January! Roundup! January! 2018!!!
Ok, I’ll relax now. It’s all normal, everything’s ok. The year isn’t hurtling past at uncontrollable speeds.
Here’s what I read this January!
I discovered Terry Pratchett last year through Good Omens. I was aware of him before then- I knew there was some university culture thing about elephants on the back of a turtle, and an iconic-looking old dude with a black brimmed hat. What I didn’t know was how delightfully ridiculous his whole universe was, and so obviously just how much I would enjoy his writing. I was introduced to Hogfather last Christmas, and immediately fell in love with Death, Susan, and the rest of the regulars. When I had another audible credit, I decided to invest in another Pratchett book, because a person can only listen to Hogfather for so many months after Christmas before it becomes ridiculous. I was determined to hear more about the wizards, because they’re obviously the best bit of the disc world universe, but I was persuaded to give Going Postal a try instead, as it’s ‘obviously one of the best’.
Going Postal follows Moist Von Lipwig, a con man rescued from a death sentence and instead charged with resurrecting the failed postal service of Ankh-Morpork. He is aided by two questionably-sane postmen, his golem parole officer, and a chain smoking, golem-rights activist, as they fight back against the attempts to shut them down by the post services faster and more modern competition, the Grand Trunk’s Clacks line.
While I did really enjoy Going Postal, it didn’t quite manage to worm it’s way into my heart the same way Good Omens and Hogfather did. As bizarre as it is to say this about any Pratchett book, I think perhaps it wasn’t quite….silly enough for me? I missed the insanity of the Wizards and their Hex, and the variety of colourful side characters that populate the Disc World. I wasn’t really prepared for any Pratchett novel to be different from the first two I’ve read, and the slightly more (very slightly more) serious nature of the novel took me by surprise. After another reading it may grow on me, but at this stage I think I’ll be continuing my search for my new favourite Pratchett book.
Columbus Day was an Amazon recommendation after I finished my binge of the Expanse series. Earth has been invaded by a superior species and called in as foot soldiers in a war they know nothing about. Told through the eyes of a soldier in the US military, I sometimes found elements of Columbus Day to be uncomfortably patriotic- I would be curious to see if any Americans who have read this book feel the same way. Those occasional moments aside, this is an enjoyable read with a likable enough protagonist and an interesting handful of alien species. While it doesn’t live up to some of the other sci-fi I’ve been reading lately, it was interesting enough for me to push through to the end. Not something I would recommend to a friend, but not a book I would warn people off either. If you give this one a go, I would be really keen to know what you think!
Big Little Lies was my second audible purchase for this month (I know, two!). I’ve been working again on my Australian accent after it slipped a little during my Christmas holiday at home, so I looked up a list of Australian narrators to fill my ears with that sweet, sweet Aussie twang. I thought the concept of Big Little Lies sounded mildly interesting, but I didn’t expect to be a completely drawn in as I was! I must have finished the 16 hour book in about four days, and now I’m itching to binge on the TV series as well.
“Pirriwee Public is a beautiful little beachside primary school where children are taught that ‘sharing is caring.’ So how has the annual School Trivia Night ended in full-blown riot? Sirens are wailing. People are screaming. The principal is mortified.
And one parent is dead.”
Knowing that the book will end in a death from the start means that Liane Moriarty sends her readers hurtling towards the end with a sense of being witness to an impending trainwreck. Each chapter is interspersed with snatches of character interviews on the goings-on which reveal nothing but the many layers of intrigue and murderous intentions among the kindy parents of the idyllic beachside primary school. It’s very clear that this is not a case of ‘small children, small problems’ for the parents of Pirriwee Public.
Rendezvous with Rama was a book recommended by my Dad, believe it or not. I had no idea that he was even into sci-fi until this recommendation cropped up! Written in 1973, Rama is a gripping read, despite absolutely nothing really happening (at least so far).
I know. Even I’m ashamed of me at this point
What have you been reading this month? Comment below to share your favourite, I’m always looking for recommendations!
You can check out some of my earlier Reading Roundups here: