7/2022 – ⭐️⭐️ Philip K. Dick Award Nominee

Unfortunately, this one just did not work for me. The main character is a 10-year-old deaf (and, I believe, possibly autistic) child, and it’s narrated in a first-person, nearly stream-of-consciousness style, which (in-universe) is the child dictating in sign language to a caretaker who translates what he says. In actuality, the book was originally written in Italian, and has been translated to English. So there are multiple levels of abstraction and translation, and I’m at a loss as to how much of the final writing style and choices were the character’s, an artifact of the in-universe translation from sign language, the author’s, an artifact of the real-world translation from Italian, or some combination of all of those. The end result was that I just didn’t enjoy it.

This year’s stack of Philip K. Dick Award nominees have arrived! (Actually, nominees plus one — Finna is the precursor to Defekt, and I don’t like starting in the middle of a series.) As usual, this looks like a strong selection of books; of note for me is Far From the Light of Heaven, as this is Tade Thompson’s second time as a nominee, and I enjoyed all of his Wormwood trilogy, the third book of which was the earlier nominated work.

Time to get reading! (And if you’re interested, I’ve created a PKD reading challenge on StoryGraph that you’re welcome to join!)

3/2022 – ⭐️⭐️

A somewhat amusing murder mystery and courtroom drama; basically Law & Order: TOS starring Samuel Cogley. Unfortunately, the poor treatment of the two primary female characters (one an overly stereotypical shallow, bitter wife; the other bitter at past events who fares badly) marred my enjoyment.

2/2022 – ⭐️⭐️⭐️

A recommendation from my 10-year-old niece (V.E. Schwab is her favorite author), this was a fun fantasy adventure through multiple magical Londons. Neat worldbuilding and magic rules and styles; perhaps a bit more violent than I would have expected from a pre-teen’s recommendation (apparently Schwab also writes YA books, which is how my niece came across her, but this is one of her adult novels), but her parents also read and enjoyed it, she’s none the worse for reading it, and I’ve certainly read far worse.

My resolutions for this year:

  • 3840 x 2160
  • 1920 x 1080
  • 1280 x 800
  • 1668 x 2224
  • 1125 x 2436
  • 368 x 448

(That’s my Mac mini’s primary 4K monitor and secondary display, the secondhand MacBook Pro I got from Prairie last year, and my iPad, iPhone, and Apple Watch, respectively. Yes, I make this same stupid joke every year, ’cause it makes me laugh.)