Current Reading April 6 – 17

Not much, is what. I’ve been having trouble concentrating, so reading has been difficult. Just two days ago I managed to read a couple of short stories, and today spent some time thinking about what to read for the special Forgotten Books post coming up next month.

the affair by childI haven’t decided yet. My first two candidates were unread books from the shelf. I decided to leave them unread, at least for now. Then I thought of the obvious authors: Chandler, Pronzini, Ross Macdonald and some other hard boiled PI authors. I’m not in the mood for that just now, and want to get started. No decision yet.

Barbara Just finished The Affair by Lee Child. She’s still catching up on the Reacher books. She’s been going through all this medical stuff with me, and has been stressed. She also finished Steel Kiss by Jeffrey Deaver.

The weather warmed up this week, Sunday it was 82, and the garden is in full growing mode. I was able to get out, walk around and enjoy it. That was a pleasure.

About Rick Robinson

Enjoying life in Portland, OR
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19 Responses to Current Reading April 6 – 17

  1. tracybham says:

    My thoughts go out to Barbara, I can imagine how stressed she has been. Glad to hear from you and I know you will be happy when you can concentrate more on reading.

    • Barbara has been a trooper…she has been changing bandages, sorting out meds, and taking care of everything, while I just laze about and grumble. Or so it seems to me. Believe me, Tracy, when I can read more than a half page at a time it will be a red letter day.

  2. Jerry House says:

    Glad to know you’re coming along, Richard. Whenever I’m recovering from something, I spend a lot of time on music, television, and annoying my wife until I’m able to concentrate more on reading.

    Books this week included the latest Charles Beaumont collection PERCHANCE TO DREAM and a Frank Bonham western collection, DEVIL’S GRAZE. Both collections were good (the Beaumont excellent). I also finished our local “non-fiction” flying saucer book, UFO ABDUCTIONS IN GULF BREEZE and I’m wondering when we changed our name from “Crazytown.”

    And, yes, I read some more Batman graphic novels — five of ’em.

    I’ve been dipping into Otto Penzler’s BIG BOOK OF ADVENTURE STORIES and Paula Guran’s fantasy collection HALLOWEEN; I’ll probably finish both over the next few weeks. Also in the chute are John Connolly’s Charlie Parker novel THE REAPERS and the Arthur C. Clake/Frederik Pohl collaboration THE LAST THEORUM.

    Stay well.

  3. Deb says:

    Glad you’re starting to feel better–and I know Barbara will now feel less stressed too. Wives and mothers…we feel everything our husbands or children are going through.

    Thus week I’m reading James McBride’s KILL ‘EM AND LEAVE: SEARCHING FOR JAMES BROWN AND THE AMERICAN SOUL, which is less a biography of James Brown (“Godfather of Soul” and “Hardest Working Man in Rock ‘n’ Roll”) and more the story of James McBride trying to write a biography of James Brown. In a way it reminds me of the movie ADAPTATION which is less an adaptation of The Orchid Thief and more about trying to write an adaptation of The Orchid Thief.

    • Deb, see my comment to Tracy, above. I don’t know how I could have gotten by without Barbara. James Brown was on the radio when I was growing up, and I liked a few of his songs, but not enough to read that book. Interesting that it’s more a book about a book.

  4. Great minds think alike. Like Deb, I’m reading KILL’EM AND LEAVE. I grew up listening to James Brown songs and he always seemed an enigmatic figure to me. It’s Crunch Time as the Spring Semester winds down. Preregistration for the Fall Semester starts today so I can expect a parade of students outside my office all week. Next week, I’ll have 100 research papers to correct. The week after that is a REVIEW week. And the week after that is FINALS week. I should be on Summer Vacation after mid-May! Then I can start reading Big Fat Books again!

  5. Jeff Meyerson says:

    Glad you’re back and taking it easy.

    What about the first Aaronovitch book for FFB?

    We’ve had a busy period. Tonight is our fourth concert in April (Chicago and Earth, Wind & Fire; Saturday night was Boz Scaggs), and we’ve been to the theater (THE HUMANS, off-Broadway). I got in a couple of new books as well: MONTALBANO’S FIRST CASE (a long novella) and Other (21) Stories, by Andrea Camilleri, was the first. The other was the new Crippen & Landru Lost Classics book, THE PUZZLES OF PETER DULUTH by Patrick Quentin. After having read basically every short story collection in the house I am piling them up again.

