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Booknotes 3.14


  • The Wager, by David Grann, published 2023. Whew, what a story. Compelling throughout, and I learned lots of interesting things about seafaring to boot. I’m so glad I was not a sailor in the 1700s.
  • The Power Broker, by Robert A. Caro, published 1974. This was almost 1,200 pages long and took me over a year to read (though for much of that year I was admittedly only reading a couple pages per week; it’s actually quite readable and I sprinted through the last 200+ pages in a single day). Really good book, and what a fascinating (and detailed!) study in power. While it was very long, I feel that the length was fully warranted and worth it. (Stockholm syndrome? Maybe. But I do think I’m going to remember this book a lot more than some shorter books I’ve finished in a sitting.)


  • The Unselected Journals of Emma M. Lion, volume 5, by Beth Brower, published 2021, fiction. Witty and delightful. Loved it. Looking forward to volumes six and seven, and I’m glad there are many more to come. I can see myself rereading these often over the years, which is saying something since I’m not a rereader at all.
  • The Saint of Bright Doors, by Vajra Chandrasekera, published 2023, fantasy. Well crafted and inventive, with good prose and worldbuilding, and an interesting take on religion. Also, that twist near the end! Great and unexpected. There were some gross parts I didn’t care for, though, and even without taking those into consideration, I don’t think I would say that I loved the book. But I’m glad I read it.