June 22, 2008
It is a cool and gorgeous day in Northern California – although yesterday we had more moody weather. The sky darkened and flashes of lightening zig zagged through black clouds, followed by the grumbling of thunder. It even rained a little. This morning the lingering smell of smoke from lightening strikes drifts on the morning breeze. There is probably nothing that evokes fear more to a Northern Californian (living in the mountains) than the smell of smoke. The news is reporting that no fewer than 75 fires were sparked by lightening in the forests of Northern California yesterday – So we are wary and alert today…but, still I will find some time to relax with a book.
This past week I finished reading Atonement (read my review) – my first McEwen novel and one which I eventually liked quite a bit. I have to admit I nearly gave up on McEwen in the first 50 pages, but am glad I hung in there as the novel improved ten-fold by the mid-way point. I’ve been avoiding reading On Chesil Beach because it just seemed so…well, hyped. But, I’ve re-thought my opinion and actually picked up a copy of the book this week at Barnes and Nobel.
Next, I read Home of the Gentry (read my review) for the Russian Reading Challenge. Nothing humbles me more than reading the Russian classics. I always feel like I miss half the meaning in these books due to my ignorance of Russian history. Home of the Gentry is supposed to be one of Turgenev’s greatest works, but it was just so-so for me based on enjoyment level.
I’m currently reading Life of Pi, by Yann Martel – and I’m having a little trouble getting into this one, although I appreciate Martel’s humor. The Bookawards Yahoo group is discussing Martel’s novel this month and I’d like to get it finished in the next day or so in order to participate in that discussion. Have any of you read this book? Did you find it slow going at first? A little odd? Were you ultimately glad you read it? I’d love to hear your thoughts!
In other bookish “news” I’ve decided to expand my Novel Challenge Blog to include literary events for readers and bloggers. I am always so amazed at the vast numbers of challenges and events…and the creativity of my fellow bloggers at designing them. As most of you know, I am also helpless to resist them!
I hope you all have a wonderful Sunday of reading or doing something fun and relaxing. I’ll be wading through Life of Pi and maybe taking a walk later…