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13 January 2013 @ 11:38 pm
Nothing to see here...  
My compulsivity, it is not pretty.

Even if I never talk about them in detail, I don't want to lose track of all these books I've read recently:

Raylan - Elmore Leonard. Characterization and plot diverges a little from the show. Irritating prose in places (better punctuatino would not diminish dialect). Raylan less smart, Boyd less dark, Rachel more talkative.
Bruiser - Neal Shusterman. Not what it first appears, and some priceless teen narrative as always.
The Beginner's Goodbye - Anne Tyler. Soulful, prickly, engaging.
Lost Light - Michael Connolly. Late Harry Bosch after retirement, details the period after the end of his marriage.
The Drop - Michael Connolly. Harry Bosch returns to cold-case duty. Even grittier than typical Bosch, and just as interesting.
The Weed That Strings The Hangman's Bag - Alan Bradley. A good Flavia De Luce novel.
Romeo Spikes - Joanne Reay. Intriguing, more captivating than expected.
Angel's Flight - Michael Connolly. Really good Harry Bosch novel, holds up on rereading.
Toys Come Home - Emily Jenkins. New prequel to "Toys Go Out." Fun, a little thin, original still better.
"V" Is For Vengeance - Sue Grafton. Compelling Kinsey Milhone novel, much better than previous one.
The Limpopo Academy Of Private Detection - Alexander McCall Smith. Good subplot on Mma Potokwane.
The Color Of Water - James McBride. Unexpected, more truly about his mother than it first appears.
The Last Dragonslayer - Jasper Fforde. Cute, first teen effort.
American On Purpose - Craig Ferguson. Funny, poignant.
Robopocalypse - Daniel H. Wilson. Fantastic Dystopian novel, multiple POVs, would make a lousy movie.

java_fiendjava_fiend on January 14th, 2013 08:54 pm (UTC)
I really need to do something like this to keep track of my books for the year. I always *mean* to but then fall down on the job because I'm a dork. :-)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on January 14th, 2013 08:57 pm (UTC)
I normally don't do this, but I also don't usually plow through quite so many books in such a short period of time. I think this dates back to around Dec 1, and there was a lot of good stuff in there!

I do have some f-listies that document everything, but most of them read a LOT more non-fiction than I ever do or would. That stuff is the exception for me, not the rule. ;)
harriganharrigan on January 14th, 2013 09:05 pm (UTC)
I read and liked Bruiser!

Have you considered using goodreads? (If you did and decided against it, I'm interested in why. I'm fairly new to using it.)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Bookshalfshellvenus on January 14th, 2013 09:10 pm (UTC)
I liked Bruiser too. Shusterman has real variety as an author-- the Everlost trilogy is completely different from the two Antsy books (which I love for different reasons), or Downsiders, or Unwind, and now Bruiser.

I haven't used goodreads, though I think I saw a blurb for it online via our library when I was looking for a plot synopsis of some of those Harry Bosch books.

Do you like it? I mostly read based on physical browsing at the library (which is why I hate that actual books are diminishing there), or sometimes recs from friends. I do occasional reviews at Amazon too, but what grabs one person vs. another can be really unpredictable.

Sometimes I'm even surprised by what grabs ME, and I know myself better than anyone. ;)

Edited at 2013-01-14 09:10 pm (UTC)
harriganharrigan on January 14th, 2013 10:51 pm (UTC)
I primarily use goodreads to log what books I've read, what I'm currently reading, and what I want to read. I've also created 'bookshelves' to note what books I'm on the waiting list for at the library, and which ones my library doesn't carry or have on order.

I don't leave reviews there, because I assess a book based purely on how well it met my expectations and matched was in the mood for. Which doesn't equate to quality or what I might rec to others at all. (I do, however, award 3, 4 or 5 stars based purely on that criteria. And if a book doesn't warrant at least 3 stars from me, then I don't finish it and therefore don't even log it.)

As a social networking tool, I like that I can 'friend' people and see what they are reading, and if they leave stars or reviews. (I only friend people I actually know and talk books with; not strangers.)

It's possible to leave 'comments' on books, and I've done that occasionally, under the probably misguided impression that those notes aren't likely to be seen by anyone except possibly my goodreads friends, unlike a review, which I think might be more readily found.

Some of my friends are much more actively engaged in goodreads features, such as author forums, etc. but I'm in no hurry to take the plunge.

