Scratching the Reading Itch, or Some of the Books I Liked in 2017

December 23, 2017

First of all, happy holiday of your choice, fellow human. We’re a celebrate-Solstice-then-act-like-sloths-for-a-couple-of-days kind of family. Which means that, practically speaking, any craziness of the season is behind us. As I write, Billie and Tamsin are enjoying future cool thing recommendation Jane the Virgin (no link, but it’s on Netflix), while I grab some quiet time at the computer.

This week, I wanted to share with you some of the books I’ve enjoyed in 2017, in case you need some written or audiobook entertainment over the holiday period. Most of them were not published this year, but were the ones I’ve read or listened to all the way through. You can see the full list of what I read this year up on Goodreads (and while you’re there, give me a follow, if you’re interested.) (Links below are all Amazon.)

I previously recommended as cool things my favourite books of the year. In fiction, it was Max Barry’s Lexicon (along with his Jennifer Government), and in non-fiction John Cleese’s So, Anyway…. You can read my thoughts about them on my Cool Things page.

So, let’s look at some others.

I’ve become quite the fan of John Scalzi, and read four of his this year. My favourite this year was Lock In, followed by his most famous work, Old Man’s War (book one in a series). One of my overall Scalzi favourites was read in a previous year, Redshirts, which might or might not have been inspired by the red shirted characters on a certain popular TV space-based show. If you’ve not read any of him, and like sci-fi with humour, he’s worth a go.

From the speculative fiction department is N. K. Jemison, who is a multi-award-winning author, including the 2016 Hugo for The Fifth Season, and the 2017 Hugo for its sequel, The Obelisk Gate, which I enjoyed this year. Both books include some second-person writing, which is pretty rare, and works in a very interesting way. Also, Jemison is female and a woman of colour, which is a pleasant change in a world of writing dominated white dudes.

On the non-fiction side, most of the non-Cleese books I read were writerly ones. If that is of interest to you, then I commend to your reading the most excellent The War of Art, Write. Publish. Repeat., The Story Grid, and Take off Your Pants (a book about plotting, not anything more salacious).

I hope there’s something in the above for you to enjoy. Happy reading.

So, what was your favourite book to have read in 2017? Drop me a note. I’d love to hear.