The State of the Reader: 5/20/20

<–The State of the Reader: 5/6/20         The State of the Reader: 6/3/20–>

A biweekly post updated every other Wednesday detailing my current reading projects and what new titles I’ve added to my to-read list.  Title links go to Goodreads, and if you have an account there feel free to friend me!  I’d love to see what you’re reading and/or planning to read.


Yeah, I spent a lot of money on research materials over the past month.  I actually should’ve included the top two last week, but I guess I forgot?  The film studies book has been on my radar ever since I heard about it in a video I watched a few months ago.  That literally screams FFVII at me, and I knew I’d need it for critical analysis of that.  It’s not an uncommon paradigm, and I guess I’m just surprised I haven’t really seen anyone else talking about since it’s such a major influence in that narrative, but video games are a bastard medium *shrug*.  The Jung alchemy book was a must buy after watching Reinstall Paul’s Silent Hill analysis, because (of course) I thought about FFVII and the alchemical influences in that.  I only have/had a passing knowledge of alchemy e.g. lead into gold, but had no clue it was so universally prominent.  Now that I know a little more, I’m picking it up everywhere, so I need to learn more about it.

Currently Reading

Title: Gods and Myths of Northern Europe
Author: Hilda Roderick Ellis Davidson
Date Added: September 21, 2017
Date Started: May 1, 2020

Cover of Gods and Myths of Northern Europe by Hilda Roderick Ellis DavidsonMedia: Paperback
Progress: 13%

I take so many notes on this because it’s kind of a seminal text on Norse Mythology and one of the few not co-opted by Nazis.  They are not getting wolves, seriously, fuck those guys.  *ahem* Anyway, I like how she summarizes Snorri Sturluson in the beginning.  I still need to read his Prose Edda, which I put on hold because I wanted a physical copy and now have one.

Title: The Valley of Amazement
Author: Amy Tan
Date Added: April 24, 2014
Date Started: March 1, 2020

Cover of The Valley of Amazement by Amy TanMedia: Hardback – Library
Progress: 77%

The majority of this novel told from the point of view of Violet, but once she reaches a certain place it switches to her mother who is…interesting.  There’s something about her that rubs me the wrong way, a selfishness that was manifesting even before she became a madam in Shanghai and prior to her daughter’s birth.  She has a variety of names, but her given one is Lucretia, and of course that just made my galaxy brain implode.  Instead of reading, I’m looking back through my notes on The Rape of Lucrece as well as several of my FFVII essays as I simultaneously wonder why the fuck anyone would ever name their daughter after a woman made famous by her assault?  I understand it’s metaphorical implications in FFVII of course, but like why in real life?  It’s my paternal grandmother’s name, too, so it’s like WHY?  But in the novel itself, it’s mentioned she’s named after Lucretia Mott, a famous abolitionist whom I’ve known about my entire life because the town I grew up in was named after her.  So I think that name was popular due to her, and this made me think about how pop culture forms a type of wall.  Like if I say “Hermione” or “Sephiroth,” you’re probably thinking of Harry Potter and Final Fantasy VII respectively, because that’s how you know these names even though the origins of them go much farther back.  This isn’t a judgement either (well…not entirely).  I think it’s fascinating how such things can happen and become popular for the “wrong” or more accurately incomplete reasons.  It goes along with my fascination for half-truths and lies in narratives.  How a misconception can lead to undoing.  How not knowing the full truth can end in downfall and disaster, and how those in power understand this and use it to manipulate.

Thank you for coming to my TED Talk :p

Title: Dracula
Author: Bram Stoker
Date Added: May 16, 2015
Date Started: February 13, 2020

Cover of DraculaMedia: eBook/Kindle
Progress: 31%

I actually got to read a bit more of this.  There are a lot more characters now that it’s moved away from Jonathan to Mina, his fiance, her friend Lucy, a Dr. Seward, and Lucy’s husband Arthur taking part in fleshing out the narrative.  I’m still anxious to see how it all comes together.

I think I’ve talked enough, don’t you?  I hope you’re all staying safe and being safe.  I decided to do a poetry live reading on Facebook, which inspired one of my friends to do the same.  I want to do another one, but it’s a bit of a pain since I have to go to the other room where it’s quiet as well as look presentable.  I think I might do them as recordings that I edit/add music to before I release them out into the world.  I mean why not?

<–The State of the Reader: 5/6/20         The State of the Reader: 6/3/20–>

4 thoughts on “The State of the Reader: 5/20/20

  1. Pingback: The State of the Reader: 5/6/20 | The Shameful Narcissist Speaks

  2. Pingback: The State of the Reader: 6/3/20 | The Shameful Narcissist Speaks

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