Wednesday, January 06, 2016

What I read: December 2015

“The Music Men” by Margaret Hindle Hazen and Robert M. Hazen. More research. This book covers the band movement (mostly brass bands) in the US from 1800 to roughly WWI. It explains a lot why the actual band I play in is the way it is today – the repertoire we play is geriatric, the places we play are mostly seniors’ residences, the band keeps getting older. It didn’t go that much into why the “golden age” of bands ended, but it totally suited my needs. The band in my novel is at the right time, but I need to find a way to motivate there being women/girls in it, as most bands at the time were male, some few were female, very few were mixed gender. 

“Dreamquest” by Elizabeth Knox. The ending of book 1 was quite unsatisfying. This volume wouldn’t have stood alone, either. At the same time, it was probably good to read something else in between, just because all that re-explaining exposition at the beginning wasn’t so awful this way. I quite liked the resolution.

“The Wind-up Bird Chronicles” by Haruki Murakami. My sister asked for it for Christmas, and since I had it lying around the house for years, it made sense to read it and then pass it along. Alas that it’s 600 pages, so meant I couldn’t really read anything else. Which is too bad because some of the other books looked good. I’m glad I read it, though. The translator did a brilliant job I think.

“The Missionary Position” by Christopher Hitchens. The boy gave me this for Christmas.

“Six-Gun Snow White” by Catherynne M. Valente. I was at Bakka on maybe December 29, and I saw this and just had to have it. The voice was so good. This is my favorite thing I’ve read by her (so far).

“Blackbirds” by Chuck Wendig. This is the second novel of his I’ve read, though I’ve read a couple of books worth of blog posts, I’m sure. He proves here once again that he knows what he’s talking about when he’s talking about crafting a fantastic genre read. I’m curious how he’ll progress Miriam over subsequent volumes.

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