Reading Wednesday 4/01 - Livre d'Or — LiveJournal

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Reading Wednesday 4/01
Wednesday, 04 January 2017 at 09:23 pm
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Recently acquired: I did very well for books as presents for chanukah and Christmas and my birthday.

Recently read: The invisible library by Genevieve Cogman. (c) Genevieve Cogman 2015, Pub Tor 2015, ISBN 978-1-4472-5623-6. It's a fun and satisfying urban fantasy.

I mostly read The Invisible Library between the end of term and Christmas, when I had a bit more time than usual for just relaxing and reading a novel. It's quite light, but stays away from genre clichés and I really enjoyed reading it. I loved the world building, it's mostly scenery but it's very fun scenery. I'm definitely the right audience for library-based magic, and TIL just feels right, with the Library existing as a kind of conduit between alternate realities. It felt like a fresh take on some of the usual supernatural creatures, your dragons who can take human form, your Fae, your vampires, werewolves etc. And I enjoyed the way it takes a particular alternate world with a certain balance of technology versus magic, implying that there are other points along the scale. The setting is neither historically accurate nor steampunk, but its own thing.

The pace remains exciting but not frenetic throughout, and there's a great development of the relationships between characters. I particularly enjoyed the small-scale politics, whether the jockeying for position in the academia-like Library or the machinations between characters within a particular social stratum of this particular alt-London. There's a good sense of the uncanny and moments that are really frightening without going too far into gore and horror. There's a slightly odd reverse male-gaze thing going on where the POV character constantly tells us how attractive she finds every vaguely humanoid male character, but that's a minor flaw.

Definitely looking forward to more in this series!

Currently reading: A journey to the end of the Millennium by AB Yehoshua. Found this in Camden market and couldn't quite resist it. It's written in 1999 and set in 999, which is perhaps a bit obvious, but I am enjoying Yehoshua's choice of a viewpoint character who is an African, polygamous Jewish merchant travelling to the backwaters of Northern Europe.

Up next: I am desperate to read Katy and I might well start it before I finish the Yehoshua, which is lush and poetic and slow.

(Have plenty to post about, since I've been almost non-stop busy since about 23rd December, plus I want to look back on 2016 and forward to the new year, but let's start up posting again with a Reading Wednesday.)

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Whereaboooots: 10th century France
Tuuuuune: G-Eazy + Bebe Rexha: Me, myself and I
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