To Reign in Hell, Steven Brust: Street find, didn't finish. Answers the musical question, "Can you make the interminable middle books of Paradise Lost at all interesting?" with a resounding "Oh my gosh, not even close."
The Long Goodbye, Raymond Chandler: Thus I moved to a languid summery reread (I think I first read all the Philip Marlowe novels one summer in high school? except there are a LOT of oeuvres I think I first read over a summer in high school, and there weren't that many). I love noir--the 20th-century heir to the gothic, resurgence of the Greek tragic hero...and oh yeah, so well dressed. Here, read a poem.
Changeless, Gail Carriger: Second after Soulless in the Parasol Protectorate series...and of all things, another street find. The zesty writing and the cheek and the steampunky fashion continue to go down like petits fours and cucumber sammiches! Oh, and my Word.A.Day email this morning taught me that her flamboyant vampire confidant Lord Akeldama derives his name from the potter's field bought with Judas' blood money! Neat!
Then I sank pretty much up to my neck in must-keep-reading bliss with George R.R. Martin's A Game of Thrones. Like so many things, I knew I was bound to love it when my sister did (we share a certain vehemence and catholicity of taste). It is straight-up fantasy epic--intrigue and dragons!--and though the prose is workaday, I'm amazed by Martin's ability to create so many characters and have them all be three-dimensional and distinct...and so very pleased by the number of important female characters. As my sister puts it, too, they're not just Important Female Characters; they are characters, who are important, who happen to be ladies. A distinction with a difference.
I'd planned to borrow the first four books from Chris's brother, but he'd left Book 2 (A Clash of Kings) at work or something, and his daughter was born last Sunday, so yeah, pretty sure sussing out the tome for me is now Priority A Million. Luckily, WORD was there for my George R.R. Martin Emergency needs (and the Museum of Modern Art Bookstore offices, where I'm filling in for the assistant book buyer through July, are there for my Income For Books needs, which YAY). I am being good and dutiful, though, and switching off days between Clash and The Brothers Karamazov, the next-three-months pick for WORD's classics book club--and a surprise gift from a college friend after an "I'm-broke-can-I-borrow" appeal on Facebook. So far it is making me feel dumb and fidgety. BUT I WILL PERSEVERE