Back on it's usual day! No cinema trips this week. On the other hand, I watched the pilot episode of American Gods, which is gorgeous - Bryan Fuller was an excellent choice for that show.

What I've recently finished reading

Greg Van Eekhout: California Bones
I must admit, reading this was a very up and down experience. Sometimes it annoyed me - mostly because, while the worldbuilding you get is intriguing - it's urban fantasy in a world where magic is acquired by eating the recovered bones of extinct mythical creatures. Well, and eating other magicians - which is our hero's father's fate and thus our hero - sorry, our protagonist's tragic backstory. But on the other hand? It keeps hinting a connections to the real US in a way that leaves me wondering how much magic the rest of the world really has and what happened. Which I suppose the next books might provide.

Anyway, it's a heist novel - our protagonist, Daniel Blackland, leads a band of merry magical freaks to infiltrate the Hierarch's ossuary to steal bones and a magic sword that contains bits of Daniel. Because that's how this world's magic rolls. It's fun and I enjoy the grim bloody world and I liked Daniel and his friends. On the other hand, I'm hesitating at requesting the next book, because the description is all about a 10 year time skip and it looks suspiciously like a first person pov narrative from Daniel's adopted son, which - I'm not sure I'm up for that.

Henrik Cavling: Det danske Vestindien
This is basically a collection of short texts written by journalist Henrik Cavling during his visit to the Danish West-Indies in 1894. It's - unsurprisingly somewhat racist a lot of the time. Mostly, though, I found myself really missing a decent foreword or notes or something. All this book has apart from a reprint of the original text and pictures is a two page summary of Wikipedia's article about the islands. A foreword explaining the situation when Cavling went, perhaps delving into stuff like, say, the boy he apparently bought while in the islands - though, to be fair, this book was published in 2015 and that news story broke in 2017, so probably not that story. But still. A foreword.

That said, while it's obviously not the world's most trustworthy piece, I do find myself less and less surprised that Danish history managed to mostly forget the islands. This book makes them feel - incredibly far away, even for the late 19th century - three weeks by boat and the boat left from Germany, not Denmark - and how few people went: officials and a few soldiers and the occasional ultra-rich planter, several of which weren't even from Denmark - if this is even halfway accurate, it really weren't a lot of Danes who went to visit. And having read other books about the people who came to Denmark from the islands - those weren't exactly numerous either. You're just left with the feeling that Denmark might have ended up forgetting the islands less out of feeling guilty and/or embarrassed about our slave owning history, and more because there was so very little contact.

Thit Jensen: Stygge Krumpen 1.
This is an incredibly sex obsessed book. I mean, typical florid Thit Jensen historical novel writing, A+ for that, but the entire story has so much - well, not sex scenes. It's from the 30s, not sex scenes, just - this overwhelming narrative about how sex is natural and inevitable and how it is evil and unnatural for women to be denied sex and the joys of motherhood. Which - well. I'm sure you can see why I might not be too keen on finding it a universal evil. Also, I really hope the Cybele nunnery is not supposed to be a feminist utopia, considering them murdering children who dare to not smile and fit in.

(Also, I just noticed I forgot to put Hannu Rajaniemi's The Quantum Thief in my last post. It's cyberpunk pretending to be space opera, and while it has some intriguing world building, especially of the Mars socity, I never quite found myself liking anybody in it.)

What I'm reading now

I just started reading Odinsbarn by Siri Pettersen, the first novel in a celebrated Norwegian fantasy trilogy. So far, so good.

What I'm reading next

And I will be starting Barbariet tur/retur by Jens Riise Kristensen, a non-fiction work about an Icelandic priest who ended up in Algeria after being abducted by pirates. As you sometimes did in the 17th century.

Total number of books and comics read this year: 82
lysanatt: (Default)

From: [personal profile] lysanatt

Brrr, Stygge Krumpen turns cruel. I read it last time twenty years ago, and it still... nah. Love Thit's books, probably one of the most overlooked authors in DK, but a few are too much for my sensitive little heart.
blnchflr: Captain America Civil War (Default)

From: [personal profile] blnchflr

Henrik Cavling: Det danske Vestindien sounds interesting. Watch me never get around to it :)



oneiriad: (Default)

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