Skip to main content

Mid-Year Review of Hastily Put-Togetherness

Sometimes I sit at my computer in the morning, staring at the blank post screen and just think 'All right. Pick a topic.' Okay, I do that EVERY time I update. Because who's got time for planning, amirite? I'll plan a trip to Seattle a month out and come up with a spreadsheet itinerary, but when it comes to writing, BY THE SEAT OF MY PANTS I SHALL FLY.

It's basically halfway through the year. So how's it been going? Getting things read? Thank God for Goodreads, 'cause otherwise I would be lost in a sea of forgetfulness.

All right. Here's the dealie-o. I have read 35 books so far this year. It's not AMAZING but it's not shit, so no sass, thank you. Of those 35 (and we're counting Scott Pilgrim volumes as individual books even though they take half an hour and also are counting them as YA do not question me), 16 are YA. I feel OKAY about this. Because some are grownass lady books and sometimes you need a break from that, y'know? And also to read about MAGIC THINGS that don't involve real world adultness.

Of the 35, five have been non-fiction. Okay. So that's not great. But y'know what would have been worse? NO non-fiction. So compared to that I am more than infinity times better. Because of something I don't understand involving zero and multiplication.

I read that history of romantic friendship in literature AND my beloved Diana Victrix, which are still my favorite reads of the year (despite the former's horrible title of awfulness). Which led to me being able to smile knowingly/weirdly condescendingly when reading references to Lillian Faderman in an article on Urania, a British radical feminist magazine published from 1916 to 1940. Basically the area of lesbian studies in Victorian to Edwardian lit is UNSURPRISINGLY small and so the same academics' names crop up all the time and eventually you feel like you're reading The Baby-Sitters Club except with a lot more references to 'heteronormativity.' And also no babysitting.

I hope they interact like this

And I read two Neil Gaimans I liked! I mean, they're both for children, but that's what he's good at writing. Coraline and The Graveyard Book are both excellent. American Gods and Stardust are not. 

I'm in the middle of....let's count...15 books. Some of which I've been working on since January. Plus I have my 28 books checked out from the library but ALL WILL BE WELL I'M FINE DON'T WORRY ABOUT IT. Part of the reason I am so perilously close to the Chicago Public Library's checkout limit of 30 is that getting books from the library satisfies the shopper's urge, but it is free. I leave the library having acquired something and I didn't spend $15 that I could have very happily spent on Indian food (have I mentioned I love Indian food? I LOVE IT SO HARD).

We'll see how the rest of the year goes. I'm extremely close to beating the giant slump that was last year, but not so much to the first year I had this blog, when ZOOM went my reading, because everyone was recommending things and book blogs were new and exciting and one must keep up with the literary trends only not so much now because I am old and jaded.


Popular posts from this blog

Harry Potter 2013 Readalong Signup Post of Amazingness and Jollity

Okay, people. Here it is. Where you sign up to read the entire Harry Potter series (or to reminisce fondly), starting January 2013, assuming we all survive the Mayan apocalypse. I don't think I'm even going to get to Tina and Bette's reunion on The L Word until after Christmas, so here's hopin'.

You guys know how this works. Sign up if you want to. If you're new to the blog, know that we are mostly not going to take this seriously. And when we do take it seriously, it's going to be all Monty Python quotes when we disagree on something like the other person's opinion on Draco Malfoy. So be prepared for your parents being likened to hamsters.

If you want to write lengthy, heartfelt essays, that is SWELL. But this is maybe not the readalong for you. It's gonna be more posts with this sort of thing:

We're starting Sorceror's/Philosopher's Stone January 4th. Posts will be on Fridays. The first post will be some sort of hilarious/awesome que…

How to Build a Girl Introductory Post, which is full of wonderful things you probably want to read

Acclaimed (in England mostly) lady Caitlin Moran has a novel coming out. A NOVEL. Where before she has primarily stuck to essays. Curious as we obviously were about this, I and a group of bloggers are having a READALONG of said novel, probably rife with spoilers (maybe they don't really matter for this book, though, so you should totally still read my posts). This is all hosted/cared for/lovingly nursed to health by Emily at As the Crowe Flies (and Reads) because she has a lovely fancy job at an actual bookshop (Odyssey Books, where you can in fact pre-order this book and then feel delightful about yourself for helping an independent store). Emily and I have negotiated the wonders of Sri Lankan cuisine and wandered the Javits Center together. Would that I could drink with her more often than I have.

INTRODUCTION-wise (I might've tipped back a little something this evening, thus the constant asides), I am Alice. I enjoy the Pleistocene era of megafauna and drinking Shirley Templ…

A synonym for 'Neanderthal' is 'boorish,' which just isn't very nice

So this article came out, which isn't really groundbreaking at all, but it happens to have been published the day after I watched part of the NOVA special "Becoming Human," so it's been on my brain anyway.

I was checking out a book a while ago called Cro-Magnon: How the Ice Age Gave Birth to the First Modern Humans, and it was all "Oh dude, our ancestors probably didn't even LOOK at Neanderthals. No way. 'Cause they would've been like, RIDICULOUSLY ugly."

This book was published in 2010. And what came out this year? DNA Shows Humans Found Non-Humans Irresistible

That's right. Your lady ancestor, at some point, sidled up to a Neanderthal gentleman and said "Hey. How's it goin'?

Because all non-Africans ('cause the Africans stayed put instead of traipsing around becoming the Don Juans of prehistoric Europe) have 1-4% Neanderthal DNA. So the above scenario DEFINITELY happened. Which is disheartening NOT because of my huge Neanderth…