Tuesday, November 20, 2012

November Reads, Adult

I saw Penelope on a list of the year's best novels posted at Huffington Post. (The author works for the publication but the article insisted that wasn't a factor.) It seemed like good Alex Award material so I checked it out.

I think it could find a place on the Alex list. I am just not a big fan of the novel. While there were plenty of moments where I laughed out loud or was pleasantly shocked, Penelope is a tough character to get close to and in the end that kept me from enjoying the novel wholly.

On the other hand, Where'd You Go, Bernadette? had me from the hilarious start. Told mostly in email and letters with additional help from Bernadette's (delightful) young teenage daughter, the story is a mystery about Bernadette's sudden disappearance. There's quite a bit of adult drama but I am a little curious to see if it also makes an Alex nomination.

I was reading this at my son's baseball practice and one of the mothers immediately asked if that was "The Real Molly Ringwald" and then engaged me in conversation about our favorite Molly Ringwald movie scenes. So while not a contender for the Alex, it fits well with the YA theme of my usual reading. (Sam is my favorite, btw.)

Plus, I thought it was very good! A happy bonus. The story is about the successes and failures of a married couple told through individual short stories. I enjoy discovering characters pop up in different narratives so this worked well for me.

A friend recommended balancing out my 80's teen revival with Andrew McCarthy's The Longest Way Home memoir and I just couldn't finish it. Meh. Not my thing.

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