Friday, December 30, 2011

Things I Pretend To Notice: 2011 Book Round-Up

As the year draws to a close I am eager to pare down. No, not my middle-age paunch, but my expansive collection of DVDs and Books (the Paper DVDs)!

Sometimes when I try this, I discover I like everything I own and I want to let nothing go to trades or donations. And that's o.k., too. I can be that horrible junk-covered harridan from Jim Henson's 'Labyrinth' if I want.

I looked back at and discovered that (including super-short books like 'Go The F To Sleep' and Weird Al's 'When I Grow Up') I read 153 books this year. That's a lot for some people, a mere book snackwich for others.

I've never measured it before. I feel mildly disappointed and I wanted to mention five that felt like accomplishments or made a real impression.

5) 'Norstrilia' by Cordwainer Smith is a fun SF adventure tale. It simplified the way I define evil in my own head- suggesting that humans are only evil when they are bored or scared. That felt really true to me, you know? It makes evil feel like it can be fought.

4) 'Earth The Book' by John Stewart and Company was most amusing and reminds me how little I know about anything.

3) David Mack's 'Star Trek Destiny' trilogy, for better or worse, was so enjoyable I started an obsessive Star Trek reviewing project that derailed this very blog in favor of its sister blog and ate a DEVASTATING amount of my spare time since September. I'm... grateful? I guess? Damn it all to hell.

2) 'The Singularity is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology' by Ray Kurzweil did my noggin in. Turns out there's a way to be extremely optimistic about the future without belief in God's intervention. Or putting that aside, Science might be about to make everything a whole lot better for everybody, whether you believe in it or not.

1) 'Mort' by Terry Patchett. I owe my BFF Bookmonkey great thanks for the loan of the Discworld books, and this was my favourite so far. If that Singularity is never forthcoming, then I pray meeting Death will be for the best. Or good for a laugh.

The forests of the Vasta Nerada won't need to be leveled on my account- I'm sliding inexorably into a paperless reading experience that renders my "paper DVDs" quip meaningless...

I'm saying I am loving my birthday eReader, a gift from my sweet lady wife.

Peace, long life, and great reads to you all in your new year!

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