April Reading (I)

I’ll be out of town for the weekend and swamped with work for a few days after that, so here in advance is the first bit of my monthly post on books I’ve been reading. Luckily I’ve written about quite a few of these already so links are all that is really needed.

H.G Wells – The First Men in the Moon: I am planning to read (and in some cases reread) all of Wells over the next year or so, because I think I have neglected him. And also because I have obtained some very pretty editions of his books. For this book (which I wrote about here) I read the Penguin Classics edition with an introduction by China Mieville.

Edgar Allan Poe – The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket: I wrote about this here. I loved it; it was shrieky, ludicruous, surprisingly creepy goodness. I’ll soon be reading the Verne book that riffs off it (many thanks to FĂ«anor for pointing it out to me).

Gail Carriger – Soulless and Changeless: I read and enjoyed Soulless last year, and thought it would be fun to reread it before Changeless came out. It was still good the second time around, and Changeless turned out to be even better.

Paolo Bacigalupi – The Windup Girl: I thought this was excellent. I could have wished the publishers (or the author) had not gone and italicised every Thai word, but well. It was engaging and impressive. I’m just not sure how much I liked it. Jonathan M. has a good review of it here.

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie – The Thing Around Your Neck: I read this at the beginning of the month and really should have written about it then, when it was still fresh in my mind. It’s too late now, but wow. This is a wonderful collection. It’s thoughtful and restrained and feminist and African and occasionally gutwrenching. I’m reading everything this woman has ever written.

Paul Jessup – Glass Coffin Girls: I reviewed this here. It’s a collection I’ll be returning to often, I hope. It’s dark and rich and gives you so much to think with. Delicious.

Kyla Pasha – High Noon and the Body: I wish I knew enough about poetry to talk about this collection as it deserves to be talked about. I’ve been dipping in and out of it since February and have consisently been blown away. Lovely, lovely book.

Syed Muhammad Ashraf - Numberdar Ka Neela (translated as The Beast by Musharraf Ali Farooqi): Tranquebar are doing these nice little short story/novella editions of Indian fiction, and I thought this one looked good. I was particularly drawn to it because Musharraf Ali Farooqi is a fine translator and did such a wonderful job on the Hamzanama and Tilism-e Hoshruba. The Beast is a satire of sorts about a power hungry zamindar who trains a violent bull to protect his interests. It’s a frequently comical, frequently angry murder mystery, that has lots of things to say about the nature of power. It’s also an incredibly nuanced piece of writing. I hope to return to it and write on it at length, but until then read Roswitha on the text.

The rest of my reading for this month will follow, including whatever I read on the plane tomorrow.

One Comment to “April Reading (I)”

  1. Somewhat esoteric list, one that I'd love to possess with a few changes here and there. I'd probably replace Wells with Raymond Carver and Kyla Pasha with Philip K Dick but you've turned on my interest in Soulless and Changeless.
    Have a safe flight!

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