Notes from a Poly-Reader: August 2017

Hahaha! So…

How you been? Obviously, I’ve been a major posting slacker this past month, because let’s be honest, posting almost every day for four months kind of burned me out (oh yeah, and that whole writing 1k+/weekday pretty much left me with mush-brain). But I have started getting back to reading, though not at the epic pace I was going last year at this time. So without further ado (and forgive the books I was reading the last time I did one of these and am still reading (*cough*april*cough*), because, you know what, shuddup…):


The Marriage of Cadmus and Harmony – Okay, let’s get the elephant in the virtual room out of the way: I’m still not done with this one, but I LOOOOOOVE it. I finally bit the bullet and bought myself a used copy so I could make notes in the margin, because it’s that kind of book and I find I avoid picking it up if I don’t think I’ll have post-its available, because the THINKS it makes me THINK. I think I’ve recommended this book to almost everybody I know in the past four months, just saying. I need to just dedicate some time, but it’s one of those books I do not want to rush (and one of the reasons I love poly-reading: not having to rush a specific book just to read other things). But I need to put in some time on it, because it does make the inspiration flowers explode in my head.

Wired for Story – Picked this one up on an edit-book recommendation, so am gradually making my way through it. I find it quite interesting, though I’ve been warned about some of the author’s “science” and am treading with a skeptical mind. (The checklists at the end of the chapters has been highly recommended, however, so I’m reading primarily for that, with context.) Just a few chapters in, and need to set some time aside to get moving. It’s a fast read, at least.

Climate Change: What Everyone Needs to Know – Picked this one up early July after reading this article (which is admittedly pretty click-baity, but very interesting all the same), and figured I ought to go to the source. I mean, I recycle, I love my parents’ electric car, and we try to conserve where we can/reduce carbon footprint/etc., but I don’t think I’ve really ever looked at the hard facts regarding climate change, and I wanted to know more. Haven’t gotten far (very long story as to why this book was temporarily tucked away in a less-obvious place on my bookshelf), but am looking forward to engaging with it again.

The Everyday Parenting Toolkit – This was one my mental-health-councilor mother picked up for me to check out and see if it’s helpful. Bug and I do pretty well most days, but he can be plenty headstrong when he wants to be, so it should be an interesting read. My mother is currently going through the more intensive version of this book (the one for attachment disorder and defiant children for her day-to-day work), but I’m interested in the science behind raising a healthy (and at least occasionally cooperative) child.

Two Years, Eight Months, and Twenty-Eight Nights – This is my very first Salman Rushdie book (*shameface*), and I’m technically listening to it on audiobook, but so far I’m really loving it. It’s got a similar vibe (if more adult-ish) to Gaiman’s The Ocean at the End of the Lane, and I’m really enjoying the alternate history-angle on djinn and the apocalypse and just all Rushdie’s very interesting fantastical ideas. It’s a cool book, though I’m stuck for the time being until I get to check it out from the audiobook library again…darn expiration dates…

The Warrior’s Apprentice – Picked this one up as my consolation for losing my loan on the Rushdie book. I just needed a bit more Vorkosigan, let’s be honest. I really, really, really needed my Arol/Cordelia fix. And it’s fun. And cute. And just…relaxing space opera silliness, which I totally love and would someday love to write myself one, but until then, I’m having a lovely time with Miles…

The Letters of Vincent Van Gogh – This one got scalped off a very smart friend’s bookshelf while housesitting for her (yes, I told her I was stealing it). I’ve been pretty immersed in the Bargue drawings process, and it’s totally brought my attention back to the working lives of artists like Van Gogh. I didn’t know much about him, besides that he cut off his ear, of course, and it’s been a truly mesmerizing introduction to him. Really fascinating. It’s been my before-bed reading this week, and I suspect I’ll get it finished by the end of August. (Hopefully…)

Aspects of the Novel – Began this one quite a while ago, but again ran into the issue of wanting to write in it, and as it was a library book…couldn’t. So I ordered a cheap hardbound copy and am making notes merrily as a delinquent school girl. I wasn’t sure I’d like this one (it’s pretty stuffy, right off the bat), but E.M. Foster’s ideas about how writing novels differs from drama (and in our context, TV and film) have been incredibly enlightening and have really made me think about fictional structure in a new way.

Watercolor for the Serious Beginner – This one came out of a temporary mania for watercolor painting, but it’s still high on my list to finish reading, because watercolor is incredibly cool, and I would like to learn some basics. It’s not high priority, and I’m currently in a knitting mania, but I suspect I’ll pass back into the watercolor mania in a few weeks and this’ll be perfect reading then.

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