Don Hosek - Recent reading

I tend to be a voracious reader, and I read widely. This list has its origins in an old signature file which I would update periodically with the current book that I was reading. That gradually transmogrified itself into the current massive archive with brief reviews.

What I've been reading lately
Number of books read and reviewed each year
1995* (28)
1996 (47)
1997 (74)
1998 (61)
1999 (62)
2000 (27)
2001 (51)
2002 (60)
2003 (37)
2004 (36)
2005 (32)
2006 (46)
2007 (109)
2008 (78)
2009 (65)
2010 (68)
2011 (98)
2012 (129)
2013 (114)
2014 (101)
2015 (73)
* Partial year
When the Church was Young by Marcellino D’Ambrosio
[Finished 5 October 2015] See my review at

Among the Ten Thousand Things by Julia Pierpont
[Finished 4 October 2015] I picked this up courtesy of a rapturous review on NPR. When I actually read it, I found a book that was well-written and had some intriguing devices in its narrative (particularly the two chapters of telescoped future action, one in the middle and one at the end), but in the end, it didn’t seem like Pierpont had enough there there to make this a satisfying read.

The Walking Dead, Vol. 24: Life and Death by Robert Kirkman, Charlie Adlard, Stefano Gaudiano and Cliff Rathburn
[Finished 1 October 2015] We’re getting into some of the more interesting aspects of the post-zombie apocalypse world in this volume, particularly the problems of rebuilding civilization (and the question of whether civilization is something that should be rebuilt at all). Throw in what appears to be the beginnings of an intriguing storyline with Negan (who I have to believe is going to play an important role in volume 25) and the story of surviving the zombie apocalypse has grown new legs.

Two Years, Eight Months and Twenty-Eight Nights by Salman Rushdie
[Finished 28 September 2015] In the end I was disappointed. Perhaps it was the flood of rapturous praise that greeted Rushdie’s new novel on its publication, but I was left feeling disappointed in what Rushdie produced. He has a clear ideological goal in the novel, advocating atheism, but I found his efforts in that direction incoherent at best, as is bound to happen when one attempts to employ the supernatural in an effort to destroy the supernatural. Perhaps, there is an intentional irony in that failure. On the plus side, Rushdie does have moments of rapturous prose and there is a sense that he enjoyed himself writing the book even if the reader may not be able to enjoy the same raptures.

Heirs of the Fisherman: Behind the Scenes of Papal Death and Succession by John-Peter Pham
[Finished 17 September 2015] See my review at

Best American Poetry 2015 edited by Sherman Alexie
[Finished 16 September 2015] A great collection of poems, overshadowed by the Yi-fen Chou controversy. Alexie does a great job of seeking out new voices, bringing in a number of poets new to the series through aggressively choosing to dig deeper. He is not only willing, but eager, to investigate, for example, the outpouring of new online venues for poetry.

A Single Man by Christopher Isherwood
[Finished 2 September 2015] I’m declaring a behind on my reviews amnesty for a while.

Priests in Love: Roman Catholic Clergy and their Intimate Relationships by Jane Anderson
[Finished 27 August 2015] See my review at

Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout
[Finished 21 August 2015] I’m declaring a behind on my reviews amnesty for a while.

The Happiness Project: Or Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean my Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotl by Gretchen Rubin
[Finished 21 August 2015] I’m declaring a behind on my reviews amnesty for a while.