Books 62-69

Nov. 2nd, 2015 11:54 am
lizzardgirl: (books)
[personal profile] lizzardgirl
62: The Historian, by Elizabeth Kostova

Okay, I'll admit I picked this mainly because it was one quid at Oxfam. I expected a pretty standard vampire novel, but I really liked this one much more than I thought I would. It's very well plotted and right up until the ending, very nicely paced (the ending felt a little bit rushed though) and has a couple of very interesting twists that kept it from being standard. I really enjoyed reading it. My only complaints would be that the ending is that little bit rushed, and that it left a few too many lose ends. I don't mind not everything being tied up neatly, but with one or two things I did wonder why they had been brought up at all if they were never going to be resolved. Still, thumbs up.

63: Cotillion, by Georgette Heyer

Got this from Caro and I really liked it. Surprisingly, I didn't catch on to the endgame until quite late in the book, and even then I was hoping for it rather than expecting it to happen.

64: Secret Place, by Tana French

I really like her mystery novels but they seem to get gloomier and gloomier all the time. This one was really good but such a depressing ending!

65: Regency Buck, by Georgette Heyer

Okay, so Cotillion brought with it an urge to reread some favourite Heyers and of course this one tops the list. Objectively, I know that the hero is a total creep, but I can't help it, I put on my rose-tinted glasses all the time and just love this novel to bits. It's my guilty pleasure.

66: Life after Life, by Kate Atkinson

Shem's description of this sounded just like my cup of tea and when she was gushing so much about it I knew I had to get it too, and luckily the library had it. I wasn't disappointed. Like Shem, I found the beginning a bit slow to get into, but then it really took off and it was awesome. It's not exactly time-travel, but it touches similar questions as good time-travel novels do and on top of that one of my other favourite topics, alternate universes caused by tiny changes. I loved it!

67: Career of Evil, by Robert Galbraith

As I said to my brother, I really really liked this one, but I liked Silkworm - the second in the series - even better. Also, I think JKR really enjoys diving into the gruesome and gory that she couldn't put into her at least nominally children's books. So, fair warning about that. This book is really gory and amputated limbs feature. I never had the feeling though that it was for shock value. It's just a very gruesome story. Also, in true JKR manner, she left it on a bit of a cliff-hanger - not about the mystery, but the personal story of the main characters (which was really nicely developed) - GRRRR!

68: Venetia, by Georgette Heyer

Something to calm my nerves after the JKR ;) When we were talking about Heyers during the DU, Julie said this was her favourite and talked about why and since it's been years since I read this I wanted to re-read with Julie's analysis in mind and she's right. Venetia really is a total kick-ass heroine and her and Damerel's relationship is awesomely honest. The only reason why this isn't my favourite Heyer is that it isn't Regency Buck because my brain is weird.

69: The Job, by Janet Evanovich and Lee Goldberg

I've grown a bit tired of her Stephanie Plums but I do like this new(ish) series and this one wasn't a disappointment. Pure escapist fast-paced action, but nicely done.

Date: 2015-11-02 08:41 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
So glad you liked the Atkinson! The second one is lying on my floor I'm worried to pick it up in case it spoils my memory of this one.

Regency Buck is one of my faves too but mainly because I read it first and I "solved" the "mystery" before the end

Obligatory Cotillion reference: They've got no heads!!!

Date: 2015-11-09 03:03 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
There is a second one???

Date: 2015-11-03 10:16 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
*grin* Told you!

When I first read Venetia (I was about 15) and I didn't get it. I missed most of the literary references, even though I was reasonably well-read for my age and I couldn't understand why she would choose Damerel over a season in London nor why she wouldn't expect him to change.

When I read it again as an adult, it made more sense. They clearly share a sense of humour, he is more intelligent than he is credited as, and they have time and space in which to develop an intellectual as well as an emotional relationship. There's a very overt sexual attraction - more so than in Heyer's other novels - and while Venetia is a non-typical but still innocent heroine, Damerel is definitely a Rake and not a faux one but the real shagged-his-way-through-Europe deal.

The thing that sold it for me was the realism of the relationship. Venetia doesn't gloss over Damerels past and neither does she glorify it. She accepts that he is who and what he is and that fidelity may not come easy to him. I don't think she's letting him off the hook and saying he can do what he wants, I think she's saying that she knows him and that she trusts him.

I think that Damerel will be faithful, precisely because Venetia has accepted him, rakish past and all. Because she doesn't want to change him, he will change and because she doesn't demand fidelity, he will find it easy to be faithful.

Does that make sense?

Date: 2015-11-09 03:04 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Yes, totally makes sense!

Date: 2015-11-07 06:53 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
My library amazingly had Silkworm, so I took that out today.

Date: 2015-11-09 03:04 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Well I hope you won't be disappointed after all my hyping!


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