You can see where I'm going with this (I hope).
I walked into the library this weekend and all of the magic happened! And so I walked out with all of THESE ==>
AND THEN, I attended my friend P's annual book swap last Saturday and came home with MORE BOOKS:
I've been happily drowning in books ever since. Since I couldn't decide which ones to read first, though, I'm sort of reading them all and only have one proper review to share with you: Pretend We Are Lovely by Noley Reid. Tin House published it, and I really like their profile and approach, so even though I hasn't heard of this title, I gladly dove in anyway. It's definitely worth a read:
Pretend We Are Lovely by Noley Reid
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Noley Reid’s debut is a strange, enchanting book. The larger tale of the Sobel family just sort hovers and breathes, a weird counterpoint to the characters who populate it, each one so distinctly alive and in motion.
I don’t think Reid had a plot in mind when she wrote much of this book - but that’s okay, I think, because the vivacity of the narrators takes up most of your attention, and their own individual small stories build a bridge upon which the story makes successful crossing. In any case, the writing sparkles and the emotions live themselves right off the page, offering the reader access to worlds in which grief and hate have simmered so long that it’s seeped into the very atmosphere. Love is hard to find here unmolested - there’s a lot of searching, though, and the ways in which the daughters, especially, try to gain access to that which they most crave can break your heart a little. Reid manages to draw the myriad broken pieces of this family back together in the end (although whether that will last remains a mystery to me), which changes the tenor of the story altogether. It’s a complicated, interesting tale, and one I’m glad that I encountered. As a writer and a reader, I found much to eat.
Next week, expect a slew of reviews, because I'm about 80% on five or six books. (Are you already full of delicious anticipation?) In the meantime, I have other treats for you to nosh.
Five Things This Week:
In My Bookbag This Week:
The book bag is full almost to bursting right now, due to all the book bingeing; I really hope I don't split the seams. I don't know exactly what I'll have digested enough to tell you about next time, but here is the definitive list of all the books I'm actually in the midst of reading right now:
1. The Tender Bar: A Memoir by JR Moehringer
2. When Women Were Birds: Fifty-four Variations on Voice by Terry Tempest Williams
3. The Nothing by Hanif Kureishi
4. The Monk of Mokha by Dave Eggers
5. The Grave's A Fine and Private Place by Alan Bradley
6. The Girl in the Tower by Katherine Arden
7. I Am, I Am, I Am by Maggie O'Ferrell
8. The Mayor of Mogadishu by Andrew Harding
That should just about do it for me today. Any bets on how many of these I manage to finish? Any suggestions on which ones you're most looking forward to reading the review? Anyone out there reading any of these? Let me know!!