When book memes attack!

OK ladies and gentlemen, it’s time for a bit of meme action. I don’t do these very often, but this one is book related, which makes it forgivable as far as I’m concerned. This one has been doing the rounds over with the Scienceblogs collective; I spotted it at Adventures in Ethics and Science, and also at Stranger Fruit. Obviously neither of them ‘tagged’ me to reply (because they don’t know me from Adam, apart from as an occasional linker or commenter), but they left an open invite, so I’m clambering on the bandwagon. Here goes:

1. One book that changed your life?

Vurt‘, by Jeff Noon. Not the greatest piece of SF writing ever, but I’d never read anything like it before in my life, and it really spoke to the person I was back then. Also the book that made me realise I’d love to write books myself.

2. One book you have read more than once?

Feersum Endjinn‘, Iain M. Banks. Doesn’t matter how many times you read a Banksy, there’s always more to discover.

3. One book you would want on a desert island?

I know it’s cheating, but I’m going to pretend that there was a single volume edition of ‘Saga of the Exiles‘ by Julian May, and have that. I’ve read it through about five times, and I still love it; arguably the series that started my interest in true SF back in the mid 80s, and a huge complex work it is too. Go read it. If I can’t have that, I’ll veer into pretention and say Bertrand Russell’s ‘History of Western Philosophy.

4. One book that made you laugh?

Umberto Eco’s ‘Focault’s Pendulum. Simultaneously serious and funny, scholarly and irreverent. Excellent book.

5. One book that made you cry?

Odd John‘ by Olaf Stapledon. Make of that what you will.

6. One book you wish had been written?

Other People: a guide to their motivations and desires for the hopelessly asocial.’

7. One book you wish had never had been written?

The Destiny Mask‘ by Martin Sketchley. This was my first ever review assignment for Interzone, and I can’t remember reading a book that was harder to keep picking up. I’m sure there’s a market for that sort of thing, but I’m not it.

8. One book you are currently reading?

Barbarians‘ by Terry Jones (of Monty Python fame) and Alan Ereira. A fun yet well researched re-evaluation of the Romans and their status as ‘cultural guardians’. In summary, they were a far more barbaric bunch of culture-wrecking scumbags than almost everyone else thery accused of the same failings.

9. One book you have been meaning to read?

Just one? There are stacks of the damn things. How about The Seven Basic Plots‘ by Christopher Booker? It’s been sat by the sofa for at least a month…which reminds me, I’d best renew the loan period on it at work tomorrow.

10. Now tag five people.


i) Jose (Meme Therapy)

ii) Niall (Torque Control)

iii) Jesse (Hyperion Court)

iv) The Mac (Posthuman Blues)

v) Paul (Centauri Dreams)

…plus anyone else who fancies a go! Use the trackback URL below if your platform supports such things, and remember they don’t have to be science fiction books, or even fiction…if you’ve read it, it counts. Here’s an ideal opportunity for all those silent readers of VCTB to chip in – use that comments field, it gets lonely and fretful if no-one talks to it.

7 thoughts on “When book memes attack!”

  1. Pingback: Hyperion Court
  2. Pingback: Torque Control
  3. I don’t think you realize what you’ve done. I’ve lost track of the number of blogs this questionaire has showed up on.

  4. Oh, I’m fully aware, old chap; it’s been quite fun watching it spread like a rash through my RSS feeds! Though I think that’s more due to me having tagged you than anything else, it’s still quite gratifying!

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