It's a Hardback Life



I'm ~Geektastic~ on Goodreads


@atroskity on Twitter


50 Book Reviews80%2016 NetGalley ChallengeReviews Published2015 Challenge ParticipantFrequently Auto-Approved

Women Who Draw

A terrific directory of female and female-identifying illustrators that more people should know about.

Reading progress update: I've read 76 out of 203 pages.

What We Do Now - Valerie Merians, Dennis Loy Johnson

From the introduction:

People are not upset, they are distraught. Even people who are staying put, who are going through their days and trying to get over it, are not upset in the way they usually are when their candidate loses. Something is different this time. They are feeling a sense of loss, yes, but in the sense of something leaving, something beloved getting away from them. And to an unprecedented degree, people are not getting over it.


We do, indeed, seem to have become a country where moderates, let alone liberals, simply don't stand a blessed chance, where anything other than an angry, intolerant, persecutorial attitude is scorned and mocked by a plentitude of bar bullies gone drunk with power.


This is talking about the 2004 reelection of Bush. Sound familiar? WILL WE EVER LEARN??

The answer to most either/or questions is both; the best response to a paradox is to embrace both sides instead of cutting off one or the other for the sake of coherence.
Hope in the Dark - Rebecca Solnit

Hope in the Dark, Rebecca Solnit

"The focus on survival demands that you notice the tiger in the tree before you pay attention to the beauty of its branches. The one person who's furious at you compels more attention than the eighty-nine who love you."

I really, really needed to hear this right now.
Hope in the Dark - Rebecca Solnit Rebecca Solnit Hope in the Dark

Top Ten Tuesday: National Nightmare Edition

The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood Bitch Planet Volume 1 - Kelly Sue DeConnick, Robert Wilson IV, Valentine De Landro The Unwinding: An Inner History of the New America - George Packer Hope in the Dark: Untold Histories, Wild Possibilities - Rebecca Solnit On Politics: A Carnival of Buncombe (Maryland Paperback Bookshelf) - H. L. Mencken White Trash: The 400-Year Untold History of Class in America - Nancy Isenberg Our Revolution: A Future to Believe In - Bernie Sanders A Social History of the Third Reich - Richard Grunberger The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark - Ann Druyan, Carl Sagan Long Hidden: Speculative Fiction from the Margins of History - Tananarive Due, Sofia Samatar, Ken Liu, Victor LaValle, Nnedi Okorafor, Sabrina Vourvoulias, Thoraiya Dyer, Rose Fox, Daniel José Older, Julie Dillon

I've been gone for a bit.


I’ve decided to go political right out of the gate. I suppose this is an odd note to start on as a “revival” of my blog after months away, and yet it is quite fitting given how I am feeling these days. Books are inherently political, if only because they reflect facets of our culture back to us, so it makes sense that I should find meaning in my blogging by looking in a political direction.


Typically, I would grab my Top Ten Tuesday topic from its originators, The Broke and the Bookish. Considering what is on my mind lately—non-stop—I felt instead like I would share a partial list of what I have read/intend to read as I come to grips with the election and figure out exactly how I want to tackle the aftermath. I, like many people blindsided by this travesty, have resolved to become more politically active and much more aware. This requires not just action, but knowledge and perspective, and I think that is something these books can offer in a time of need. This list could easily be hundreds of titles long but we have to start somewhere and ten is as good a number as any.


The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood. This will be a re-read for me and it couldn’t be more appropriate. And before you scoff about exaggeration, just remember the percentage of the evangelical vote that brought us where we are today.


Bitch Planet series by Kelly Sue DeConnick and Valentine De Landro. Needed for much the same reason as Handmaid. Also, because it will make me righteously angry and I need that right now.


The Unwinding: An Inner History of the New America by George Packer. Who hurt you, America??


Hope in the Darkness by Rebecca Solnit. Just about anything by Solnit could fit here, but some readings by people I admire have pushed this one to the top of the list. We could all use a reminder that hope is hard but necessary and despair is not an option.


On Politics: A Carnival of Buncombe by H.L. Mencken. While Mencken had some problematic views on women (he was writing 100 years ago), just about any of his political writings are extremely prescient. He saw this coming and we still didn’t listen.


White Trash: The 400-Year Untold History of Class in America by Nancy Isenberg. What is it about the history of poverty and the wealth gap in the US that prompts people to vote against their own self-interest or scapegoat others? Is it just a lack of education or is it much more? And is class even the motivating factor people are claiming, or is it simply about culture? I’m hoping this book can shed some light on these questions.


Our Revolution by Bernie Sanders. I’m a Bernie Babe, can’t be helped.


A Social History of the Third Reich by Richard Grunberger. While there are any number of books on the Third Reich, I feel it is most important to begin by understanding the everyday people that contributed (purposefully or not) to its rise and normalization. And this is not just alarmism; the parallels are disturbing even from the vaguest distance.


