We’re back with another Sundays in Bed With… meme! This meme dares to ask you what book has been in your bed this morning and is hosted by Midnight Book Girl. Come share what book you’ve spent your time curled up reading in bed with or which book you wish you had time to read today!
I’m hoping to spend my Sunday night in bed starting my month-long group buddy read of Babel by R.F. Kuang. I’m super excited to be reading this with a small group of some of my favourites in this community but I’m also intimidated because this one’s a chonkster. Also, what if it just goes completely over my head?! We’ll find out soon enough, I guess! 😂
Traduttore, traditore: An act of translation is always an act of betrayal.
1828. Robin Swift, orphaned by cholera in Canton, is brought to London by the mysterious Professor Lovell. There, he trains for years in Latin, Ancient Greek, and Chinese, all in preparation for the day he’ll enroll in Oxford University’s prestigious Royal Institute of Translation — also known as Babel.
Babel is the world’s center of translation and, more importantly, of silver-working: the art of manifesting the meaning lost in translation through enchanted silver bars, to magical effect. Silver-working has made the British Empire unparalleled in power, and Babel’s research in foreign languages serves the Empire’s quest to colonize everything it encounters.
Oxford, the city of dreaming spires, is a fairytale for Robin; a utopia dedicated to the pursuit of knowledge. But knowledge serves power, and for Robin, a Chinese boy raised in Britain, serving Babel inevitably means betraying his motherland. As his studies progress Robin finds himself caught between Babel and the shadowy Hermes Society, an organization dedicated to sabotaging the silver-working that supports imperial expansion. When Britain pursues an unjust war with China over silver and opium, Robin must decide: Can powerful institutions be changed from within, or does revolution always require violence? What is he willing to sacrifice to bring Babel down?
Babel — a thematic response to The Secret History and a tonal response to Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell — grapples with student revolutions, colonial resistance, and the use of translation as a tool of empire.
What are you currently reading?
Well, it’s been a week. A very hectic, very tiring, very long week of wedding events and family. It’s been great being together again but we’ve had a lot of very early morning starts and long, hot days full of meeting and greeting extended family and friends. Two wedding events down, one final one to go next weekend. Since we have a week break in between, I flew back into Jakarta Saturday night as I have to go to the office for my first day of work (!!) on Monday for two days of meetings, then I’ll fly back to Bali on Wednesday to keep WFH. I’m looking forward to when I don’t have to fly again any time soon because I’m truly exhausted!
It’s not been a great week for blogging or reading as I did barely any of both. I fell far behind on my two tour reads because I overestimated my ability to do ✨all the things✨ while busy with family stuff so that was definitely a mistake! I’ve thankfully caught up now and things are looking more chill in October, so now I just have to get caught up with all my overdue ARCs. I’m terrible. 🙈 BUT on a happier note, I got my copy of Babel from The Broken Binding and it’s a beaut. 😍
ICYMI, here’s what I posted on the blog this week:
- Blog Tour Review: Omega Morales and the Legend of La Lechuza by Laekan Zea Kemp
- #WWWWednesday: 28 September 2022
- #TopTenTuesday: Typographic Book Covers
- Blog Tour Review: Soul of the Deep by Natasha Bowen
i’m so happy – jeremy zucker x BENEE
I hope you’ve all had a good weekend and that you have a great week ahead! Take care of yourselves and of each other, friends 🖤