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Sat Feb 1st, 2014

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09:54 pm - On book acquisition
The last three weeks seem to have vindicated my book-buying habits: I never know when I'll want a pointless detective novel/ a mid-list SFF/ a Chinese mystery/ something light (all senses of the word) and forgettable/ so better grab this now. Except it transpires that these are what I want when laid low for weeks by a multi-symptomed bug, and how often do I get those? Once a decade, apparently: and ten years ago it was a deep incision in the abdomen causing my symptoms, not a bug at all.

Which means I should change my buying/ acquiring habits from 'You never know when I'll want this' to 'Do I want this now?' I still have twenty years of unread books around here, should I find myself bookless; and my personal nightmare scenario of 'I want this specific kind of book right now and I don't have it!!!' has so far proved a chimera.

Gaiman- Smoke and Mirrors
-- most of which I read in December anyway, none of which has stayed with me

Three mysteries that have aged very badly indeed:

Stockbridge, The Man who Killed Fortescue
-- featuring a 20s detective investigating the death of an author, who hasn't the brains to go through author's waste paper baskets to find the incriminating carbon copies. That's the brilliant discovery of his 12-year-old assistant.
Dexter, Last Bus to Woodstock
Marquand, Mr Moto is So Sorry
-- some of the Mr Moto books resonate; this doesn't at all

Three fantasies that are fine to have read:

Banks, The Business
-- inexplicably lowering
McGuire, One Salt Sea
-- I should try some other series of hers. *All* her heroes can't be insensitive twits
Ballantine and Morris, The Janus Affair (Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences #2)
-- not as irritating as #1, though the title makes as little sense and the same kind of errors crop up: "The authors are obviously bad with homonyms and near-homonyms: they write fair for fare, bobble for bauble, eluded for alluded, touting for toting, grizzly for grisly and so on." From a goodreads review that also takes NZ issue with the NZ author's NZ English. Living abroad rots one's native English, as I can attest, and I think Ballantine's has been rotted.

One keeper:
Parker, The Dragon Scroll
-- Sugawara Akitada mystery, always reliable

(5 comments | post comment)


[User Picture]
Date:February 2nd, 2014 12:41 pm (UTC)
I couldn't even get started on 'Smoke and Mirrors'. Like 'Stardust' which I found troublesome and tedious.

That last sounds intriguingly familiar. Will seek it out at our library. ^_^

Sometimes ... time in England rots ones English as well. ^_~

[User Picture]
Date:February 2nd, 2014 01:58 pm (UTC)
I couldn't get started on it either, for over a year, but it makes good snow-bound/ mindless reading.

Yes, I can see it might.
[User Picture]
Date:February 3rd, 2014 04:39 pm (UTC)
I should try some other series of hers. *All* her heroes can't be insensitive twits

IMO, Toby is noticeably worse on that front than any of Seanan's other protags. (I'm fond of Toby, but she drives me up the wall more than all the others combined.)

My feelings on Newsflesh and Georgia Mason are exhaustively documented, but I can also say that I like the InCryptid books much more than the Toby ones, and unlike the Toby books, InCryptid changes narrators periodically. (Well, the only two that are out now have the same narrator, but the third one comes out next month and has a different POV character entirely.)

I also really enjoy the two Velveteen collections, but there's no readily available hard-copy format--they're out in limited edition hardcovers and as ebooks.

And I haven't finished Indexing yet, but I'm about 3/4 in and quite liking it. (It's an Amazon Kindle serial that's finally in print, and unless Amazon contracts Seanan to write another "season" of it, there'll only be the one volume.)
[User Picture]
Date:February 5th, 2014 04:09 am (UTC)
Ah well then, maybe I'll dip into Newsflesh when this cruel war is over. McGuire reads easily enough, if only I liked the people I was reading better.
[User Picture]
Date:February 5th, 2014 12:48 pm (UTC)
If you do, I hope you like it!

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