The OF Blog: July 2013 Reads

Sunday, August 04, 2013

July 2013 Reads

It is hard to gauge the amount of reading that took place in July by a simple listing a books.  One "book" for example could reasonably be listed as 37 (if divided by the original volume number) or over 100 (if going simply by original release), but I follow a principle of singular (e-)binding when numbering the books I read, so I ended up reading over 10,000 iPad-sized e-pages in July of a 15,209 e-page work that counted as only one volume on the list below.  Taking into account the font size (small) and screen, the word count would be slightly over 6,000,000.  Considering that the average book I read is slightly over 100,000 words, that would be the equivalent to around 60 books (and with 2/3 read in July, that would be roughly 40 traditionally-sized books).

All of this is a short way to say that I only completed 15 (e)print volumes in July despite having read more in terms of page count than any month so far this year.  Here are those 15 works:

182  Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, Poesías de Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz (Spanish; poetry; very good)

183  Voltaire, Oeuvres Complètes (French; this is the above-mentioned 15,209 e-page e-book that I read that included the contents of a previously-published 37 volume collection of his plays, poetry, prose, essays, and correspondence.  Individually, few were earth-shattering, but considered as a whole, it is impressive to a degree that very, very few writers in any genre will ever hope to accomplish)

184  Herta Müller, The Passport (re-read; very good)

185  Angélica Gorodischer, Menta (Spanish; re-read; collection; excellent)

186  László Krasnahorkai and Max Neumann, Animalinside (re-read; outstanding)

187  Benjamin Percy, Red Moon (Percy was one of the writers I selected for further consideration for the later-defunct Best American Fantasy 4.  This novel on werewolves was one of the few that utilize this subject matter that engaged me.  There were a few weak spots, but overall it was a very good read.)

188  Rodolfo Martínez, Fieramente Humano (Spanish; very good)

189  Mike Allen, Sleeping, Burning Life (this and the following two were novellas included in the Clockwork Phoenix 4 Kickstarter package I sponsored.  Very good)

190  Mike Allen, She Who Runs (novella; very good)

191  Mike Allen, Stolen Souls (novella; very good)

192  A.A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh (re-read; still love this as an adult)

193  Giacomo Leopardi, Canti (Italian; poetry; outstanding)

194 José María Arguedas, Los ríos profundos (Spanish; re-read; excellent)

195  Mariela González, Lágrimas de luz:  postmodernidad y estilo en la ciencia ficción española (Spanish; non-fiction; more on this later, but this Premio Ignotus-nominated study of SF in relation to Spain and Spanish literature makes for an interesting contrast to most Anglo-American-centric SF studies)

196  Evangeline Walton, She Walks in Darkness (soon-to-be-released "trunk novel" that is a gothic tale set in 20th century Italy around the Etruscan tombs.  Solid effort.)


Total:  196/366 goal (behind pace by 14 books, largely due to how I counted the Voltaire e-book)

Women writers:  69/196 (35%, above 33% goal for year; 5 for July)

Foreign language:  64/100 (slightly above pace at slightly more than 9/month; 7 for July)

Spanish:  31/50 (1 above pace; 5 for July)

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