So this week was up and down. It marked my last pottery class. We spent most of our time glazing or otherwise decorating our pots and cups in between playing with a cute dog (one of the students brought her dog because her neighbors were going nuts with the fireworks, and the poor pup was terrified) and eating cookies. It was a good way to end a fun class.
On Independence Day, I went over to friends’ for dinner and fireworks. I didn’t light any of the fireworks. I just tried to photograph them. That didn’t go well, and it all ended when I’d had enough of being bitten by mosquitoes. I went inside just in time to watch my friends send up five of the six artillery shells they’d bought. The last one did not launch properly and blew up about five feet off the ground, which made for a loud and unpleasant surprise. While one of my friends screamed quite shrilly, no one was harmed.
Friday was an awful day. It started out just fine, but I’d been at work for about fifteen minutes when our internet service went out and remained out all day long. I spent far too many frustrating minutes on the phone trying to get through to our internet provider and got precisely nowhere. While my coworkers did manage to get through, they got different stories about what was wrong. Our service was finally restored Saturday morning, and all the tech could say was “X happened, and I have no idea why. Everything’s working now, though, so have a nice day”.
It was enough to drive a girl to drinking. Or to the bookstore. I went to the bookstore. Naturally.
I finished three books this week! Two of them were novellas, so I don’t feel like this was a mind-boggling feat. The first was Alice Hoffman’s Practical Magic, which I loved! Sjón’s Moonstone: The Boy Who Never Was is good, but a little strange. I was expecting the strangeness, but the very ending was just weird and it was hard to tell what, exactly Sjón meant there, even though I read the last couple of pages a few times to try and figure out what had happened. Victor LaValle’s The Ballad of Black Tom is an amazing and somewhat disturbing novella set in New York in 1920. It has hints of H.P. Lovecraft’s mythos, and while I have a love/meh relationship with that particular flavor of horror, The Ballad of Black Tom is one of the best Lovecraftian tale I’ve ever read.
My current reads include Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, and I just picked up Mark Lawrence’s Red Sister today after it came in for me at the library. I’ve never read any of Mark Lawrence’s other books, but I’ve only heard good things about Red Sister. It is apparently another teenage-girl-assassin book. My track record hasn’t been very good with that type of book, but I’m looking forward to this one.
Looking at these covers side by side, I realize just how different they are. Their similarities? They are both about young women, and both are written in English. We’ll see if they share anything else.
I found another podcast! LeVar Burton Reads. In this podcast, LeVar Burton performs short works of fiction, mostly science fiction (which surprises no one), with some sound effects and a bit of music to help set scene and mood. I’ve only listened to one episode so far, The Lighthouse Keeper, but I loved it and plan to listen to more of them later today. It is a little weird listening to it, given that I watched both Reading Rainbow and Star Trek: The Next Generation, both of which he starred in. I’d watch Star Trek: TNG one night, and then watch Reading Rainbow the next day. It was strange to watch Geordie LaForge talk about kids’ books, but my six year-old self got over it quickly enough. LeVar Burton Reads is the grown-up version of Reading Rainbow.