Jeff O'Handley

The Doubting Writer Finds His Voice

The Reading List, 2017 (Part III)

Amazing that we’re into October already, isn’t it? Here’s the list of books read and completed between July and now–have you read any of them?

The Good Life (2006), Jay McInerney. Unintentional re-read. I did not like it nearly as much as I thought, and I can’t remember what I thought of it the first time.

The Returned (2013), Jason Mott. A TV show was based on this, but apparently not the one I watched, which was French and based on a movie that had no relation to this except the title and the broad concept. It seems there’s a bunch of films/TV shows/movies called “The Returned” that all have dead people coming back, not in a Walking Dead kind of way. I really liked this one.

Cancer Ward (1969 edition), Alexander Solzhenitsyn. The toughest part of reading Russian writers? The patronymic! Thus, everyone is Oleg Filimonovich and Pavel Nikolayevich and Ludmila Afanasyevna. Good book, though.

Into the Water (2017), Paula Hawkins. Strong follow-up from the author of The Girl on the Train.

Dream Hoarders (2017), Richard Reeves. Non-fiction work looking at the growing separation between the top 20% of Americans and the rest of us.

The Wild Palms (1939), William Faulkner. I reached the end and said, “WTF???”

Amagansett (2004), Mark Mills. Murder in the Hamptons, post-WWII. Ultimately disappointing.

The Winter People (2014), Jennifer McMahon. Promising start that kind of fell apart in the last third.

The Shock of the Fall (2013), Nathan Filer. Schizophrenia makes for unsettling but effective narrator.

There it is. Nine books read, one a re-read. I note that, aside from Cancer Ward, which was a monster, most of these books were pretty thin in terms of page count.

In other news

I had a good weekend of working on the RiP (huzzah! This revision has been difficult)

…On Wednesday last week, our high temperature was 85. On Thursday, it was 65. Fall has arrived (though we’ve effectively had no rain for three solid weeks now).

…Hockey season starts this week, yay!

…Though the Bruins could be a disaster this year. Boo!

Finally, the song of the week. Neil Young’s After the Gold Rush. What have you been reading lately?

 

7 Responses

  1. Because I'm writing a Victorian time travel book, I've been listening to a ton of Regency romances and mysteries to help get the language tight in my mind. I'll be glad when I finish this first draft because of about done. I love these historicals, but I'm ready to get to some other books I have in my library.

  2. -Stacy–the excitement and optimism of a new season. I hope you enjoy it!
    -Donna–Branching out a bit? Good for you! Best of luck with the new book!

  3. Haven't read any of these myself, but thank you for the link to the Wikipedia page on patronymic names; I have learned something new and interesting today.

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