What Are You Reading Right Now?

Considering China's current coronavirus scare, Cold Storage by David Koepp might be of interest. It follows the development of an aggressive fungus that can kills its host within mere minutes. I reviewed the book here.
It's been a while since I've posted here!

I just finished Gene Wolfe's Book of the New Sun series, and loved it. I consider it a masterpiece, one of the best series in fantasy or sci-fi I've ever read.

I hadn't known much about it prior to reading it. I'd seen it on a few list of great fantasy/scifi, but not many. Though the ones that listed it all said it was one of the greatest ever.

I had read that is was very difficult to get into or understand, and maybe that explains why it's not more universally read or known. It definitely is somewhat difficult, it does NOT hold your hand, doesn't always explain or describe in great detail what is happening, what certain places/creatures/weapons etc are, just how they are seen and/or used by the protagonist (usually these things are fleshed out in later references to them). In fact, there are lexicons and chapter guides written specifically for this series, and particularly for new readers.

Personally, I've gained a taste for writing that like over the years. Jack Vance is one of my fav authors, and he is like that to a degree. Steven Erickson (specifically his Malazan series) and Glen Cook are like that as well, I'd say Iain Banks also. I actually really enjoy not knowing or understanding completely what is going on in a particular scene, and then being enlightened about it later in, whether in the same or subsequent books in the series. I enjoy the discovery and "light bulb" moments that gives me.

Prose-wise he is actually very similar to Vance. He has a command of the language that I find very beautiful to read. It may be an acquired taste but I enjoy it. For comparison, two other authors that I really enjoy, Brandon Sanderson and James SA Corey, write in a more conventional and polished prose. They are very clear about what is going on, they tell you the story and don't hide it from you.

I'm not saying that in a negative way at all, it's just a different style, and frankly it's just more digestible. Their greatness comes in the creativity, characters, action, humor. Wolfe's greatness, I would say, is in his prose, concepts, and mysteries. The action is more sudden and less detailed, but not necessarily less impactful.

So if that style of novel appeals to you, do NOT miss this series. I consider it a work of art.

Anyones else here read it? I'd be curious to hear more thoughts about it.
I am reading Snow Crash nowadays. It's an absolutely amazing book to read if someone is interested in science fictions. you too can read this book, and you can get it here.
I love Snow Crash, and I LOVE Stephenson. Anathem is my favorite novel of all time. I've read it four times over the years and it continually amazes me.

Cryptonomicon was my first Stephenson I read, it's fantastic. The Baroque Cycle is great and lot of fun, and I love how it connects to Cryptonomicon.

I enjoy most everything he does, but those are the highlights for me.
I'm trying to decide between three books right now. 1) "Leviathan Wakes" James S. A. Corey 2) "Heavy Weather" Bruce Sterling 3) "Islands in the Net" Bruce Sterling
If you haven't yet, I would definitely recommend Leviathan Wakes, and the rest of that series. It's fantastic. It was serialized by the Syfy channel and now Amazon Prime, and they've done a great job with it.
Over the weekend I read Meat Cute, Gail Carriger’s short-story prequel to Soulless. I thought it was a fun little romp. Definitely for fans of the Parasol-verse.
Yesterday morning I read “The Lady Astronaut of Mars.” Time-wise it comes late in the Lady Astronaut series, but I think it was published first. It’s a very short work. It’s quite good, but also a bit sad. Hoping to move back to longer books next.
Over the weekend I read ”Romancing the Inventor,“ another book in Gail Carriger’s Parasol-verse. I quite liked it. A good little story about finding yourself and trying to find love.
This week I read two short stories by Dan Moren, “Showdown” and “Pilot Error.” They’re free ebooks, released to promote the third novel in his Galactic Cold War series which is due soon. I enjoyed both stories. I do like the series, so I was happy to revisit the universe and the characters.
Last night I finished I finished Defy or Defend, another of the side books in Gail Carriger’s Parasol-verse. Dimity, from the Finishing School series, has to save a vampire hive though art & redecoration. It’s so much fun. Silly, romantic, and sweet.
I finished The Aleph Extraction yesterday. I found it fast-paced and entertaining. The characters are great, too. I hope Dan Moren is able to write & get out the rest of the books in this series. I’m curious as to where his “Galactic Cold War” idea goes.
Yesterday I finished Warprize by Elizabeth Vaughan. I found an enjoyable fantasy. It‘s about a Princess-turned-healer learning about another culture as part of a peace treaty.
Started the "Wheel of Time" series of 14 books.

And a blast from the past, got given book 1 of "The Trigan Empire", a sci-fi graphic novel that apparently drove Brit comic development through the 1960s.
Just finished the Halo: Forerunner trilogy. It's sort of a prequel to the Halo video game series. I don't think it's necessary to have played the games and/or know the story of Halo, but it definitely makes the series more impactful if you have.

It's written by Greg Bear so of course it's great. Just a great and intriguing hard sci-fi that lays out the mystery of an alien race (the Forerunners) that, in the Halo universe, had disappeared many millenia ago. Not the best thing I've ever read, but I do love the games so I probably enjoyed it more than the average reader would.
I’ve read three planetary romances by Leigh Brackett: “Enchantress of Venus,” “Queen of the Martian Catacombs,” and “Black Amazon of Mars.” They had exciting plots but were also quite moody. I quite enjoyed them, and I’m planning on reading a few more of her novellas.
I’ve now read 4 more Leigh Brackett novellas. I started with “Citadel of Lost Ships,” which was okay but not great. Then was “The Jewel of Bas,” which was great. After that was “The Beast-Jewel of Mars,” which was pretty good. And last night I finished “Shannach-The Last.” It was also quite good. All very intriguing planetary romance SF.
I’ve finished 3 works by H. Beam Piper: Little Fuzzy; Space Viking; and the short story “Omniligual.” Little Fuzzy was great, even if the “future tech” is now outdated. The short story was just okay, and while Space Viking has a good plot, it also has some issues with other characters and views about governments.