"The book I'm looking for,' says the blurred figure, who holds out a volume similar to yours, 'is the one that gives the sense of the world after the end of the world, the sense that the world is the end of everything that there is in the world, that the only thing there is in the world is the end of the world."
- Italo Calvino, If on a winter's night a traveler

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Annoyed But Still Pretty Positive Book Reviews

The first half of this memoir about being cyber-harassed is terrifying and unputdownable. Then it gets boring. Lasdun is a professional fiction writer, and he writes like someone who knows his way around a sentence. Which... is just not super helpful for a tense thriller about feeling unsafe and helpless? And then at the end he takes a trip to Israel?

I love me some Agatha Christie. This is a good one. What is there to say? You know if you want to read this kind of book. I give it Four Agathas up out of five.

Super-great feminist sci-fi. If I hadn't gone to a very religious middle school I would've half-read it like ten years ago for class and never even appreciated how very good it is.

Strout wrote one of my all-time favorite books, Olive Kitteridge. This book is about two brothers who are lawyers from Maine, and their sad nephew accidentally commits a hate crime against Somali immigrants during Ramadan. It's not as good as Kitteridge, but that's just because it's a novel (whereas Kitteridge was a series of connected stories), and all novels are sloppy and imperfect compared to short stories. But it's still very, very good, and its pretty cool that Strout tackled subject matter that was probably outside her comfort zone.

What a weird book! A sort of morality tale slash coming of age story slash lives of the rich and famous episode. Some people like this better that The Great Gatsby, which is... I mean, who cares obviously, and this book is fine, but it's also kind of all over the place. It feels like an artifact to me, more than anything else. It feels like it's not for me.

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