Reading, Rainbow

One of the nice things, for me at least, about being gloomy is that I get a lot of reading done. Some people, I’m sure, turn to controlled substances; I turn to escapist fiction. 🙂 I’d committed to reading 75 books this year through Goodreads, and have already made my way 26% toward my goal. Of course, the books weren’t exactly the most intellectually challenging ever:

reading2011

This collection of book covers is generated automatically by Goodreads, and is arranged from most recently read (top left) to first read in 2011 (bottom right). You’ll see that I started off the year in a mad dash to wrap up the Ender and Bean series (serieses? what the heck do you do with that plural? serii?) by Orson Scott Card. (Still trying to track down a copy of First Meetings so that I can put the series to rest, at least until the new book comes out.) I re-read Night with my class, took a couple of little detours into COMPLETELY RANDOM LAND (i.e., True Grit and Bishop Blackie), and read Lives on the Boundary for a class.

NOTE TO SELF: There ought to be another for-class book up there, but there were disasters. So yeah, I may be in deep trouble with my grad class this time. I did so love that 4.0…

I picked up the Parasol Protectorate series (Soulless, Changeless, Blameless) and was initially underwhelmed, but then got wrapped up in it enough that I’m dying while waiting for book #4 to emerge. I stumbled upon a used copy of Briar Rose and fell in love; I bought a $4 copy of a book about roller derby and enjoyed that pretty well, too. I finally finished the audio book of Life As We Knew It – easily one of the most depressing books I’ve ever read, I think, which is something considering it’s YA – and made a second tentative step back into the world of science fiction with John Scalzi’s Old Man’s War and sequel. (I just checked out the third book from the library and am excited to read it… so far, so good.) And then, curious about a much-hyped YA post-apocalyptic dystopia series, I read and am reserving judgment on Gone and Hunger. They’re good, and I want to know what happens next – but the hype, it is too hype-y.

Right now, I am splitting my time between behaving and escaping with the following:

reading2011currentThe two yellow books are for classes; the one with the saxophone is as clear as mud and as dense as bricks, but it makes me feel smart (except when it’s making me feel dumb), so that’s something. The one on the far left is actually pretty interesting, for a bunch of short pieces about teaching developmental writing. The Jack book is another adult/modern retelling of a fairy tale, in the same series as Briar Rose, and so far I’m quite liking it. It reminds me of Emma Bull’s urban fantasy, which is a very, very good thing. There’s not nearly enough of it to go around. And finally, Princess Academy is my current “listen while commuting” pick. I don’t tend to pick very challenging audio books – YA is just right, neither too tough nor too juvenile – because I’m trying to listen to them at 7 AM while not yet awake, and at 5 PM while trying to stay awake. This one is a “full cast” recording, which means that there’s a different voice actor for every character instead of a single reader. Jury’s still out on that one; I’m not a very audio-capable person (world’s biggest understatement) so any sort of audio recording challenges me, and the multitude of voices actually seems to make this a bit tougher. We’ll see.

I wanted an excuse to make this entry’s title “reading rainbow,” so here you go: You should join the Rainbow Delegation and get a free wristband and wear it. And then you should tell me how likely it is to get in trouble at my workplace if I ask around  about starting a GSA. I don’t have job security yet, but if the legislature has its way I’ll never get it…

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