What am I reading now? (and should you read it, too?)

What I’m Reading Now

Catherynne Valente‘s The Orphan’s Tales series, a set of two books: In the Night Garden, and In the Cities of Coin and Spice. These two books form a modern Arabian Nights, consisting of the fantastical tales a mysterious girl tells a Prince over the course of many nights spent in the palace gardens. These are not merely short story collections with a framing device, however. Valente links and nests the tales like a very complicated set of matreshka dolls or a spiralling labyrinth.

night gardencitiescoinspice

Yes, You Should Read It, Too

I am nearly done with In The Night Garden, and I am thoroughly hooked. The intricate way the stories are nested and connected is incredibly compelling – each tale propelled me on to the next one. I could hardly put the books down. I don’t know whether to plunge ahead as fast as I can, or carefully pace my reading so as to fully savor every sentence.

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