August 15, 2022

August 2022 Wrap Up Pt. 1

Since I have done not much more than sleep and read the last 3 weeks, I should probably let you know what I've finished. Otherwise, the end-of-the-month wrap up would be colossal. So here we go.

Mr. Malcolm's List by Suzanne Allain - I originally picked this up because I saw an ad for the movie. It looked like fun. I'm sure it is piggy-backing off the success of Bridgerton which is set in the same era. It was fine. It wasn't Bridgerton. I liked the main character. I liked the love interest until he went all toxic toward the end. She deserves better.

The Terra-Cotta Dog by Andrea Camilleri - This is the second in the Inspector Montalbano series. We start out with a request from a mafioso to meet up on the down low. Then the mob boss dies. There is a bungled heist from a warehouse and then we end up in grotto hidden at the back of a cave where there are two skeletons in a strange set up that looks like some kind of ritual. Most interestingly, the set up involves a little terra-cotta dog. Monalbano starts off really angry in this book. It doesn't say why. Oh wait. One of his best friends was murdered right next to him. That would do it. But he was an asshole to a couple of women he knows for no reason. Also, the titular dog doesn't show up until literally halfway through the book. That being said, the plot was suitably intellectual. There was a lot of philosophy and research he had to do. The intrigue was sufficiently twisty and after the first half, the story really picked up.

South Toward Home: Travels in Southern Literature by Margaret Eby - I've finally finished this book that read the first section of a year ago. It consists of the author traveling to the hometowns of various Southern authors. Only one of whom is still alive. It was interesting. And I enjoyed readingabout what the towns are like now, and how the current residents feel about their famous authors. It was nice, but it wasn't ground breaking.

Pride by Ibi Zoboi - It probably says something that I had to start another book to reward myself for reading a chapter of this one. That being said, I'm still reading that other book and I've finished this. The Elizabeth character (it's a retelling of Pride and Prejudice) is kind of a bitch. She has attitude from the start about the rich kids moving in across the street. In the original, Elizabeth was originally interested in meeting new people and being friendly until Darcy pulled his shenanigans. I did appreciate the way the author took the elements of the original plot and modernized them. The letter from Mr. Darcy that spills Mr. Wickham's deeds becomes a rushed text conversation between Zuri (Elizabeth) and Darius (Darcy) while she is flirting with Warren (Wickham) on her front stop and Darius is watching from his window across the street. The deeds in question became taking naked pics of Darius' sister and spreading them around. It ended up being okay, but I never did really warm up to Zuri.

84, Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff - This is the August Book Club Book. I read it about 12 years ago and I remembered liking it, but in re-reading it, I realized I had forgotten a lot. I remembered her being sarcastic and brash, but I didn't remember her straight reaming Frank out for sending a bad book. I also didn't remember all the other people who got involved in the letter writing process: i.e. Franks wife, his next-door neighbor, other members of the staff. I enjoyed it immensely.

And that's it. Only 5 books for the first half of the month. Still not a bad run.