Blog Profile / OF Blog of the Fallen


URL :http://ofblog.blogspot.com
Filed Under:Genres / Fantasy
Posts on Regator:1169
Posts / Week:4.4
Archived Since:April 27, 2010

Blog Post Archive

Robert Darnton, Censors at Work: How States Shaped Literature

What is censorship? Like pornography, it seems to be a field that is hard to define, yet people feel confident that they can identify examples of it without worrying overmuch about the precision of their definition of the term. If anything,...Show More Summary

Weekend plans

Not much time to post today, so here's a tentative plan for the weekend. Much of this depends on how I feel after my ureteroscopy Friday morning to remove an 8 mm kidney stone, but I do hope to have several more reviews online by Monday morning. Show More Summary

Michael Faber, The Book of Strange New Things

"I was going to say something," he said. "So say it," she said. He was quiet, keeping his eyes on the road. In the darkness of the city's outskirts, there was nothing to see except the tail-lights of other cars in the distance, the endless unfurling roll of tarmac, the giant utilitarian fixtures of the motorway. Show More Summary

Will Self, Shark

DAY – TUBE – WORK – DINNER – WORK – TUBE – ARMCHAIR – TV – SLEEP – TUBE – WORK. HOW MUCH MORE CAN YOU TAKE? ONE IN TEN GOES MAD, ONE IN FIVE CRACKS UP... and this mantra stayed with him – although, after much repetition, it dawned on him: this ability of capitalism to so accurately identify its own symptoms was itself... Show More Summary

Cixin Liu, The Three-Body Problem

Those who survived that initial period gradually became numb as the ruthless struggle sessions continued. The protective mental shell helped them avoid total breakdown. They often seemed to be half asleep during the sessions and would...Show More Summary

Jacqueline Woodson, Brown Girl Dreaming

There are white men working at the printing press beside Daddy, their fingers blackened with ink so that at the end of the day, palms up it's hard to tell who is white and who is not, still they call my grandfather Gunnar, even though he's a foreman and is supposed to be called Mr. Show More Summary

October 2014 Reads

Relatively slow reading month, with only 20 books finished. Just slightly off the pace in a few of the year goals, but I anticipate catching up with most, if not all, of them in November.280 J.R.R. Tolkien, The Silmarillion (re-read; already reviewed)281 J.R.R. Show More Summary

A few books finished today to be reviewed shortly

Had planned on writing a review today, but I spent most of the morning and early afternoon traveling between medical clinics (I have an 8 mm left kidney stone that will require a very wince-inducing medical procedure sometime next week;...Show More Summary

Jenny Erpenbeck, The End of Days

The Lord gave, and the Lord took away, her grandmother said to her at the edge of the grave. But that wasn't right, because the Lord had taken away much more than had been there to start with, and everything her child might have become was now lying there at the bottom of the pit, waiting to be covered up. Show More Summary

An interesting quote on power and "freedom of speech"

Going to be writing a review of Robert Darnton's Censors at Work: How States Shaped Literature in the next few days, but I thought this quote from his introduction might provide some food for thought when it comes to discussing the concept...Show More Summary

Looks like the next five weeks or so are going to be a bit busier than usual here

Although it is still another four days away, I thought now would be a good time to announce my quasi-annual November review month goal. Since I'm not an aspiring piss-poor novelist, I don't do the write a novel in a month thing many others do. Show More Summary

A few 2015 releases I already have as e-ARCs or have requested

Although I won't do a formal 2015 Upcoming Releases/Reviews Link post until January, I thought perhaps a few people might be interested in a few titles that I've seen on Netgalley (yes, I joined back in September, although I've been fairly low-key about it) that aren't scheduled to be released in the US until sometime in the Winter/Spring 2015. Show More Summary

Antoine Volodine, Terminus radieux (Radiant Terminus)

– Suite à une tentative de rekoulakisation, dit Hannko Vogoulian, il y a longtemps. Nous, on était pas nées. C'était avant que le kolkhoze soit rebaptise «Terminus radieux». Si les Organes étaient pas intervenus, c'était à coup sûr le retour du capitalisme et de toutes les saloperies qui vont avec. Show More Summary

Emily St. John Mandel, Station Eleven

There was the flu that exploded like a neutron bomb over the surface of the earth and the shock of the collapse that followed, the first unspeakable years when everyone was traveling, before everyone caught on that there was no place...Show More Summary

So I was prepared to write a column defending the notion of reading being more than just entertainment when...

I saw some chatter on Facebook yesterday about an article in The New Yorker by Rebecca Mead entitled "The Percy Jackson Problem." I didn't have time to read it then (I was at work and just checking messages during my break time), but...Show More Summary

Howard Jacobson, J

Before chancing his nose outside his cottage in the morning, Kevern 'Coco' Cohen turned up the volume on the loop-television, poured tea – taking care to place the cup carelessly on the hall table – and checked twice to be certain that his utility phone was on and flashing. Show More Summary

Things I'm supposedly going to be working on this month

My second bout with kidney stones this weekend set me back quite a bit. Not only did I miss the final two days of the 2014 Southern Festival of Books due to sometimes intense kidney/abdominal pain, but I didn't get any reviews written this weekend. Show More Summary

Inaugural Kirkus Prize shortlist for Fiction

Another new lit award I forgot to blog about, the Kirkus Prize for Fiction will be awarded on October 23. Here are the six finalists:Siri Hustvedt, The Blazing WorldLily King, EuphoriaDinaw Mengestu, All Our NamesBrian Morton, Florence...Show More Summary

2014 Southern Festival of Books book purchases

Yesterday, I attended the first day of the 2014 Southern Festival of Books (I didn't go today, due to a recurrence of kidney pain; might go tomorrow, but uncertain). I first stopped by the McKay's booth, where I was pleasantly surprised to see three leatherbound Franklin Library editions on sale for $12 each. Show More Summary

2014 Goldsmiths Prize

Forgot to blog about this the other day, but the second Goldsmiths Prize for literature just announced their shortlist. Here they are:Rachel Cusk, OutlineWill Eaves, The Absent TherapistHoward Jacobson, JPaul Kingsnorth, The Wake Zia Haider Rahman, In the Light of What We KnowAli Smith, How to be Both The winner will be announced November 12th.

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