Tuesday, December 01, 2015

What I read -- November 2015

“The 19th Century Wind Band and Wind Ensemble in Western Europe” by David Whitwell. I’m not sure how Russia counts as Western Europe, but I’m researching for North America anyway, so … shut up. This book was what I needed though. I read this over two Friday afternoons at the Metro Reference Library. 

“John Crow’s Devil” by Marlon James. This must be the magic that happens when you win a major literary award… people like me suddenly find out about you and read your book. This book was the sort of thing I could never write – the scatologicalness of it all, the sex, the language. The resolution totally made sense. I dind’t find any characters particularly likeable, but that’s not important to me apparently. Really good. Though I guess I was expecting something a little… more mainstream from a booker prize winner? 

“Dreamhunter” by Elizabeth Knox. The sequel has been kicking around my house for years. I guess someone gave it to me, but I didn’t want to read it without reading the first one, and I didn’t have it, so apathy prevailed. I had a little trouble with the first couple of chapters, I think because omniscient POV isn’t in style right now so I’m not used to it. I couldn’t keep track of how many people there were in the picnic party (five that mattered, but I kept feeling like there was another girl). But I managed to get through that and then the story was quite engaging. The comparisons to Garth Nix and Philip Pullman were spot on. I’d be pretty mad if I didn’t have book two, because the ending was quite unsatisfying. It felt like this was written as a single book and was cut in half in editing. 

“The Elephanta Suite” by Paul Theroux. My sister gave me this. Based on the receipt that looked like it was used as a bookmark, she bought it at an airport bookstore. She’s a pilot, sohaving an eReader has really improved her life. This book claimed to be about India, but it seemed like it was more about Americans in India. Dislikeable Americans. I found this book odious, and only finished it so I could call it done and get rid of it. I’m not sure whether this book was about awful things India does to Americans, or how awful India is, or what.

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