Date:

December 30th, 2006

So I go off for ten days and you people not only let a president die but the Godfather of Soul as well? Well, ok, so the president was 93, but still! Also, I know I can’t be the only one creeped out by how quickly Saddam was executed. I mean sure, right, not our place to interfere. Still, kinda creepy, no?

I haven’t unpacked my reading vacation notes yet, and I’ll do a book log entry (last one of the year!) when I do, but I just thought I’d mention that I read 5.5 of the 6 books I took with me, plus the book I was in the middle of, plus a magazine and both Colonias. By my standards, an utterly successful reading vacation.

One of the things I finished while in the frozen north (which was not very frozen, by the way. No snow at all until the day we left. Don’t know if that’s global warming or what, but it was freakish and weird.) was the The Year’s Best Science Fiction Twenty-Second Annual Collection edited by Gardner Dozois (billed, on the cover, as “over 300,000 words of fantastic fiction”). If I get caught up on my book log, maybe I’ll review this baby. At any rate, it contains the Christopher Rowe story “The Voluntary State.” I re-read it, because that’s what I do, and it completely knocked my socks off. Again. This got me pondering about compiling a list of stories I’ve read in the last couple of years or so that completely blew me away. Stories nearly perfect in every way, most importantly in the value add on subsequent readings way. These are stories that feed me new things every time I read them. So, without further ado, here’s my top 5 stories, read in the last twoish years, in no particular order of preference:

  • The Voluntary State” by Christopher Rowe.
  • “The Cage” by Jeff VanderMeer (excerpted here).
  • “Report of Certain Events in London” by China Mieville.
  • The Faery Handbag” by Kelly Link.
  • “Seven American Nights” by Gene Wolfe.

I have missed you, and missed blogging.

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