The week in review

Another busy week, with New Year’s and a sneak trip to Great Wolf Lodge, but my kids finally went back to school yesterday (yay!) and I always read faster when I’m not liking something (boo!) There are a few books I’m very eagerly awaiting but here’s what I went through this week:

Before the Fall. Oh. My. GOD did I hate this. I don’t like to be so very negative but this was a throw it across the room when you’re done kind of book for me. I pretty much hated everything about this, but if I had to pick one thing I hated above all it would be the misogyny permeating the entire thing. Every female in the book uses her sexuality as a commodity. Oh wait, there’s one woman who inherited a lot of money from her rich dad, and oh wait one woman who’s a completely incompetent ER nurse. Basically, a woman’s only role is to be defined by a man. There’s plenty more not to like here, including what I guess was a typo that really ruined things. That’s kind of impressive in a way.

I wanted to read about some women with jobs and personalities after this, but Something Borrowed wasn’t really any better. I will read this author again but this one was a huge huge miss for me. The story of a woman having an affair with her best friend’s fiance is a hard sell, but could have been pulled off. The biggest problem here was that the author and the narrator are trying very hard to rationalize the whole thing by portraying the friend as an awful, selfish person who I guess deserves to be betrayed like this, BUT, she has to be at least endearing enough to believably be a friend/lover to the other two characters. So, she really is not that bad, not bad at all; I had no sympathy for anyone in the end and did not care how it turned out.

I’m still working out how I felt about Truth and Beauty. I can’t say that I actually liked anything about it, but I also can’t really call it a bad book. For one thing I in general do not like memoirs at all, with very rare exceptions. So that part’s on me. This was also pretty depressing on more than one level. It’s a sad story in its own right, but it was sad to read about a friendship that had such rough edges; Ann seemed to have a savior complex, and Lucy was so exhausting and needy, and they were so competitive. I felt for Lucy because she did get dealt an awful hand, but I also felt like she’d be very difficult to be friends with. It also did kind of have an air of cashing in on a famous friendship. I am sensitive about grief vampires myself so I may be projecting a bit. I love her fiction, didn’t love this, but at least it was thought provoking.

Yesterday I started Behold the Dreamers. I’ve been waiting to get to this one for quite a while and so far it’s living up to the hype. Very strong writing and I’m loving the story and the characters. I hope this holds up all the way through, if it does I’m going to be bummed that it’s a debut- I want to read more from her!

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