Friday, June 22, 2007

What I've been reading lately

The Song of the Sparrow -
Lisa Ann Sandell
Another novel in verse, this one told from the perspective of Elaine aka the Lady of Shalott. After Elaine's mother dies, she is brought to live with her father and brother in the war camp. There she runs wild, learns healing arts from Arthur's sister Morgan, and longs for other girls to befriend. So when one finally does, Gwynivere, she is unprepared for the coldness with which she is treated. I'll admit, I'm a sucker for new versions of Arthurian legend, especially ones where Gwynivere is portrayed as a bitch. I never did like her all that much. This wasn't the best one I've read, but it is plenty good and will appeal to both the romantics and the King Arthur buffs.

The Noah Confessions - Barbara Hall
Deep, dark family history. That is the gift that Lynnie's father gives to her on her 16th birthday. She was hoping for a car, instead she gets a spangly bird bracelet and a letter from her dead mother. And I'll tell you, once the letter begins you are spellbound, you are desperate to know what is going to happen next. The ending is a bit anti-climatic, I wish there had been more drama and perhaps some bloodshed, but I guess I can be satisfied with a life-altering experience.

The Road - Cormac McCarthy
A dystopian future where nothing grows, the earth is covered in ash, people have for the most part died out, and you can't trust anyone you do happen to meet. They're more likely to kill and eat you then they are to extend any sort of aid. It is in this world that a father and a son walk south on an old buckled highway to escape the oncoming winter that will surely kill them - unless something else does first. This is a bleak book. There is nothing fun about it. It was so dark it was almost unbearable, but it was so well written I couldn't put it down. It was grisly, there is a whole bunch of baby eatin' going on. And so of course I couldn't get this stupid Meteors song out of my head. Eat the Baby (eat the baby, eat eat eat the baby, eat the baby, eat eat eat the baby...why not they taste nice, etc.) It was totally inappropriate and I told my brain to stop, but it wouldn't. What I did find interesting is that we never find out what happened to the world. There are some flashbacks, but nothing concrete, nothing says "this is what happened..." We just have to wonder about it. It made it all kinds of scary.

And now I'll go back to simply being jealous of all my colleagues who got to go to ALA while I had to stay home. I'm hoping for presents!!! Good readable presents!!!

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