No Time to Spare: Thinking About What Matters

Ursula K. Le Guin

Book cover

This is the last book published by UKL before her death early this year. As far as I can tell, it is a selection of posts from her blog, probably cleaned up and edited a bit. As the title might indicate, there is no real focused theme to the essays; they are about all kinds of different stuff.

As may be expected from a blog, the quality level here is a little uneven. The best entries are really thoughtful and insightful, but there are also plenty that feel sort of dashed-off. I think I probably would have enjoyed the content more if I had actually been reading it on the blog. I also think the editor, or organizer of the content anyway, made some bad choices. The first third or even half of the book was made up of the weaker content, to the point where I was somewhat close to leaving the book aside. Luckily, I am enough of a Le Guin devotee to soldier on, and was rewarded with several excellent essays in the back half. My favorites were:

-“It Doesn’t Have to Be the Way It Is”
-“Utopiyin and Utopiyang”
-“The Inner Child and the Nude Politician”
-“Belief in Belief”
-“About Anger”

I just looked at her blog (which I didn’t know about while she was alive), and there is a ton of content there that is not in this book! Even though she is dead, I am glad there is still so much of her writing for me to discover!

My Goodreads rating: 3 stars