Monday, May 14, 2007

It feels like I haven't spent a weekend doing nothing but reading for a long time. It was nice, despite discovering my grand plan of lounging by the pool Sunday afternoon wasn't going to work because our lone deck chair was seriously dirty and possibly broken, so I enjoyed my lunch on the patio bench instead and then went back inside to resume my position on the couch. So Saturday I read The Woods by Harlan Coben, which I described to Daisy as "a very Harlan Coben-like book." It was, too. There was the believed-to-be dead relative who might not actually be dead, secrets, lies, plot twists galore, etc. The problem was it was a little too Harlan Coben-like. The twists and turns were a little less shocking and even predictable - when they happened instead of being amazed and excited, my reaction was more of a "oh, yeah, I thought that might be the case." That's not to say I didn't enjoy it - I did - but it was definitely one of his weaker efforts.

Sunday was spent with The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield, which was obviously very influenced by du Maurier and the Brontes. Daisy loaned it to me and I can see why she loved it, but my response wasn't quite as enthusiastic as hers. I definitely enjoyed it, but there were things I can't quite put my finger on that irritated me and prevented me from whole-heartedly embracing it. Was it the repetition? Margaret's constant longing for her sister got a little old. Or Hester's diary - it merely presented the same facts we'd already learned earlier from a different point of view but didn't shed any additional light on the story, so why was it presented as a big deal? I just didn't connect with it on a deeper level which, I'll agree, is odd given the setting, subject matter, references, etc.

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