Monday, November 9, 2009

Monday: What I'm reading

I interrupted my attempt to polish off "All Shall be Well; and All Shall be Well; and All Manner of Things Shall be Well" (whew) to read a quick, 195-page YA novel called "When You Reach Me." The novel had received several positive reviews, and I more or less enjoyed it, although at heart the book is a routine time-travel SF novel set in the dangerous world of 1978-79 New York City. What makes this novel worthwhile are the strongly drawn characters, most of whom are sixth-graders, the allusions to A Wrinkle in Time and the chapter headings that play off of "The $20,000 Pyramid," one of my favorite game shows.

Still reading: "All Shall be Well," etc. I'm bogged down in it with about 90 pages to go; the main character is so adept at making the wrong choices, and his children are so messed up, that it's taken me out of the narrative. I've also been picking at Knights of the Cornerstone, a novel by James Blaylock I took out from the library (I had started it during the summer and never got passed page 40) and Googled, a book about new media by Ken Auletta I received for my birthday.

Still listening: "A Confederacy of Dunces": I listened to it on the way to and back from a concert in Birmingham on Sunday; the novel's weaknesses (Mrs. Levy is even more of a caricature than the rest of the characters) and strengths (wild riffs, like filling the Army with gays so there will be no more war), are balancing out, somewhat.


J. Kaye said...

The $20,000 Pyramid - I loved that show too!

alitareads said...

Oh how I loved A Wrinkle in Time. That's a book I need to re-read.

I hope all Shall Be Well gets a bit better for you in the last 90 pages.

Here's my Monday Round Up.