Friday, July 1, 2016
Careful Husbandry of a Hold List
Summer is a time for vacation, which means I need to scrutinize my hold list very carefully. Some of the books on it are for my sons, who have the hard task of vacationing separately with their father and with me, so I have to make sure those books don't arrive while they are on a beach in the Mediterranean. Some are for me, so that would be the perfect time for them to arrive, and some are for both and ideally would arrive either in time for me to read them before they show up, or after they do so they have time to read them and hand them over before due dates call.
It's always a sad thing when a book I've waited weeks or months for arrives while I'm out of town, and suddenly there is frantic scrambling and confusion and confrontation with library regulations about who can pick up which books.
On a smaller scale, I also have to keep an eye on due dates. Usually I can renew things, but occasionally other people have the audacity to request books I haven't finished yet, and suddenly I might find myself with a book in Austin that is supposed to be in the drop chute in Renton. But I'm not going anywhere this week, so I'll worry about all that some other time while I enjoy my books.
My hold shelf loot was mainly Cybils books:
Blackbird Fly, Erin Kelly. Another Cybils Middle Grade Fiction finalist.
The Blackthorn Key, Kevin Sands. Another Cybils Middle Grade Fiction finalist.
Listen, Slowly, Tranhha Lai. Another Cybils Middle Grade Fiction finalist.
The Price of Silence, William Cohan. Since I just finished a book (Missoula) that firmly believes in the credibility of rape victims, I decided to follow up with a back that looks at the rare case in which this is incorrect. This book got a positive review in the Economist, although they complained that it ran long.
Also, I've almost caught up on my Library Quest books, so I grabbed some from the next stack:
Polity Agent, Neal Asher
Lights Out, Donald Bain
Only Enchanting, Mary Balogh
When the Devil Doesn't Show, Christine Barber
Karen Memory, Elizabeth Bear
That's a total of 29 things out. I'll go look at the Library Loot which is at The Captive Reader this week to see what everyone else is getting. Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Linda from Silly Little Mischief that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post - feel free to steal the button (that pile of books up at the top) - and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week.
Here I document any progress I make in my Quest to read a book from every shelf in my local library.
I finished Daniel Abraham's The Spider's War. I liked the story, although I could tell that I was coming in at the end of the tale (its book 5 of the series). I really liked the use of war gold (paper currency) as an economic innovation, and I also liked the nebulous relationship with the dragon -- they had intersecting goals, not shared ones, and the author kept a firm grasp on what everyone wanted. And I liked the moral ambiguity of the spiders -- once someone was infected, were they morally responsible for their actions? How about the people under their sway? Because they have to be defeated, which usually means killed, but does that mean good guys are killing innocent people?
I'm still enjoying the audio version of Flight Behavior by Barbara Kingsolver. I'm on disc 5 of the latter, and I managed to renew it.