September 29th, 2011

Paul Neyron rose 2

Thursday real life

I made it to a 1:30 appointment, which, considering how badly I've been sleeping, I was happy to make it to.  I'd even gotten a few minutes of computer time before that, but had to shut down the computer quickly when a thunderstorm started.  I was glad I'd taken that precaution when the lights went out.  I was taking a shower, so it wasn't an ideal time for me to not have light, but I'm glad the computer didn't blow up.  The electricity went back on a few minutes later, basically just a long enough delay for me to wonder if it would be out for some hours.  I'm still very good as far as my collections of glow lights, candles and flashlights go, so I don't have to worry about night time.  Yes, I like collecting, but there is actually a faint reason behind at least the flashlight collection. 

I went to the library while I was out, as I'd had the first three of Dorothy Sayers' Lord Peter Wimsey books out for a while and they were due yesterday.  I have yet to read them.  Fortunately, I hadn't gotten a fine yet.  I took out Whose Body? again.  I just haven't been in the mood for murder mysteries.  When I'm ready to read, it's late at night, and I mostly just want light things to read.

I went to the secondhand bookstore and put in about forty-five minutes putting away donated paperbacks and filling in and straightening out the romance shelves.  Someone or someones had donated some category romances, which was good, as there were massive gaps on the shelves of the cart of them -- as in, half the shelf emptied on a couple of shelves.  I put the lines of them in numerical order by line.  (Lines -- Harlequin Temptation, Silhouette Desire, and so on.)  There were even some left over to put in the back, so I was grateful to the people who had donated them.  Well, we're happy for donations generally, but these I was specifically able to use, and some were from May and August 2011, so really new.

Paul Neyron rose 2

Thursday -- rambling about books

There was a discussion of the Raised by Wolves books on AE's Gay Lit forum.  I believe that first they were mentioned, and the discussion continued with a librarian not being thrilled with the quality of them.  I think she said she judges for the Stonewall awards, so she's got really different criteria from someone who just likes reading m/m romances.  Erastes critiqued the first.  I believe I saw that review on Goodreads.  Erastes does critical reviews, which I appreciate.  Often you just get someone saying, "I liked this," or "I hated this."  When I talk about books online, it's often limited to "I liked this."  My silence regarding a book I read may be me trying to be diplomatic and not say anything.  Then again, it may just be that I only comment on a fraction of the books I've read.

In any case, I hadn't read this series.  From what I understand, they're very long, and my attention span for the past several months has for the most part been limited to reading short stories and novellas.  For quite some time before that I was mostly just reading for work.  I'd read the occasional short story, like any in the Dr. Fell universe (auto-buys for me) that came out, but I wasn't doing much pleasure reading.  My concentration for reading was totally shot when I broke my ankle.  I could barely move, and I couldn't concentrate enough to read for pleasure.  Fortunately, I was still able to watch German soap operas.  That only required me to read subtitles or try to do rough mental translations.  I don't know why that wasn't taxing, but watching TV doesn't usually require much attention span.

Perhaps I'll work my way back up to long books.  I read Lover Mine and Lover Unleashed recently.  Of course, that's not exactly challenging reading in the "needing to think heavily about it" sense.  In fact, it's better if you don't think about it too much and just go along with the wackiness.  It's like bubblegum, but with lots of "h"s.  Someday a big fan who's not critical will find me, and then I'll be in trouble.  I'll probably have to resort to my "It's fiction, people" defense.  I like the books.  They are what they are.  I adored how the Ho Yay continued in them.  I probably posted about how much joy that gave me.

This post has really turned into me rambling about critical reading versus reading for pleasure.  Not that you can't do both, but I've developed more of a sense of why I liked or didn't like a book over the last few years.  Part of it probably had to do with reading Man, Oh Man.  I know more about book structure now, and I've seen a lot of critiques of different levels of writing skill.

There was one book that Josh posted about in his LJ without naming names that I later got and recognized a line from.  The book was a did-not-finish for me once I recognized that line.  I had seen Elisa's review and thought it might be interesting.  I believe that Elisa just reviews books if she can say something positive about them.  Not that there's anything wrong with that, and I've found some books I liked through her recommendations.  After the book in question became a did-not-finish for me, I saw Emmyjag's review of it.  I wish I'd seen Emmyjag's review first.

I've read a lot of books I liked lately, though.  I guess I'm picking more from authors I know I like, for one thing.  I have gone with at least a few recommendations from the AE forums.  In some cases I already had the book and it encouraged me to read it.