Endless Summer Book Bingo July 22, 2021 3:03 PM   Subscribe

Just a continuation of this Meta, which hit the time limit. A place to share our triumphs and recommendations as we fill in squares for the Summer Book Bingo card put out by the Seattle Public Library.
posted by The corpse in the library to MetaFilter-Related at 3:03 PM (18 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

I've ended up reading David Chang's Eat a Peach and Michelle Zauner's Crying in H Mart back-to-back, two books for the BIPOC Food Writing square. Very much enjoyed Chang's storytelling style, but Zauner is speaking to my heart and making me hungry for a meaningful meal.

Still haven't chosen a Beach Read; suggestions?
posted by MonkeyToes at 3:23 PM on July 22, 2021 [1 favorite]

For Beach Read I did Seth Rogan's Yearbook, even though I don't particularly like his movies (nothing against them, but I'm just not the target audience). It was good!
posted by The corpse in the library at 6:05 PM on July 22, 2021

For Small Press, I'm currently enjoying Joseph D. Carriker, Jr.'s Sacred Band.
posted by The corpse in the library at 6:08 PM on July 22, 2021

I used this list for Romance and ended up reading three.

How had I never read The Passion? Or Mr Fox? Or Atmospheric Disturbances?

Have since moved to small press, which is great because I'm 100% using it as an excuse to read the Percival Everett's Telephone, which I've been wanting to read for several months (I love Percival Everett). Probably won't read all three versions. But I have a couple of Europa Editions ARCs, too, so hopefully I'll make it out of the small press square by August.
posted by thivaia at 7:59 AM on July 23, 2021 [2 favorites]

I read The Final Revival of Opal & Nev by Dawnie Walton and it is amazing.
posted by mogget at 10:06 AM on July 23, 2021 [1 favorite]

I do book bingo in a somewhat unorthodox manner. I read broadly, make a numbered list of books, and put the number in any square it could apply to. Only once I have a good spread of numbers do I start deciding which book to actually put in each square. So this is my final book bingo (did after around 40 books read). I did do a lot of them, but am not aiming for a blackout because the prize is usually less attractive to me then a bingo (and also the library staff won't say what the blackout prizes are).
  • Romance: Coddiwomple by S. E. Harmon
  • On your shelf: Girl Genius vol. 1-18 by Kaya & Phil Foglio
  • Small press: Tell me exactly what happened by Caroline Burau
  • Beach read: Screens apart by Charlie Novak
  • Black joy: The Avant-Guards Vol. 2 by Carly Usdin
  • Activism or social justice: We hereby refuse by Frank Abe
  • Made you laugh: Jay's gay agenda by Jason June
  • Coming of age: The Sky blues by Robbie Couch
  • Recommended by library staff/Peak picks: One last stop by Casey McQuiston
  • Graphic novel: Heartstopper Vol. 2 by Alice Oseman
  • Mystery or crime: Fugitive telemetry by Martha Wells
  • Asian American or Pacific Islander Author: A Taste for love by Jennifer Yen
  • Speculative fiction: Snapdragon by Kat Leyn
  • BIPOC food writing: Hana Khan carries on by Uzma Jalaluddin
  • Sports: Tough guy by Rachel Reid
  • Olympics host city: Here comes the flood by Kate McMurray
  • A book from a series: Goal lines & first times by Eden Finley & Saxon James
  • A book from a series: Line mates & study dates by Eden Finley & Saxon James
I enjoyed everything but highly recommend We hereby refuse, One last stop, and Snapdragon. If you like M/M romance at all, highly recommend Eden Finley & Saxon James' CU Hockey series, starting with Power plays & straight A's. Looking forward to everyone else's favorites.
posted by blueberry monster at 10:30 AM on July 24, 2021 [1 favorite]

posted by y2karl at 10:32 AM on July 24, 2021 [3 favorites]

> I read broadly, make a numbered list of books, and put the number in any square it could apply to.

Wise. I admit I do sometimes have a bit of shenanigans towards the end. I have You'll Never Believe What Happened to Lacey: Crazy Stories about Racism in my "recommended by a friend" box, because someone recommended it to me and I can't remember who but surely they were friendly if they were recommending books.
posted by The corpse in the library at 1:44 PM on July 24, 2021 [3 favorites]

Oh, I am also creatively interpreting "recommended by a friend" - that's where I'm putting God Spare the Girls (link is to Texas Observer review) by Kelsey McKinney. Which I'm justifying because the author is one of the co-owners of defector.com, which is where I heard about it and to which I subscribe at the "pal" tier. The book could easily fit in a different square with less silly reasoning, and I read lots of books recommended by actual friends. But I find almost cheating at these kinds of things more fun than playing them straight.

If anyone has particularly good ways they've justified slotting a book into a space it only kinda fulfills, please share for my amusement.
posted by the primroses were over at 2:48 PM on July 24, 2021 [1 favorite]

If anyone wants to fill their card with books by MeFites, there are definitely a few I can recommend as absolutely fantastic. (They also, apparently, reveal that I have specific tastes. Or perhaps Metafilter does?):

thesmallmachine's The Breath of the Sun -- small press, speculative fiction, queer

Ballad of Peckham Rye's The Psychology of Time Travel -- mystery/crime, speculative fiction, queer

Jeanne's A Love Story Starring My Dead Best Friend -- romance, coming of age, queer

PhoBWanKenobi's Strange Creatures -- mystery/crime, coming of age, speculative fiction, queer

jscalzi's Redshirts -- speculative fiction, might make you laugh

and I'll throw in my own Love Bites and Bleeding Hearts -- romance, speculative fiction, might make you laugh, queer, books in a series
posted by kyrademon at 3:00 PM on July 24, 2021 [5 favorites]

> But I find almost cheating at these kinds of things more fun than playing them straight.

