2021: From slumping to binging, my (half) year of bi-polar reading

Well, those of us on a little plot of land at the bottom of the world we like to call Melbourne are in the middle of our 4th hard lockdown as officials try to nail down an Indian variant that escaped out of hotel quarantine in Adelaide.  The poor man who served as the virus’s escape route did everything right: 14 days of quarantine, and 3 (4?) negative tests, only to find out after making his way home to Melbourne that an infected person on his hotel floor opened their door more or less 12 minutes earlier than he did to collect their meal.  How much does that suck?  The government ought to give that poor man a refund.

Anyhoo, this lockdown has been different for me.  Whereas previous lockdowns found me restless and lacking any desire to follow normal routines, leading to a massive, prolonged reading slump that lasted well into April, the start of #4 found me completely on the other end of the spectrum.  I’ve been binge reading at epic levels, to the detriment of almost everything else.  They’ve all been re-reads of favorite urban fantasy series, back-to-back, with no breaks in between.  33 books covering 3 series in a little less than 24 days.  Whew.  I’m a little shell-shocked, but mostly, I’ve run out of urban fantasy series to re-read and I’m not yet in a mystery mood.

I’m not going to re-review any of these books, though I’m using this as an opportunity to bring over the original reviews (if they exist) from my BookLikes archive, so apologies in advance for the mini flash flood coming your way.  What I will say here is that of the three series I’ve re-read:  Patricia Briggs’ Mercy Thompson series, the Alpha and Omega spin-off series and Darynda Jones’ Grim Reaper series, Brigg’s hold up the best over time.  Jones’ Charlie Davidson is still a favorite, and the writing is still enjoyable, but I didn’t realise until reading all 13 back to back just how close to paranormal romance the series sits.  I tried to read Charlaine Harris’ Sookie Stackhouse series but couldn’t muster enthusiasm after the 1st book; her writing just doesn’t hold up that well, though later books might improve – I can’t remember.

For anyone who might be wondering how our new family member is going:  she’s hell on 4 paws.  Also sweeter than anything and a massive fan of playing fetch, and even more oddly, water.

13 thoughts on “2021: From slumping to binging, my (half) year of bi-polar reading”

  1. Sweet, fond of playing fetch AND water? Is she really a dog?

    Also, “I’ve run out of urban fantasy series to re-read” sounds a lot like “I need to go book shopping” to me.

    1. I know – I really do need to do a book shop, but exchange rates and shipping fees are not favorable at the moment, so I’ve been trying to hold off. It’s going to get harder as the month goes on though, because there are a lot of new releases coming out I’ve had my eye on.

      As for Bug – her dog-like tendencies are balanced by the very cat like claws she hasn’t quite learned not to use yet, her imperious meows, and the imperious expressions that imply she knows words she’s too young to use. 😀

  2. Bug! What a great name and such an attractive cat. 💜

    Do you read Ilona Andrews? Specifically the Hidden Legacy series, which has a character nicknamed Bug.

    1. Thanks – her ‘official’ name is Pikachu, but I call her bug because it fits. 🙂

      I’m a huge fan of Illona Andrews and the Hidden Legacy series, and I have to say, at times, this Bug very much resembles that Bug. 😀

  3. Whatever it took, I‘m glad to see you‘re reading (and blogging) again!

    Charlie and Sunny are great fans of water, too … I can‘t have a faucet running anywhere without either or both of them showing up to check out what‘s going on — and trying to catch the running water. It‘s especially funny in / on top of the tiny sink in my toilet, where they barely have room to stand on the rim! Charlie is very curious about where the water comes from and where it‘s going … he‘ll spend ages staring at the wall above and the pipes below the sink, and you can literally see his brain spinning on overdrive, trying to work it all out. (Holly was like that about faucets, too.) He‘s also been known to jump onto the rim of the toilet bowl, trying to work out how the flushing mechanism works. Thankfully, so far he‘s never been tempted to take a drink … apparently his nose tells him he‘d better not!

    1. Bug had an unfortunate experience with the toilet; she saw me putting something on the lid (obviously when it was closed) and later went to jump on it when it most definitely wasn’t, and nose-dived straight in. It was a disconcerting moment for both of us.

      Easter loves drinking from the faucet – it’s her preferred method of hydration – but she’s never been interested in getting any water on herself. ‘Lito took forever to understand the dynamics of plumbing, and his steep learning curve was a rather soaked one as a result – but his fur is so stupidly thick it takes him minutes to realize he’s wet at all. :p

      1. Awww. Poor Bug! Such a scare … for both of you!

        And I can totally picture ‘Lito’s learning curve. Ugh. I just hope you didn’t have to wipe the bathroom (and kitchen?) too often after him …

        Funnily enough, Charlie and Sunny aren’t interested in running water for drinking purposes at all — apparently their adventures trying to “catch” it have convinced them drinking would be an equally futile enterprise. That said, they don’t mind getting their paws a tiny bit wet in the “catching” game, but there’s no faster way to make them jump out of “the big box” in the bathroom (= bathtub) than to turn on the faucet there; and for the life of them they can’t understand why their mom will, ever so often, fill that “big box” completely with water, add some unappetizing, clearly inedible scent and get immersed in the whole brew. Their utter bewilderment when they saw me taking a bath for the very first time was priceless! Now they’ll just go “oh, she’s doing that again. Humans … seriously!!”

        1. HA! I was just thinking the other day what Bug would do with a bathtub (we sadly don’t have one … yet). She loves the shower, AFTER we get out of it. Her little face squishes up adorably when she tries to approach while it’s running, but she loves splashing about on the bottom right when we’re finished. I think a tub (while full), however, would defeat her and likely end hilarously bad.

    1. We have daily border skirmishes interspersed with temporary cease fires. I was ready to toss both Easter and Bug out the front door today, as they spent two hours sniping and bickering with each other and it HAD to be right in the middle of where I was working. Then they spent the next couple of hours napping within a couple of feet of each other on the bed. Same sort of thing happens most often with ‘Lito though; many a time we’ve had to pull her off his head, only to find the two of them snuggled up together later on.

      1. Snort. ROTFL picturing Bug clinging to the top of ‘Lito’s head …

        Anything involving snuggling up together still sounds like progress, though. As does, FWIW, Easter and Bug just a few feet from each other.

        1. Clinging is the operative word; picture an octopus wrapped around ‘lito’s face, or the back of his head, and you’ve nailed what it looks like. 😀

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