Sunday, August 16, 2015

very brief recap

A quick post, trying not to fall behind, and trying to do things that involve as little movement as possible because it is 90 degrees and so humid that the diapers which have been on the clothesline in full sunlight and the aforementioned 90 degrees for almost eight hours are still not dry. Gross.

Anyway, what I have read lately:

Bad Feminist: Essays, by Roxane Gay. Essays about feminism, politics, pop culture, race, and Gay's personal life. So smart and incisive. I can be honest enough to say that sometimes I was made uncomfortable, and I was made uncomfortable because I am white, and I was being called out on the enormous privilege I have because of that. One of the most insidious things about privilege is that I think it is literally impossible, no matter your liberalism or effort, to be constantly or fully aware of how much the world is designed for your comfort and not for someone else's. And it is very possible to get complacent in your outrage on behalf of the someone else, because your outrage comes from a safe place, which is in itself a privilege. Being reminded of that is a good thing, and I hope I can keep it in mind when that complacency starts to creep in again.

The New World, by Andrew Motion. The sequel to a fun book in which the children of Jim Hawkins and Long John Silver go hunting for treasure. This book was not fun, nor did it even make much sense. Racist as balls, and our attractive early-twenties protagonists are so weirdly asexual and occasionally irrational that after a bit they stopped being characters at all to me. I barely finished it.

Revelation, by C. J. Sansom. Another in the series featuring a lawyer during the reign of Henry VIII solving crimes. Very well-written, very disturbing, totally kept me up reading at night.

The Mad Sculptor, by Harold Schechter. 1930's murder in New York. Decently-written and interesting. Will fall into the seemingly limitless category of "has 'trial of the century' somewhere in the title" books that I read, which all blend together after a while.

The Belton Estate, by Anthony Trollope. Young woman must choose between two men. That is the entire plot, as is not unusual with Trollope, and in his hands that's really all you need. Especially if one man is a cerebral scholar and the other is a bluff, hearty, broad-shouldered farmer, and you deeply enjoy reading about a lady who can only imagine herself marrying the first type and slowly comes around to the other point of view. Broad shoulders and vegetable gardens and getting up early in the morning? I can't imagine many happier things, myself.

Stay cool, everyone.

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