Whatcha readin'? Most of my reading time is taken up with novel research stuff, but I've managed to slip in other stuff recently, too:
Valis. A romp through madness, paranoia, conspiracy, and healing riding a strange bucking bronco combination of autobiography and science fiction. Pretty funny, too. Reminded me of Vonnegut. Philip K. Dick's star has risen steadily since his death in 1982 because his stories tend to make good films.
Speak, Memory. About a quarter of the way through Nabokov's autobiography so far, and it's living up to the hype. Luscious sentences often containing breathtaking snark. I'd kill to write prose like this.
American Gods. I really wanted to love this, but it didn't do it for me. The style was too breezy and had stretches of slop and awkwardness, the protagonist was too remote and flat, and the detective story ending was laughable. Great idea, but it has to be all about the execution. I hear Anasazi Boys is better, but I dunno, now I am a tad wary of Gaiman. Someone defend this, because too many people I know liked it.
The Devil Is a Gentleman. Very good survey of modern American religious fringe movements, using William James as a touchstone.
Oxherding Tale. This novel was outstanding. Hilarious and heart-breaking and extremely well written. And short. A jewel. If you can imagine a comic novel about slavery ... oh, you can't? Seek it out. Read it. Made me want to read all of Johnson's works.
Red Earth, White Lies: Native Americans and the Myth of Scientific Fact. I don't swallow all of the author's assertions, but he does a formidable job of puncturing the myth of scientific impartiality and biaslessness. He retells the history of Indian settlement and white anthropology in America, uncovering systematic, often shocking racism. As it turns out, he was more right than wrong, as more and more scholarship agrees that no, the Indians did not exterminate the mammoths and other megafauna, and no, they didn't arrive only 11,000 years ago, and no, they were not poor stewards of the land. Perhaps the most fundamental bias has been that anthropologists simply don't take Indians' stories about their own origins seriously, preferring to weave their white, agenda-laden fantasies that take decades, in some cases a century or more, to dislodge.
American Indian Myths and Legends. Fantastic collection of rich, rich mythical stories. Better than the Bible.