So basically, I don't use goodreads much to get book recommendations (though I do keep an eye on what friends are reading that way). I mostly use it to keep track of what I am reading/have read/want to read. But I find it very effective for that. (My list is here if you'd like to take a peek.)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Bookshalfshellvenus on January 15th, 2013 03:53 am (UTC)
I hadn't realized you could use it to collect the books you'd read. Thanks for the pointers-- your example was really helpful!

I signed up, and have so far rated a bunch of stuff. I can see already that my tastes are very eclectic. I like some fantasy/mystery/contemporary authors, but there are a whole bunch of popular books that don't click with me.

But this will be nice to keep track of things in case I want to discuss them later (sometimes, I actually revisit them in LJ entries), and to have something that might tie into our library system to keep track of "want to reads" rather than the MS Text file I use for that. ;)

What I could really use is a feedback system from the library itself during checkout that says, "You have previously checked out this book. Continue?" Most of my checkouts are for my son, a voracious reader for years, and I mistakenly check out books he's already read because I can't keep track of them all!

Thanks for the suggestions. :)

amodalie: superman subtextamodalie on January 14th, 2013 09:52 pm (UTC)
Hey! I like these books-list, made one myself for 2012. Jasper Fforde was my sursprise discovery of the year. I don't know this Dragon book you read but his "Thursday Next" series and his "Shades of Grey".
Oh, and I have listened to "American on Purpose" as an audiobook. Read by Craig Ferguson himself, of course, which gives it this extra Scottish flavour ;-) I liked it very much because it is really funny on the one hand - he is the master of crazy exaggeration -, and on the other it feels authentic and honest.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on January 14th, 2013 10:04 pm (UTC)
I must remember to read "Shades Of Grey"!! The person who introduced me to the whole Thursday Next series said he hated it, and I keep forgetting to try it. Plus, now it's forever rolled in with the dreaded "Fifty Shades Of Gray" in my mind. :O

I also recommend his Nursery Crimes series, though there might be only 2 of those? They're detective work in an AU version of the Bookworld, with nursery rhyme characters cropping up in the background. Plus, the "News" reports at the top of each chapter are hilarious!

"American on Purpose" was a terrific read, and "honest" sums it up very well. I think he did exactly what he set out to do-- reflect on other people with kindness, but spare no barbs when it came to his own shortcomings. It was funny, but also very moving. Really, looking at his school experiences growing up, I can see why he hit upon drinking as early as he did.
amodalie: M/Lamodalie on January 16th, 2013 10:24 pm (UTC)
I suppose Fforde is one of those love 'em or hate 'em writers. "Shades of Grey" (shame about the titel mishap!) was my first book by him and it fascinated me because it was different. I have always loved the classic creators of new worlds, like Jules Verne, Ray Bradbury, H.G.Wells, etc., and Fforde creates his own mix of utopia/dystopia with a modern touch. His Thursday Next series has a lot of humour, too. Often more than absurd, but humour nonetheless :D The Nursery Crimes are on my list now :)

Wish it was a bit easier to watch Craig Ferguson's show over here. Luckily there is youtube...

Oh, any by the way: Thank you for the cute v-gift-Man on my profile page :)) Looks very yummeh!
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on January 17th, 2013 12:58 am (UTC)
I suppose Fforde is one of those love 'em or hate 'em writers.
I think so-- either you like satire and absurdity and intellectual humor, or you don't. Though even at my house, my son loves those books as much as I do, and my husband (the English major!) "sort of" likes them.

I'm amazed that you read so many books in English (isn't German your native language?) I'd think that would be difficult, but then, my German was never anywhere near as good as your English!

If you like Fforde, then you might also like Adam Rex's "The True Meaning Of Smekday." I think it appeals to much the same sense of humor. ;)

You're very welcome for the egift! Glad it made you smile. :)
amodalie: went blueamodalie on January 19th, 2013 12:29 pm (UTC)
Yep, my native language is German, and actually, while I enjoy reading books in English from time to time I did not do so with Fforde. I suppose a lot of the humour would be completely lost on me :D
Craig Ferguson on the other hand isn't even available in German.

But I really like the English language, always have, so DANKESCHÖN for the compliment!^^ :) It always amazes me when people with other native languages know a bit of German at all, because they have learned it in school, have a German granny, have studied over here etc. That being said, I suppose the 'hip language' to learn these days is Chinese, isn't it?

Thanks for the rec. "Smekday" does sound good!