I’ve been on a long sci-fi kick for a while, in this case that means a few years. This is in reference to what I’m reading. Normally I change things up, but for at least the past two years I’ve done nothing but read one science fiction or fantasy book after the other. This is by no means a bad thing, but when you get to the point where you’re content to read through a 20+ book Star Wars series without interlude, you really need an interlude.
That’s what I’ve finally done. I’ve even gone so far as to pick up two books that some may consider literary. I recently finished Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan and am now reading A Friend of the Earth by T.C. Boyle. Okay, the first one I suppose a lot of people wouldn’t classify as Literary fiction; personally I classify it as damn good and pleasing to both the book and tech nerds in me. It is really an immensely entertaining book, and it examines the clashing of the old print industry with the new digital print industry, but in a very original way. Also, I’m not sure I’ve ever read a book that uses the word googlers so often without being related to Google in some way. I read it on my Kindle, which I loved because considering the subject matter of the book and the way certain characters therein feel about bound books, it made my method of consumption a bit ironic. As for the T.C. Boyle novel, I’ve only just begun, but hey, it’s Boyle so it’s safe to assume it goes in the literature category. I do love his use of language, it can be dense and almost poetic at times and yet still fit the character for whom it is written no matter their pov.
School has dictated I read plenty of short stories and poems which I don’t feel like enumerating at the moment, except for one I particularly liked. “The Storm” by Kate Chopin has thus far been my favorite selection in my American Literature class. Knowing when it was written makes it even better: a woman writing a story about marital infidelity around the 1890s, and the story ends on a high note. Obviously Chopin was ahead of her time; beyond that, she had a masterful way of using symbolism, structure, and dialect. It just all adds up to a wonderfully written short story.
As much as I love science fiction (I really do) sometimes it’s nice to take break from it…at least when it comes to books. Most of my other media, well…