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Currently reading

From Cape Charles to Cape Fear: The North Atlantic Blockading Squadron during the Civil War
Robert M. Browning Jr.
Churchill's Secret War With Lenin: British and Commonwealth Military Intervention in the Russian Civil War, 1918-20
Damien Wright
Progress: 253/576 pages
Stalin: Volume I: Paradoxes of Power, 1878-1928
Stephen Kotkin
Progress: 49/912 pages

The first legit exciting books release news of 2018 (for me, anyway)

There's a line in one of the earliest episodes of The Simpsons in which a character pays tribute to "the most beautiful moment in life! Better than the deed. Better than the memory. The moment... of anticipation." It's a line that I've come to appreciate holds especially true for me when it comes to books, as no matter how good a book is, often the promise I invest in it is richer than any payoff within its pages. Perhaps that is why I enjoy collecting books faster than I can read them. It's also probably why I enjoy reading about forthcoming books. So far the news for the upcoming year has been a little disappointing, with no news about new releases by the authors or major series that I follow.


Then this morning I came across a literary calendar highlighting some of the releases for the upcoming year. Most are of only passing interest for me, but then I saw that Diarmaid MacCulloch's biography of Thomas Cromwell is listed as coming out in September. This is a pretty big deal in terms of Tudor history; MacCulloch is a major historian and if his biography is anywhere near as good as his award-winning one on Thomas Cramner (which I own but admittedly haven't read yet -- see the previous paragraph as to why), then it promises to be the new standard by which Thomas Cromwell biographies are judged. Time to carve out some space on my crowded shelves!