It was a great week, as long as you ignored 99% of everything.
I took my time finishing A Gentleman in Moscow. What an utterly delightful book! This was one of those times when I kind of dragged myself kicking and screaming to something I felt obligated to read, but then absolutely loved it. I don’t know when I’ll learn that I actually love historical fiction and don’t love thrillers. This definitely could have been a little shorter, but so what? It’s such a charmer.
Charming is definitely not the word for Homesick for Another World, but this was another killer read. She’s a pretty fascinating author. Her characters have this really hard to pinpoint essence about them; they’re interesting, not super likable, but not really bad people. She doesn’t apologize for their faults but doesn’t revel in them either. It’s kind of the opposite of the “I didn’t come here to make friends or be PC” mentality, more like, “I have trouble making friends because I am flawed and awkward.” I don’t know, like I said, hard to pinpoint but I loved this collection and I loved her novel and I kind of want her to write all the books right now.
Nowhere to go but down after two such stellar picks, but I tried my best with The Underground Railroad. This was fine, perfectly fine, but I didn’t love it. I could say it was the victim of too much hype, but despite all the acclaim, I didn’t personally have high expectations. The whole thing about having the underground railroad actually be a railroad was interesting, but he barely did anything with it, so it seemed kind of pointless and weird. This really wouldn’t have been any different if that element had been removed, so it just ended up being distracting. It’s certainly not a bad book by any means but I didn’t love it.
I’m now almost halfway through Allegedly. This didn’t seem like something I would be that into, but I was intrigued by the reviews of some of my best goodreads buddies. The consensus is that it starts out very well, but then falls apart in the end; this makes me nervous because I already kind of hate it and I’m supposedly in the good part. I’m trying to keep an open mind; it’s very readable, and fast, and fairly engaging. I just find the plot very melodramatic and adolescent, which are two big negatives for me. But maybe since I hate the beginning, I’ll be the one who likes the ending? We shall see!