January always sees me vowing not to buy more books until I’ve read some of what I already own. Usually, by February I’m so bummed out by the weather and the book-buying-ban that I go on a spree around the local charity shops (often finding some excellent New Year cast-offs as people start making room for things they received over the holiday period). This year, however, I stuck to my guns. I was a rock. Impassive to the siren call of the second-hand. Impervious to my local Waterstones’ wily window displays.
Then I left my job, and as a leaving present my frontline colleagues/friends presented me with a very generous Waterstones voucher. Dagnabbit.
And then, Thumbs and I managed to co-ordinate a rare day off together, which we spent in one of our favourite towns. We were able to visit a much-loved second-hand bookstore of ours and we discovered a new one with an impressive vintage sci-fi section.
So, having not had any time to play with some of the great book tags kicking around right now, I’m here to show off my new purchases instead. (Yes, this is absolutely filler content until I can get some posts stacked up again!)
I wanted to use my voucher to buy books I already know I love and want to reread, so that my leaving gift has some permanence. So, I finally bought my own copy of Zoe Gilbert’s Folk after falling hard for it in all its weirdness back in 2019. And I bought Gail Carriger’s Finishing School series for its comfort-read quality. A person can never have too many comfort reads. (I also want my sibling to read this series, and now I can bully them into it).
I couldn’t resist getting at least one book from off of my many reading lists, however, and I read a compelling review of The Last Children of Tokyo by Yoko Tawada fairly recently. (Darn it though, I can’t remember who wrote the review! I was sure I’d commented on the post, and have tried to find it, but can’t. If it was YOU, please say so in the comments so I can do right by you and link to your post; I normally make a note of such things – am very cross not to have done so this time round!)
The last of my brand spanking new purchases is The House in the Cerulean Sea by T J Klune. This book first came to my attention because of the awesome cover art by Chris Sickles of Red Nose Studio who creates the most incredible characters and scenery, (which you can see on his website here). There’s also some information about the design he came up with for The House in the Cerulean Sea here. I’m sure I’ve read some great reviews for this as well, but yes, I am shallow enough to buy a book for its cover alone.
Dinosaur Summer by Greg Bear and The Terranauts by T C Boyle were both second-hand purchases that I picked up because they sounded cool – a sort of follow on to Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Lost World and an experiment in self-sufficiency gone wrong? Yes, please! – and Yellow Blue Tibia by Adam Roberts because only last week I read this excellent review by S J Higbee and felt braver about giving Roberts a go.
I’m planning to read Lois McMaster Bujold’s Vorkosigan Saga from the beginning (after stalling for far too long) and Borders of Infinity isn’t on the shelf already, so I snapped that up, along with Barbary by Vonda N McIntyre because I’ve never seen anything by her in any shop before now (and, no, I haven’t read Dreamsnake yet, but I do have it on my pile). Also, it’s not often you see a cat on a scifi cover – colour me intrigued.
Finally, my most prized purchases are Triton by Samuel R Delany (because I can never find Delany books and I need all his scifi in my head) and The People: No Different Flesh by Zenna Henderson. Both were picked up from the newly discovered second-hand store, where I had a lovely chat with the owner from whose personal collection these two books had been selected. (My heart is all warm and glowy right now).
All in all, I have more than made up for not buying any books in January and February. I’d hang my head in shame if I wasn’t so excited about them all. #sorrynotsorry
Have you read any of these titles? Do you have thoughts? Opinions? Further recommendations?