The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark by Carl Sagan. Living in a post-truth world is going to do a number on science.


Any and every contemporary sci-fi short story collection I can get my hands on. I have

faith that these stories, told by diverse voices, will give me perspective beyond the headlines and history. In the right hands, speculative fiction gets to the heart of everything that troubles us as a people and gives us alternative visions of the future.


Just so you know

I'm hoping to become more active again in the next few weeks. I need something to help with the crippling depression that is banging on my mental door after this election.


But here's the thing: I will likely be reading a lot (A LOT) of politically charged things. If that is not your cup of tea, or you think you might be prompted to be less than civil in your responses, just unfollow me now and be done with it.


Much love to everyone.

Litsy is now on Android



Not dead, just dead tired

I’ve been effectively MIA from Booklikes for a few weeks now. I’m assuming most people haven’t noticed (that sounds whiny- I just mean I’m not the most active of bloggers in the best circumstances). But for anyone wondering, I just wanted to drop by and say I’m alive and well, just very, very busy and pretty exhausted. I was recently promoted to copy editor at my company, which has resulted in an exponential increase in work and an equal decrease in reading and blogging time. Basically, I spend a lot of time reading and writing for money and thus can’t spend as much time as I would like doing it for free. I still pop by to lurk around and I’m hoping that I can get back to being more active when I’ve better acclimated to the new position (and cleaned up the dumpster fire left behind by my predecessor.)


Happy reading and have a great day!


Reading progress update: I've read 32%.

A Storm of Swords - George R.R. Martin

Dany's story kind of lagged in Clash of Kings; she basically just traveled and questioned herself. Not in Swords, though.


Girl is killin' it.




Reading progress update: I've read 24%.

A Storm of Swords - George R.R. Martin

I know one of the appealing aspects of the Starks is their harsh code of honor. But come on guys, get your shit together! I know what is coming- not like you can avoid be spoiled for a certain crimson matrimonial catastrophe these days-- but I can't wait for the Starks to realize there is more than one kind of honor. Tywin may be an evil prick, but at least he has foresight, unlike a few honorable-but-soon-to-be-dead northerners I could name.


This series is eating me alive (in a good way, I guess).

Reading progress update: I've read 20%.

A Game of Thrones - George R.R. Martin

The only problem with reading digitally is I can't throw the damn thing against the wall to get out my frustration. I need to dig out my paperback copy so I can throw it every few chapters from now on.

Reading progress update: I've read 45%.

Ninefox Gambit - Yoon Ha Lee

I'm still flailing around trying to figure out the technology that is at the center of this story- nearly halfway through and no exposition, which is great and also a little frustrating for the part of my brain that wants the technical stuff to be clearer. And yet, still enjoying it despite feeling like I only understand 50% of what is going on. Impressive work.

Reading progress update: I've read 25%.

Ninefox Gambit - Yoon Ha Lee

This book throws you in the deep end. I don't usually read hard sci-fi and this one certainly has a lot of jargon that I don't remotely understand. However, I still find it interesting and want to keep going-- but it is a book that requires quiet and no distractions.

The Worst

I'm still struggling through a reading rut. I've started and/or completed a few things, but not like "usual" for me. This wouldn't be a big deal except honestly I really, really need to find something that really sucks me in, because the more time I spend in the real world, the more I hate it. I'm full of anger about so many things and reading usually helps keep that under control. The Stanford case, the dude-bro responses to reasonable complaints about the Apocalypse poster, politics, high-profile abuse cases, someone straight up telling me that women and men have achieved equality and that 3rd wave feminists are "destroying everything the earlier feminists did for us"... The real world sucks, I don't like people, and I really, really need books to save me.


Reading progress update: I've read 15%.

The Munchkin Book: The Official Companion - Read the Essays * (Ab)use the Rules * Win the Game - James Lowder

I love Munchkin, but I may have overestimated my interest in essays about a card game.


Anyone here on Litsy? (For those unfamiliar, it's a 100% mobile social media app for book lovers. It reminds me of Instagram, only for books). If you want to find me over there, I'm @atroskity.


Currently reading

How To Be Parisian: Wherever You Are by Sophie Mas, Caroline De Maigret, Anne Berest, Audrey Diwan
Progress: 75/255pages
Crafting the Personal Essay: A Guide for Writing and Publishing Creative Nonfiction by Dinty W. Moore
You're More Powerful than You Think: A Citizen’s Guide to Making Change Happen by Eric Liu
Progress: 30%
Lies My Teacher Told Me : Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong by James W. Loewen

2017 Reading Challenge

2017 Reading Challenge
~Geektastic~ has read 13 books toward her goal of 52 books.