May 2020 books

This is the latest post in a series I started in late 2019, anticipating the twentieth anniversary of my bookblogging at the end of October 2023. Every six-ish days, I’ve been revisiting a month from my recent past, noting work and family developments as well as the books I read in that month. I’ve found it a pleasantly cathartic process, especially in recent circumstances. If you want to look back at previous entries, they are all tagged under bookblog nostalgia.

We continued to labour under COVID restrictions in May 2020, but our office had reopened for one day a week by the middle of the month and I certainly took advantage of being able to (cautiously) share physical space with colleagues.

I also indulged in some nostalgia, digging out photographs from my 21st birthday party in 1988. The lady in the red jacket later married the guy who is visible over my shoulder, who was one of my co-hosts. The lady in green married another of the co-hosts. The fourth co-host was the much missed Liz.

We finished the month with a visit to the park at Tervuren on a blisteringly hot day.

I kept up my ten-day plague posts:

And I did a last few videos from the village.

I read only 18 books this month.

Non-fiction: 5 (YTD 26)
The Hunt for Vulcan: …And How Albert Einstein Destroyed a Planet, Discovered Relativity, and Deciphered the Universe, by Thomas Levenson
Joanna Russ, by Gwyneth Jones
A Sacred Cause: The Inter-Congolese Dialogue 2000-2003, by P. E. Winter
Roger of Hereford’s Judicial Astrology: England’s First Astrology Book?, by Chris Mitchell
A border too far: the Ilemi triangle yesterday and today, by Philip Winter

Fiction (non-sf): 2 (YTD 12)
The Godfather, by Mario Puzo
The Accident, by Ismail Kadarë

sf (non-Who): 9 (YTD 65)
Riverland, by Fran Wilde
In an Absent Dream, by Seanan McGuire
The Forever War, by Joe Haldeman
Black Wine, by Candas Jane Dorsey
Arthur C. Clarke’s Venus Prime 1: Breaking Strain, by Paul Preuss
Slaughterhouse 5, by Kurt Vonnegut
The Nightmare Stacks, by Charles Stross
The Tiger’s Wife, by Tea Obreht
Make Room! Make Room!, by Harry Harrison

Comics: 2 (YTD 15)
Peanuts: A Tribute to Charles M. Schulz, ed. Shannon Watters
The Wicked + The Divine vol 1: The Faust Act, by Kieron Gillen etc

5,000 pages (YTD 33,500)
6/18 (YTD 43/124) by non-male writers (Jones, Wilde, McGuire, Dorsey, Olbreht, Walters)
0/18 (YTD 13/124) by PoC

The best of these was my former colleague Philip Winter’s account of peacemaking in DR Congo, A Sacred Cause, which you can get here. I also enjoyed rereading The Godfather, which you can get here, and reading for the first time Make Room! Make Room!, which you can get here. Nothing too awful this month.