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It's the Halloween reading thread!

Lily Fairbairn

Nov 3 2020, 3:21pm

Post #1 of 4 (317 views)
It's the Halloween reading thread! Can't Post

Halloween, All Saint's Day, All Soul's Day/Dia de los Muertos, Election Day in the US of A....

I'm now listening to the latest installment in Louise Penny's Inspector Gamache series, All the Devils are Here. This one takes place in Paris, as Armand and Reine-Marie join their children and grand-children awaiting the birth of the newest child. Then there's a hit-and-run accident. Or is it an accident? While there are some aspects of Penny's style that don't sit well with me---a tendency to repetition, for example---her books are overall not just good mysteries but good novels. I'm thoroughly caught up in this one.

I'm reading Fall of Angels by Barbara Cleverly, her first in a new series set in Cambridge in the 1920's. I had a bit of trouble getting into it, misled by the blurbs and reviews comparing it to Dorothy L. Sayers' iconic Peter Wimsey novels. No. It's not like those at all. There's a vast difference in tone, feel, and voice between a novel that was contemporary when it was written, as the Wimsey novels were, and one trying to evoke a historical period. Once I started reading Fall of Angels for itself, I began to enjoy the story.

So what have you been reading while you stay safe?

Where now the horse and the rider? Where is the horn that was blowing?
Where is the helm and the hauberk, and the bright hair flowing?
Where is the hand on the harpstring, and the red fire glowing?
Where is the spring and the harvest and the tall corn growing?
They have passed like rain on the mountain, like a wind in the meadow;
The days have gone down in the West behind the hills into shadow....

Guardian of the Galaxy / Moderator

Nov 3 2020, 6:26pm

Post #2 of 4 (298 views)
The Tattooist of Auschwitz [In reply to] Can't Post

It's clear that this started as a movie script as the story is reasonably thin, but it moves along at a cracking pace and is a testimony to human resilience in the worst circumstances.

It's important that we keep telling the stories of real people. Drama has its role in exploring the human condition but sometimes the stories that stick with us longest are those told by ordinary people who lived through extraordinary times.

Celebrimbor: "Pretty rings..."
Dwarves: "Pretty rings..."
Men: "Pretty rings..."
Sauron: "Mine's better."

"Ah, how ironic, the addictive qualities of Sauronís master weapon led to its own destruction. Which just goes to show, kids - if you want two small and noble souls to succeed on a mission of dire importance... send an evil-minded beggar with them too." - Gandalf's Diaries, final par, by Ufthak.

Fantasy novel - The Arcanist's Tattoo

My LOTR fan-fiction


Nov 4 2020, 4:51pm

Post #3 of 4 (265 views)
Any Human Heart by William Boyd [In reply to] Can't Post

Been on a Boyd kick lately. Most of his books I have not enjoyed so much, but when I find a good one I really like it. This one reads like nonfiction, a linear collection of journal extracts from a fictional British writer over the course of a varied and eventful life. He's not a particularly likeable character, which is true of pretty much all Boyd's characters and why I struggle with him at times, but like Forrest Gump his path through history intersects with a lot of important people and events: the ex-pat artists of Paris in the 20s, the Duke and Duchess of Windsor during WWII, the major American artists of the 50s and 60s, the Biafran War. Boyd is a master of the craft; I enjoy his prose for its own sake.

I also read "Tales from the South Pacific" by Michener, which I found on my dad's bookshelves. Dad is living in the past a lot these days, including his tour of duty in the Pacific at the end of WWII; Michener's stories have given me a new perspective on his experience. I asked about his health when he came home and he admitted he was very ill, suffering from dysentery and "jungle rot" as most of them were; he had lost 30 pounds. Said he mostly lay around all summer and did nothing at all.

I am a dreamer of words, of written words.
-- Gaston Bachelard

* * * * * * * * * *

NARF and member of Deplorable Cultus since 1967

My Amazon author page: https://www.amazon.com/...id=1590637780&sr=8-1

Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Nov 7 2020, 2:08am

Post #4 of 4 (190 views)
The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver [In reply to] Can't Post

It's the first thing I've read by this author and it is very slow going. I'm 60% through and it seems as though it is taking forever to get to the end, even though normally I am a fairly fast reader. I'm reading it for a book club so I will make it to the end but I doubt I will pick up another Kingsolver book.

I also finished an audiobook of Neil Gaiman narrating Neverwhere which was perfectly wonderful, although weird in the typical Gaiman fantasy way. He does a terrific job reading his own books!


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