Book roundup


A round-up of the books I’ve been reading lately:

1. The Post-American World, Fareed Zakaria: An easily-digestible overview of what the world would look like post-American domination…in 2008. Doh. Despite its eminently readable style (though Zakaria is potentially a little too even-handed when it comes to China’s political maneuverings, especially in Africa ) had to put this one down half way through due to my idiocy in not picking up the more relevant 2nd edition and everything in the book being pre-world market implosions, pre-Mumbai terror attacks…pre-everything, really. I persisted for a little while thinking it would be interesting context, but in the end it was just too irrelevant. Still, it ensured The Post American World 2.0 is firmly on my list of to-reads.

2. Shift, Kim Curran: Ever since my favourite Boston children’s librarian put a copy of TFiOS in my hands a year and a bit ago, I’ve been properly loving YA.  In Shift loser Scott Tyler discovers he has the power to undo any decision he ever made. (oh but really, any decision? You’ll see…). It was a fast-paced, enjoyable blend of sci fi & realistic fiction, excepting an exposition dump in the early chapters that grated a little. For me it definitely hit its stride a little further in when we meet particularly disgusting villain…

All in: strong female characters? Check. Philsophical undercurrents about free will and determinism? Check. Enough plot twists and fake-outs to satisfy even the most experienced of ending-guessers? Indeed. Speaking of,  the ending definitely felt like a set-up for a sequel, so I’ll be interested to read that when it arrives…

3. The Help, Kathryn Stockett: After five million, billion reading years had passed (and committing the cardinal sin of watching the film before reading the text) I finally picked this up. I’ve already gushed a little about how much I enjoyed this, so you should probably read this post. Because cookies.

Currently reading: Zadie Smith’s NW. It’s utterly delicious and I can’t wait until I’ve finished, if only to be able to pick the idea of it up as a complete little box and muse on it from all angles.

What are you reading at the moment? Leave me a comment and give me some things to add to my to-read list!

3 comments on “Book roundup”

  1. Great post! I’m currently reading The Casual Vacancy, but mostly I’m disappointed that Harry Potter doesn’t feature in it! I just finished ‘A Sunday by the Pool in Kigali’ which is set in Rwanda at the time of the genocides. It is a horrific story but one I am sure everyone should read, there is so little we actually know about the atrocities that happened.

  2. Three recommendations: “If You Could Be Mine” – a YA novel about a gay Iranian teen girl who decides to undergo sex reassignment surgery so that she can still be with the girl she loves. I loved it, and I look forward to recommending it to teens when it comes out this fall. Next up is “The Plantegents

    “Have You No Shame” by Rachel Shukert, a collection of essays about a Jewish girl growing up in Omaha. Quick, hilarious read- I was shaking from laughter on the train.

    “Fangirl” by Rainbow Rowell. I’d call it YA, but some might classify this as New Adult. A girl who writes fanfiction about a thinly veiled version of Harry Potter goes to college and has to deal with growing up, in love, and apart from her twin sister. I cannot speak highly enough of Rowell’s work. She’s written three books, each of which is better than the last!

  3. Oooo. I have a YA manuscript that needs editing, if you’re getting into the YA fiction. Five of them, actually, but one in particular. Will contact you.

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