Still recovering and wondering if I had the flu instead of a cold because getting back to health has not been easy. I skipped seeing Les Miserables (too tired and I didn’t need to cry for two hours) but did get stir crazy on Friday so went to see Silver Linings Playbook which I liked. I did not know the movie was based on a novel of the same name. Has anyone read Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick? I haven’t done much reading this week other than rereading The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown for book group on Monday.
This is what caught my interest this week:
Fleur Fisher introduced me to Canadian author L. R. Wright and her mystery series set on Canada’s Sunshine Coast with her review of The Suspect (Karl Alherg Mystery #1). Written in 1886 and winner of an Edgar Award, the novel is not so much a “who-done it” but a “why done-it” and how will RCMP Karl Alherg prove it. The third character in the novel that helps drive things along is the town Librarian who has conversations with the murderer. Character driven mysteries can be so much fun and a new series is also nice to stumble onto. The first one is available in the United States but the others seem more difficult to locate. However, I am putting the author on my used bookstore list and hopefully I will be successful.
India and its justice system is very much in the news these days and Witness the Night by Kiswar Desai (reviewed by Savidge Reads) also takes a look at India and the dark intricacies of the justice system. A young girl is found barely alive, surrounded by dead bodies, after a devastating house fire. The police accuse the girl of the crime but Simran Singh, a female social worker, believes in her innocence and works to prove it. Savidge Reads writes:
Desai gives you a mystery which as uncovered gives you a story and insight into Indian society and one that I was genuinely shocked still exists. It is a book that brims with a dark underlying atmosphere and has all those page turning qualities, though never at the expense of the prose or characters.
The novel won the 2010 Costa First Novel Award.
The Indextrious Reader is hosting a Postal Challenge and has quite a few links to lists of epistolary fiction. And Jen of Devourer of Books just finished listening to a novel that would be perfect for the challenge. The Confidant by Helene Gremillon (translated by Alison Anderson) is set in Paris in 1975 and Camille is sorting through all the letters of condolences she received after her mother’s death. Included in the lot is a letter from Louie telling Camille the story of his first love, Anne. A new letter arrives each week with the story of Anne, her desire to help a barren couple, a love affair, a baby, a jealous wife, and WW II. As Camille becomes invested in the story she receives the wife’s journal telling the other side of the story and she begins to wonder what all of this has to do with her. Jen warns that this novel is slow to start so that is something to keep in mind if you decide to pick it up.
Finally, my mother called to tell me about a book reviewed in this Sunday’s NY Times – Madness, Rack, and Honey by poet Mary Ruefle. The book is a collection of her lectures and was published in August 2012. I have looked at the table of contents and already I want to read Someone Reading a Book is a Sign of Order in the World. And below is one of Ruefle’s poems that I found on the internet. She definitely has a way with words.