Today’s Book – is not actually a book but don’t hold that against me

Cuz it’s about a book!  Yes, I realize you’ll all be very tired soon of hearing about how wonderful George RR Martin’s Song of Ice and Fire series is but this I needed to share.  It’s an editorial that appeared in The New York Times on September 7, 2011 titled – Trapped in a Tapestry of Ice and Fire.

I love that this is an editorial about a book.  *Love it.* This makes me happy.  I would go on about the deeper meaning of this being an editorial about a fantasy book in the paper of record, or talk about the people who bemoan that we’ve stopped reading, blah, blah, blah.  But I seem to have met my match in a germ making the rounds so that’s all I have that’s coherent.  Go ahead and read.  And, if this doesn’t make sense, don’t hold it against me.  Blame the nasty germs.

Today’s Book…is more than a book

It’s a soundtrack too.  Did you see this article in The New York Times about ebooks?  Part of me knows this is about sales and appealing to a large mass of people who may not read often.  And publishing is a business which means exploring possible revenue sources with new technologies.  I’m not against a concept like this and props to the person who came up with the idea for this company but why can’t books be books?  Why do they have to be and do something more?

Today’s Book – Mansfield Park by Jane Austen

Does anyone out there love this book? Can you help me?

I knew going in this was not one of her most loved works. Also knowing how I adore some of her other books, I thought I could get past that.  It seems I’m not immune after all.

The biting social criticism is interesting but I’m finding the characters somewhat hateful. Fanny and Edmund, the only two likeable characters, are still annoying at times. I’m not quitting, I’ll finish it. But I’m finding it difficult to get into and that’s frustrating me to no end.

Austen is an author I go back to from time to time and always find something new to enjoy but this one may be a one and done for me. I don’t see Mansfield Park falling into my re-reading pattern.

If Mansfield Park is a favorite of yours, can you tell me why?

Today’s Book – The Magician King by Lev Grossman

Lately, all my today’s book posts have been about additions to my TBR.  The list is getting long…not that I’m complaining. 🙂

Today’s book is The Magician King by Lev Grossman. I read the first book in the series, The Magicians, liked it, actually rated it high but also had some issues with it.  Overall, I thought it was well done and the snarkiness that held me back from loving it seemed, well, plain snarky of me to use it as a major reason to dislike of the book in general.

First, don’t you love the cover?  Cover lover that I am, it made me want to run out and buy it for that reason alone.

Second, I love a good fantasy, and though the snarky attitude I mentioned earlier** bothered me some, the fantasy was still strong and really, who doesn’t love a fantasy book set at a boarding school?

** OK, I know part of this book was a take on other fantasy novels (Harry Potter, Narnia, Lord of the Rings to name three) but the issues the author had and the way he poked fun at the other worlds annoyed me because without those previously mentioned books, he wouldn’t be writing his own set of fantasy novels.  Toss all the stones you want but make sure you aren’t doing it inside your glass house.  Just sayin’.

Anyway, moving on.  If you’re interested, here’s the book’s site.  It doesn’t give you much but you can enjoy gawking at the covers.

Today’s Book – Non-Fiction & Travelogues

Today, I’m highlighting three books on my TBR.  I’ve said before that I want to read more non-fiction this year and while I haven’t stuck with my one non-fiction book a month idea, I have added several to my list.  Let’s take a look.

Cabinet of Roman Curiosities: Strange Tales and Surprising Facts from the World’s Greatest Empire by JC McKeown – I love strange facts about ancient Rome and this one promises to provide me with facts for days about Roman life, superstitions, and customs.

Without Reservations: The Travels of an Independent Woman by Alice Steinbach – This one appealed to me because her travels are centered in Europe.  It’s also got a bit of the finding yourself theme that I don’t so much like but I think I can look past that to enjoy the travel part.

Turn Right at Machu Picchu: Rediscovering the Lost City One Step at a Time by Mark Adams – We live near the Peruvian embassy in DC.  Right now they have banners up celebrating the discovery of Machu Picchu and the photos on the banners make me want to get on a plane.  I also have a friend that hiked the trail this year so there are many reasons this one appeals.

Anything interesting on your list?

Today’s Book – The Faerie Ring by Kiki Hamilton

You know all those newsletters you get?  Well, the other day I decided to go through them all, skimming here and there, trying to get through as many as possible before my self-allotted time gave out.  That’s when I came across this little tidbit.  It’s a book trailer for The Faerie Ring by Kiki Hamilton which is coming out this September.

It takes place in Victorian London, a favorite time period of mine, and involves faeries.  Faeries are not a staple of my fantasy reading but why can’t they be?  Also, the trailer looks gothic and foreboding — love that combination.

If you’re interested, more info about the book is here.