Wednesday, February 26, 2014

February reading roundup

I'm sort of in a place where I'm reading two books and won't finish either of them before the 28th, so I'll just post this now.  February's reading covered a wide range of different books, and this month I celebrated a first:  I quit reading a novel pretty much at the beginning because it was just plain bad -- and I didn't see it getting any better. I also fell in love with Raymond Chandler this month -- anyone who says crime fiction has no literary value really ought to read Chandler's Marlowe novels.


Perfect, by Rachel Joyce
The Shock of the Fall, by Nathan Filer
The Cat's Table, by Michael Ondaatje (not yet discussed)

The Big Sleep, by Raymond Chandler
Farewell, My Lovely, by Raymond Chandler
The High Window, by Raymond Chandler
The Lady in the Lake, by Raymond Chandler
The Little Sister, by Raymond Chandler

People Who Eat Darkness, by Richard Lloyd Parry

weird fiction/horror/fantasy/sci-fi
Annihilation (Southern Reach Trilogy #1), by Jeff VanderMeer (read, not yet reviewed)

Now the rest

1)  Added to the  wishlist this month:
 crime fiction:
nothing this month 

 general fiction/literature: 
Kinder than Solitude, by Yiyun Lee
The Museum of Ordinary Things, by Alice Hoffman
The Illicit Happiness of Other People, by Manu Joseph
The Whispering Muse, by Sjón

the weird, the strange, supernatural etc:

Tales of the Ghost Sword, by Hideyuki Kikuchi

Without Mercy: The Stunning True Story of Race, Crime, and Corruption in the Deep South, by David Beasley
Down to the Crossroads: Civil Rights, Black Power, and the Meredith March Against Fear, by Aram Goudsouzian

2) Books bought this month:
The Guts, by Roddy Doyle 
House of Sleeping Beauties and Other Stories, by  Yasunari Kawabata
The Ghost Stories of Edith Wharton, by Edith Wharton
The Long Goodbye, by Raymond Chandler
Playback, by Raymond Chandler
Red Harvest, by Dashiell Hammett
Down These Mean Streets a Man Must Go: Raymond Chandler's Knight, by Philip Durham (nonfiction)
A Child of Christian Blood: Murder and Conspiracy in Tsarist Russia: The Beilis Blood Libel, by      Edmund Levin

preorder: Every Day is For the Thief, by Teju Cole
preorder: The Black-Eyed Blonde, A Philip Marlowe Novel, by Benjamin Black
preorder: The Dead Lake, by Hamid Ismailov

3) Indiespensable and Book Passage Signed First Edition books for this month (in that order):
The Blazing World, by Siri Hustvedt
An Unnecessary Woman, by Rabih Alameddine

4The book group read: The Cat's Table, by Michael Ondaatje.  We were all in love with Ondaatje's writing in this book and we had an incredibly great discussion.  I would definitely recommend it for any book group.

5) Currently reading:
  Madam Crowl's Ghost and Other Stories, by J.S. LeFanu
The Secret Squad, by David Goodis

so, that's it. Have a good rest of February and happy reading!


  1. OK. I will read a book by Ramond Chandler, have not done so yet.

    If I were to select one book, what do you suggest?

    1. Tough one, Kathy. If you don't read The Big Sleep, you don't get what Chandler's doing with Marlowe, but my favorite so far has been The Little Sister because Chandler gets really candid about his Los Angeles. I'd start with The Big Sleep, then at least you've got a basis if you decide to read more. Larry's reading them now, which is amazing, because he's more of a Michael Connolly kind of reader.


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