What I am reading: Surface Detail, by Ian Banks. I’m mixed on this book. On the one hand, as usual, Banks’ creativity and depiction of technology and technological possiblity just sucks me in, with a a microscopic armored tattoo, a philisophical technological war in virtual reality (with some interesting lines placed in terms of where characters break morally), an ancient but highly advanced habitat, etc. On the other hand, despite the fluidity of gender and sexuality in the Culture books, there are definitely problematic issues to the novel, both in the amount of rape (not that much so far, but really, I didn’t need rape both in the slavery story -and- in hell. It would be just fine to drop it from one; or even both!) and how sexuality is handled.
The last book I read was Captain Vorpatril’s Alliance, by Lois McMaster Bujold. A lovely and delightful romantic farce, this novel achieves the “looking at the Vorkosigan Crazy from the outside” feel that Bujold was clearly going at for her previous novel (Cryoburn) but unlike the previous novel, this one is very much a success, with an engaging secondary character, great Ivan moments, and lots of well crafted comedic moments. I read it twice.
Next? I’m not sure; I might read the first of Catherynne Valente’s Prester John novels; I’ve been holding on to those for a while and really should give them a whirl.
So, what are you reading? What did you read last? What do you plan to read next?
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