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RedEyedGhost

August Reading 2017

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I spent most of July reading the Riyria Revelations.  Read books 3-6, thought I would take a break in between them, but I got caught up in the story.  The writing was suspect at times, but the story was great.  For book 6

I can't believe I didn't realize who the true heir was before the ending.  There were so many niggling clues that I certainly should have, but it never sunk in.  Which is funny because I knew Nimbus' real identity after like the second chapter in which he appeared.  Oh and fuck Arcadius, that's some low handed bullshit killing Gwen.

 I'm unsure whether I should read the three prequel novels with Hadrian and Royce or not.  I'll probably wait to see if the price comes down before committing to them.

Then I read Strange Dogs the latest novella in the Expanse universe.  Good stuff, but as always with the novellas, they leave me wanting more.

Now I'm on the highly anticipated (by me at least) Infernal Machines by John Hornor Jacobs.  I love these books, and 13% in it's living up to the first two.

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Donald Ray Pollock's The Devil All the Time. Dark, graphic novel about mostly terrible interconnected individuals doing terrible things set in southern Ohio and West Virginia in the 1960s primarily.  A quick, but gripping  grit lit read.

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I'm stilling reading Edgar Allan Poe: Complete Tales and Poems from July, I only have Poe's only novel to read and the book is finally over.

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I haven't posted in a while.  Currently I have been reading Sebastien de Castell's The Greatcoats series.  Right now I just started the last book in the series, Tyrant's Throne. Really enjoying it.  I would recommend this series to others.

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Posted (edited)

Finished Prisoners Of Geography by Tim Marshall, a non-fiction that covers the geopolitical tensions and outlook throughout the globe through the lens of geographical determinism.  Interesting read and a concise summary of a sprawling topic.  I enjoyed it despite not learning anything new, which makes me wonder if it's like the Economist (which I also read) in targeting a smug cognoscenti.  The book itself is complete at the 66% point in Kindle, which left me feeling slightly cheated -- I was all ready to see if there might be something new and revelatory in the final third.  The references, long index and sample chapter from another book shouldn't count toward the Kindle % count. 

I tried The Kind You Want To Kill, advertised as the next Gone Girl.  I'll freely admit that despite liking some complex antiheroes -- Walter White, Don Draper, etc -- I generally don't enjoy novels about self-absorbed selfish people even when they are doing their utmost to destroy each other.  So I didn't actually enjoy Gone Girl all that much in the first place but I'm trying to vary my reading and I gave it a try.  I dropped it after 20%.  I just could not see myself enjoying the development of this plot or characters, nor was the writing sufficient to demand my attention despite hating the story.  Other people may delight in the suspenseful story and anticipated twist -- I suspect they are the ones who watch all those movies on Lifetime.  

Edited by Iskaral Pust

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I finished Max Gladstone's Two Serpents Rise. I liked it, although I think Three Parts Dead was probably better. The biggest irritation was that a lot of the plot hinges on the protagonist having a love-at-first-sight obsession with a woman he barely knows and this obsession does lead to him doing some pretty stupid things thought the book. I did like the new setting, a metropolis with a strong Aztec influence and maybe a bit of Las Vegas thrown in ruled over by an undead skeleton with a fondness for killing Gods. The way the magic system is a metaphor for the perils of corporate capitalism is also quite cleverly done. The relationship between Caleb, a corporate middle-manager, and his father, a fugitive priest of a religion based on human sacrifice, was also interesting every time the two of them met.

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12 hours ago, williamjm said:

I finished Max Gladstone's Two Serpents Rise. I liked it, although I think Three Parts Dead was probably better. The biggest irritation was that a lot of the plot hinges on the protagonist having a love-at-first-sight obsession with a woman he barely knows and this obsession does lead to him doing some pretty stupid things thought the book. I did like the new setting, a metropolis with a strong Aztec influence and maybe a bit of Las Vegas thrown in ruled over by an undead skeleton with a fondness for killing Gods. The way the magic system is a metaphor for the perils of corporate capitalism is also quite cleverly done. The relationship between Caleb, a corporate middle-manager, and his father, a fugitive priest of a religion based on human sacrifice, was also interesting every time the two of them met.

I liked this one too, but when I tried to start the third one I got a bit of World Exhaustion.   I need to pick up something else before I go back to it.

