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The Sound and the Fury
William Faulkner
The Last Man
Anne McWhir, Mary Shelley
In Search of Walid Masoud (Middle East Literature in Translation)
Allen Roger M. A., Adnan Haydar, Jabra Ibrahim Jabra, جبرا إبراهيم جبرا
The Getting Of Wisdom - Henry Handel Richardson Very much enjoyed this story of a bright, imaginative, bossy girl running smack into a society she doesn't understand and continues to fail to understand, hard as she tries to win friends and influence people.
Black Spring - Alison Croggon I am very much the wrong reader for this book. It's well written but my dislike of the characters and impatience with their behaviour meant that all my enjoyment was in the writing and none in what was written about. It's likely that I'm missing a lot of context for the story, as well. I've read Wuthering Heights, but I don't remember it in detail which shouldn't surprise. I didn't like it. It's hard to have any sympathy or liking for characters who unremittingly and thoroughly destroy their own lives. If you like grim, tragic stories about thoughtless, self-centred cruel people or, looking at it another way, you enjoy tragedies about wild, true creatures horribly caged by a staid and unforgiving society, then you will likely enjoy this book.Croggon is a fabulous writer though.

Crucible of Gold (Temeraire Series #7)

Crucible of Gold - Naomi Novik Better than the previous book, but still didn't have a focus. I enjoy the characters very much, particularly dour, straight-laced Lawrence, and I enjoyed each little adventure, but it seems more like a string of beads than a novel.

Tongues of Serpents: A Novel of Temeraire

Tongues of Serpents: A Novel of Temeraire - Naomi Novik Not a lot happened in this novel. It seemed to be missing a plot. Possibly this is the one you're commonly advised to skip when reading a large series of books.

Mr. Cavendish, I Presume (Two Dukes of Wyndham Series #2)

Mr. Cavendish, I Presume (Two Dukes of Wyndham Series #2) - The story of the other guy from The Lost Duke of Wyndham. There's a qualitative difference between knowing how a story ends because it's a romance and it will end happily with the clearly flagged MFEO couple together, and knowing how a story ends because you've already read it in another version.

The Lost Duke of Wyndham (Two Dukes of Wyndham Series #1)

The Lost Duke of Wyndham (Two Dukes of Wyndham Series #1) - An odd book, felt messy but was mostly tidy.
Thuvia, Maid of Mars  - Edgar Rice Burroughs This was GREAT. The usual Burroughs rollicking, non-stop, two-fisted, open-throttle biffo as the action veers back and forth across Mars, with outrageous acts of heroism, ridiculous coincidences, nefarious plots and noble deeds. But truly best of all, every time Cathoris races to save Thuvia, she pretty much saves herself moments before he arrives. Then they have a moment to not communicate and they're off again, narrowly escaping death and dishonour. Until, at the very end, everyone is saved by Kar Komak, the traditional collected-on-the-quest new best friend and doughty warrior. In summary, Thuvia is the best Martian princess ever.
Warlord of Mars (Barsoom #3) - Edgar Rice Burroughs It had to happen. This is just as much two-fisted John Carter fun as the previous books, but I'm quite over Dejah In Distress. She doesn't even get any lines. Well, some lines. I spent quite a bit of time imaging a book that was all about Phaidon, Dejah Thoris and Thuvia having shenanigans. There was still fun to be had. I have a question, though. How do you think John Carter disguised the colour of his pubic hair whenever he was 'in disguise' as a Thern in the previous book? And how did they colour his genitals? Seriously? These people don't wear clothes unless they are outside at the North pole of Mars. Is there not significant scholarship on this topic?
The Gods of Mars - Edgar Rice Burroughs John Carter is ridiculous, deliciously, hysterically, entertainingly ridiculous. He is the manliest man who ever manned. Never was one so noble, so brave, so lucky, so good-hearted, so epically lucky and such an idiot. This is not a spoiler: the boy is your son. He's your son, you massive nuff nuff. And yet, all the time I was yelling 'he's your son' I was gripped by the adventure. Dejah Thoris manages to be offstage for the entire novel, plunging into distress towards the end. Thuvia, on the other hand, is truly awesome, from the first moment we meet her when she begins to rescue John Carter and Tars Tarkas while still chained to a wall. She continued awesome as she shoots down the guy who had enslaved her as soon as she sees him with a weapon in her hand. No conversation, no hesitation, bam! You're dead. She is hardcore and deserves many adventures. Let there be more Thuvia. This book ends in a massive cliffhanger. Onward to Warlord of Mars.
A Princess of Mars (Barsoom, #1) - Edgar Rice Burroughs How awesome are the green women of Mars? Engineers, trauma surgeons, armorers, blacksmiths, teachers and more. What are the green men of Mars? Naked dudes with weapons. How does John Carter win the people's ovation and fame forever on Barsoom? Cuddles, people. He wins it with cuddles and kindness. Were he just a guy from a planet with higher gravity, he would still win the fights he fought and won, but he would not have won the affection and loyalty of Woola, his faithful toothy hound, and the thoats, and he would not have Sola and Dejah Thoris as his allies, all key at various points to his survival on Mars.Mars needs cuddles, my friends. Mars needs cuddles.I love this book. It is vibrant and silly and earnest and purportedly about manly business but every page is about the awesomeness of the ladies. Ok, sure, Dejah Thoris could do a bit more rescuing of herself and a bit less swanning about being sternly princessly and stiff upper lipped. She does save the day once, I suppose. I'd like to see more of her being awesome in subsequent books. My major complaint is being robbed of the reunion of Sola and Tars Tarkas. Books and books about Sola would be very fine indeed. In an epic display of juvenile behaviour, I found myself giggling every time I remembered that all the characters were naked but for jewellery and weapons. I find it hilarious that all the cover illustrations are over-dressing!
The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes  - Richard Lancelyn Green,  Arthur Conan Doyle That Arthur Conan Doyle fellow knows how to write an engaging short story.

The Mermaid's Madness (Princess Novels Series #2)

The Mermaid's Madness - Jim C. Hines Cracking good fun, lady heroes. I don't regret that I stopped reading SF/F in the late Nineties, but I wouldn't have stopped if there had been a lot more like this.

The Secret Mistress

The Secret Mistress - Mary Balogh That was fun. Loved the second couple and I was glad their story was not completely off stage. There was a lot of joy in this story.


Accelerando (Singularity) - Charles Stross This book, too many words about world building, too little characterisation, and I know Stross can do it because I've read another of his books. Interesting but not satisfying, no-one is particularly engaging and the deus ex machina is kind of a let down.

A Precious Jewel (Signet Regency Romance)

A Precious Jewel - Mary Balogh This novel stands out in that the hero is pretty rubbish in bed. It's fantastic. While I didn't particularly like either character, they clearly snuck under my fences because I was all swelling violins weepy at the resolution.
The Ideal Wife - Mary Balogh I love a contrived marriage plot to pieces but this book, while holding out occasional hope for being delicious fun, was boringly by the numbers even for a style of book I like to read because it's formulaic.