Last year I had The Last Day in my "uplifting" square because a) I was desperate and b) well, hey, people survived the earth's stopping its rotation, isn't it cheerful that they didn't all die immediately?
posted by The corpse in the library at 3:40 PM on July 24, 2021 [1 favorite]

I had never used the Your Next 5 Books feature before this round of Book Bingo, and I heartily recommend it to anyone, especially if you need help with a particular square! Instead of five books, my librarian gave me twelve recommendations in a multi-paragraph email, and the first one I read was just perfectly in line with my tastes.

I seeded my ask with Ocean Vuong's On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous, which I read for the QTBIPOC square and just adored. I asked for more memoirs by younger authors that detail a period of one's life rather than a whole life's retrospective, and my librarian recommended Claire Bidwell Smith's The Rules of Inheritance, which was exactly perfect for me and I can't wait to read the other recommendations.

If you are looking to wedge books into not-quite-right boxes, I think On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous arguably fits into the Poetry box! Ocean Vuong is a poet and weaves occasional poems into his memoir, but also his prose is so lyrical and poetic that I read some passages over and over, they were so delicious and beautiful.

I only have a couple of squares left on my card, so now I'm at the stage where I am reading more books to replace some of the squares I filled with books I read and didn't actually like very much...
posted by adiabat at 1:52 PM on July 25, 2021 [2 favorites]

Just got back from vacation where I read these great books.

Alison Bechdel's The Secret of Superhuman Strength. (Color!)

Nobody's Normal: How Culture Created the Stigma of Mental Illness by Roy Richard Grinker, which I highly recommend, though I wish he looked a bit more at the religious origins of stigma. He really focuses on the Capitalist causes in this fascinating and well researched book.

Charles Yu's funny and smart novel Interior Chinatown.

Casey Wilson's autobiographical essays, The Wreckage of My Presence was funny and surprisingly touching.

And finally, Jenny Slate's aptly titled Little Weirds.
posted by Stanczyk at 9:34 AM on July 26, 2021 [1 favorite]

If you'd prefer a different bingo card, may I present the one from The Ripped Bodice.
posted by BlahLaLa at 11:19 AM on July 26, 2021 [1 favorite]

So far my card looks like:

Romance / Slippery Creatures by K. J. Charles (historical gay romance, well-written, I should read the others in the series and put them in the bingo card for my series books.)
On Your Shelf / Orlando by Virginia Woolf
Small Press / Folklorn by Angela Mi Young Hur (Interesting speculative-ish take on Korean folklore and intergenerational immigrant trauma)
Black Joy / Take a Hint, Dani Brown by Talia Hibbert (very tropey, rather delightful)
Activism or Social Justice / Prison by Any Other Name by Maya Schenwar and Victoria Law (interesting critique of reforms of the prison system that end up replicating its functions)
Made You Laugh / Winter's Orbit by Everina Maxwell (space gay romance! Kind of on the edge between "too tropey" and "exactly the right amount of tropey")
Coming of Age / Aristotle and Dante Dive Into the Waters of the World by Benjamin Alire Sáenz (great, though I think I liked the first book better)
Recommended by a Friend / Fates & Furies by Lauren Groff
QTBIPOC / Bestiary by K-Ming Chang (Loved this! You can also put this in the "coming of age," "AAPI author," and "speculative fiction" slots)
Cli-fi or Environmental Non-fiction / Entangled Life by Merlin Sheldrake (Mushrooms! Loved this).
BIPOC Food Writing / Who Really Feeds the World? by Vandana Shiva, stretching the definition of "food writing" a little, maybe (interesting critique of industrial agriculture)
Recommended by a Local Bookseller / Everyone On the Moon is Essential Personnel by Julian K. Jarboe (short stories, science fiction, very queer)

I don't think I actually have any completed lines yet (although I think "beach read" can stretch to encompass just about any book, if you try hard enough, not that there are any beaches locally!) but I am just playing for fun, not for prizes.
posted by Jeanne at 8:56 AM on July 27, 2021 [1 favorite]

If anyone has particularly good ways they've justified slotting a book into a space it only kinda fulfills, please share for my amusement.

I generally put a romance featuring at least one athlete into the "sports" category. Hana Khan carries on is in the food category because she works in the family restaurant and the food descriptions made me hungry, but it's still either fiction or romance, really. And while the Murderbot books do have crime solving aspects, they are not mysteries in the regular way. I also slotted graphic novels into 4 other categories, because they make me happy.

On the opposite end, Here comes the flood fits it's category extremely well. I couldn't be bothered to look up Olympic host cities, so I used a book that was set at the Olympics.
posted by blueberry monster at 10:47 AM on July 28, 2021 [2 favorites]

Has anyone got a rec for Cli-fi or Environmental Non-fiction that is short and isn't a bummer?
posted by The corpse in the library at 12:10 PM on August 3, 2021

Pacific Edge, the third of Kim Stanley Robinson's the Three Californias.

Although, come to think of it, The Wild Shore might do in a pinch for the more sanguine herein.
posted by y2karl at 2:48 PM on August 3, 2021

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