Tuesday, December 08, 2015

All I want for Christmas

So I have a little free time* these days, as I'm basically on stress leave** from work, and I'm indulging in a little armchair shopping***.

*If you can call "Christmas is coming and we will be travelling, and oh, we're moving in less than 6 weeks so I should get organized and pack up the household," free time.

**Let's see, in the past year, my husband left me, I've been adjusting to single motherhood and struggling to mitigate the pressure of feeling that I have to be always on, underwent a bathroom renovation, had a vacation which however fantastic it was came with its own set of logistical complications, shopped for a new home and made an offer, endured no end of bureaucratic obstacles in settling the current property with my ex, my brother had brain surgery and died of lung cancer within 2 months of his diagnosis****, my daughter became a teenager, I can't fathom that my ex believes his sum total responsibility toward his daughter is to take her to brunch for an hour on Sunday, I bought some new furniture, and now I'm preparing to move. Plus regular work crap. Last week I went to the hospital, convinced I was having a heart attack. Turns out, it's stress. Basically, you know that checklist of stressful life events, when you go for a massage or whatever? Just check all. 2015, you suck.

***Armchair shopping in this instance should be taken figuratively to mean shopping from the comfort of my home, as opposed to shopping for armchairs, which is something I'm also doing these days, sometimes also from the comfort of my home, albeit without an actual armchair, hence my being in the market for one. I hesitate as to whether I require it to have arms, but, leaving aside the semantic conundrum that poses, what then would I fling my legs over?

****If that sounds flippant — one more item in my litany of otherwise quotidian complaints — it's not meant to. It's heartbreaking. I just don't have the strength to address it any meaningful way.

So I'm checking some of the year-end book lists to see what I could get for others, what I should reserve for myself, and one title jumps out as one I'd registered previously. I don't generally read customer reviews for books on Amazon, but I thought it might jog my memory of what I knew of this novel.

This review (by "James") made my day:
I bought this book because the cover was cool and I was a little drunk. I didn't read it for a few days because someone else called it "a geopolitical fantasy" and that combination of words alone almost put me to sleep. Luckily for me fate intervened and I got stuck on a plane with only this and sky-mall for entertainment and subsequently dug into it. My god it was good. I finished it in under 24 hours and am eagerly awaiting whatever the author puts out next.
The book is The Traitor Baru Cormorant, by Seth Dickinson. This is the book I want***** for Christmas, please. (And also maybe some time to read it.)

*****To be clear, my want is not based solely upon this review, but rather on the general critical and popular reception of this novel. Also, I love the title.


Stefanie said...

You have all my sympathy for the crappy year you've had. I hope 2016 turns out much better. As for the book you want, I've read some really good reviews on it and hope to get the chance to read it sometime next year.

Isabella Kratynski said...

Thanks, Stefanie. I suspect you might like this book too.

Thanks also to Santa, for sending me a copy of the book early.