Books

Category archives for Books

I’ve blogged before about authors who write fiction in the first person past tense but clearly have no idea of in which situation or at what point in time their narrator resides while telling the story. This is one of the problems with David Tallerman’s 2012 novel Giant Thief. But what made me quit reading…

Vacation Fun

Spent a week gloriously off-line at my mom’s glorious summer house in the archipelago. Oh the joy of reading 300 pages for fun in one day without feeling the need to check e-mail! Here are the books I read: Invented Knowledge. False history, fake science and pseudo-religions. Ronald H. Fritze 2009. One amazing essay covers…

New Guide Book on Medieval Uppland

Sweden’s traditionally divided into 25 landskap provinces. They live on in people’s minds despite having been superseded by a new län division in 1634. The boundaries of the landskap go way back into prehistory, and so they don’t respect the country’s cities much, these generally being much later in origin. Stockholm is a case in…

Another Crappy Publishing Deal

Sigh. Another crappy publishing deal. This firm wants me to write a 500-word encyclopaedia entry and assign copyright entirely to them, with the right to re-edit in the future. And what do they offer in return? A £30 book coupon and access to a paywall website. I just can’t see why I would find this…

Harry Martinson Talk

The Swedish Skeptics have received the 2012 Harry Martinson Memorial Prize from his birth municipality Olofström and the Harry Martinson Society. Martinson, a Nobel laureate, was a poet and prose writer who is particularly well known for his book-length science fiction epic poem Aniara. As chairman of the Swedish Skeptics I was invited down to…

I listened to BBC Click about the future of publishing and had the idea to look at a couple of parameters in my reading habits: where I get the idea to read each book-length text, how I get hold of them and what form they take. Here’s about the past year, April 2011 through March…

Mike Carey Writes Well

Aard super-regular Birger Johansson very kindly sent me a bunch of supernatural detective novels by Mike Carey, the Felix Castor series. I’m on the second one now (from 2006) and enjoying it a lot. The stories are a bit too long and meandering for my taste, but I love Carey’s dry wit and fine grasp…

The Royal Swedish Academy of Letters, History and Antiquities is over 250 years old and consists almost entirely of professors of the humanities and social sciences. But don’t let that fool you into thinking that it’s a sleepy organisation. For one thing, the Academy is a signatory of the 2003 Berlin Declaration on Open Access…

17th Century Pastoral Novel

As a schoolboy I read the first original play performed publically written in Swedish, Urban Hiärne‘s Rosimunda (1665). Me and my friend Tor loved the absurd spelling, the odd changes that had occurred in the sense of many words and some of the comical one-liners. Recently I learned that about the same time Hiärne also…

Best Reads of 2011

Here are my best reads in English during 2011. I only read 38 books this year (blame the Internet), which is why the really good ones are fewer than usual. Bonk. The curious coupling of sex and science. Mary Roach 2008. A charming look at the history of sex research. The Culture of Fear. Why…