But you wonder if I've been reading, I have! Reading is one of those personal joys that I need to keep going. So what have I read lately? What am I reading now? I think I've chosen to read everything but "romance," and by that I mean mainstream contemporary and historical romance.
I'm really enjoying this serial, folks! So far Scalzi has alternated between the overall storyarc involving negotiations between the Colonial Union and different aliens and key events that affect or will affect those negotiations. So far some of the individual episodes work well on their own while others do not, and as a whole book the flow may seem a bit choppy. However, as the story moves along and revelations come to light, it works. I think that after Tales from the Clarke the story may flow better. I will let you know. So far this is a solid B read for me.
The 2013 Science Fiction Experience
highlighted The Rest of Us: Stories by Guy Mark Foster. Foster is a gay African-American writer whose collection of gay fiction stories turned out to be fantastic. I purchased the digital edition, began to browse and ended up reading the whole book in one sitting.
The collection begins with "Boy," a short piece that sets the tone for the rest of the book, where a father explains to his son what manhood is all about, "rest the ankle of one leg on the opposite leg's knee-never cross one leg over the other's knee, and people won't too easily peg you for the punk you are right under my very roof due to become; " and ends with the amazing "Between Us," a story in letter form addressed to "Dear M" where Foster's character Mark attempts to explain to his former white lover why he tends to push people away. Foster's character explains that in addition to being black and gay he also has to "navigate the ever present complexities" of racial history: "simply being a human being presents a whole host of conflicts, but to be gay and of African descent in our society only increases those conflicts."
In between, Foster's wonderful collection of stories captures the social and cultural complexities of growing up as a gay African-American male while dealing with difficult family issues, religion, racial differences, racism, homophobia, and snapshots of men who continue to love men regardless of the obstacles. Highly recommended, this was an A- read for me.
I'm not done with Jordan Castillo Price yet. I'm planning on reading more of her series, plus Hermovore. All books already in my Kindle. Can't wait!
What Am I Reading Now?
Two upcoming March releases: In Search Of and Others is a collection of speculative fiction stories by Will Ludwigsen that's working perfectly for me at this time because I can read and enjoy a few stories at a time in between other books. I will let you know how it turns out when I'm done, but there are some great stories in this collection so far.
The other book I'm reading is Rigoberto González's upcoming creative nonfiction release from UA Press, Red-Inked Retablos. This is another book that I'm thoroughly enjoying. It is totally different from my other reads in that it is nonfiction, but because the book is essentially a collection of distinct essays it can also be read slowly. So far a great read.
That's it for now folks! Hope those of you in the U.S. are enjoying President's Day.