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« January, 2020 »

The Poser   book icon  
by Jacob Rubin (2015)

read: 29 January 2020
rating: [+]
category: fiction

Another of the books I got over the holidays from the library booksale. This book was super uneven but I liked the central point. The main character is a guy with a gift for mimicry and less of an ability to know who he is. He gets famous but there’s an emptiness to it and his life doesn’t go where he thinks it will or even where you-the-reader think it will.I liked the ending so much it made up for parts of the book being a little tough and hopeless.

The American Agent   book icon  
by Jacqueline Winspear (2019)

read: 25 January 2020
rating: [+]
category: fiction

This book takes place during the Blitz which is a real organizing factor for a lot of what happens.Maisie and Priscilla are driving ambulances, the American Mark Scott shows up and is mysterious, people need to sleep wherever they wind up when the air raid sirens go off.I’d read a fair amount about the Blitz but it was nice to see your characters inside a bit of history to give it a little more rounding out. The central mystery to this book was better and more interesting than the one in the last book too which I appreciated.

To Die But Once   book icon  
by Jacqueline Winspear (2018)

read: 23 January 2020
rating: [+]
category: fiction

Wound up taking home the sequel to this book from the library and then realizing I hadn’t read the one before it! This was kind of a sad story with the death of a young man early on in the process and a lot of trying to figure out whodunit. I liked it but did not love it, a lot of interesting historical stuff about the war but most of the characters we spent time with besides Maisie and her regulars, seemed to be having a tough time of it.

Spag: An American Business Legend   book icon  
by Elsa Tivnan (2000)

read: 19 January 2020
rating: [+]
category: non-fiction

This book was a gift from my SO who also grew up going to Spag’s as a kid. This book is written by Spag’s sister. I expected a puff piece hagiography with this book . But it was good! I shopped in this store as a kid, and as a teen, and I loved being there again. The one super weird aspect of this book was that they talked and talked about how much Spag loved his family, his mother, his wife, etc, but barely mentioned his three daughters who wound up inheriting the store. I’d really love to hear their take on this story.

Medusa Uploaded   book icon  
by Emily Devenport (2018)

read: 16 January 2020
rating: [+]
category: fiction

Always good to do a palate cleanse with a bad Tor book with a better Tor book. This is the book i think i was hoping that Binti or Ascension would be but both of them had characters experiencing too much raw pain and I found it hard to take. The main character in this one is a little more reserved (thought she is a killer) and seeing the story through her eyes was a helpful way to look at things. I enjoy generation ship stories and this was a good one.

The Pixel Eye   book icon  
by Paul Levinson (2004)

read: 9 January 2020
rating: [0]
category: fiction

Picked this up from a library book sale, saw the futuristic blurb and that it was on Tor and thought I’d try it. Definitely not my thing. The central conceit was interesting enough--oh hey maybe we can implant spying devices in small mammals for security purposes--but the implementation was off.Like, the main character was so sexist I found myself wondering if it was a plot device that would be his undoing later (i twas not) so I just had to spend a lot of time with a sexist low-level jerk of a main character.Interesting enough but overall not for me,

Green Mountain Boys of Summer   book icon  
by Tom Simon (2000)

read: 7 January 2020
rating: [+]
category: non-fiction

Really enjoyed this comprehensive and well-researched book about people who were born in Vermont and played (even a little) in Major League baseball. There are a wealth pf photos and interviews, many not published before, that flesh out the history of baseball in Vermont as well as some of the history of Vermont itself. Many of the early players came from immigrant families and it was interesting to read how they got to where they were and/or the challenges they faced playing baseball. A well-done book with a few familiar faces.

Acceptance   book icon  
by Jeff VanderMeer (2014)

read: 4 January 2020
rating: [+]
category: fiction

This is the finale in the trilogy about the weird Area X in the Southern Reach which, once you read more about the author, you know to be somewhere in Florida. I didn’t get a lot of closure but I wasn’t expecting much. I got to learn a lot more about an unsympathetic character from the first book and lost sympathy for some of the characters from the second book. Overall this was a great trilogy and I liked how each of the books was a little different in its approach to the same weird stuff.

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