Jerusalem by Alan Moore (Books 2017, 5)

Yes, it's halfway through the second-last month of the year and I've just finished my fifth book. Five in a year. That's very poor. But this book was a large part of the reason for that. ((To be fair, spending a lot of time reading on the web, plus some reading comics, etc: these also…

BSFA Awards 2016 by Various (Books 2017, 3)

Interrupting my Alan Moore reading to check on the short-fiction nominees for the BSFA Awards, reprinted as ever in an A4 booklet. Good stuff, of course, but maybe not as good as last year (though I realised that I hadn't read all of last year's). Let's go through them one by one. Warning: spoilers follow.…

Publishers and Sinners

Borrowing that title from (what used to be) a regular section in Dave Langford's Ansible newsletter. The publishing sin in question, though, is quite astonishingly egregious, if the story is true. And I have no reason to doubt it. There's a book called Too Like the Lightning, by Ada Palmer. I read a review of…

Reading Materials

You're probably wondering what's happened to my books posts. Surely I must have read something since January (and I thought I'd posted about two books this year, but apparently not). Thing is, after the Twin Peaks book, I started something rather large. I'm over 200 pages in, which means I'm about one-sixth of the way…

Footnotes Revisited

Having looked again over yesterday's piece, I've had a slight change of heart. As I'm sure you noticed, I made a comment in the footnote to the effect that I thought that my misremembering of Neuromancer's famous opening line was better than the actual one. I no longer think that's the case. Gibson obviously knew…

Under the Television Skies

In The Colour of Television Jack Deighton questions the worth of the famous opening line of William Gibson's Neuromancer: The sky above the port was the colour of television, tuned to a dead channel. ((I always remember it as "... over the port...", which frankly I think is better.)) Jack questions its meaning, and describes…

All the Things in the World

Do you ever look around and think how amazing everything is? How it all got there? And I'm not talking about the grandeur of nature, the glory of the universe, and all that. I'm talking about all the human-made stuff. I have often found myself in the middle of a city, or looking out of…

A Song of Stone by Iain Banks (Books 2017, 2)

Started towards the end of last year, interrupted for Christmas and post-Christmas reading, and taken up again later. But yes, you read that right: I interrupted reading a Banksie. Now even though it's a reread, that's not something that happens normally. But then this is not a normal Banksie. My memory of it was that…