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What I’ve been reading, October 2011

on November 1, 2011

NPR’s top 100 Sci-Fi/Fantasy books (as voted by readers) and handy flowchart to figure out your next book.

I’m still on a kick of free Amazon titles, most of which are so very much not worth mentioning. If they weren’t free e-books, they ought to be burned. I either abandon a large number of them or trudge to the end through willpower alone.

  • Northanger Abbey, Jane Austen. This one was fun and funny. Though the characters took themselves seriously, Austen, apparently, did not and poked some fun at them throughout.
  • A Touch of Night, Sarah A. Hoyt. A Kindle freebie that’s worth including. Pride and Prejudice… and Werewolves. But it actually was decent (though the sheer number of were-characters was nearly ridiculous by the end), and she didn’t try (and fail) to recreate Austen’s prose; instead, we get a still elegant but more modern interpretation of what Austen wrote.
  • Wickedly Charming (Fates), Kristine Grayson. No longer free, but I snagged it when it was. One of the Prince Charmings, now divorced, meets one of the Stepmothers, actually not so evil. Gets a little meta there, with it being a reworking of fairy tale characters and then he encourages her to write a book like Wicked (uses that exactly — and it turns out she knows Elphaba, too, lol).
  • The Golden Acorn, Catherine Cooper. Another freebie. A dive in to British mythology. My one quibble is that the kid accepted everything — everything! — as normal: “Oh, birds can talk? Okay. Trees can talk? Okay.” C’mon, kid, just a little incredulity would work wonders.

3 responses to “What I’ve been reading, October 2011

  1. MC says:

    Jane Austen is surprisingly funny, isn’t she? I suspect many books would be really good reads if they weren’t on required reading lists or considered classic. That makes them sound like terrible entertainment choices. Of course, some of them really are– guilt by association taints the rest.

    • Aparna says:

      Maybe I’m just weird, but I actually liked a lot of the books I had to read for school, and I liked (to some degree) working through them. There are times when I miss that–like when I tried to start a book club in undergrad. Epic fail =\

    • leslie says:

      Northanger Abbey is definitely the funniest of hers I’ve read. Most of the time her humor is rather sly, but in this one it was right out there. And she even poked fun at her heroine. (On the other hand, Persuasion — which I also read this month and apparently forgot to include — is quite serious all around.)

      I think I liked about half to three quarters of the books that I was required to read over the years. I felt guilty about not liking the others — they were classics, for goodness sake! — until I got to college and one of my English professors admitted that she didn’t like a lot of the canon, either. So ever since I’ve felt fully justified in disliking whatever I wanted to dislike. 😉

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