What I read in January 📚

Non-fiction (tech):

  • I liked B. McCulloch’s How the Internet Happened as a pretty breezy history of the 90s and 00s.
  • I finally finished The Friendly Orange Glow, a history of an internetworked, federally-funded computer system that happened from the 60s to the 80s. “You mean ARPAnet?” Nope. A whole other thing that ended up losing. Glad I read it but it was sort of exhausting to get through.

Non-fiction (memoir/bio):

  • How Not To Be A Boy, Robert Webb. Autobiography of half of the Mitchell & Webb comedy team. I didn’t expect a lot of humor here and it gets pretty heavy. Strong message about husbands and fathers and sons and toxic masculinity, though a bit disjointed. Recommended whether you like Mitchell & Webb or not.


  • Alif the Unseen, G. Willow Wilson. A little bit like Stross’s Laundry Files, but in the Middle East, so that’s fun. Felt a lot like a Cory Doctorow book, though, which is not as fun (to me).
  • Artemis, Andy Weir. Okay. He really caught lightning in a bottle with The Martian, and it’s hard to recreate that.
  • Thin Air, Richard Morgan. Glad to see RM back in the sci-fi genre. This is not quite up there with his earlier sci-fi, which I really really liked, but entertaining for sure.
  • Rogue Protocol, Martha Wells. I love the voice of this series. Fourth one is waiting for me at the library now.
  • “A Dead Djinn in Cairo,” P. Djèlí Clark. This was a short story on Tor’s website that was great.
  • Foundryside, Robert Jackson Bennett. RJB might be my favorite world-builder lately. Book 1 of a new series, now that The Divine Cities has concluded (?).
  • “White Nights,” F. Dostoyevsky. I figured I should balance all the genre fiction with something else, and I stumbled across an ePub of this so I gave it a try. Eh.
  • This Book Will Save Your Life, A.M. Homes. I would’ve liked this when I was 25, just like I liked Bret Easton Ellis at the time. Is L.A. really like this?
  • Things You Should Know, A.M. Homes. I like collections of short stories so I grabbed this along with the novel. It’s been 3 weeks since I finished it and I have literally no memory of any of the stories. I gave it 2/5 on Goodreads…
  • Culdesac, Robert Repino. A brief novella I read on the treadmill. Anthropomorphic animals; imagine a gritty, humorless version of Alan Dean Foster's Spellsinger series. This was marked "1.5" in a series, so I've added Book 1 to my to-read.