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Naked Reading 2021

In 2021 I also set out with the intent to renew my naked reading self-portraits series as an ongoing series throughout the year, based on the previously annual project several years prior. Throughout the early stages of the covid pandemic I found I really reduced my reading though, so didn't get through many books at the time. But also I didn't love the style I had chosen for the relaunched series, and so rather than continue with something I wasn't enjoying, I decided to put it aside until I was ready to renew it another time (eventually in 2023).

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Something else from Star Trek: Voyager for my next read, but this time comics; the first Voyager comic series in many years, the four-part Seven's Reckoning, by Dave Baker with art by Angel Hernandez. It is focused on one of my very favourite Star Trek characters, Seven of Nine, and a new alien species with a complex social system and culture based on storytelling. I didn't love the melancholy ending, but the series overall was a fascinating bit of world building. The aliens were beautifully rendered in the illustrations, but I kind of feel like I'd rather this had been a novel, to really flesh out their fascinating culture.

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The first book I have finished in 2021 is what is probably the last book in a substantial series of Star Trek: Voyager novels set after the events of the TV series. As you will no doubt see as this series progresses over the year,  my reading is alarmingly dominated with Star Trek novels, and this series is among my very favourites; twisting the entire premise of Voyager, which on TV saw the ship stuck on the other side of the galaxy trying to get home, such that Voyager has now willingly returned to those distant parts of the galaxy (by means of innovative propulsion technology) in order to properly explore them. This novel, which ends this period in the Voyager series, sets up another twist on that set-up, which gave the book and the entire series a very satisfying end. It was also a really pleasingly Star Trek-ish novel, with an empathises on getting to know a truly alien alien species, with the narrative unfolding the mystery of who/what they are, and how to communicate with them. A brilliant end to a brilliant series.

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