Time for another report, this being Thanksgiving and all.
I am thankful for…
- The fact that there is something rather than nothing
- My wife
- Our cat, Lefty
- Our dog, Riley
- My family
- My friends
- People of good heart
- Our house
- That I grew up in a house and family where I felt safe and we didn’t a bunch of fucked up problems
- Our stereo and music collection
- Our health
Finished reading my 19th novel for the year tonight, Drowning World by Alan Dean Foster.
Pretty classic ADF. Solid story. Interesting. Great pacing.
Deciding what to read next. This will be the first year ever that I actually meet my Goodreads.com Reading Challenge number, which is 20 books for 2023.
As it turns out, in this Alan Dean Foster novel I’m reading now, Drowning World, two aliens races are living side by side on a planet. One race is native to it. They are trying to drive the other race off the planet, and are getting weapons and tech support from a more advanced alien race wishing to keep the Commonwealth from gaining benefits from that planet. The native species attacks their neighbors by surprise.
That’s as far as I got last night, as I read this while watching news of the Israel-Hamas war.
I made an attempt to read And Chaos Died the other night, by the late Joanna Russ.
I say “attempt” because about 5 pages in I realized it is not a casual read. This isn’t one to read while you watch America’s Funniest Home Videos. It will require some dedicated attention, solitude, and a non-weary mind. None of which I had the other night.
So I began Alan Dean Foster’s “Drowning World”, the fourth (chronological in-universe) of his standalone Humanx Commonwealth novels.
Here’s the thing about ADF. He’s not going to blow your mind with state of the art science fiction ideas, speculative science, hallucinogenic mind-fucks, or experimental narrative styles and structures. ADF tells a good, solid, entertaining science fiction story within his fictional universe. Within those stories you will find some humor, some surprises, and in this era of depressing “the universe hates us” science fiction ADF offers adventure and optimism (not unlike Star Trek).
ADF will drop you on to an alien planet, introduce you to weird aliens with weird names, and a hour later the names don’t seem weird and the aliens are beings you might even relate to. He’ll tell you one small story — one of thousands of possible stories — based in his setting.
There is something to be said for a novel you can just read and don’t have to decipher.
I’m going to see how this goes. Using my nice microphone to dictate this post right into my iPhone’s WordPress app.
I finished reading Blood Music, by Greg Bear, last night. Really good science-fiction novel. This is the first one I’ve read in quite a while that didn’t deal with space. It’s about bio technology and nano technology and artificial intelligence and real intelligence with elements of horror. Not going to drop any spoilers here. I’ll just say it’s pretty good.
This was my 18th novel that I’ve read this year. Starting it on a new one tonight.