Another Monday is here and a literary awards week is behind us. So what did everyone think? I’ve never read anything by Hilary Mantel, though I already own Wolf Hall. This weekend I went out and purchased two more of her novels: A Change of Climate & Vacant Possession. Both books are described as black comedies on the back cover – perfect October & November reading in my opinion. Strangely, it never even occurred to me to look for something by Herta Mueller, even though I was at my favorite used bookshop of all time (Carroll & Carroll, Booksellers in Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania) and spent a few minutes discussing the new Nobel laureate with the owner. His verdict – who was last year’s winner? I responded: I have no idea. He nodded, Exactly.
Added to the Mantel stack were a few random books from Ellis Peters’ Brother Cadfael series. I’ve never read Peters, but a lovely couple who bought a bag of my books at a garage sale this past summer recommended her. (And if you can’t trust random people who show up in your garage, in the rain, to buy your old paperbacks – well I ask you, who can you trust???) What’s neat about the Brother Cadfael series is that it takes place during the English civil war, approximately 1139, between King Stephen & Empress Maud. This it the war which immediately preceded Henry Plantagenet’s rule – for all the Mistress of the Art of Death fans out there.
The Year of the Flood by Margaret Atwood is finished, and the review will be up this week. This is by far my favorite book of 2009. So much so that after listening to the audio book I bought the hardcover. The search is now on for “new” used copies of Oryx and Crake to force on family, friends & unsuspecting strangers passing me on the street. (Remember, there will be a quiz).
My current nightstand steady remains Eating Air by Pauline Melville. This is one of those books that has me wishing for a blizzard, a log cabin in Maine, and enough food to last a week. Barring that, I hope to finish by Friday.
Until then, my review for Amphibian by Carla Gunn went up over the weekend.
And for even more recommendations, please don’t forget to check out J. Kaye’s blog. Happy Monday!