This was a crazy fun jam packed weekend and I’m leaving town tomorrow so I’ve been extra busy. Not too busy to read, of course, and not too busy to dress up as Enid Coleslaw on a date with Mr Pink.
It seems very very fitting to say that a lot of Motherhood was a tough hang, but it was sort of maybe probably worth it in the end. Well played with that title then. I don’t know why this is so long; very very little happens in this book. Like basically nothing. It could have been a long essay is what I’m saying. The whole thing is essentially a lot of navel gazing about whether to have children. There was a cool technique of coin flipping throughout; that part was probably a love it or hate it kind of thing but it worked for me. Even though I was totally sick of this book by the end, when it did end, and she had finally made her decision, I felt truly happy for her. This was a funny one for me because I never really struggled with that decision, so it was an interesting perspective. I did end up kind of liking this but I doubt I’ll read anything by her again.
Innocents and Others is one of those books that feels like it’s written specifically for me to enjoy. So, thanks, Dana Spiotta! I’m always drawn to fiction about movies, and about complicated female friendships, and this book does both of those topics extremely well. Man, I am still blown away by this book. There’s also a subplot that is about how a woman’s self worth is tied in to how attractive she is to men, and she also really nailed that one! I’m kind of ALL CAPS EXCITED about this book and I am going to catch up on the rest of her stuff asap. Also apparently she’s married to Jonathan Dee, so I might be in love with a literary supercouple.
Tough act to follow, but The Pisces gave it a good shot. Holy smokes, this book is bonkers. This is about a woman who falls in love with a merman, so, um, yeah. At some points I kind of wished this was about something else, because I was way into this character, and the writing was pretty killer, but I wasn’t totally on board with the whole ‘in love with a merman’ thing. (This is also how I felt about The Shape of Water, but thankfully my arch nemesis Michael Shannon isn’t in this book.) One thing I loved about this is that there is a lot of frank, graphic writing about sex, and it is extremely well done. I don’t often like how authors do sex scenes, and I am sure a lot of readers won’t like how she does it here, but it really worked for me. I was especially pleased by a bad date with a guy who loves Bukowski as that’s a particular red flag for me. Anyway, while I wasn’t totally committed to the merman love story, I loved loved loved how that turned out. It took a turn I was not expecting, and it paid off for me bigtime. This is one that I have no idea whether my reader friends will like, but I really enjoyed it, and I bet hanging out with the author would be a blast. (Call me!)
Sadly, things went south from there with Suicide Club. I mean, how could things go wrong with a title like that? I’m on board with the premise; nothing especially original, but dystopian fiction about creating a race of superhumans always seems worth a shot. The prologue of this book was fantastic and drew me right in. And…that was pretty much the only thing I liked about it. There were a lot of inconsistencies in the world building here, and it just feels lazy. I did not get invested in any character or anyone’s story. I really thought I’d like this but it was a total dud. That prologue though.
Things are looking up so far with French Exit. I loved Patrick deWitt’s first book, and I always love a ‘rich people in distress’ trope, so I’m very much here for this one. Loving this so far, and luckily the chapters are pretty short, which makes it perfect to read in between trick or treaters. I will of course keep you posted!