{ Tuesday, June 27, 2006 }

What I Read on My Summer Vacation.

If you actually want to know what the books are about, click the links to amazon and it'll tell you. This is more about my reaction to each, really.

Audio Books

Now, these were the first two audio books I'd ever listened to. Frankly, once I learned to read, I stopped enjoying listening to other people read to me. And so I had avoided audio books. But... you can buy and then return audio books at the Cracker Barrel (they charge something like $3.50 a week for the "rental" when you return it). And so, we got two books.

What I am saying is that maybe these books weren't so bad; maybe I'm just not an audiobook kind of girl.

The Lincoln Lawyer

Mom and I spent miles and miles debating what was wrong with this book. She thought the narrator was the problem, I didn't think there was anything better he could possibly be doing with that writing. Then my stepfather pointed out that it was read by the author, so we were both right.

It was terrible. Mostly because the main character was a total asshole. The story was contrived but basically okay. We got to the last tape and... we all cheered when the guy got shot. I also tried to turn the damned thing off, thinking we were done when there was still one more major plot point left unresolved.

Also, we were on the seventh tape when I realized that this character was called the Lincoln Lawyer because of his car. It had been bothering me for a couple of states at that point.

Garlic and Sapphires

My goodness was this book dull. Seriously, deeply dull. Basically, I kept waiting for the... central conflict to emerge. There just wasn't one. Or there was one and it seemed like a minor subplot. Because this woman just detailed every bite of every meal she ate for, like, a thousand years.

It reached the point at which we were making rules about when we had to listen to it. Because I have to finish the books I start, even the really bad ones. When we got to Portland, my sister's boyfriend told me he'd read a review of it in Harpers that said basically that it was unspeakably boring. That made me feel better, like I hadn't missed something.


Hot Item

I could try to rationalize this one. But, really, it's the trashiest trashy romance novel I've ever read. It came from the airport and apparently is the latest in a series. Basically, a trashy romance novel about people with Daddy Issues... it really was not much fun to read.

I think I managed to completely squash the impulse to sigh heavily while smacking the novel on the back of the seat in front of me. I may have muttered under my breath a bit on the airplane though.

Little Earthquakes

I liked this more than Good in Bed and I really liked Good in Bed. Actually, I liked them both so much that I went ahead and bought In Her Shoes at Powell's. It was funny and touching and what-not. It's light and fluffy but totally worth reading.

Mrs. Kimble

What a good book! It was interesting and engaging and I cared about all of the characters and I wanted to know what was going to happen next. I really enjoyed reading this and I was sad when it ended. Seriously, I loved this one. Go read it.

To the Last Man I Slept with and All the Jerks Just Like Him

A short story collection. A good short story collection. I just wanted the stories to each be longer because they were so hilarious and just right. I really liked this. It's not fluffy really, except that it totally is sometimes. This was one I'd been looking for spcifically, but casually, for awhile and I totally wish I'd read it sooner.

How I Paid for College

And the last one. "A Novel of Sex, Theft, Friendship and Musical Theater" What more could you possibly want from a single work of fiction? The story seems outlandish as I imagine summarizing it, but when I was reading it, I was totally sold.

The main character was... basically likeable. I mean, for a teenaged boy. His priorities and aspirations and thoughts were all like being a teenager. I didn't appreciate the last little bit of it when the author got all Outsiders on me, but aside from that last paragraph, this was a great book about being a teenager.

And that is what I read on my summer vacation. Seven books in eleven days, two of which took for-freaking-ever because they were audio books. Nothing too complicated, some of it exceptionally fluffy, but mostly entertaining. You know, vacation books.

I think if I'd just read the lawyer book it would have been an entirely acceptable way to entertain myself for a few hours in the flat states (the entry yesterday forgot Iowa. Sorry Iowa!). But listening to seven tapes of every single word was too much.

It's really not a bad haul considering everything else I managed to do on vacation...

posted by mary ann 11:07 PM