Books Read- 203 Books to Read-282 Percent Complete- 41.86%

Just Finished (For the third time) - 'Mirror Dance' by Lois McMaster Bujold

Friday, June 7, 2013

It's been almost a month since I've updated, and I feel a little bad about that.  Sometimes life get in the way, vacation and whatnot.  But, I've still been reading, just not that much SF.  I finished 'A Perfect Circle' by Sean Stewart, and really liked it.  The book straddles that line between what we would consider SF or just general fiction.  It reminded me a little of Keyes 'Flowers for Algernon' in that regard.  I also finished 'The Last Place on Earth' by Roland Huntford about the race for the South Pole.  It was a great book, and really fascinating.  I read a little of Plutarch's 'Age of Alexander,' mostly the chapters concerning Alexander the Great.  One thing I've found if you're trying to read some history is that it's always best to go back to original sources.  When I was trying to teach myself a thing or two about Ancient Greece I kept getting fed up with reading books from the history section because they just seemed to quote the same sources over and over.  Finally I just went to the source and read Herodotus' 'The Histories.'  One of the best books I've ever read.  Plutarch isn't quite as interesting as Herodotus but it's still enlightening.

I also read a good book about the Crusades from an Arab perspective, 'The Crusades through Arab Eyes' by Amin Maalouf.  A really interesting book, though it probably would have payed off a little better if I had a better knowledge of the Crusades from a Western perspective.  Maybe now that I have the Arab view I can go back and get the Western one.  What I'm really interested in is getting a biography of Saladin written in his own day, but that seems a little tough to come by in the bookstores I frequent.

I also read most of Greg Rucka's 'Queen and Country' and Brian K. Vaughan's 'Y the Last Man.'  Two very different but equally great graphic novel.  I believe Y was nominated for the first graphic novel Hugo award, and it's too bad I'm not really reviewing those here because I really loved it.  I have the last two collections to get through before I'm completely done with it.  I'll post all my thoughts about it when I'm done.  Q and C I really liked as well though I was a little thrown off by the last few collections.  It seems there's a prose novel in there somewhere that I'm supposed to have read.  I don't know if my love of the characters will carry over to the novel, so I'll steer clear unless I read good things about it.

Right now I'm rereading 'Something Wicked this Way Comes' by Ray Bradbury.  I picked up so many new novels on vacation that I have to say I'm a little intimidated about where to start, but I also grabbed a copy of this and it's been a little while since I read it.  So often I'm trying to finish off new Hugo and Nebula nominees I don't get a chance to go back to the classics or the books I really love.  It's been years since I've read any Hemingway or LeGuin.  I wanted to go back to a book I really loved as a kid and I saw this sitting on a shelf.  When I'm done I'll get back to all the nominees, and I promise I'll get back to posting more.  Vacation's over after all.