Jeff O'Handley, Author

Jeff O'Handley

The Doubting Writer Finds His Voice

The Reading List, 2017 (Part II)

Happy Independence Day (early) for my American readers! Happy Canada Day (late) for my Canadian readers! And happy [insert appropriate holiday here] for my [insert appropriate nationality, ethnicity, religion, etc. here] readers! Whew, I think I covered it.

Last week, I wrote about the MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) I’m in, and the promise to finish that job is still there, but since the course is still technically open until tomorrow, I’ll hold off until next week. And since we just closed the second quarter of 2017 on Friday (seriously, how is it July already???), it’s time to share my reading material for the quarter, in case you find it of any interest. Here we go, in order that I read them. Some with editorializing, some without:

Feed (2002), M.T. Anderson. A future with wifi built right into our heads. Good concept, good book overall, undermined (for me) by the really annoying “teenage voice” of the protagonist/narrator.

Wizard and Glass (Dark Tower, book IV) (1997), Stephen King, re-read. This was always my favorite of the Dark Tower series, and a treat to read again.

Wolves of the Calla (Dark Tower, book V) (2003), Stephen King. Re-read, but it’s been a long time.

The Song of Susannah (Dark Tower, book VI) (2004), Stephen King. Re-read. This is where King may have lost a lot of readers, as King introduced a new character into the series: Stephen King.

Fates and Furies (2015), Lauren Groff. Irony: I started reading this one right after my semi-coherent thoughts about time. This book made me question the whole premise of that post.

The Lifeboat (2012), Charlotte Rogan.

The Sleepwalker (2017), Chris Bohjalion. Both this and Lifeboat were interesting while being read, but quickly forgotten. And I’m a Bohjalion fan.

White Fang (1906, though the one I read was published in 1971 or so), Jack London. I think I’ll be skipping Call of the Wild.

The Dark Tower (Dark Tower, book VII) (2004), Stephen King. Re-read, but it’s been a long time (and I think I had only read it once, unlike some of the other entries in the series). Authorial insertion aside, this is a good read and a satisfying conclusion to the series. Does it make any sense at all? That would take many multiple posts.

That’s the list. Three months, nine books completed, which is more than I thought, as it seemed like I went through long periods of not reading during that time. I suspect the fact that four of the books were re-reads (though only Wizard and Glass is a book I’ve read more than once) sped my reading up a bit. I’m also happy to say I’m still making progress on the WiP and even a bit on the RiP.

So–what have you been reading? Anything good?

7 Responses

  1. Sometimes I'm tempted to re-read the Dark Tower series (I've re-read all but the last few, since they came out bang-bang-bang). But I have all these unread books waiting for me to read, it's hard to choose. I think I buy too many books. I'm addicted. It's a disease. But man, not really such a bad one to have, right?

  2. I should get round to that Dark Tower series one of these days. As for re-reads, I don't do many because there's too much else to read, but I am re-reading my Terry Pratchett collection (again – but a lot came out since I last did and most of the later ones I've only read once). Always a treat!

  3. Stacy and Nick: Yeah, there are so many books out there, that re-reading seems kind of pointless, but sometimes, you just gotta! I'm pretty sure I've only read the last three DT books once before (I know this for a fact for VII), but Wizard and Glass to me is always worth a read.

  4. I broke the 60 book mark for 2017, which is already 10 books more than I had set as my call. Thank heavens for audio books, or I doubt I would get more than two or three books done in a year.

  5. I read a lot of King's books when I was younger – haven't read as many since because I value my sleep and that man writes so brilliantly he keeps me awake. His scary stuff gave me nightmares for years! 🙂

  6. You've had a productive few months! I studied 'Feed' in my children's literature class but didn't read the whole thing because I'd chosen a different text for the assignment. Class discussion and the snippets I read were quite interesting–but I totally get what you mean about the annoying teenage voice.

    I have not read a full book in a long while, but I've enjoyed some short stories and poetry from some local lit journals. Hope you're well!

  7. -Donna: Wow, 60 books is quite impressive. I've only listened to audiobooks once or twice. What do you do while you're being read to?
    -Jemi: this series kept me up more because of the "What happens next?" factor. Amazing that he was working on that series for 30+ years.
    -Bonnee: I think my other problem with Feed is that it wasn't quite about what I thought it would be about based on the blurb. The story didn't quite go where I wanted it to go. I hope you can squeeze in some more reading time!

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