Wednesday, January 21, 2015

What I Read (2014)

I'm slowing down in my dotage!  Hopefully, a better routine will get me back in pace in 2015.

Jan. 2, 2014:  Homer, The Illiad  "Interesting how it starts in media res and ends at a surprising point.  Quite bloody too!"

Jan. 8, 2014:  N.D. Wilson, The Chestnut King  "Final book in 100 Cupboards trilogy.  Good but not great.  Still, a writer with potential."

Jan. 9, 2014: James L. Sutter, Before They Were Giants  "Planet Stories collection for first published work by major SF writers with own commentary.  Really enjoyable and introduced me to some authors to check out."

Feb. 2014: Robert Jordan & Brandon Sanderson, The Gathering Storm "Fantastic page-turner.  Best WoT book in ages."

Mar. 5, 2014: Jeff Kinney, Journal d’un dégonflé: La vérite toute moche "Still laugh-out loud funny and very entertaining."

Mar. 6, 2014: David Lyon & Marguerite Van Die, Rethinking Church, State, and Modernity: Canada Between Europe and America, "Fairly good collection of essays for anyone interested in church & state in Canada."

Mar. 17, 2014: Michael Reeves, Patterns of Force "Third 'Coruscant Nights' Star Wars book.  Okay, but largely forgettable."

Mar. 2014: Stephen King, Carrie "My e-book re-read.  Brilliant, and you can see why it made him an instant star.  Yes, there's horror, but the overwhelming sense is tragedy and sadness."

Mar. 24, 2014: Carolyn Maree Evans, Legal Protection of Religious Freedom in Australia "Excellent, well-researched, and concise overview of statutory and constitutional dimensions of topic."

Mar. 31, 2014: Paul Heelas & Linda Woodhead, The Spiritual Revolution: Why Religion is Giving Way to Spirituality "Thought-provoking study of traditional religious activity vs 'holistic milieu' in English city w/ wider implications drawn for future of spirituality."

Mar. 31, 2014: Philip Roth, Portnoy's Complaint "Plotless, stream of consciousness monologue on Jewish life in post-war N.J.  Still very funny, even if I can't connect to much of it personally."

Apr. 7, 2014: R.A. Salvatore, The Legend of Drizzt Vol. 2 "Trilogy as Drizzt & friends liberate Mithril Hall, rescue Regis from Calimport.  Introduces Artemis Entreri.  Entertaining."

May 5, 2014: Stephen King, Salem's Lot "King brings realism to a vampire tale, and it works quite well."

May 15, 2014: Andrew Lang, Cock Lane and Common-Sense "Discussion of supernatural phenomenon, unfocussed & w/out strong guiding thesis."

May 28, 2014: J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter et les Reliques de la Mort "A bit exposition-heavy at times, but still a satisfying conclusion to the series."

June 5, 2014: Sarah Pinborough, Long Time Dead "Torchwood Miracle Day prequel--Suzie Costello lives again & has to be stopped.  Pretty good all in all."

June 11, 2014: David Budbill, Bones on Black Spruce Mountain "YA book about 2 boys on camping trip.  Theme of loneliness & family.  Very good, and worth keeping."

June 12, 2014: Charlaine Harris, Dead Until Dark "Re-read of first Sookie Stackhouse book.  Still love the well-described, evocative setting."

June 14, 2014: Laurie R. King, The Game "Holmes & Russell on an adventure in India.  Great skill in evoking a setting, even if plotting still falls flat."

June 28, 2014: Stephen King, The Shining "Classic & still spooky.  King really makes you care about the characters, which is what makes the horror work."

June 29, 2014: Carrie Vaughn, Kitty Takes a Holiday "Third in the werewolf series, as skinwalkers attack.  Enjoyable."

June 29, 2014: Elizabeth George, I, Richard "Short story collection.  Mostly 'twist in the tail' types, with one slight tale featuring Lynley.  Not worth getting."

July 8, 2014: William Dean Howells, The Rise of Silas Lapham, "Norton edition; classic story of economic fall but moral rise.  Fairly interesting, & very useful essays on literary realism."

July 20, 2014: C.J. Henderson & Erica Henderson, Baby's First Mythos "Silly rhymes & alphabet from Cthulhu mythos.  Not worth the cost, but some great artwork."

July 24, 2014: Mircea Eliade, Occultism, Witchcraft, and Cultural Fashions "Collection of essays showing breathtaking and wide-ranging familiarity with culture, religion, and language around the world."

July 2014: Charlaine Harris, Living Dead in Dallas "Second Sookie Stackhouse novel.  Main plot with anti-vampire cult in Dallas is strong, but subplot with murder of gay cook poorly written & borderline problematic."

August 12, 2014: Stephen King, Night Shift "Still an excellent collection of short stories."

August 2014: Danielle Dumais, Sortilèleges, salsa, et compagnie: L’Evénement "First volume in pre-teen series about kids who gain magic powers after magnetic storm.  Not worth reading."

August 21, 2014: Gary Bouma, Australian Soul: Religion & Spirituality in the 21st Century "Some good overview, but also some polemic mixed w/ scholarship."

August 25, 2014: James Swallow, Faith & Fire "Frankly fantastic.  Warhammer 40K book about Sisters of Battle.  Would make a great movie."

September 2014: Barbara Hambly, Planet of Twilight "Boring paint-by-numbers Star Wars book."

September 23, 2014: Constance Greene, Double-Dare O'Toole "Fantastic YA novel about Fex, a boy who just can't resist a double-dare.  Sweet & insightful."

October 2014: No Author, Doctor Who Companion Compendium "Nicely packaged collection of trivia."

October 29, 2014: Erik Larson, The Devil in the White City "Fascinating tale of construction of Chicago's World Fair while serial killer strikes in the shadows.  True story."

November 2014: Gary Johns (ed.), Recognise What? "Essays opposing recognition of indigenous persons in the Australian Constitution."

November 2014: Robert Jordan & Brandon Sanderson, Towers of Midnight "Next to last Wheel of Time book.  Excellent & exciting."

December 2014: Charlaine Harris, A Touch of Dead "Sookie Stackhouse short story collection.  Not required reading for sure."

December 2014: Jasper Fforde, First Among Sequels "Fourth of the Thursday Next books.  Surprising time jump, but remains incredibly creative and fun to read."

December 18, 2014: A.B. McKillop, Pierre Berton: A Biography "Journalist, historian, and 'Canadian Icon.'  Focusses on professional life, but little sense of personal life."

December 20, 2014: Richard Lee Byers, Unholy "Third book in the Haunted Lands series of FR Thay novels.  Decent."

December 23, 2014: Jude Watson, Secret Weapon "7th Last of the Jedi book.  Surprisingly really interesting and page turning.  Looking forward to others."

December 25, 2014: H. Paul Jeffers, Complete Idiot's Guide to the Great Depression "Bought for Cthulhu gaming research, finished years later!"

No comments: