In my last post, I wrote of a “Summer Meltdown” which had left me struggling to read – and especially finish – books. To those who responded, thank you so much for taking the time to read and offer advice or support, I really appreciate it.
The boiling heat of 2018’s summer has finally subsided, and autumn’s cooling touch has brought some welcome relief. BUT I still haven’t reached the end of a book. Wtf?
I’ve been doing a bit of soul searching, trying to find a deeper reason than the summer’s heat knocking everyone out, and I think I’ve discovered what’s been missing.
Let me ask you a question. What was the last book you read that you truly couldn’t put down? You know, the kind of story in which you become so caught up that you resent the time spent NOT reading it. A book or story that you keep thinking about when you’re not reading it. One which you can’t wait to get back to reading once your work or chores are done.
Isn’t that why we read fiction, whether it be speculative or not? To become so caught up in someone else’s imaginary world(s) that we forget where we are, if only for a brief moment? A book that takes us out of ourselves and puts us into someone else.
THAT is what I’ve been missing.
Looking back at my book-review posts since I started this blog, I’ve recommended a lot of stories. After checking my Goodreads page, I’ve found eleven 5 star reviews. Here they are (with links to the reviews on this blog):
The Dispossessed by Ursula K. LeGuin
The Thing Itself by Adam Roberts
The Overneath by Peter S. Beagle
The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle
The Best SF & Fantasy of the Year: Volume 11 by Various authors
Where Late the Sweet Birds Sang by Kate Wilhelm
The Beauty by Aliya Whiteley
Kindred by Octavia E. Butler
The Book of Phoenix by Nnedi Okorafor
Titus Groan by Mervyn Peake
Neuromancer by William Gibson
The last book in which I really lost myself was Ursula K. LeGuin’s ‘The Dispossessed’ which I re-read in February this year, six months ago. Since then I’ve read some good stories as well as some not so good ones, putting it politely.
Now, six months isn’t very long, I know, but within that time I guess I’ve been missing that sense of wonder you feel when you lose yourself in a stranger’s words.
So, if you have any recommendations for a story – short or long – that might restore my sense of wonder please leave a comment below.