August 2020 Reading Log

Everything (of substance) that I read in August, with some annotations.

A ⌛︎ before a title indicates that I have not finished reading it.

Total: 4 novels, 2 novellas, 19 short stories, 6 essays/articles, 1 light novel + 2 light novel preview chapters, 23 manga/comic chapters + 64 manga webcomic chapters, 2 visual novels



This month I read: a screed against the current state of paywalls in academic writing and journalism; an essay reflecting on the morbid responsibilities placed on teachers; an update on the long-term effects currently being experienced by COVID-19 survivors; an obituary for the longest-surviving apple tree from those originally brought to Washington; an investigative piece about a particularly destructive GRS surgeon and a call for standardization and regulation in the field; and a short history of kudzu. Bundles

I previously shared a list of the non-interactive fiction in the Bundle for Racial Justice and Equality, and I've been reading through the whole list. I can wholeheartedly recommend everything I've read so far, there are some amazing works in there!! Check out Julian K. Jarboe for some intense and varied, extremely trans short stories; Jess Sebastian for a novel with sweet queer romance, taking ahold of your responsibilities, and a super cool fantasy city setting; Lily Reeves for some bite-sized, very funny autobio comics; Zach Hazard Vaupen for three creepy, disorienting short comics; C. Bedford for a first installment in a sexy, colorful sci-fi comic; and RoAnna Sylver for a novel about fighting vampires and coping with trauma, featuring a grey aro/ace romance and an exciting sequel hook.

This month I also played all or parts of a handful of visual novels from the above mentioned bundle as well as the Visual Novel Romance Collection for Black Trans Lives. Again, everything I sampled was exactly what I wanted. Check out Highway Blossoms for a choice-free lesbian romance about a treasure hunt roadtrip with a stranger; That Which Binds Us for a het love story featuring a magic knife that can erase your memories of a chosen person; Brassica for three princes sent on a wild goose chase of a quest by the sapphic princess they have each been sent to marry; and LadyKiller in a Bind to play as a lesbian masquerading as her brother, featuring the best and most creative conversation/choice system I've played!

Run Away With Me, Girl

The scanlator group Sexy Akiba Detectives recently finished their work on this manga and I gave it a reread. The art is beautiful, the story features two adult women who had previously dated in high school, there's a happy ending, and as always Rankarana's translations are so well localized and idiomatic.

Galaxy Magazine, September 1954

Don't forget that you can download old issues of this magazine if you love classic sci-fi and don't mind sorting through trash and gems! There were one or two in this issue that were so awful I couldn't read them; my favorites were “Dusty Zebra” and “A Start in Life”.

Fried Green Tomatoes

I watched the movie adaptation of this novel recently and enjoyed it, but I could tell that there was supposed to be more to the story, so I tracked down the book... If you liked the movie, you'll like seeing the other characters who are relegated to side-status in the movie get fleshed out. Be forewarned that the movie and the novel have different endings.