Reading Log, September-October 2013

I haven’t posted anything substantive in this blog in a really long time! Sorry about that.

I haven’t been doing a lot of writing, but as usual when not writing much, I have been reading, and I’ve been logging that reading, after a fashion. I’ve decided to post my off-the-cuff commentaries in manageable chunks For Your Pleasure. These posts are going to have a mixture of fiction, nonfiction, and fanfiction.

September 2013
Fiction: Blood of Tyrants by Naomi Novik, latest in the Temeraire series, which I enjoyed despite being braced for a cliffhanger-ish ending (which I got). I think we visited Shogun while the characters were in Japan, a book I haven’t read but have heard a lot about, then they went to China and Russia. One more Temeraire book to go, sigh. I will miss those characters!
The Maker’s Mask (The Books Of Requite Book 1) by Ankaret Wells – the heroine/pov character is a geeky engineer trying to navigate among all these gorgeous fantasy creatures swanning around with swirly capes and swords. There is some interesting stuff with gender which I won’t spoil here.

Nonfiction: About Time 5: The Unauthorized Guide to Doctor Who, which I enjoyed in a thoroughly geeky way, particularly the details and constraints of how television was made in that period (I’m now up to the last volume in this series, BTW).
Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal by Mary Roach – chatty, informative, entertaining, a ship passing in the night.

Fanfiction: Thaw by Domenika Marzione, who writes military-inflected stories; it’s a sequel to her story Freezer Burn and puts the Winter Soldier movie arc into her version of The Avengers continuity.

October 2013
Fiction: Mounting Danger by Karis Walsh, a lesbian romance with horse and polo and mounted police neepery, which was fun. The author did a great job of integrating the horse stuff with all the other aspects of the plot. I was amused by how one of the characters, Cal, was typically rich and rakish, the other a former foster kid, very upright and rulebound. I did a preview of this one for Heroes and Heartbreakers.

Nonfiction: The Women Who Wrote the War: The Compelling Story of the Path-breaking Women War Correspondents of World War II by Nancy Caldwell Sorel – I had read practically nothing about World War II before, though I have a few books on the To Be Read. This book skips between the various women as it advances forward in time, so I frequently had to remind myself who each person was, mainly because I read it in small segments. I really enjoyed reading about the variety of roles women played in war journalism, and how they worked with and around rules to accomplish things.
Edwardian Life and Leisure by Ronald Pearsall – a recommendation from, I think, Evangeline Holland. It had a lot of good information, but his coverage of the suffrage movement was rather…annoying, I will say.

Fanfiction: User Since by rageprufrock, a very meta story about an online discussion group for fans of Captain America, and the participation of Agent Phil Coulson of S.H.I.E.L.D..

After this, my log jumps forward to February 2014, so I’ll start there next time.

About Victoria Janssen

Victoria Janssen [she, her] currently writes cozy space opera for Kalikoi. The novella series A Place of Refuge begins with Finding Refuge: Telepathic warrior Talia Avi, genius engineer Miki Boudreaux, and augmented soldier Faigin Balfour fought the fascist Federated Colonies for ten years, following the charismatic dissenter Jon Churchill. Then Jon disappeared, Talia was thought dead, and Miki and Faigin struggled to take Jon’s place and stay alive. When the FC is unexpectedly upended, Talia is reunited with her friends and they are given sanctuary on the enigmatic planet Refuge. The trio of former guerillas strive to recover from lifetimes of trauma, build new lives on a planet with endless horizons, and forge tender new connections with each other.
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