Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Political coincidences and my bedside reading

These are pure coincidences.  I don't actually choose my own books, most of the time.  My wife puts books on my night stand, and whenever I finish one book, I just grab the next.

I just started reading Jacqueline Carey's Santa Olivia.  It is a sort of post-apocalyptic thing set in a region between border walls separating the US and Mexico, in an outpost occupied by the US military, occasionally attacked by somebody who is basically a terrorist who may or may not actually exist.  He might be concocted as an imaginary threat to keep everyone contained.  (I'm not done with the book yet-- it has just been strongly suggested).  The book was published in 2009.

And then there is the book I just finished.  Asghar Farhadi, an Iranian filmmaker, was nominated for an Academy Award, but, well, can he attend the ceremony?  He has announced that he will skip, no matter what.  The last book I read was John Scalzi's Agent to the Stars.  Basic plot:  aliens arrive, and while they are nice, they look like gelatinous blobs and smell horrible.  So, instead of making a scene, they make contact with a Hollywood agent to figure out how to do first contact.  The conclusion (which sucked):  one of the aliens merges with a comatose, brain-dead actress, absorbs the memories of a Holocaust survivor, acts in a movie about the Holocaust, wins an Oscar, and reveals that she is secretly an alien at the ceremony.  It... turns out better in the book than it would in real life.  Scalzi's other books are better.  This was just an amusing coincidence.

No political science insights here.  Just coincidences.  Honestly, I just finished the Scalzi book, and just started the Carey book.

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