liv: Bookshelf labelled: Caution. Hungry bookworm (bookies)
[personal profile] liv
Recently read: Oh my gosh, it's covered in Rule 30s by Stephen Wolfram. A rather sweet as well as informative blog post about the architecture of my new local station (still excited about having a local train station!) and how it's inspired by cellular automata.

Currently reading: Too like the lightning by Ada Palmer. I'm liking it so far; I think I largely disagree with the people who find it too slow and infodumpy, I'm really enjoying the worldbuilding as well as caring about the plot. And I'm really liking the juxtaposition of a miracle-working child with global politics and an intriguing heist arc.

But I agree with the people who have complained that it misses the mark with what it's doing with gender. In the manner of those dystopia parodies: in the future, gender is outlawed and the government controls religion! The idea is that the narrator, from a post-gender future society, whimsically decides to impose what he thinks of as eighteenth century gender roles on all the people he meets. I'm pretty sure the idea is that he's supposed to be unreliable, but in practice too much of the book so far consists of random solliloquies about how people who use their sexuality to manipulate others must definitely be female.

Up next: I'm only a little way through TLTL. And I'm still in Hugo reading mode so possibly All the Birds in the Sky, by Charlie Jane Anders; the rest of the novels shortlist is all second books in well-lauded series so I'm less inclined to vote for them.

(no subject)

Date: 2017-06-07 07:28 pm (UTC)
ambyr: a dark-winged man standing in a doorway over water; his reflection has white wings (watercolor by Stephanie Pui-Mun Law) (Default)
From: [personal profile] ambyr
I have thoughts on TLTL, but I don't want to spoil you until you've finished the book. So consider this a reminder to myself to come back later.

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Date: 2017-06-08 12:09 am (UTC)
redbird: full bookshelves and table in a library (books)
From: [personal profile] redbird
I'm not reading for the Hugos, but I just finished A Closed and Common Orbit, a couple of weeks after reading The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet, and I liked it, but don't think it's as good as the first book (which I liked a lot).

(no subject)

Date: 2017-06-08 12:00 pm (UTC)
redbird: full bookshelves and table in a library (books)
From: [personal profile] redbird
The recommendations I got for it included that it was soothing/comforting to read a book about people who got along/worked together the ways that the crew of the Wayfarer did, and the way it shows chosen family shows being created and maintained.

That's sort of orthogonal to some of the other ways people might judge an sf novel (like how good the worldbuilding is, or whether they think the plot holds together). I'm not sure whether having read the first book makes a significant different to liking or understanding the second (though if you care about spoilers and think you might want to read The long way to a small, angry planet I would definitely recommend starting there.

Possibly dubious comparison: some people read detective/mystery novels in part for the reassurance that the mystery will be resolved, and something resembling justice will be done (and thus aren't happy with the sort where the mastermind escapes to plot another day, even though the form of "crime occurs/is discovered, protagonist(s) investigate and figure out what's going on." (This comment is informed by remembering a conversation in one of Sayers's books where she has someone say something along those lines, detective stories are our most moral fiction, because they show that process.)

Soundbite

Miscellaneous. Eclectic. Random. Perhaps markedly literate, or at least suffering from the compulsion to read any text that presents itself, including cereal boxes.

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