I read very little this month; I think I shall blame Iain M. Banks for this. Must blame someone, right?
That said, from the enjoyment point of view, everything was pretty good. Introduced to a new comic writer (Tardi) with whom I was previously unfamiliar, which is pleasing. The Jane Rogers novel was excellent and I read some history for the first time in a while. Granted it was a little grim, but certainly thought-provoking.
- The Testament of Jessie Lamb – Jane Rogers
- I’ve already reviewed this one. Suffice to say it is an excellent novel and I highly recommend it. Hoping to see it on the Clarke Award short-list, too.
- The Morbid Age – Richard Overy
- Richard Overy’s history of Britain between the first and second world wars. It’s a grim read, as the title might suggest, but it was an interesting read. Also, the section on eugenics reminded me why I was so uncomfortable with the film Idiocracy.
- It Was The War Of The Trenches – Jacques Tardi
- I think I’ve mentioned before that I didn’t particularly grow up with comic books, which makes me a little sad, now that I’ve discovered the joy that they can give. However, this does mean that I’m a little less tolerant of bad comics than I might be (in, say, the way that I am sometimes with trashy SF).
- This was superb, though. Tardi has constructed a brutal, but moving, account of trench warfare. It’s not particularly concerned with the grand sweep of history, rather it focuses on a series of incidents in people’s lives. Highly recommend this and I think that I shall have to track down more of Tardi’s work.
- Matter – Iain M. Banks
- Though I am generally quite keen on Iain M. Banks’ SF (less so, these days, on his mainstream fiction as Iain Banks – I think that has lost some of its potency), I wasn’t so keen on The Algebraist. I’d found that a bit of a chore and was hugely disappointed in it. Matter, despite being fairly hefty still, is a far better proposition. I’m quite looking forward to Surface Detail, now.
- Camera Obscura – Lavie Tidhar
- I have been enjoying what I’ve read of Lavie Tidhar’s stuff for a while now. This, while not up to the standards of Osama, is still good fun and (despite the odd misstep in the actual writing) a good alt-take on the Victorian era.