Monday, April 30, 2007

Books I've been reading

OK - this is going to be brief! 2 books read in the last few weeks - one that I think I'll keep, and one that I'll be quite happy to give away at the next charity collection.

The first one is Liars and Saints, by Maile Meloy. It's the story of a family through 3 or 4 generations (depending on how you count). It took me a while to get into the story. The first few chapters were about the earlier generation, and the characters didn't appeal to me that much, but as the story unfolded and explored the paths taken by the 2nd, 3rd and 4th generations, it really grew on me. I was moved by the death of one of the characters, more than I expected. From that point onwards, I could not put the book down. This is a keeper.

The second one is Q&A by Vikas Swarup. This is probably much more of a blockbuster ("it is being translated into 25 languages, and is due to be made into both a film and a stage musical"). And it was quite enjoyable. But it was very self-conscious, I thought. I couldn't take the main character seriously and I can almost picture the author coming up with all these unlikely scenarios (scenarii?), and fitting them all together around the structure of the Q&A TV Show ("Who Wants to be a Millionaire?" to you and me). The adventures were too unlikely for me, with too many side characters, who came in and out of the story before you got to know them. It was a quick read, nice for the beach, but I'm not planning to read it again!

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