I agree wholeheartedly with the whole ‘learn the good and leave the rest’ approach (I also like some of the MariKon rituals too). It’s healthy and a good way to work on yourself. It’s maybe something that I could do better myself, so, thanks for having this conversation!
Do you have any self-help books you’d recommend, while we’re on the subject?
I’m not much for them, actually. Too much of a pessimist, as a general rule. But I quite enjoyed How to Change Your Mind (by Michael Pollan). It’s more of a science/psychotropic book, but if that’s not offensive to you, it’s a good (and spiritually sustaining) read.
Interesting! I actually think I preferred The Bear and the Nightingale, although I need to give it some time to sit in my mind to say for sure.
Either way, I will definitely add “Deathless” to my to-read list! Thanks for the recommendation.
I also plan on reading Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik sometime soon.
Recently read Noumenon by Marina J Lostetter, which I enjoyed. Sci fi epic about an expedition to a distant star that looks like it might be surrounded by alien technology. Starts from the conception of the journey to their eventual return to earth, thousands of years later. The how’s and why’s kind of make up the meat of the story, for example they decide crew the ships entirely with clones as a solution to how to make a multi generation long journey.
Anyway kind of reminds me of Foundation style Asimov in it’s scale and cautious optimism about the future of humanity.
Oh, also finished reading all three endings of the visual novel Heaven Will Be Mine, thanks to Austin and everyone else who recommended it!
I feel ultimately that a lot of self help books are more guidance than a solution. As noted prior lots of clashes are found in them. Something’s are just not well explained to people. So self help books I feel fill this void, we all need help with things, sometimes a book is a kinder company than man itself.
I’ve preferred the company of books (and games) to that of people since I was in kindergarten. INFP here, so no real surprise.
Eta: finished the Shteyngart and it was splendidly sad and funny. Started reading So I’ve Been Thinking of Ending Things by Iain Reid, and I don’t love it yet, voice is too stiff and unnatural, but it’s short and spooky, and I’m definitely gonna finish it.
So I sat and read a bunch more Under The Pendulum Sun. I’m still only a little over half way through it because i’m a slow reader and it’s a slow book but (major spoilers) This book sure is super incesty, huh? I assume she is a changeling given where everything is pointing. But goddamn. THAT’S STILL PRETTY INCESTY.
Enjoying it though, it’s a good read if a bit slow. I think i’ll probably finish it up this weekend and move on to Mortal Engines which I assume will be much shorter and have less incest?
Currently reading Once Ghosted, Twice Shy by Alyssa Cole. So good! Loving this entire series so far.
I checked out Arabella of Mars by David D. Levine from the library and really should have read it before Once Ghosted but I couldn’t wait. Still, Arabella seems really interesting. It’s like a B movie Sci-Fi thing, I think.
Non-fiction wise I’m reading The Personality Brokers: The Strange History of Myers-Briggs and the Birth of Personality Testing. It sounds really interesting, so we’ll see.
On the first - more so than you think.
In answer to your second question - yes, none that I remember in the series.
Haha I kinda assumed as much!
I actually finished Under The Pendulum Sun the day after I made that post. I really liked it and Didn’t see the twist that the first twist was a lie coming at all, I really liked that. Especially as yes, it firmly pulled their "not incest’ back into the “oh wait no DEFINITELY incest” realm. Which of course, was the point. I definitely had plenty of issues with it, like Everything to do with Ariel Davenport’s death.
Like, Davenport’s last words of advice to you are telling you the Pale Queen wants to trick your brother into sinning, so you need to stop him from sinning. And your first response IS TO FUCK HIM?
And then Cathy is super upset about killing Davenport but moves on largely because she decides that because she isn’t human she doesn’t have a soul and so committing murder isn’t a sin. But later when she realises she is human it isn’t brought up again. The only sin they ever talk about again is the incest and even then they seem pretty cool with it pretty quickly.
There is a doctor called David Burns - has one book for dealing with depression - Feeling Good, another with aniexty - When Panic attacks. I found both useful more so as reminders for things I would have learned in therapy, kinda like refreshers for me that way.
Two more general ones - Getting Things Done by David Allen. What stuck with me most from it was his advice of writing down any random thing you plan to/must do to do to (a) not have it actively on your mind, (b) memory is faulty. There is more to the books than that in terms of how to approach future actions in terms of complexity that is useful for me for work. I use my calendar on my phone alot more after reading this book.
How to have a good day by Caroline Webb. More of grab bag of things to do that might help you with different aspects of your life, some I found useful, others not so much. It has the problem of referencing studies to back claims some of which I know have already been disproven by replication.
Once Davenport said the Queen wanted the brother to sin after telling Cathy she was a changling I figured Cathy was actually his sister and the Queen was playing the long con.
I think the book had an interesting premise and some decent characters but the ending was very flat partly like you said because Cathy seemed to be pretty quickly ok with murder, incest AND being in hell. Looking up the author this was her first novel and I found that plot and/or character weakness is pretty common with first novels in SFF particular where more work seems to be put into the premise/world buidling
Red Mars Blue Mars Green Mars -Kim Stanley Robinson
I’d be curious to see what television/movies got the book character completely right when it comes to look.
I would say Brienne in Game of Thrones comes to mind, who is described as ugly, but I don’t think Gwendoline Christie comes off as particularly ugly at all.
Also, Tyrion scar book vs. show will always be hilarious:
Only read Mort and had such a good time reading it. I know this makes no sense but I haven’t picket up any other Prachet because it feels like I am wasting my reading time with non-sense.
Again I know this doesn’t make sense as my primary genre is fantasy.
Back at it again with the Japanese novels.
I recently finished reading 植物図鑑 (lit. An Encyclopedia of Plants) by 有川浩 (Hiro Arikawa) and I think it might be my new favourite book.
You might recognise the cover artist as the same person who does all the album covers for Asian Kung Fu generation.
The book is a romance, a genre that I realized I’ve literally never read in English or otherwise, which is wild considering I am all about romance stories in TV and movies.
It’s about a woman who gets home drunk from a work party one day and finds a guy on her doorstep. She lets him stay with her for a while and they start dating. He’s really into picking different plants that grow wild around town or out in the mountains and making them into weird and different dishes.
It’s a really sweet and comfortable read, and I could not get enough of it. After finishing it I went out and bought 5 other novels by the same author (all for 100 yen each!) and now I’m reading another called 阪急列車 (Hankyuu Ressha, the name of a train in Kansai).
Might fuck around and make another post in a couple of months.