n what is as much a tradition as weekly blog postings, I close out my year with my Best Of review of books that delighted me. And I’ll say that it was a rough year. With everything going on, I really didn’t find much of anything that lit my fire. No Oves. No Airbornes. Nothing that really lit me up as in years past. But anyway, here are the best of my reads for the plague year of 2021.
RedShirts – A wonderful tale by a new master of scifi. It’s rather like Galaxy Quest but in the telling, it moves beyond the quick laughs for a deeper appreciation of a tale that focuses on storytelling and connectivity. I loved this book so much that I gave it to a local bookseller, not to resell, but to read.
Ark Royal – I found this one in a used bookstore in Norfolk, the perfect mix of Star Blazers and Horatio Hornblower. Working my way through the full saga now but I must give praise for an original idea that I’d wished I’d had.
The Glass Teat – This one was like finding a working time machine. Harlan Ellison did TV reviews back in the late sixties. In them, he fumes about the war in Vietnam, Nixon, the entire bit of living in turbulent times that we’ve forgotten about while coping with our own. Yes, fascism and reason fought then as they fight now. Worth hunting down and checking out, cats!
The Book Thief – A compelling story of a young girl growing up in Nazi Germany, seeing the rise and fall of the Thousand Year Reich from ground level. A great read that stayed with me.
The Electric State – Part picture book, part slice-of-life in a parallel dystopian world (more than our own, even), this book haunts me. The paintings are mesmerizing and the story sad and touching. I can only recommend this to my more thoughtful readers.
So there you go, the best of. Your page rates and enjoyments may very, of course. And here’s hoping that 2022 will bring an end to our collective suffering, our supply-chain disruptions, out political divides and our personal sorrows. And that you’ll…