I went book shopping again…

This weekend I discovered The Book Bank in Old Town Alexandria. The Book Bank is a relatively small used bookstore with the best sci-fi/fantasy section of any bookstore that I’ve been to in the DC area.  I had gone there with the hopes of finding some old Robert Silverberg paperbacks, and was more than successful.  Here’s what I picked up (in no particular order):

  • “The World Inside” by Robert Silverberg – One of Silverberg’s more popular titles.
  • “Dying Inside” by Robert Silverberg – The title sounds a bit emo, but the story does look good.
  • “The Book of Skulls” by Robert Silverberg – I selected this one somewhat randomly, but it was nominated for a Hugo and a Nebula.
  • “Sassinak” by Anne McCaffrey and Elizabeth Moon – Space pirates?  Yes, please!
  • “Trader” by Charles de Lint – Because I don’t think that I’ve read enough Charles de Lint books yet…
  • “The Dispossessed” by Ursula K. LeGuin – I had wanted to read this during the Science Fiction Experience but ran out of time.
  • “Firebird” by Mercedes Lackey – Based on a Russian folk tale.  It seemed a perfect choice to start out Once Upon a Time.

Earlier in the week, my boyfriend and I went to a comic book store.  I don’t read many graphic novels, but I saw a copy of Neil Gaiman’s “Sandman:  Endless Nights” and decided to give it a try.  The artwork is beautiful, and the story is entertaining thus far.

I was also browsing the Kindle specials last week and bought Neil Gaiman’s “Neverwhere” and Ransom Riggs’ “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children.”  I’ve read a lot of good things about both books, and was excited to find them on sale!

Has anyone read any of these, and if so, how are they?

Comments make me happy! Please feel free to leave a reply.

33 comments

  1. Is there such a thing as reading “enough” of Charles de Lint? 😉 I’m very excited about diving back into his work in the coming months. The recent Spring-like weather has brought on the de Lint urge.

    Nice finds! I hope you enjoy the Silverberg. My first experience with his fiction earlier this year was a good one and I’ll be picking up more in the future.

    And Hooray for Neverwhere and Miss Peregrine. I hope the pictures are included in the Miss Peregrine book because they are an integral part of the story, in my opinion. Keep in mind that I am really strongly leaning towards hosting a Neverwhere read along sometime later in the Spring/Summer. Would love to have you take part in that one.

    1. A groupread of Neverwhere would be fantastic!

      I’m really excited about the Silverberg; I read “Nightwings” earlier this year and loved it. If these books are even half as good I’ll be happy.

  2. You got some good books there – I loved Neverwhere and I really want the Miss Peregrine book – I’ll wait for your review of that one and see what you think.

    Lynn 😀

    1. I’m curious about Miss Peregrine’s. I’ve seen a lot of people review it and almost everyone who’s read it seems to love it. I’ll let you know how it is!

      1. Strangely enough I was actually put off reading it at first because it had pictures in it – I wondered what was going on with that? But then I read some really good reviews and actually went to buy it a few weeks ago and the bookstore had ran out of copies – I wondered if it was an omen.
        Happy reading.
        Lynn 😀

        1. I’m curious how the photos will work with the story. I think that it is an interesting idea to include pictures in a book that isn’t a flat-out children’s book. It’s something I don’t see very often.

    1. Thanks! When I saw Firebird I couldn’t pass it up, especially because a friend and I saw a ballet production based on the same legend a couple months ago. Fairy tales are so much fun.

  3. I read Neverwhere several years ago, it was only the second Gaiman I had read and I liked it a lot. He definitely has a different perspective. I read Miss P… last month and I really enjoyed it. The story kept me interested and the pictures that are included in the book give it a whole new dimension. I was very happy to learn that Riggs is working on a second book.

    1. The only Gaiman that I’ve read so far was “Fragile Things,” but I enjoyed a lot of the short stories in it and am excited to see how he does with a full-length novel.

      1. I’ve never read any of his short stories. I’m just not a fan of short stories in general, but I also enjoy his YA work.

        1. I think the biggest problem with reading a collection of short stories is that I tend to absolutely love some of them, but a lot of them just don’t stick out to me. They’re very hit or miss.

    1. Thank you! I’ve only read one or two graphic novels before, but I’m very curious to see how Gaiman does with them. It’ll be something new and different for me!

  4. First, I love Old Town Alexandria! Second, I love used bookstores. So I’m extremely jealous, but very happy for you for finding such a treasure. I haven’t read the books but I’m curious to hear what you think of them. Happy reading!

    1. It’s such a cute neighborhood! The only downside to this bookstore is that it closes at 6 every day, which makes it pretty much impossible for me to get to during the week.

      1. Just wanted to mention – we actually close at 7 on Fridays and Saturdays, and we’ll extend our closing time to 8pm every day during the summer. 🙂

  5. Great books. I haven’t read any Silverberg yet but I remember you reviewed him before and it sounded very good. Mercedes Lackey is another aozthor on the list I’d like to get to. Roll on Once Upon A Time.

  6. I’ve read “Trader” and while I enjoyed it, it’s not my favorite DeLint.

    That said, I’ve not encountered a “bad” De LInt novel or story yet.

    1. I’ve read a lot of de Lint’s books and haven’t read one yet that I’ve disliked, although I will say that some are better than others and that his early writing could have used a better editor. I like the way that he is able to inject a mythic quality to modern life.

  7. ooh, lots of Silverberg awesomeness there! Sure, he’s got some crappy pulp floating about, but I just adore him. And Firebird looks awesome too, I’m always a sucker for anything Russian-esque.

  8. Ooooh, lots of Silverberg winners there! I know he’s got some pulp floating about, but I just love him. your “emo” comment cracked me up!

    I’m very interested in your thoughts on the Lackey as well, I haven’t read her in years and I’m a total sucker for anything Russian-esque.

    1. I was excited to find him, because most bookstores here don’t keep any of his stuff in stock, and I prefer to buy from physical bookstores because I discover awesome new books that way.

      I’ve never read anything by Lackey yet, but I’m very curious about Firebird, especially since one of my friends and I saw a ballet interpretation of it earlier this year. I love anything even remotely related to Russia, and I also love modern interpretations and retellings of folk tales and fairy tales, so I’m hoping that it’s as good as it sounds! 😀

  9. Hey, I’m the owner of Book Bank – thanks for the compliments! We have a couple of sci-fi fans working here (I’m one of ’em), so we try to keep that section well-stocked! I’m excited to have another blog to read, too!

    As for comments on the mentioned books…

    Firebird – I don’t generally read a lot of Mercedes Lackey, but I LOVE this book. I really like retelling of fairy tales when they are done well, and in my opinion, she did a great job here!

    Neverwhere – I am a huge fan of Gaiman’s writing. This is a wonderful book, and if you like it (and the Sandman stories…so good!), I would recommend American Gods and Anansi Boys. In my opinion, they are two of his best works.

    Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children – I was so excited to read this book, and it was fun to read, but it didn’t live up to my expectations, unfortunately. I think I wanted it to be more dreamy and fantastical, and it like the author made up a set of rules and then explained them all to me. I enjoyed it, but I felt a little let-down. I ended up comparing it to Mechanique by Genevieve Valentine (I heard about them both around the same time), which I really enjoyed. Too high of expections, I think…