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Feel like I haven't picked up a book in months.  After starting Sunday I'm about 1/2 way through The Unholy Consult and have really enjoyed it so far.  After that I'll be finishing up Calaban's War before moving on to my book backlog that's about 10 or so deep right now.

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After watching the first season of The Expanse I am rereading Leviathan Wakes.  And I gotta say, the show is better.  I remember why I almost gave up on this series (glad I didn't because the second book was an incredible improvement).  I just never clicked with Holden and Miller's story drops some great hints for whats coming but is almost too subtle with them at times; I know I didn't see most of this stuff the first read through.

Unless something changes my mind through I plan on reading strait through and finally catching up with the whole series.

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Finished Infernal Machines by John Jacob Horner. The conclusion to the trilogy that started with The Incorruptibles. I enjoyed the trilogy and appreciated the very interesting mash-up world that Horner created. The final book could have used more of a denouement after the climax I thought though. But overall it was a very refreshing trilogy and I would recommend it. 

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William Gay's Provinces of Night. I loved Gay's prose in this southern gothic novel. Morose tale about a wayward family patriarch returning to his bitter and broken family after several decades. Just the right amount of humor thrown in with a character or two to lighten the novel.

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Finished Jack Reacher #6 for a quick read.  Another good installment.  Other than #3, this series has been very consistent.  The detail of the research is what makes the character's competence so convincing, albeit implausible. 

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4 hours ago, Iskaral Pust said:

Finished Jack Reacher #6 for a quick read.  Another good installment.  Other than #3, this series has been very consistent.  The detail of the research is what makes the character's competence so convincing, albeit implausible. 

I've read most of those books. I feel like they're extremely formulaic, but also very enjoyable, largely because Lee Child is such a good writer. 

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I read Annihilation by Jeff Vandermeer last week, and liked it quite a bit although I'm not sure I'll be in any rush to read the next two books in the trilogy.

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On 8/9/2017 at 8:26 AM, SkynJay said:

After watching the first season of The Expanse I am rereading Leviathan Wakes.  And I gotta say, the show is better.  I remember why I almost gave up on this series (glad I didn't because the second book was an incredible improvement).  I just never clicked with Holden and Miller's story drops some great hints for whats coming but is almost too subtle with them at times; I know I didn't see most of this stuff the first read through.

Unless something changes my mind through I plan on reading strait through and finally catching up with the whole series.

I'm the opposite. I feel like I waited for the whole series for it to be as good as LW again. Probably because I rather dislike Holden and Miller is my favorite. :) Book 5 got there.

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Last Friday I finally finished Edgar Allan Poe: Complete Tales and Poems.  I'm going to be completely honest there were some great pieces--many of which were the usual suspects and some which were surprises--but a lot of the time it was a slog to read hoping from something different but always getting premature burial or a young woman dying or a criminal having gotten away with it until they confess of their own free will.  After having the book on my shelf for three years, I wish I had purchased a more selected collection.

Yesterday I finished Spy Schools: How the CIA, FBI, and Foreign Intelligence Secretly Exploit America's Universities by Daniel Golden.  Golden is an investigative journalist and has been writing about how both American and foreign intelligence agencies are using higher education in the global spy game.  It was a fascinating read, but already it's "current affairs"-vibe is waning after the election of and reaction to Trump last November, which is interesting because the book will be officially be published in October but I received an ARC via LibraryThing's Early Reviewers program.

Also yesterday I started Monstrous Regiment by Terry Pratchett as part of my read-through of Discworld.  I'm nearly 40% through the book and am enjoying it, I'll say that I saw one "revelation" coming but am more interested in a little snippet occurring every so often and how that'll play into the narrative than anything Vimes and company are doing currently.

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Posted (edited)

I'll be finishing off Day of the Jackal, but unsure which of the following to start next:

Mistborn, Brandon Sanderson

Assassin's Apprentice, Robin Hobb

The Thirst, Jo Nesbo

Siddhartha, Hermann Hesse

Snow Falling on Cedars, David Guterson

The Power of the Dog, Thomas Savage

 

Which should I choose, guys?

Edited by kafkascoat

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2 hours ago, kafkascoat said:

Which should I choose, guys?

Assassin's Apprentice.

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1 hour ago, RedEyedGhost said:

Assassin's Apprentice.

:agree:

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Yessss come join the dark side, learn to love Fitz and have all your emotions torn out of you!

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