When all is said and done I think I will have read about 90 books this year, and of those 90, I have finished them all save two.
What went wrong?
With North River, some of it may have been my own prejudice against the book. I just didn't think it was a book club book (meaning that I didn't think it was discussion worthy), I thought it was more of a beach read or one of those books you read when you need a break from other stuff. I was surprised that a friend of mine considered it "literary". The discussion, as I suspected, didn't really yield much. I still have it and might try flipping through at another point to see if my opinion is altered now that I'm not reading it with a predetermined purpose in mind. He's supposed to be good and I saw from some reviews that North River isn't consider to be his best work. What's interesting is that Pete Hammill was mentioned in another book I reviewed, The Bookmaker, by Michael J. Agovino. I liked that one.
I still don't know what happened with Man Gone Down. It was beautifully written but I just couldn't connect with the main character or any of the other characters for that matter, and it was stream of consciousness on top of that. I needed something to hold onto and I just couldn't find it. None of my book club knew what to think about it either. I think we just sat and asked each other questions or if we got certain parts and none of us could answer. Granted, I hadn't read the whole thing, but the others had and it hadn't seemed to help them much. I remember liking the goldfish, but I usually like animals in books and movies, even fish. I think his name was Mr. Strawberry. The main character was really all over the place. Books that are well-written, but that I don't like, usually make me curious about what I would think about reading something else the author has written (what a mouthful that was!). I'm waiting to see what else he's got.
I would try and do a year in review post, but it would be too long and
I am just not that disciplined, so I will be breaking these up over the last days of 2008.
Care to join me? What unfinished business do you have for 2008?