Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Guh, I've been working on this post forever!

The blessing way by Tony Hillerman.  I couldn't get into this, largely because of the language.  I read for a while, wavering between "it's artistic\experimental" and "this author never talks to real people."  In the end, it doesn't matter, does it?  Not-natural language is not-natural language.

Ordinary grace by William Kent Krueger.  This was suggested to me by a coworker, and I can see both why he liked it and why he suggested it to me.  Unfortunately, I was confused about a few identity details in the first couple pages and couldn't get it all sorted out in my mind in time to become invested.  Worth another try somewhere down the line, but I put it down this time.

Hell's gate by Bill Schutt and J.R. Finch.  I remember that I saw stars and great reviews associated with this.  I read fully half of it, and the book has no idea what it is trying to be.  I cannot, off the top of my head, think of a book that tries to mix 3 or more genre elements and is successful in doing so.  This is part historical fiction, part alternative history, part mystery, part paranormal, part conspiracy story.  There are good elements-- the feel is very WWII-era fiction, the main character is a man's man appropriate for the era-- but it's not a smooth read.

The chronicles of Narnia: The voyage of the Dawn Treader with Georgie Henley and Skandar Keynes.  I am pretty sure I saw this before, but in a my-husband-watched-it-and-I-napped-in-the-same-room sort of way, because it was familiar, but I know I haven't read the book (started it but only got a few chapters in and set it down).

The actor who plays Eustace does a fantastic job!  That role, done poorly, could really have broken the movie.  I cannot comment obviously on the adaptation, but as a movie it's a good one-- I enjoyed the effects without feeling they were overdone, the characters were believable, the action was good.

Nurse Jackie, seasons 1 and 2, with Edie Falco.  Netflix suggested this for me, and there are definitely similarities to some other things I've watched, but I'm not going to continue past season 2.  It is a good suggestion for people who like Orange is the new black-- graphic, dark, unapologetic-- and also House-- a self-destructive medical professional who is great at the job but a crappy human.

I'm not going to continue because the main character is so purposefully self-destructive.  I've watched a couple other things in which the main character is a destructive, unlikable, unredemable person, but the secondary characters are so interesting and well-drawn they make it worth continuing.  That is not the case here.

The librarians, season 2, with Rebecca Romijn.  Hmm, it ha been a while since I binged this one weekend.  I continue to be a little in love with Christian Kane's character-- I know I said it before, but such a good fit for him!  The advent of season 3 this fall makes me almost wish I had TV.

Something new: Tales from a makeshift bride by Lucy Knisley.  I wish this had existed-- and I had read it-- before our wedding.  We didn't know anyone who had gotten married, hadn't attended any weddings since the one I was a flower-girl in when I was 5.  Despite our best intentions, our celebration ended up being a little more commercialized, a little more cookie-cutter than I wanted, but I didn't really know how to avoid it.  It was years and years before I knew anyone who incorporated anything hand-made into their reception.

Track of the cat and A superior death by Nevada Barr.  This continues to be a popular series I'm regularly replacing, so I thought I would give it a try.  After two installments, I'm nearly disgusted with... I'm not sure.  Myself because it is so full of errors and problems but I still want to read the next one?  The publisher for continuing such a long series when each volume needs a great deal more editing?  Readers in general with low standards?

The main character is great, and she carries these books.  She, along with the well-incorporated natural setting, is the only reason to continue reading.  In the first book, problem include:
-character makes major oversight in trying to solve the murder.  You call yourself law enforcement?
-secondary characters lack depth and are little more than stereotype.
-messy resolution and no follow-up.
Problems from the second book:
-bipolar secondary characters: you tied him up and left him to work his way out when he threatened to kill you; you run into each other the next day and he helps you fix your boat?
-other secondary characters were indistinct from each other and too numerous.
-the what-happened-after-she-cornered-the-bad-guy was better,  but this time wrapped up perhaps a little too neatly, like the author checked off boxes for each character to close up the last chapter.

Adulthood is a myth: A "Sarah's scribbles" collection by Sarah Andersen.  This is not a volume necessary to the library collection-- it is most likely to catch the eye of people familiar with the artist from seeing her online, but people who have seen a few of her things online are likely to have already seen everything contained in this volume.  I didn't see anything new.

The dragon round by Stephen S. Power.  I didn't get very far in this-- I had read a really good review, but I wasn't super confident after reading the first couple pages, then time ran out and I had to return it for someone else's hold.  

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