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Last January, I resolved to finish as many books as possible. I’m a chronic book-abandoner, and I thought that perhaps putting a review up of each book I finished would be an incentive to finish more things. As a result, I read (to completion) 27 books (11 novels and 16 non-fiction). I’d say I still abandoned about as many books as I finished - some of them after only a few pages, but a few (which are still weighing on me) within 50 pages of the end. The last 5% takes 95% of the effort, or something like that. Following on Stungeye’s annual “reading and listening lists”, I thought I would collect the reviews I wrote over the last year here in one place.

One book is missing from this list: William Clare Roberts’ Marx’s Inferno, which I’ve reviewed for International Socialism, but the review hasn’t appeared yet. It should be published sometime in January, so when it’s available, I’ll update this post.

I’m not sure whether I will stick with trying to review every book I finish this year. I’ll still keep track of completions, but sometimes there wasn’t really much to say about a given book.

I still hope to finish some of the lingering things from last year - Dostoyevsky’s House of the Dead and Margaret Laurence’s Stone Angel are within a stone’s throw of completion. I’ll probably review those two as, despite not finishing them (yet), I think there’s stuff to comment on in both books.

EDIT (January 21, 2018): My review of Roberts’ Marx’s Inferno has appeared in International Socialism


Sam Popowich

Discovery and Web Services Librarian, University of Alberta

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