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What are y'all reading and watching lately?

I've been picking away at due South. It's just so cute and fuzzy, you guys!

In reading I'm on a Patricia McKillip kick while also working my way through the Hugo-nominated novels. The Three-Body Problem had a lot of interesting ideas, and I love the creepiness as the mystery unfolds over the first 2/3. It's been many moons since I read a book that cared this much about pure science, rather than applied. All that talk about the three-body problem was almost as good as math. :D The backstory dumps that come after the reveal just kill the momentum, though. And now I'm a little way into The Goblin Emperor, which so far is a fine and pleasant read but has not distinguished itself to me at all. I'm also hoping some more women show up soon. (NO SPOILERS. Remember I am a delicate flower about spoilers!)

I've actually read more in the past month than I feel like I have in a really long time. This makes me very happy.

That said, I'm so behind on comics. I have a whole pile I need to get to. In a few weeks, maybe. And I see there are new issues of Copperhead out! \o/

Crossposted from Dreamwidth. Comment here or there. (comment count unavailable DW replies)


( 17 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 17th, 2015 06:20 am (UTC)
Which McKillips are you reading? I don't usually get on with her style, but there are a few I like. The most recent thing of hers I tried to read I couldn't lay my hands on - it was the Cygnet Duology, and it seemed like my best bet was interloan from another city, which dimmed my enthusiasm for the time being.

I'm currently reading Pamela Dean's Tam Lin. It's not entirely working for me. The characters are consistent, but I'm not always convinced to care about the things they care about. I want to finish it, though - I'm borrowing it from a friend, and I want to discuss it with her when I return it.

May. 17th, 2015 06:36 am (UTC)
I recently read Od Magic, which was weirdly heavy-handed and also much more interested in certain characters than I was. I also reread The Bell at Sealey Head, which is cute but somehow felt both times like the pieces didn't quite come together right, like as worldbuilding/mythology? And now I'm rereading The Changeling Sea. I would say my favorites are probably The Tower at Stony Wood, Alphabet of Thorn, and Solstice Wood (which is a little different, being contemporary fantasy).

Tam Lin is a favorite! I reread it a lot. I think I enjoy it partly because I'm not a lit geek, really, not that kind of literature, so I enjoy reading them geeking out about and living vicariously through them a little. Also the whole thing is just so weird and unsettling - I really like what she achieved with the style, and how everything feels half a bubble off plumb.
May. 17th, 2015 08:17 am (UTC)
Well, I like Alphabet of Thorn. I liked the scope. I found Tower at Stony Wood too difficult to get into - the descriptions are just too layered for me, so I feel half-blinded, like I can't figure out what's going on - and I haven't read the others you list.

That's interesting, and it may explain one reason I'm not enjoying Tam Lin. Part of the college experience it describes is familiar, but I wasn't an American college student. So, I guess I'm supposed to feel a slow building of weirdness, but instead something either feels familiar to me or it doesn't, and I can't tell if an unfamiliar thing is an American college thing or if it's a deliberately weird thing. And I did major in English Literature, but quoting poetry with fellow students in the way that these characters do would have felt unbearably pretentious. We were more likely to draw gory cartoons in the margins of our Old English saints' lives.

May. 21st, 2015 09:25 pm (UTC)
You know, I've heard from other people who had similar difficulties with Tam Lin in that it was very different from their college experience, and so they had trouble relating. I'm not a lit major, but I did go to a small school with a similar vibe to Blackstock. I can see how that would make judging the weirdness value of individual aspects of the book really difficult, though. I'd be interested to hear what you thought after you finished! I have more feelings about it, but I don't want to give anything away.

It keeps surprising me how much McKillip I still haven't read. She's been really prolific in the last fifteen years or so!

May. 17th, 2015 06:45 am (UTC)
I think it's sufficiently non-spoilery to say that a female character ended up being one of my favorite things about The Goblin Emperor (which I enjoyed a lot on the whole). Some of the speculation I've heard about why the book was so well received *is* spoilery though, so I'll hold that until you're done with the book. :)
May. 21st, 2015 09:26 pm (UTC)
Duly noted! And yeah, I don't feel like I understand yet why people are such fans. It's an engaging story, but...? But he hasn't even been crowned yet; there's tons of story still to go.
May. 17th, 2015 04:39 pm (UTC)
Ooh, Goblin Emperor looks really interesting.

