Recent reads

So far this year, I’ve read 17 books and according to Harper Collins Canada’s handy #50bookpledge website, I’m on track for 45. Looks like I’m going to have to pick up some of my slack to get back to being on track for 50!

I’ve read some long books recently which has slowed me down (ahem, The Goldfinch). Also distracting me has been my recent discovery of the show New Girl. I normally can’t stand Zooey Deschanel, but this show is this century’s Friends. I’ve been decompressing after work or a run by watching an episode or two and knitting some beautiful things from The Purl Bee. But – time to focus on some reading again. So, so many good books on my TBR pile!

Currently reading: The Girl Who Was Saturday Night

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I can’t even. This book is so gritty, unapologetic, wild and wonderful.

Heather O’Neill uses images and ideas that give any writer’s imagination a run for its money. Looking so forward to writing about this book soon once I’ve finished (won’t be long…!) but for now, here’s a teaser of some recent lines that just floored me. The main character has just met someone she’d been admiring from a distance for weeks. In their first real conversation, they share their first kiss:

“It was all too late after that kiss. I already knew what his breath smelled like. I already knew what he looked like in his pyjamas. I already knew what he sounded like when he spoke in his sleep. I was already his girlfriend by the end of the kiss.”

Seriously? More to come in my review. Go out and buy that book like, now. For more examples of O’Neill’s vivid writing, scroll to the bottom of my review of Lullaby for Little Criminals.

Recent Reads: The Goldfinch

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As my friend Steph of Bella’s Bookshelves described in her recent review, this book has been quite polarizing. After it won the Pulitzer Prize, it became even more so. I often find that if something is a best-seller, a “Heather’s Pick” or an award-winner, I have higher expectations when I start the book and I am often let down.

This didn’t happen to me at all with The Goldfinch. It was dark, meandering yet well-plotted and developed one of my favourite things really beautifully; a platonic relationship. In this book, between Theo and Boris. So many books’ endings hinge on two characters getting together (or not) and it’s so refreshing when an ending can be riding on a friendship. When a friendship can bring you to tears. Another excellent example of this is The Year of the Flood.

I can see how the extremely detailed description of the work that our protagonist, Theo, does as an antique dealer could get tiresome, but it didn’t bother me. This novel is certainly a commitment. With so much out there to read this year (Toews! O’Neill! Soon-to-be-released MacDonald!) it’s hard to make the time for a 700+ page book, but I give it my full recommendation.

Also, I came across this amazing article by Adam Dalva whose real life so parallel’s Theo Decker’s, he’s almost convinced that Tartt followed him around with her notebook. If you’ve read The Goldfinch (spoiler alert), check out that article here.

Also recently read:

Up next:

For our Beer & Book Club this past May we read A Tale for the Time Being and for our July meeting, we’re on to The Enchanted by Rene Denfeld. It’s a novel I wouldn’t have picked up, but am looking forward to reading it. It’s also Denfeld’s first – I always enjoy first novels.

While on a business trip in Vienna this week, I’m reading Life After Life by Kate Atkinson on my Kobo. Took me forever to get around to this one for whatever reason! Really enjoying it so far.

What are you reading this upcoming long weekend?

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2 Comments Add yours

  1. LR says:

    I’m reading Heather O’Neill’s book right now too – it’s SO good. I’ve only read 100 pages, but they’ve been a fabulous 100 pages.

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