Bibliophile Lass (bibliogirl) wrote,
Bibliophile Lass

Reading list

I took seven books with me to Munich. Some would say that was too many, but I know my reading habits ;)

Peter Moore, Swahili For The Broken-Hearted: I didn't realise when I bought this that I already had one of his other books, No Shitting In The Toilet. Both are travel books; Swahili For The Broken-Hearted details a journey from Cape Town to Cairo taken shortly after the breakup of a relationship. In all honesty the breakup, despite giving the book a nifty title, plays not so much second fiddle in the narrative as somewhere in the back row of the viola section. More of it is about visa difficulties, dodgy bars across the continent (can't you see why I liked this book?) and the complexities of bus travel when you are likely to be ambushed if you travel by night.

Nevil Shute, Round the Bend: a Shute I hadn't previously read which I picked up at a book sale a little while back. An interesting collision of the emergence of a cult (mostly) of personality in an engineering setting. I didn't think the storyline worked as well as some of Shute's other works.

Connie Willis, Passage: Well-conceived plot which could have done with some REALLY major editing along the way. This is a fat paperback, maybe 500 pages, and by the time I was about two-thirds of the way through I was dying for the thing to just get on with it. I can't really recommend it, sorry, though I would have given a lot to put Maisie, from this book, together with the mother character from David Baddiel's book Time for Bed (and see what new disasters they collectively came up with).

Linus Torvalds and David Diamond, Just For Fun: basically Torvalds' autobiography to date, along with some semi-philosophical musings. Less substantial than I might have hoped, or perhaps I just wasn't in the mood for ponderings about the nature of open source. I'll probably re-read it some other time.

Steve Aylett, Bigot Hall: I randomly added this to my wish list after running across it on Amazon as it sounded like it might be fun. It's a shame they hadn't noted the blurb by Michael Moorcock. Good prose, no plot, generally much like you might imagine something Moorcock might like - basically reads like the author was at least semi-stoned when he wrote it. I mean, not in the William Burroughs league of stoned, or, gods help us, Moorcock himself (I know his books aren't that bad, but I saw the guy speak once. Or, should I say, 'slur'. This is what happens if you do too many drugs, boys and girls.) I'm not sure I'll be re-reading it any time soon.

Samuel Florman, The Civilized Engineer: Ruminations on the relationship between engineers, engineering, education and the arts. A thought-provoking read. I would have loved to see a discussion between this chap and Nevil Shute; I originally typed 'debate' but I think they'd've been very much on the same side. The book itself is a little bit dated - it's from about 1987 or so - and also rather biased towards the way engineers are educated in the US, but I don't think things are so amazingly different over here in the UK that many of the points aren't still valid.

Richard Morgan, Altered Carbon: Picked up on spec because the description of it as a combination cyberpunk and detective novel appealed. Definitely a worthwhile purchase. It's a riveting read, rotwang and I have been fighting over it ;) It has some really nifty ideas and is excellently told. I wouldn't necessarily pick it up above Michael Marshall Smith, but it'll do for filling in the gaps between his books ;)

  • Gah -- "friends" page styles

    Anyone know how to turn off LJ's new "feed" style friends pages? Do not want. I find my existing 25-entries-per-page to be much more manageable.

  • (no subject)

    Merry winter-festival-of-your-choice, all of you!

  • Gissa job...

    No, no, not me, but a friend of mine is losing his retail job this coming Monday when the place where he works closes down. (Nice timing...) Anyone…

  • Post a new comment


    default userpic

    Your IP address will be recorded 

    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.