I’ve been traveling a lot this month, and when traveling I like to read. Who doesn’t? I hold no distinctions between ebook, trade paperback, or audiobook. I consider absorbing them in any way is still “reading.” So here is my list of what I’ve read and partially read this month - after which, I want to know what YOU’RE reading too and where I should go next.
Books I’ve finished in no particular order:
PRIDE AND PREJUDICE AND ZOMBIES (amazon)
OMFG I loved this book! I’ve read a lot of Austen rewrites, knockoffs, and attempts in my day … but this is truely amazing. And here’s its secret: it leaves Austen’s words intact. I would venture to say at least 50% of the writing is hers, but it feels more like 60-70%. All of the moments, all of the classic lines, all of the scenes that we fanatics love so much about P&P are there. Some are just … embellished. The premise is that about 100 years before Elizabeth’s birth, the Zombie plague breaks out. So that’s what Wickham’s militia is doing: fighting the unfortunates who roam the countrysides in herds. Oh, and Lady Catherine and Elizabeth are noted warrirors trained in The Orient and Darcy, instead of swimming in a pond and emerging all wet and rugged, rides a white steed with a smoking gun all gallant atop his horse. Even the match between Charlotte Lucas and Mr. Collins is made better by Charlotte’s affliction. It is ridiculous, but fantastic in its ridiculousness.
THE RED TENT (amazon)
I liked this book mostly because it took me right back to my Hebrew Bible/Old Testament studies in college. It brought back the memories of first discovering that the people of the bible back then didn’t necessarily not believe in mulitple gods, they just thought El/Yahweh/God was the best and the only one that should be worshipped. Lots of people only followed one god, but still believed in many. If that makes sense. There was also a lot of strong feminism in THE RED TENT that made me love the main character and narrator, Dinah, even more. However, the downside to the book is that there is a LOT of discussion about birthing. She and her mothers were midwives, after all, and well, as a non-mother myself, I thought that was a little too much for me. Unfortunately, I’m a “read every word” type of girl instead of “skim the annoying parts” kind of reader. The relentless birthing scenes did get a bit tedious.
MY SISTER’S KEEPER (amazon - yes, I’m reading the Movie Tie In mm paperback. Blech.)
Technically I haven’t finished this yet. But since I’ll finish it tonight, or even a few hours after this is posted, I’ll just say I finished it. It’s official: I like Jodi Picoult. I knew I would, but I thought it would be a gruding like, like Dan Brown or something. No, I think she really got at a serious topic in an easily digestable way. Kind of like a woman’s John Grisham. At least, that’s how I see her.
THE DESERT SPEAR (news of when/how it’ll be published)
As this is an unpublished book, I am not allowed to comment. Nor will I. Other than to say that I devoured it last week and intend on rereading it soon. My reviews are reserved for the author.
JSA: THY KINGDOM COME (amazon)
This is … ok. It is nowhere near as good as KINGDOM COME, and I’m also reading it completely out of order. I remember reading Part 3 a long time ago in my cubicle at Random House. And when I finished this Part 2 I was so annoyed that i didn’t have the full story. That’s why I get trades in the first place!! Oh well, as for the story, the story is great. The art is nowhere near as good as Kingdom Come. It’s not even because everyone looks the same like Ross’s art usually does. It’s because there are some truely terrible shots of superman. I took a picture of one cell where he’s hideous, but don’t feel like taking the time to embed it right now. Trust me it’s bad. But whoever did Power Girl in it, did a great job throughout. Luckily she features prominently in this part. Did I mention it was a good story line, though? I also like that there are a million characters I’m unfamiliar with but there are enough guides and explanations at the beginning and throughout that it wasn’t a problem at all.
THE DARK TOWER: TREACHERY (amazon)
LOVED IT. Not much more to say. The story of the Dark Tower and the people in search of it is sufficiently confusing enough for me to be unable to share any of it with you. But this graphic novel is a good background to The Gunslinger that I liked and appreciated. However, as usual with anything associated with The Dark Tower, I’m left with far more questions than answers. I bought myself a used copy of The Gunslinger so I could go back and read the whole thing from the beginning. But I have so much more New stuff to read that I don’t think I’ll plough through the whole series this summer.
Books I started but haven’t finished:
A WOLF AT THE TABLE (amazon)
I like the book. It is impeccably written. I heard someone say Augusten Burroughs isn’t a good writer but his memoirs are so compelling you can’t put them down … I disagree. I think he is a fantastic writer. It is the subject matter and the course I am expecting it to take that makes me put it down. This is such a serious book, with such an unchangeably sociopathic father, that I can’t stomach living this poor kid’s life for too long. I don’t see justice being handed to this father in any way, so I’m not eager to reach the disappointment I’m sure to feel upon reaching the end. However, I’ve been assured there is closure of some sort that is kind of satisfying, so I’ll finish it very soon. I don’t have much more to go.
THE SIRENS OF TITAN (amazon)
My duties to interviews and to other books I was reading before this took precidence and I had to stop reading Sirens. It is a very Vonnegut book. It reminds me more of STRANGER IN A STRANGE LAND than SLAUGHTERHOUSE FIVE, but it has the same flippant acceptance of the weird that I have now come to associate with Vonnegut. I enjoyed what I read—it just didn’t grab me and strap me down to my chair the way I expected it to. However, I’m thinking that once I finish it, it will stay with me for a very long time. Kind of the way SLAUGHTERHOUSE FIVE did.
4,000 QUESTIONS FOR GETTING TO KNOW ANYONE AND EVERYONE (amazon)
I carry this book with me wherever I go. It is permenently stuck in the back of my blue goiter (my teal blue canvas purse that is basically attached to my hip and comes with me everywhere). It is fun and funny to ask people questions from the book. When the questions are taken seriously, the answers usually surprise their audience. When not taken seriously, the answers are usually hilarious. Thus it’s a win win situation and the best ice breaker I’ve ever found. Not to mention a great flirting tool and/or excuse to ask the penetrating questions I’m usually too shy to ask early on in a relationship.
MIDDLESEX (amazon) - been on my TBR for a long time
REBECCA (amazon) - recommended by my sister in law
ATLAS SHRUGGED (amazon) - audiobook lent by my brother. Probably the only way I’ll be able to slug through Ayn Rand.
THE RED WOLF CONSPIRACY (amazon) - also been on my TBR forever. Can’t wait to read it, but things keep popping up. Sigh.
THE GUNSLINGER (amazon) - my reasoning was previously mentioned. WTF is going on in this series??
THE GUERNSEY LITERARY & POTATO PEEL PIE SOCIETY (amazon) - I’ve heard a lot of good things about it and want to check it out. I almost bought it during my 5 hour layover in NY, but I bought MY SISTER’S KEEPER instead since I wanted to read that before I saw the movie.
Ok, that’s my month in review.
WHAT ARE YOU READING?
Anything I need to add to my list?
Anything I need to kick off my July TBR list?