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September booklist

Better late than never, yeah?

1. Mariana, Susanna Kearsley (audio)

so, this is basically the exact same plot as the last Kearsley book I read. Which is not exactly a criticism - it's an engaging premise - but makes me a little less eager to jump right into another.

on the other hand, there are so many things to love: the historical detail, the slowly unfolding relationships, the *cough* Scottish Ian (note to self: continue to pick audiobooks featuring Scottish characters.)

2. The Upside of Irrationality, Dan Arily

Basically, I adore Dan Arily.

3. A Hat Full of Sky, Terry Pratchett (audio)

A reread, because reasons, and also to get me in the right headspace for The Shepherd's Crown.

4. Shadowy Horses, Susanna Kearsley (audio)

This made for a great audiobook, what with the Scottish voices and all. I liked this premise quite a bit, although I'm still confused about why Kearsley's couples never actually TALK about their relationships.

5. A Severe Mercy, Sheldon Vanauken

This is not the great love story the author clearly thinks it is - it's an unhealthy love story, obsessive and self-centered. The book is also, possibly, maybe-just-a-little bit show-offy in a "look what good friends I was with CS Lewis" way.

That's not to say it's not worth reading (it is), or isn't interesting (it is.) For a picture of conversion and a raw look at grief, it's worth the short time you'll spend reading.

6. All Clear, Connie Willis

7th or 8th time, still noticing new things

7. Kilmeny of the Orchard, Lucy Maud Montgomery

Goodreads reports that I read this six years ago, but I have no memory of it. Which is a shame, because it's a lovely little gem - quaint, a bit overblown and melodramatic in places, but possessed of such sweetness and light as to quite counteract any descent into florid descriptions and implausible plot points.


( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 12th, 2015 09:14 pm (UTC)
See, I felt like Vanauken only described it as a great love story for the first 2/3 and then at the end he realized *how* completely obsessive and selfish they'd been (well, him especially). Did he realize the full extent of not? Perhaps not. But he was very open about the fact that if Davey had not gotten sick, their marriage could easily have crumbled and fallen apart in the future. He talks about the silly flirtation he had with their young British visitor and how a future flirtation could have been disastrous, since he was basing his love for Davey on something that couldn't last as it was.

Anyway. Not saying Agree With Me Or Else ;) I'm fascinated by the different reactions people have to the book. In my mind, yes, he was a bit arrogant but he was honest and humble enough to start realizing what a selfish soul he'd been...and few of us really do understand the full effects of our faults, so I want to give grace when I see that with others.
Oct. 19th, 2015 01:38 am (UTC)
He certainly acknowledged that their relationship wasn't totally healthy, but I didn't get the feeling he really understood just HOW unhealthy it had been... or at least, he still held up parts of it as being some sort of Shining Ideal? Then too, I wonder how much her early death caused him to romanticize their time together. (And I am completely open to the fact that I may be reading my own biases into this. :))

Oct. 13th, 2015 02:05 pm (UTC)
I read A Severe Mercy in another lifetime and thought it was very romantic and noble, but I'm both interested in and afraid of what I'd think of it now. ;)
Oct. 13th, 2015 11:52 pm (UTC)
A Severe Mercy was the "it" book when I was a sophomore in college. My super black and white thinking bf who broke up with me because I wasn't spiritual enough loved it. I don't remember if I was sucked into its reality distortion field or not.
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )