16 March, 2013

Airplane Reading (Weekend Reads)

With two trips involving planes and airports and no kids lately I've managed to get quite a bit of reading done. Even when I travelled for my corporate life I spent my flight reading, including the trips where my boss was sitting next to me. I eschew carry-on luggage for the sake of a good book and a cup of tea.

The first book I finished was The Midwife of Hope River by Patricia Harman. I really wanted to like this book. A midwife with a history, birthing in the mining communities of West Virginia with the backdrop of the Depression and the KKK looming. Sounded captivating, or at least promising. I love good storytelling in my novels. In the end, though, I only found it kind of meh. 

In all honesty, I thought the book needed a better editor. There were great elements of story here, but they got lost in irrelevant details. Some tightening up and a few clarifications and the book would have been great. Focus. Just like Patience, the main character, would tell her moms in labour, focus please.

Just this morning I finished Mister Roger and Me by Marie Renee Lavoie. I lingered in bed, leaving my husband to the kids and drank in the last few pages of this novel. A girl on the cusp of growing up, a seedy city neighbourhood, and a gaggle of sad characters so funny it was sad. This is the novel I dream of writing if I was to capture my own anxieties of being a kid. Maybe that's why I loved it so much?

I truly wonder what it would have been like to read it in the original French because the English translation was funny, eloquent, and full of little twists of language that made this about the writing as much as the story. And the story, while sad and depressing for the most part, was honest. A girl with a desire to do nothing more than live, and live with interest and independence, is matched with a neighbour, Mister Roger, who is running towards his death. They are match in sarcasm and in attitude. Maybe that's why I loved it so much?

Regardless, it was a fantastic read. Well worth the loss of leg room on a plane.

1 comment:

Live a Colorful Life said...

I'll definitely check out the second book.