I love the first two weeks of World Cup. Three matches a day for days and days. And since it’s being held in Brazil, it’s even on at reasonable times for me. I don’t watch every single match, but I’ll probably average two per day through the group stage. Thanks to family, friends, and years of watching, I have strong and weak attachments to several teams. And then there are the good teams that I want to watch. TheH is out of town for a few days so I don’t have to pretend to be a responsible adult, and the dogs love the sofa company.
I’m treating myself to a little down time because I got Paper #1 of my three papers off my desk this week. Coincidentally it happens to be a paper on football hooliganism. Yes, political scientists can, if we put our minds to it, find ways to write about interesting topics. It’s being read by colleagues before I do final revisions and send it out for review. Paper #2, which TheH finished revising before he took off for a few days, is awaiting my substantive and line edits. Which leaves only Paper #3, which may or may not need the most work from me. It should be the easiest even if it does, since the data analysis has been completed by my co-author and I “just” have to rewrite a couple of sections. All I need is the mental energy. But amazingly, I am almost on schedule, or at least not more than a week or ten days behind at this point. I can’t remember the last time that happened.
In reading news, I’ve been sticking to tried and true authors. Three of my favorite romance authors have upcoming new and re-releases, so those are queued up in the TBR for reading sooner rather than later. I finally went back to listening to audiobooks (which also means I’ve been getting some nice outdoor exercise) and I fell headlong into David Peace’s Red Riding series. I’ve owned these books for years and I’ve started and abandoned the first one several times. Finally, I downloaded the audiobook, and everything clicked at last. The narrator is excellent and he understands how to pace the author’s singular style.
These aren’t books I’d recommend to romance readers unless you like dark, depressing mystery-meets-litfic and can tolerate a non-trivial amount of grisly violence. The era wasn’t a pleasant one in Britain, especially in northern England where these novels are set, and the story arc is embedded in the era’s unemployment, police corruption and brutality, and serial murder. They aren’t fun, exactly, but they are so, so gripping. I flinched repeatedly through 1974, but I couldn’t stop listening, and as soon as it ended I went straight to 1977. I’m also about a third of the way through Peace’s mammoth biography of Liverpool manager Bill Shankly, Red or Dead, and I want to get back to that. I guess this is turning into the Summer of Peace.
Ros is planning another Big Fat Book readalong, which I’m going to participate in despite my abject failure this past spring. I don’t know if picking up a partly read #BFB is acceptable or if it supposed to be a fresh start. I have books for either contigency, needless to say.