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What I’m Reading

3 March, 2010

My brain is firmly stuck in ‘what on earth is this damn novel about?’ mood this week. I’m both trying to decide whether the novel I’m currently working on is worth finishing (it’s become so complicated that I’ve lost track of what it’s about and whether any of it makes sense) and brainstorming ideas for a new novel. When you’re working on something difficult, that new shiny project always looks so much more fun and appealing, so what I’m now trying to work out is whether it really would be more fun or if my brain is just playing tricks on me out of laziness.

All of which was a long way of saying that I can’t muster the thought power to do a writing post today, so I’m going to just jot down a few notes about what I’m reading.

First up: Above the Snowline by Steph Swainston. I loved the rest of this (loose) series – of which Above the Snowline is the fourth – so much that I’ve actually bought this in hardback, less than a week after it came out. I virtually never buy hardbacks unless they’re second hand. I haven’t actually started reading yet – that’s what I plan to spend the rest of the afternoon doing.

Secondly: Pretty Monsters by Kelly Link. This is Link’s newest short story collection and actually another book that I bought in hardback, simply because the design of the book is so gorgeous. I’d heard good things about Kelly Link but never read any of her work beforehand. I’ve read the first three stories so far, of which two were very enjoyable and the third – ‘Magic for Beginners’ – I absolutely loved. It’s one of those stories that made me ache somewhere deep inside simply because I wish I’d come up with it. I’m looking forward to getting a chance to read the rest, but I did specifically start reading a short story collection so that I could easily put it aside when Above the Snowline turned up, so I’ll probably get back to Pretty Monsters next week.

Finally: The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand. I’m only forty pages into this, but I picked it up purely because I kept hearing Rand’s name mentioned (usually not in a very flattering manner) and didn’t know anything about her work. This is one of those books that I may not finish but which I had to take a look at out of sheer curiosity – if I ever get around to reading Twilight, it’ll be for the same reason. I don’t really have anything to say, good or bad, about The Fountainhead yet and I suspect it’s something I’m going to pick away at very slowly over several months.

And that’s it for now. I have an afternoon to spend in the Fourlands.

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