October Summary, November Preview

October Summary

October was, overall, a pretty good month. There were a few stumbling blocks at work (when isn’t there?) and a couple of books that slowed me down a bit, but I can’t complain about it, even if it was colder than normal. I will not complain about cooler temperatures.

I finished fourteen books in October. Though my usual public library branch was closed for most of the month for HVAC repairs, I was able to get audiobooks via the Overdrive app, which helped me get through some of the books a little faster. I haven’t listened to any audiobooks for the past week or so. I feel like I should find something to listen to while doing housework.

What I Read in October:

Statistically speaking, 69.2% of the books I read were written by woman, and 30.8% were written by men. Five were written by American authors, seven by English authors, and one each by Canadian-American and Irish writers. Nine were physical books, three were audiobooks, and one was an ebook. Eight were adult fantasy, one was middle grade fantasy, two were science fiction, and there were one each of historical fiction and general fiction. Five of the books came from the library, and nine were from my own shelves. The publication dates ranged from 1818 to 2019.

I can’t declare one single book  to be a favorite from October, since there were so many good ones. The best ones were The Goblin Emperor, The Song of Achilles, Jade City, The Dark is Rising, Snow Glass Apples, The Picture of Dorian Gray, and The Hollow Hills.

I had two DNFs during October: The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert and Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir. The Hazel Wood had structural problems that turned the narrative into a jumpy mess, and Gideon the Ninth‘s writing style felt like it was trying too hard to be cool.

 

What’s Coming Up in November:

I have a lot of short books on the docket for this month. I went through my shelves and pulled out all the novellas I hadn’t read yet, and they made a decent stack, though one is a reread, just because I loved it so much earlier this year. And because Sam at Thoughts on Tomes is hosting another Tome Topple Readathon later in the month, I pulled another unread book, but it is a little longer at about 540 pages. I also want to start on the Their Bright Ascendancy trilogy by K. Arsenault Rivera.

I have one ARC to review this month:

And while my usual library branch is closed for another week, I do have one library book that I had on hold. I had to go to a different branch to pick it up, and because I can’t renew it, I need to get started on it:

 

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There are several television shows I want to finish in November:

  • The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance (Netflix)
  • The Living and the Dead (rewatch, DVD)
  • Mindhunters: season 2 (Netflix)

And while I am not taking part in National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) this year, I am planning to do a lot more writing on an old fanfic project that I am going to try to finish up after leaving it dormant for the past few years. My goal is to write 40,000 words, but because I did no writing at all on Saturday, thanks to work and seeing The Phantom of the Opera, I’m a bit behind. I’m hoping to catch up this week. We’ll see how I do.

So those are my plans for November. It’s a busy month at work, so if I miss my goals I won’t be too hard on myself.

 

15 thoughts on “October Summary, November Preview

  1. Book club. We discussed it last night. And as you probably guessed, I wasn’t a fan. Confusing is where I’ll start. I needed a road map. I also didn’t like any characters except Dawes and Turner.

  2. I can see how it would be confusing if you’re not already familiar with the tropes and conventions of the fantasy genre. I am constantly trying to remind myself that it’s fiction, but it’s not helping me to see Ivy League in a way that doesn’t make it look like a world so intently focused on itself that it doesn’t realize the rest of the world exists.

  3. So you do call this a fantasy. Most if the people in book club were iffy if that was the right designation. I know the author did go to Yale, but I can’t help but think it’s a Harry Potter/girl with the tattoo combo rip off. Also, I hate the writing as trilogy thing that is so popular now. I get that you want cliff hangers, but too many unanswered questions don’t necessarily leave me wanting more. Sometimes it just pisses me off.

  4. Yes, it’s definitely a fantasy. The ‘proper’ sub-genre would probably be urban fantasy. Trilogies have been a default for a long time in fantasy. It goes back to Lord of the Rings, which was written as a single book, but initially published as three, thanks to British paper rationing after WWII. Since then, just about every fantasy author/publisher has assumed that the trilogy is The Way To Do Things, for better of for worse. Often for worse.

  5. I left the book with too many questions, and not actually caring. I can already format exactly what’s going to happen in the next book, maybe not the specifics, but the main things, and that’s not a good feel as a reader. I want to be challenged a little by the ideas, not the mechanics. And this book I felt was all about the mechanics. I also think that many average authors use magic as a way to get out of writing snafus

  6. Magic is often used like that. That’s part of why I don’t care about magic systems or about the magic itself in fantasy novels. They’re like special effects in movies. A few well-done effects make the world pop, but if you’re relying on the effects to tell the story and not the characters, I stop caring.

  7. I listened to The Goblin Emperor on audiobook, and that really helped me out because many of the names are long and hard to pronounce. The narrator did a great job, so I think rereading the physical book would go more smoothly.

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