Checking in

Well, I have failed at reading Middlemarch.  Again.  But I’ve started listening to the audio book, narrated by Juliet Stevenson (whose Persuasion I enjoyed), so maybe I’ll get through it in that medium.

A couple of other books from the library have been slightly more successful.  About A Girl by Lindsey Kelk read as fluffy chick lit, a lighter version of early Marian Keyes.  It was fine; I probably would have really enjoyed it 10 years ago and gone looking for the sequel, but now it reads as pretty derivative to me.  Olivia de Havilland’s memoir, Every Frenchman Has One, was charming.  It was dated, of course, and narrated a lifestyle that seems as alien and distant to me as medieval England or China under the Han dynasty.

I ran across an interview with Lois McMaster-Bujold in which she talked about self-publishing her work as electronic rights became/become available, along with a Penric short story.  The story, Penric and the Shaman, was a lovely little adventure; it went over much better for me than her last full book.

Currently I’m reading one of Victoria Thompson’s Gaslight Mysteries, and I’ve got a Le Carre novel up next; the one that has been turned into a movie recently (out this summer), its title escapes me at the moment.  There are a couple of library books sitting on the table, as well.  After that, who knows.  It’ll be time to pick out some beach reads by the time I finish all that up…assuming I manage to finish them.

Saw Love & Friendship, which was quite funny; I’d recommend it not only for the costumes and set decoration but for the acting and writing of the screenplay.

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4 Comments

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4 responses to “Checking in

  1. I love Middlemarch, but doubt I would have found time and energy to re-read it at this point in my life without the audio book. Stevenson’s reading is superb. (But of course it could be that it’s just not a book for you).

    • I’ve enjoyed the first few chapters of the audio version so far. It’s slow going, because if I”m multi-tasking while listening, I can miss things and need to replay parts. But since I’ve never managed to get past Chapter 5 before, the audio version may be the solution to my Middlemarch problem 🙂

  2. I haven’t been able to get through Middlemarch either, although I’ve tried a couple of different times. I hope the audiobook works for you! I plan to try again, since it has to be me not the book.

    The Le Carre is Our Kind of Traitor, which got middling-to-positive reviews. I have the book in the TBR. Right now I’m listening to Le Carre narrate an abridged version of The Tailor of Panama. Usually I hate and avoid abridged audiobooks, but he reads his own words so well, and I figure the abridgements are ones he approved. I’m enjoying it very much so far.

    I haven’t read the book yet, but I thought the film version of A Most Wanted Man was really good. One of Philip Seymour Hoffman’s last roles, and he was a perfect Le Carre protagonist.

    • The audio version seems to be working, since I’ve never managed to get this far in print or ebook…although I have to make sure not to let myself be distracted while I’m listening. It’s been good for long walks.

      That’s it! I picked up a copy on impulse when I had a B&N gift card burning a hole in my pocket, and then saw that my local independent theater would be showing the movie. So I should probably hurry up and read it so I can then see the movie and compare. Run times tend to be quite variable there; Love & Friendship has played all summer, but other films have come and gone quickly.

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