- Pitchfork just posted a list of the Top 200 Albums of the 1980s. They also included a Spotify list for your listening pleasure.
- The National Book Awards longlist has just been published. Once again, I have been unreasonably snubbed simply because I have not written a book. Is that fair?
- Categorizing Types of American Religious Belief. Which is to say, cataloging how Americans believe as much as what they believe.
- For all you Twitter users out there who want Twitter as YOU want it, not as Twitter wants it, user realtwitter.com. No algorithms, no likes or follows or replies. Pure chronological order of first-level tweets.
This was a good week for books! A little over half of them (3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9) are from publishers to whose catalogs I subscribe. A couple (2, 11) are from Kickstarters, one (1) is for research for an upcoming call for submissions, and the last (10) is just because it is an interesting title on an interesting subject.
- Having recently visited San Francisco for the first time, I found this essay particularly compelling: HAGS In Your Face: A People’s History of the Legendary San Francisco Dyke Gang. Michelle Tea is a superb writer. I read her semi-autobiographical story Black Wave while on a work trip to Sacramento back in 2017.
- Tor.com asks, Who are the Forgotten Greats of Science Fiction? I expect this list will expand as time goes on. It is in the nature of things to be forgotten.
- What would a socialist America look like?
- An overview, description and explanation of Late Capitalism, from the always-excellent Midwest Socialism.
- Metafilter has added a new post containing links and discussion of the deranged and pathetic reign of Daddy Issues Donnie.
- N.K. Jemisin talks about world building.
- How hyperpolyglots got that way.
- TOR.com’s lists of the new genre books coming out in the next month:
- The Incredible, Rage-Inducing Inside Story of America’s Student Debt Machine. This makes me feel…guillotiney.
- Some new words: guillotainment, guillotaining – respectively, the televised proletariat revolution and the sensation of watching the televised proletariat revolution.
- N.K. Jemisin has won the Hugo Award for her novel The Stone Sky, the third and final volume of her astonishing and brilliant Broken Earth trilogy. This is the third year in a row she has won the Hugo, and she is the first writer to ever win the Hugo three years in a row, as well as the first person of color to win a Hugo for best novel. Her acceptance speech at WorldCon 2018 follows this list.
- Been aware of The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction for a long time but recently discovered its online presence.
- A list of fifty must-read books by women in translation, for Women in Translation Month.
- Places here for future research purposes: A Strangely Funny Russian Genius
- Why Disgust Matters
Another fine week for reading. From top to bottom, they are: Fence, Patio, Blessed Virgin by Kristin Brace, The Cooking Gene by Michael W. Twitty, Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain, Narrator by Bragi Olaffson, Salvage issue #5, and Jacobin issue #30.
Kristin announced Fence, Patio, Blessed Virgin at a reading back in, I think, late April. This is her first book, and it is wonderful!
I picked up The Cooking Gene and Kitchen Confidential at the We Are Lit popup bookstore, which was set up in the Downtown Market in Grand Rapids. They are run entirely online, with occasional popups, and have an excellently curated selection of books.
Narrator came in as the most recent volume from my subscription to Open Letter Books.
Salvage is an interesting journal based in England, to which I subscribed on a whim. I discovered it during an afternoon of reading leftist fiction and researching different -punk subgenres. I came across a reference to “salvagepunk” and, upon further inquiry, this was one of the top results, with China Mieville’s name displayed prominently. I honestly never expected to receive any issues of this, but here it is, and it is a thing of beauty.
Receiving a new issue of Jacobin is always a pleasure. The writing is top-notch, the content important and interesting (particularly in the current pre-apocalyptic political climate), and the physical artifact is a thing of beauty.
- Here is a wonderful speech by V.E. Schwab, on doorways and gatekeepers in the world of Fantasy literature.
- A Survey of Some of the Best Science Fiction Ever Published – brief reviews of “best of” collections of authors going back to the 1920s, along with brief bios of those authors.
- August is Women in Translation month, and here is a great list of recent works by women writers, including several from some of my favorite publishers.
- Good list of Latin American alternatives for some of the books in the English-speaking canon.
- And here is an excellent list of books by Malaysian writers.
- Metafilter posted their latest thread of links and conversation concerning the ongoing pillaging of the USA by the inbred cannibals of the 1%, led by emasculated man-baby iDJiT.
- And finally, blues and soul legend Aretha Franklin passed away earlier this week. Here is a video of a second-line in the Treme district of New Orleans, honoring Aretha.
- Just finished reading At the Existentialist Cafe by Sarah Bakewell and Paternus: Rise of Gods by Dyrk Ashton. Now reading Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse and Art of War, an anthology commissioned by Petros Triantafyllou, with all profits being donated to Doctors Without Borders.
- Squealing coward white nationalists marched in Portland, OR a few days back. They were met by leftist and antifa counter-protesters. There was some violence, mostly perpetrated by the police upon the anti-fascists. To be clear, the mere existence of white nationalism, as represented by Alex Jones and the majority of Trump supporters, is an act of violence. Therefore any reaction to the existence of white nationalism, in any context, under any circumstances, is automatically an act of self defense. Punching fascists is, in fact, a moral obligation.
- More squealing coward white nationalists marched in Washington, DC over this past weekend. Almost two dozen of them were brave enough to leave their parents’s basement and go downtown, where they were met by hundreds upon hundreds of counter-protesters. And once again, police took the side of the white nationalists and fascists.
- On that note, Metafilter has posted the latest catch-all thread for links and conversation about the increasingly frayed and tapeworm-riddled tenure of emasculated president iDJiT.
This was a good week for books. From top to bottom: Selected Poems of Sergei Yesenin, Voronezh Notebooks by Osip Mandelstam, First Love and Other Stories by Ivan Turgenev, Selected Poems of Vladimir Mayakovsky, The Freeze-Frame Revolution by Peter Watts, Celadon by Ian Haight, Granta issue #144, Apex Magazine Issue 110, and Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse.
For links to these authors, books and publishers, please see their listings on my 2018 Reading List page.
Thanks to a small gift card from work, I was able to pick up the four Russian authors from Amazon.com. They are unusual-enough titles that I didn’t want to burden the local bookstores with hunting them down. The Watts and Roanhorse books I ordered from Books and Mortar here in Grand Rapids, and I have ongoing subscriptions to the two journals. I picked up Ian Haight’s book at a small signing in Lowell this past Monday. It was great to finally meet Ian, after publishing him in Issue 1.3 of The 3288 Review, back in early 2016.
Since I just finished reading At the Existentialist Cafe by Sarah Bakewell and Paternus by Dyrk Ashton, Trail of Lightning is currently at the top of the to-read pile, and I can’t wait to dive in.