4 minute read

September was almost entirely dedicated to wedding planning and admin. All our hard work paid off though, as the day was incredibly beautiful and full of immense happiness. I’m still overflowing from joy from the day, and had a relaxing, necessary honeymoon with my wife. It was amazing and still doesn’t feel fully real. I feel so very lucky.

In all the excitement I didn’t post one of these in August. So this is what I have managed to read and watch in the last two months.


  • This One Sky Day by Leone Ross - Such a magical, funny and tender book dealing with the residents of Popisho, who all have cors, a type of magic innate to their being. It follows several different people throughout the book over one day as their lives intertwine and disaster looms. It’s often surreal with some incredible images, such as a black and white beach or someone plucking butterflies out of the air and eating them. But it’s always grounded in the emotions of the characters, whether it’s conflicting grief or desire. Beautifully written in a Caribbean dialect, this is a stunning book.

  • War of the Foxes by Richard Siken- I’m almost certainly going to have to read this one again. Complex, twisting poetry dealing with painting, representation and reality. I loved the recurring images and how coherent the book felt as a single unit. As it is so complex, I need another couple of rounds to fully digest it.

  • Tales of Earthsea by Ursula K. LeGuin- I returned to the Earthsea books after a break, the same way LeGuin returned later in life to the world. This is a collection of short stories that expand and complicate the world of Earthsea, changing the origins of Roke for example to be run by women. What I love about these novels is the coherent world LeGuin has built and the forensic attention to detail. You never for one second doubt that these are real islands, with real history. But also each novel twists and complicates your view of the world in unique ways whilst remaining coherent to the ongoing story. Looking forward to the last one.

  • Use of Weapons- Iain M. Banks- Continuing my read through The Culture novels. This is a war novel written by a pacifist that exposes the horror and brutality of war. There’s a unique structure going on here and a twist that genuinely blindsided me. Unlike The Player of Games, The Culture is seen from the outside and it makes them not feel so utopian. What elevates it however, is not the discussion of the Culture or the technology, but the in depth character study of Zakalwe. This is the series really hitting it’s stride.


  • Palm Springs- A much darker take on the Groundhog day premise, where instead of attempting to improve himself the main character gives into despair and inevitability. It’s slickly done, carried by the chemistry of the two leads and digging into the rules of the looping world to provide a fresh take. I enjoyed it.

  • Terminator 2: Judgement Day (rewatch)- For a thirty year old film (!), this still holds up. Part of it is the relentless pace the movie has, being three or four extended action scenes linked by the smallest moments of peace. Part of it is the effects, which still look fantastic even now. But mostly, it’s just a lean, well made film that knows exactly how to up the stakes and keep the tension high.

TV shows

  • Paper Girls- It feels this came and went with very little fanfare or promotion. Which is a shame, because this is a really excellent adaptation of the comic books. Slowly the story down from it’s frantic pace, it has time to focus on all four of the main characters and to dig into what drives them. At the same time, it is a beautiful meditation on growing up and how your dreams and personality shifts as you get older. I just wish Amazon had given it more of a budget and allowed it to continue for another couple of seasons.

  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 6- This is the season it all goes dark. I thought the exploration of depression was interesting and well done, but other elements like the Buffy/ Spike relationship and the magic as drugs metaphor felt clumsy and out of place. Tonally, it’s very different to the fun monster of the week show it started out as. I’m not sure it fully works, but it’s more interesting for a show to try something different than it is for it to stay the same.

That’s it for now. I have some plans to update this blog a bit more frequently going forward so we will see what happens.



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