Sunday Status Update: June 11, 2017

Character update is on break again this week.

Bill: This week I read Victoria Schwab’s This Savage Song, a well-told YA book and am looking forward to starting book two, Our Dark Duet, which closes the duology, today. I also finished A World From Dust by Ben McFarland, a fascinating if sometimes dense look at how the rules of chemistry together with early geology directed evolution; and Digging in the Dark by Ben Johnson, a brief regional history of the grave robbing trade around Yorkshire England. In film the family went to see Wonder Woman and while I had a few issues, I though it well done and enjoyable. I’d put it in the middle of the pack of the Marvel films but it certainly blows away the last three DC movies, and Gal Godot was absolutely fantastic. And while we’re on the subject of DC, I’ll note the sad passing of Adam West, my first Batman, and the one I’m most fond of.

Sandy: Moi? I am currently reading my third book in a row by Edmond “The World Wrecker” Hamilton. It is one of his later works, entitled Doomstar (1966). I am greatly enjoying this one and am pleased to discover that the author’s writing abilities showed more and more sophistication as his lengthy career progressed. I hope to be able to get a review out for this one very shortly…

Stuart: Getting quite busy with London move preparations and will be for the next month, so while I have time to listen to the entire 4-book HYPERION CANTOS series by Dan Simmons, I just don’t have the time or energy to craft reviews of these very dense literary space operas (Kat will probably come after me to demand reviews at some point!). I’ve finished Hyperion (1989) and Fall of Hyperion (1991), and they are a pretty impressive achievement. The storyline is very complex, the back stories of the seven pilgrims to Hyperion are each distinct tales, and there are heaps of space battles, AIs, space portals, a WorldWeb and galactic empires, and a murderous super-creature called a Shrike that guards the mysterious Time Tombs on Hyperion. I’ve started Endymion (1996) now, which takes place several centuries after the first two books, and it is equally dense and engrossing.

Terry: In the weeks since I last reported here, I finished up Benedict Jacka‘s urban fantasy series (so far — looking forward to the next one) with Burned and Bound, as well as Megan Whalen Turner‘s Thick as Thieves, all of which I enjoyed very much (reviews to follow). I’ve started a ridiculous number of other books, but nothing has yet taken hold of my imagination: Catherynne M. Valente‘s The Refrigerator Monologues; Tulip Fever by Deborah Moggach, a mainstream novel about a women in 17th century Amsterdam, and involving art — I can never resist books that feature art; My Cousin Rachel by Daphne du Marier (in anticipation of the new movie); Feedback by Mira Grant, the latest in her series about zombies and journalists; The Furthest Station by Ben Aaronovitch, a novella featuring his series character, PC Peter Grant; Maplecroft by Cherie Priest, because Marion raved about it; and This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab, because I’m so impressed with her work that I’ve set out to read everything she’s written. I think I’m so flighty about picking a book to stay with is because I keep getting distracted by politics, and am reading tons of newspaper and magazine articles about what’s going on in Washington. It’s a hideous spectacle, but I can’t seem to look away.

Tim: This week, I continued reading The Dream-Quest of Vellitt Boe, by Kij Johnson. Very good. I’ve also begun listening to The Fall of Hyperion by Dan Simmons, having after many attempts finished off Hyperion, the first book in the series.


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TIM SCHEIDLER, who’s been with us since June 2011, holds a Master’s Degree in Popular Literature from Trinity College Dublin. Tim enjoys many authors, but particularly loves J.R.R. Tolkien, Robin Hobb, George R.R. Martin, Neil Gaiman, and Susanna Clarke. When he’s not reading, Tim enjoys traveling, playing music, writing in any shape or form, and pretending he’s an athlete.

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