Reading #60 2013 Bankruptcy Edition

I’m declaring reading note bankruptcy for anything read in 2013. Or early 2014. It was a busy summer and fall and winter. I did keep a list, though.


Of the nonfiction, I particularly recommend How Music Works by David Byrne and A Paradise Built in Hell by Rebecca Solnit. Both expanded my understanding of what humans can do, individually and in groups. Much more is hard to ask from any book.

  • How Music Works by David Byrne
  • The Russian Revolution by Richard Pipes
  • The Cult of Beauty: The Victorian Avant-Garde 1860-1900 by Lynn Federle Orr and Stephen Calloway
  • Words and Music: A History of Pop in the Shape of a City by Paul Morley
  • A Paradise Built in Hell: The Extraordinary Communities That Arise in Disaster by Rebecca Solnit
  • News from Nowhere and Other Writings by William Morris
  • Empires of the Silk Road: A History of Central Eurasia from the Bronze Age to the Present by Christopher I. Beckwith
  • Of Dice and Men: The Story of Dungeons & Dragons and The People Who Play It by David M. Ewalt
  • How to Read the Bible: A Guide to Scripture, Then and Now by James L. Kugel

New (to me) Fiction

Of the fiction, I particularly recommend Blackbirds by Chuck Wendig, the Newsflesh trilogy by Mira Grant, How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff, Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides and Joyland by Stephen King.

Blackbirds is a fantasy thriller with a noir feel and a unique voice. Joyland is my favorite kind of Stephen King novel — quiet, thoughtful, and creepy. How I Live Now is a young adult novel which kept going in directions I didn’t expect.  Middlesex is hard to describe but you can think of it as a history of Detroit through the eyes of one odd individual. The Newsflesh trilogy is far, far better than a trilogy about zombie-hunting bloggers has any right to be.

Looking at this list, all but Middlesex follow a similar pattern: they’re short, take a classic genre trope (or three) in a new direction, and feature a distinct voice.

  • The Hydrogen Sonata by Iain M. Banks
  • Caliban’s War by James S.A. Corey
  • Abaddon’s Gate  by James S.A. Corey
  • Leviathan Wakes by James S.A. Corey
  • Gateway by Frederik Pohl
  • Blackbirds by Chuck Wendig
  • Deadline by Mira Grant
  • Blackout  by Mira Grant
  • How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff
  • A Natural History of Dragons: A Memoir by Lady Trent by Marie Brennan
  • The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith
  • Gate of Ivrel by C. J. Cherryh
  • Middlesex: A Novel by Jeffrey Eugenides
  • All You Need Is Kill by Hiroshi Sakurazaka
  • Limits of Power by Elizabeth Moon
  • Joyland  by Stephen King
  • The entire Change series by S. M. Stirling

Graphic novels

  • Saga, Vol. 1 by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples
  • Prophet, Vol. 1: Remission by Simon Roy, Farel Dalrymple, Giannis Milogiannis and Brandon Graham
  • Captain Marvel, Vol. 1: In Pursuit of Flight by Kelly Sue Deconnick, Dexter Soy and Emma Rios
  • Fatale, Book 2: The Devil’s Business by Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips
  • Invisibles (whole series) by Grant Morrison
  • Hawkeye, Vol. 1: My Life as a Weapon by Matt Fraction
  • Hawkeye: Little Hits, Vol. 2 by Matt Fraction
  • Young Avengers, Vol. 1 by Kieron Gillen and Jamie McKelvie

Re-Read Fiction

  • Against the Odds by Elizabeth Moon
  • Cetaganda by Elizabeth McMaster Bujold
  • Phoenix by Steven Brust
  • Dragon by Stephen Brust
  • Zodiac by Neal Stephenson
  • Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
  • American Gods by Neil Gaiman
  • The core Dorsai novels by Gordon Dickson
  • Most of the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy “trilogy” by
  • Dune by Frank Herbert
  • Freedom and Necessity by Steven Brust and Emma Bull