    Recent reading:LITTLE GIRL LOST by Brian McGilloway, first about Sgt. Lucy Black, who has returned to Northern Ireland to care for her father with Alzheimers and gets caught up in a missing child case. George Easter recommended this series and I liked this library dowload enough to continue with the next one.

    SILVER SCREEN FIEND by Patton Oswalt, telling of his misguided attempt to prepare himself to be a director by seeing hundreds of movies over a 4 year period. SHADOW SHOW: New Stories in Celebration of Ray Bradbury was a George Kelley recommendation, I believe. Some good stories there. Then was the aforementioned Aaronovitch you recommended, MIDNIGHT RIOT, first in the Peter Grant series. I liked this one (downloaded from the library website) quite a bit and will get the next one soon, as soon as I clear up a little of the backlog (whenever that is).

    Latest was PAST CRIMES, the Edgar-nominated first mystery by Glen Erik Hamilton. Van Shaw is an Army Ranger who returns to Seattle for the first time in 10 years, only to find his grandfather bleeding from a gunshot wound to the head. Dono (the grandfather), who raised him, also taught him to be a thief before driving him away (lots of flashbacks to his childhood) and he needs to find out what is going on. The sequel is out now.

    Current reading coming.

    • I don’t feel very “back” yet, but I’m trying. I don’t know that RIOT is Aaronovitch’s first novel, but even so, it’s only a maybe. Good thought, though. Nice concert. I saw Chicago (Chicago Transit Authority) in one of their early concerts, at the Shrine Auditorium in L.A. They opened for Love. It was fabulous. I still love that first album.

      I need to read another Camilleri, and that story collection sounds great. Glad you liked MIDNIGHT RIOT. I’ll be moving on to the 3rd in the series when I shape up a bit more.

  6. Jeff Meyerson says:

    KILL ‘EM AND LEAVE is a great title, by the way. I saw James Brown do the whole act – the cape, falling to his knees, etc. – back around 1963! I’ll check that one out. I bet Cap’n Bob won’t.

    Current reading. Another of your recommendations, INK AND BONE by Rachel Caine. I wasn’t sure about it in the prologue but now that he’s on the way to Hogwarts, I mean Alexandria, I’m enjoying it. Also reading another short story collection downloaded from the library to the Kindle: Christianna Brand, BUFFET FOR UNWELCOME GUESTS. The first section features her inimitable Insp. Cockrill, and if I’ve ever read any of the stories I don’t remember them.

    • Not sure why Cap wouldn’t want to read that book, does he dislike James Brown? When I finished INK AND BONE I wanted to start the next book immediately, but it’s not out yet. I think I read a Cockrill, but am not positive.

  7. Jeff Meyerson says:

    I don’t know for sure he dislikes James Brown, but I know that he’s said many times that he hates “I Feel Good.”

  8. I’ve read a couple of Reachers. Very fast paced, but I like a little more poetry in my reading

  9. I know what you both are feeling like. I had the added issue of not driving so I had to rely on the kindness of others to take us to appts and shopping. Hope you are feeling stronger every day. But I have to say it took a long time. We went to CA six weeks later and it was probably too soon. But still CA sun over Michigan gray and snow and cold. Had to do it. Be very good to yourself and Barbara too.

    • Thank goodness Barbara has been driving us, and she does all the shopping. Speaking of sun, it’s 88 right now a new record for this date, and only 2:40. That’s SoCal temps.

      • Jeff Meyerson says:

        We hit 82 yesterday (though it didn’t feel that warm here by the water), the first time over 80 since last September. Also, this is our longest dry spell without rain since October, so we are loving this weather.

  10. Yvette says:

    So glad to hear that you’re coming along and at least, beginning to feel better, Richard. Kudos to Barbara. I haven’t been paying as much attention to my blog as I ought and didn’t realize you were having troubles. So forgive me for not commenting sooner. What I like to do when I’m not feeling good is immerse myself in vintage books. I recommend Philip MacDonald’s Anthony Gethryn books. Highly. However if you’re not in a reading mood, may I recommend AUDIO BOOKS? I love them. If you’ve never tried them, why not begin now? I’m a member of, but your public library will have audio books for download if you prefer not to join anything – you can download them to your phone or i-pad or computer or whatnot.

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