What are y'all reading and watching lately?

I've been devouring Australian author Liane Moriarty for the past few weeks. It's not fantasy, so it's not my usual thing, but her plots are delightfully whimsical and unusual, her writing is compulsively readable, and her characters (mostly female) are amazingly human and complex. I don't think it'd be your thing b/c it's not fantasy, but if you ever did want some contemporary fiction, I can't recommend her enough.

I watched Jurassic Park last night night/this morning because WHY NOT (I want Jurassic World so badly. And by that I mean I want the dinosaurs, not Chris Pratt or BDH or any of the actual actors), but in general...Jane the Virgin was my happy place this year in terms of shows. Another thing I can't recommend highly enough. Now that summer hiatus is upon us, I think I'll be watching more Psych and Gravity Falls, the latter of which I've only seen a bit of but have heard is amazing.
May. 21st, 2015 09:27 pm (UTC)
Huh, yeah, I haven't heard of that author! I do occasionally read fiction that isn't SFF, but there's already so much SFF on my list that the other stuff doesn't make it on very often. :P

I think Jane the Virgin is another of those shows I'm just going to rec to people without ever watching any more of myself. I continue to be bad at TV.
May. 17th, 2015 09:27 pm (UTC)
Stanislaw Lem's short stories - finally got around to 'em when they landed on the Daphne award long list. Which are very prophetic and telling and blackly funny and imaginative, but not emotionally resonant, let's face it. Also Sex Criminals vol. 2 (even better than vol. 1!) and Fables #20.

Last awesome book I finished was, of all things, a website design/UX guide called Don't Make Me Think! by Steve Krug. I'd recommend it to anyone with a passing interest in how websites could be better, and why they so often suck (even in 2015).

Edited at 2015-05-17 09:27 pm (UTC)
May. 21st, 2015 09:30 pm (UTC)
Ooh. I have a Hugo voting membership, which means I just got the first trade of Sex Criminals in my voter packet and will finally get to read it - previously I'd only read the first issue.

Oh man, so many websites are so terrible. I was trying to look up cupcake delivery in a major US city the other day, and half the websites I looked at didn't even have flavors listed on the site! And college websites are always the worst. :P
May. 21st, 2015 10:52 pm (UTC)
My whole career path is hopefully turning into 'trying to make websites suck less.' All those years of faffing around online may pay off yet!

Add to the list with college websites, restaurant websites. ,a href="http://www.slate.com/articles/technology/technology/2011/08/overdone.html"This is still so often true</a>.
May. 22nd, 2015 01:08 am (UTC)
HAH. That sounds familiar and terrible.
May. 18th, 2015 03:51 am (UTC)
It's been many moons since I read a book that cared this much about pure science, rather than applied. All that talk about the three-body problem was almost as good as math. :D
That sounds really interesting? Is it a book you'd rec?

I'm way behind on comics, too. I've been trying to catch up on Marvel Unlimited, but they keep putting new ones up faster than I can read them and I'm still several weeks back. :P
May. 21st, 2015 09:32 pm (UTC)
I'd... rec it as being very interesting? It's an idea book, for sure; it's not much interested in characters or character arcs. And like I said, the pacing was strange. IDK. But if you did read it, I'd be curious to hear your thoughts. :)

I'm soooo behind on Marvel Unlimited. I think I'm going to let my subscription run out in August, because I just haven't been making use of it lately. :P
May. 22nd, 2015 01:20 am (UTC)
Oh, cool. Is it a complete story? I think I read it was part of a series.
May. 22nd, 2015 01:22 am (UTC)
Yeah, that's another thing - it's the first in a trilogy. So at very least you might want to wait until all three are translated.
May. 22nd, 2015 01:25 am (UTC)
Ahh, yeah, I might wait then.
( 17 comments — Leave a comment )

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