March 2012 reads

>> Sunday, April 01, 2012

So, my March reads. An ok month, but not too good on the romance front. Other than the reliable JD Robb, all C romances. The non-romances saved the month.

1 - We Need To Talk About Kevin, by Lionel Shriver: A-

review coming up

Narrated by a woman whose son carried out a school massacre. She never liked him. Was she the only one who could see the real Kevin, or did Kevin become what he did because his mother never liked him? What a brilliant, brilliant read. Eva is a fantastic character, whose honesty was painful and heart-wrenching, very difficult to read, but rewarding.

2 - Celebrity in Death, by JD Robb: B+

review coming up

A quiet case for Eve, for once. She and Peabody investigate the murder of the very nasty actress who's playing Peabody in a film based on one of their earlier cases. Not the best In Death ever, but I enjoyed it very much.

3 - The Report, by Jessica Francis Kane: B+

review here

A terrible accident in London during the Blitz: streaming into a shelter when the air raid sirens sound, something goes wrong and almost 200 people are crushed to death. It's a terrible tragedy for the community, and a local magistrate is brought in to write a report that will provide closure. Fascinating subject matter, sensitively treated, and I loved the glimpse of everyday life in London at the time.

4 - A Sense of an Ending, by Julian Barnes: B

review coming up

A middle-aged man re-examines an incident from his youth, and discovers memory is not as immutable as he once thought. It explored some really interesting ideas and themes, but this was a book I just liked well enough, but not loved.

5 - The Little Stranger, by Sarah Waters: B-

review coming up

A local doctor in post-war rural England becomes involved in the strange and scary goings-on at the decaying big house. I loved the first half for its careful scene-setting and really creepy indications of something not quite right in the house. In the second half, though, things went a bit too crazy, and the conclusion was very unsatisfying.

6 - Christmas Eve at Friday Harbor, by Lisa Kleypas: C+

review coming up

A man takes in his dead sister's young daughter, and the widowed owner of the new toy shop is the only one who can connect to the little girl -and her uncle. Sappy. Plus, I like character-driven books, but there need to be some issues, otherwise it's boring!

7 - Lover Unleashed, by JR Ward: C+

review coming up

Only for long-time readers of the series, newbies would be completely lost. Main romance here is Vishous' twin, Payne, and the doctor brought in to heal her after she breaks her back. Well, actually, the main romance is supposed to be them, but all the attention is on V and Jane, who are having marriage trouble. V annoyed me with his "it's all about me" attitude, and I didn't care to spend that much time with them.

8 - Choose Me, by Jo Leigh: C

review here

A young woman, new to New York but determined to make it there in the fashion business, is set up by a friend to go on a blind date with the King of New York, the celebrity owner of a blogging empire (and the matchmaker's cousin). Didn't care for the whole celebrity crap, but most of all, disliked that the romance
had a very skewed power dynamic. The heroine is starstruck all through the book, and the hero, well, I've no idea why he thinks he's in love.

9 - Live Bait, by PJ Tracy: still reading

I loved the first in the series, and I'm really liking this one so far.

10 - The Song of Achilles, by Madeline Miller: still reading

If the Iliad was in copyright, this would be fanfiction of the best kind. Miller fills in the blanks left in about Achilles and Patroclus' relationship, which is only hinted about (albeit quite obviously) in the Iliad. I'm about a third in, and so far, so good.


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