mjj (flemmings) wrote,

July reading

Rivers of London
-- in the grand tradition of Ackroyd, all the names of all the streets I don't know (to say nothing of boroughs), though I suppose it must be nice if you do. It always struck me as provincial when Toronto writers put in similar local referents, possibly because they seemed to be aping their betters. Their betters in this case are London and New York-- you can name streets in those cities and not sound like you're trying to establish the reality of the city, which is how TO writers come off to me. Yes, yes, there's Kensington Market and Queen St and University Ave (which doesn't go through the university, natch) but really, who cares? Only the local yokels.

We will not mention the other tradition referenced, that of Gaiman (and I suppose Mieville, only I haven't read his)-- unreal city; the city behind the city; but in this case, a city originating in the past that London has built up, a notion of which I approve. Past accumulates in certain places, like grime on buildings, and London is definitely one of them. So is Rome, what I remember of it from childhood. But French cities wear their past lightly, and Japan-- there the past happens on a different wavelength, quite beyond reach of a gaijin's senses.

The Italian Secretary
His Last Bow
O Jerusalem
The Art of Detection
-- because I missed Mary Russell

Debts of Dishonour
A Piece of Justice
The Wyndham Case
The Bad Quarto
-- Imogen Quys are a fast read. Wish there were more

The Moorchild
Ballet Shoes

You Are Here
--more Thich Nhat Hanh

100 Demons 20
-- well, at least it's Japanese
Tags: 100demons, holmes, manga_11, place, reading_11, rivers

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