This January I was taking a class at the University I work at. The reading for that class was very intense and I haven’t been reading “for fun” in a while. Now, however, I’ve finally picked up a book.. or two. In December I finished Up the Down Staircase for a book club I am in with my best friends. I’ll post about that once we have book club (Feb. 21) so that I still have stuff to say about it.
I’ve just started reading Dr. Sleep by Stephen King. With the snow days adding up in New Hampshire, I was able to get almost halfway through it yesterday. Dr. Sleep is the sequel to The Shining, which I finished reading last October. The Shining was MUCH different from the movie, and so far this sequel isn’t much of a sequel in that it sticks with the storyline in a relatively short time period. We see Danny, now Dan, as a 30-40 year old. And other than him and that the book goes into depth on the “shine” you won’t miss much if you never read, or watched, The Shining. As I haven’t finished the book yet I do not want to speculate too much, but so far it seems quite straight forward and the reader is able to see where the plot is going to go. Hopefully there are a few twists down the road!
So this post is going to be pretty brief. Mostly just to acknowledge that I’ve been so busy reading and doing other stuff that I haven’t taken the time to actually post about my reactions to the books I’ve read recently. For the most part, I’ve been enjoying the books…which you can see in my Goodreads feed… except for the Bughouse Affair. There were just too many plot lines that it didn’t actually need. I think if they had focused on the main two detectives it could have been much better than also bringing in a possible Sherlock Holmes just to add conflict.
Anyways.. I’m keeping busy. I currently am in the middle of three different books! Not Your Father’s Son by Alan Cumming, Captivated by You by Sylvia Day, and Safe Haven by Nicholas Sparks. I am enjoying them all for different reasons so far. Hopefully I remember to come back here and review at least one of them!
So I’ve already written about the first book in the All Souls Trilogy by Deborah Harkness. The second novel, Shadow of Night, is the main focus of this post.
To be honest, although I love history, and historical fiction, this installment in the trilogy has not been my favorite. There were bits here and there when I would get swept up in the story, but the flow never really stuck for me. I think Harkness tried to cover too much material in Shadow of Night. Diana and Matthew timewalk back to Elizabethan England. They also need to travel, ultimately spending around 8 months in the past, while achieving very little. In 592 pages, the characters accomplish two things, while the rest of the novel is filler and background information.
I am not saying that this is a bad book, or not to read it. It does provide many details into Matthew’s past, and many of the details have come up again in the 3rd installment, the Book of Life (but that’s for the next post!). It’s important for the characters to develop and that is what the 2nd book allows the characters to do. However, I do think the story would have worked without the Shadow of Night. I’ll see if I change my mind as I get further into the Book of Life.
I’ve been getting through some books at a quick pace as of late. And now that I am connected to the Internet again post-move I can finally post about them!
So the first book I’m going to write about is The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith aka J.K. Rowling (Happy birthday to her today btw). This book is the second installment to the Cormoran Strike series. I had heard quite a bit of backlash to the first book, and in some instances agreed. I haven’t heard much about The Silkworm yet, but I loved the book! It flowed better than the Cuckoo’s Calling and I think that has to do with the fact that the character was developed in the first book so she could get to more story in this one. The writing also seems more confident, with more twists than the previous book. I look forward to more installments to the series in the future!
OK–on to the second review– yes they’re quick ones this time around and I’m trying not to include any spoilers.
A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness is the second book I’ve finished recently. I enjoy the world of witches and vampires, or as the book refers to non-humans, creatures. I think Harkness has created a unique storyline for her characters and I’m excited to keep moving through the trilogy. Many readers have critiqued the main heroine as a weak woman, and she does have her weak moments. But I think it is important for people to realize this character, although a witch, is realistic as a human. Diana is incredibly smart and successful in her professional life, but sometimes she needs help. From the first book of the trilogy I think Harkness has created great potential for her leading lady to grow to be a strong confident character. Nobody is strong all of the time, and even though this is fiction, readers need to be able to relate to characters and these flaws allow them to.
Shadow of Night– 2nd book in the All Souls Trilogy by Deborah Harkness
Sooo it’s been a while. I’ve been busy cataloging at work, playing with my new cat, and preparing to move while enjoying the World Cup!
While Germany won the Cup, I finished reading my first book since February! I read Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith, aka J.K. Rowling. I grew up reading, and then watching Harry Potter. J.K. Rowling created the literary world of my childhood, and teenage years. I for one, am extremely excited to continue reading her novels for adults. The Casual Vacancy, which I also read was a bit of a flop in my opinion. I never seemed to be able to follow what was actually going on. This time however, I quite enjoyed the murderous plot lines. The plot isn’t genius, it’s fairly generic as far as crime novels go, but still enjoyable. Rowling brings her descriptive talents to play in the script. Some reader reviews I have read say she goes overboard with her adjectives, but I think they work, bringing the reader into the world of Cormoran Strike.
The one thing that bothers me about the novel, isn’t even about the book, but the fact that J.K. Rowling used the pseudonym Robert Galbraith. Now using a pseudonym is a great idea, when people do not know the real name of the author, or the book is written by a team of authors who choose to write under one created name, but using a pseudonym when the author’s real name is associated to the book the entire time is pretty pointless. I get it, she wanted to get boys to read the book by using a male name. Or even hiding her true identity so more than Harry Potter fans would read the book is a good idea. However, I, and I am sure many other readers found out about the book and found out it was Rowling at the same time.
Sorry for the rant, it just doesn’t make sense to me. Maybe some of you readers have heard more about why she went with the pseudonym and can clarify that for others like me.
Next book on my plate– The Silkworm book #2 in the Cormoran Strike Series by Robert Galbraith.
Happy reading all!
Librarians are more than…
I just wanted to repost this blog article because it’s really important for people to understand that librarians do not just check books in and out.