We had a taste of autumnal weather this week– rainy, with daily highs around 75°F. It was perfect. Until Friday came around, and the temperatures hopped back up to 90°F with humidity somewhere above 80%. Just standing outside makes a person feel miserable. Get here soon, Fall!
Because it was so cloudy for most of the week, I only went out to the park on one day:
What I read last week:
- Splintered Light: Logos and Language in Tolkien’s World by Verlyn Flieger
- Educated: A Memoir by Tara Westover
- The Red Notebook by Antoine Laurain, translated from the French by Jane Aitkin and Emily Boyce
- The Legend of Sleepy Hollow and Other Stories by Washington Irving
- The Sandman, Vol. 4: Season of Mists by Nail Gaiman, illustrated by Matt Wagner, George Pratt, Dick Giordano, Kelley Jones, P. Craig Russell, Mike Dringenberg, Malcolm Jones III, Forward by Harlan Ellison
I read The Legend of Sleepy Hollow and Other Stories before starting my ARC of The Spellbook of Katrina Van Tassel. The two most famous stories in the collection- The Legend of Sleepy Hollow and Rip Van Winkle are famous for a reason, but I found the rest of the stories to be a bit dry.
In The Sandman, Vol. 4: Season of Mists, Dream returns to Hell to save a woman he unjustly sent there centuries earlier. The trouble is, he angered Lucifer in a previous story and Lucifer is more powerful than Dream is. When Dream arrives, he discovers that the situation is stranger than he imagined, and that Lucifer has a bizarre surprise in store for him.
What I’m currently reading:
- The Spellbook of Katrina Van Tassel by Alyssa Palombo (ARC provided by NetGalley)
- The Fellowship of the Ring by J.R.R. Tolkien, audiobook narrated by Rob Inglis
So far, The Spellbook of Katrina Van Tassel is a lovely piece of historical fiction based on Washington Irving’s story, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow. It’s stayed true to the time period, the characters, and the style of prose of the original story. I’m 14% of the way through, and have enjoyed it so far!
In the audiobook version of The Fellowship of the Ring, Frodo and Company have nearly made it through the forgotten lands of Hollin and are approaching the mountains. Though I don’t care for the way Inglis sings the songs, I love that once again, I am discovering little bits of story and details I’ve never seen before, in spite of more than twenty readings of this book!
What I plan to read this week:
- Beren and Luthien by J.R.R. Tolkien, edited by Christopher Tolkien
- The Yellow-Lighted Bookshop by Lewis Buzbee
- The Road to Middle-Earth: How J.R.R. Tolkien Created a New Mythology by Tom Shippey
I finished listening to back episodes of The Prancing Pony Podcast just in time for the third season to premier later today. They’ll begin their reading of The Fellowship of the Ring, and I am so looking forward to it! I’m also planning to listen to discussions of Tolkien’s work by Corey Olson and Michael Drout in addition to my readings of Tom Shippey’s books about the mythology and language of Tolkien’s work. I’m also thinking of re-reading The Hobbit for the first time in several years, thanks to the PPP’s discussion of said book.
The Hugo Awards were given out last Sunday. It was a big night for women authors, as women won 15 of the 17 awards given out. N.K. Jemisin won an incredible third straight award for Best Novel for her book, The Stone Sky, which is the third novel in her Broken Sky trilogy. Every book in this trilogy has won the Hugo Award for Best Novel. That is amazing! I was thrilled to see that Lois McMaster Bujold won her second straight Hugo Award for Best Series for her World of the Five Gods series (which contains my favorite of her books, The Curse of Chalion). Bujold won the same award last year for The Vorkosigan Saga. You can see the whole list of winners HERE.
And speaking of the Hugos… One of my favorite BookTube Channels is Kalanadi. It’s hosted by a woman named Rachel who attended WorldCon in San Jose, California, where the Hugos were given out. She had no idea until she arrived that her channel had been on the Hugos’ longlist for Best FanCast! In her video, she was obviously thrilled and quite surprised about this, but I can understand why she made the longlist. Her reviews are thoughtful, in-depth, and even-handed. She doesn’t make endless apologies for not liking popular books, nor does she get overly excited and forget how to speak when she’s talking about a book she loves. Her level headedness and articulate reviews are what keep me coming back to her channel. So congratulations for being the first BookTube channel to be considered for a Hugo Award for Best FanCast, Rachel!
If you follow my Bookstagram feed, traveling.in.books (you should see it on the right), keep an eye out for some new photos. There are some new titles in my collection with beautiful covers, and I simply must photograph them. Especially since it’s going to be hot and humid all day. I have been on a bit of a book-buying spree this month despite telling myself I didn’t need to buy anymore books, thanks to a too long list of titles I own that I haven’t read. *sighs* I lack the willpower to not buy books, though, especially when the used bookstore a) adopts a new kitten who I simply must meet, and 2) keeps having these nice sales. Also, there is a new book of J.R.R. Tolkien’s work, edited by his son, Christopher Tolkien, coming out next week. I already have a copy waiting for me at Barnes and Noble. I can’t wait to read it!