In response to another unauthorized charge (yey! this time Singapore!) on yet another card, I downloaded every malware destroyer I could find and then decided to spend the rest of my money on books. If it's to be spent, it will not be spent on pirated software, hookers, crack or whatever it is my lurking friends are buying (I'm the only one that can run up the limits on hookers and crack).


1. The first four books of The Pendergast Series by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child (wouldn't you hate to be the second name listed for a co-authored work?)  I seem to be the last to hear about anything, so I know there's many of you out there that have read this series. What do you think? Good? Bad? Indifferent? I'm really into series now because they give me an excellent excuse to not write or finish anything I've been working on.
Relic (Pendergast, Book 1)
Reliquary (Pendergast, Book 2)
The Cabinet of Curiosities (Pendergast, Book 3
Still Life with Crows (Pendergast, Book 4)

2. A client mentioned telepathy and slash fiction almost in the same breathless breath yesterday. My palms started to sweat and I made an excuse to go check the horses in the back of the barn. She was referring to the work of Rupert Sheldrake, applying his theory of morphic resonance to the way horses move en masse away from perceived dangers (the slash comment was in reference to two geldings with a very close attachment to each other). One cannot ignore congruence. I ordered Sheldrake's The Sense of Being Stared At: And Other Unexplained Powers of the Human Mind . Creepy.

3. And because no week is complete without an extraordinarily baffling text on quantum mechanics: Wholeness and the Implicate Order (Routledge Classics)

What are you reading right now?
twopoint: (Default)
( Apr. 21st, 2009 10:16 pm)

I told the master of perfect details,[info]ahpookishere to come back from Europe with a hundred new scenes for me to read.  This is kind of what I had in mind (many thanks to [info]victoriawiley  for thinking of me when she found the link). 

I really, really want to buy this coat.  Bentley, a huge, black, handsome (often goofy) Canadian sport horse might agree to let me ride him around while I'm wearing it.  I thought I could wait by the entrance to the barn drive and demand visitors pass over their gold.  It's been a week of rich highwayman fantasies.

Violent Grace: Anne Carson's An Oresteia
Thank you NSM for offering the perfect opening quote to the original story I've been working on.  From Anne Carson's translation of the Oresteia.

"Where I come from people say bad shit happening / when they mean death."

From the The Nation review: "Her version of Agamemnon is characteristically alert to Aeschylus' tendency to coin compound neologisms: "griefrememberingpain" is a powerful literal translation of mnesimon ponos . . . Her Oresteia includes only Aeschylus' Agamemnon, juxtaposed with plays by two younger Athenian contemporaries based on the same myth: Sophocles' Electra and Euripedes' Orestes."

The Prophet Murders by Mehmet Murat Somer

The plot is simple but the writing is clever, especially after the second chapter where the language shifts, becomes sharper, and reads like another translator is brought on to finish the book. I ran across this series while researching the Beyo─člu project and I don’t regret the extra postage I paid to have it shipped from the UK (but I’m still cursing my failure to look up the US translation before hitting buy).

Found it on Amazon. The Prophet Murders: A Hop-Ciki-Yaya Thriller (Hop-Ciki-Yaya)

This Publisher's Weekly blurb sums up the plot:
Set in modern Istanbul and narrated by a nameless transvestite, this first in Somer's Hop-Çiki-Yaya series is a strange blend of blithe and bloody, more about atmosphere than the mystery itself. A serial killer is murdering transvestites, and the narrator, who kick-boxes for fun and owns part of a nightclub, decides to investigate when police commissioner Selçuk Tanyer and his staff are unable to solve the killings. Cute dialogue and breezy descriptions undercut the seriousness of the crimes, even as the author strives to make a statement about Turkey's treatment of the transvestite community. While the resolution may be pat and the more graphic elements unsettling, the interesting narrator and exotic elements of Turkish culture will appeal to many readers.

"Graphic elements unsettling . . ."  why do I have the feeling the reviewer isn't talking about murder scenes?  Which leads me to my latest rant about why it's okay to tell a general audience, "my latest story is filled with blood and death and manipulation" but it's not okay to say, "my narrator is gay."  I'll save that for another day.  Back to the book -

Turkish writers have a way of portraying hüzün, the word’s literal translation doesn’t come close to describing the full meaning. Hüzün means melancholy, but it’s so much more than that – it’s an atmosphere of melancholy that is both sad and beautiful and mesmerizing and ruinous. Somer’s atmosphere is quirky and dark and full of contradictions, like Istanbul. Quick mysteries aren’t first on my reading list but I couldn’t resist this one after reading the description. I was prepared for a fast read that would at best contribute to my inner map of Istanbul and introduce me to a writer I could interview for the project, but I squealed a little when I finished and immediately ordered the second in the series all the while muttering about waiting until Sept. for the third book. My mother in law cracked up when she heard that I would spend more hours studying Turkish so I wouldn’t have to wait for the translations. Whatever it takes.

My favorite lines are simple yet numerous including: "Afet totters precariously on that thin line dividing the ridiculously strange from the strangely beautiful.  Her feet are large, even for a transvestite.  Even so, she had chose to emphasise them, spilling out of tiny high-heels.  As usual, knees slightly bent, she appeared poised to leap forward."



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