thomas di Giovanni, The Lesson of the Master:  On Borges and His Work (a combination of biography, memoir, and thoughts on translation, all of which were appealing to me)

363  A.L. Todd and Dorothy B. Weisbord, Favorite Subjects in Western Art (OK intro to its subject; outdated approach to art, unfortunately)

1 comment:

Chay said...

#361 - The Castle. You probably don't have time, but upon rereading this novel it became one of my favorite books of all time. Haven't read the The Trial, it is on "the list" (which seems to only ever get books added rather than subtracted).

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