(7/50) No progress this week.
While I Was Reading Challenge
A book with a child narrator: Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, by Jonathan Safran Foer: I really wanted to like this book, but I didn’t. I wasn’t into it the whole time I was reading it, but sometimes literary fiction has a good payoff, and this one promised an interesting mystery about a found key. I was hoping the mystery of the key would make this one worth my time, but it didn’t. The ending was so disappointing that I almost threw the book across the room. I didn’t hate it (there’s only one book I ever wanted to burn after reading it, and it wasn’t this one) but I didn’t like it either.
This book has three narrators: 9 year old Oskar (who doesn’t sound 9 by any stretch of the imagination), a man who doesn’t speak, and a woman who’s writing Oskar letters. The identity of the two other narrators are gradually revealed, but it felt unnecessary to hide them in the first place. Not to mention that they’re supposedly writing to Oskar, revealing things that are inappropriate for a child.
Lots of people loved it, including some reader friends of mine who often recommend and exchange books with me, but it just wasn’t my thing. At least it’s one less book on my shelf.
A book with your favorite food in the title: Love and Gelato, by Jenna Evans Welch: This book is as sweet as the title suggests. It’s a YA romance about a teenage girl who just lost her mom. She’s sent to Italy to live with a “friend” of her mother’s, who may or may not be her father. As she reads her mother’s journal and starts to piece together who her father is, and why he hasn’t been in her life, she’s also falling in love with Italy and a friend who’s helping her get answers. This story was the perfect antidote to the aggravation that was EL&IC.
The Unread Shelf
5 Classic Books
(0/5) No progress
Asylum, Sanctum, and Catacomb, by Madeleine Roux: I’m burned out on reading literary fiction, especially since I haven’t really been enjoying it. Sometimes it just happens that way. Since I write Young Adult horror, I thought it was time to catch up on some of the fiction I’ve missed.
I love creepy old mental hospitals as a setting, so Asylum seemed like the perfect read. And no, I didn’t know it was a series when I started it. These types of books read fast for me though, so I wasn’t too worried about it.
The first one was pretty good. Three kids go for this summer program at a small college. But because the dorm is being renovated, they have to stay in an old building on the grounds. It used to be a mental hospital, and part of it is locked up so no one can get in. Of course the kids are curious and go exploring. There’s a murder, the kids have nightmares, and they find out more about the history of the hospital. (Spoiler alert: it’s bad news.) This isn’t the best YA horror I’ve ever read, but it was fast and entertaining.
Sanctum continued the story when the kids come back to find out more about what happened over the summer, and they discover a secret cult meant to keep the secrets of the mental hospital. It stretched my belief at times, but I went with it, and it worked for me.
Catacomb… did not work for me. It felt very deus ex machina because it’s a completely different setting, yet once again, the kids stumble across a cult that wants to kill them. It had some cool concepts in it, and if it had been a completely different book with different characters outside this series, I would have liked it much more.
2018 Running Total: 18
Have you made any progress on your TBR or book challenges?