Sunday, July 06, 2008

Reading David Mitchell's Black Swan Green after a long string of largely disposable mysteries and YA was just really lovely. It's his most straightforward book, not as playful or intricate as his others, but by no means is it simple or plain.

Denise Mina's latest, Slip Of The Knife continues her Paddy Meehan character into the early 1990s. Paddy, now a successful columnist, has to deal with a son, the murder of a colleague, and the release from prison of one of the boys she helped put away in a previous book.

Things I've Learned From Women Who've Dumped Me edited by Ben Karlin was overall an okay collection of essays. A few of them were laugh out loud funny but not as many as I expected given the list of contributors.

The Replacements: All over but the shouting by Jim Walsh was one of those oral histories where the history of the band is presented through the memories of the people involved, other local musicians, fans, and journalists. Walsh relied on old interviews of the band members instead of conduction new ones. He explains the reasons for this in the introduction, but I still think it would've been a stronger book with them involved.

I finally read The Birthday Party: A memoir of survival by Stanley N. Alpert which Daisy told me about a long time ago. It relied a bit too much on purple prose, but it was definitely a compelling story and even kept me up late finishing it. Alpert, a federal prosecutor, was able to survive and talk his way to freedom after being abducted off the street and held captive for a couple of days.


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