5. The Shipping News - (2/13) - Annie Proulx 352p
Pultizer books are so hit and miss for me, and this was actually both.
At some points I was so bored, I wanted to put the book aside and never return. The last 1/3 was absolutely great.
The characters and the setting were very well done. The writing drove me batty. This is the sentence that started chapter 20. "Quoyle in Billy Pretty's skiff."
Hate fragments. Pulitzer loves them. Love personal pronouns. Proulx doesn't.
Anyway, the last third of the book made it worthy. I'm about to re-watch the movie, which I loved the first time I saw it.
Hey, did you all know that Sookie is telepathic? Really, she is. She can read minds. She calls it a disability. She's telepathic. You know how I know this? Because this book mentioned it 175 times. And of course, I read the 7 books before it which also mention it quite a lot.
I'm just not sure book series (in general) should go on as long as this one has. This was by far the worst for me. Nothing new or interesting, basically bordering on ridiculous. Hey, we're having a gathering of our super secret supernatural community, did someone invite Sookie?
Sookie got splattered in blood (again), Sookie got a new body guard, again. Sookie saved the day, again. Everybody's indebted, blah blah blah. At least she didn't slut it up this book.
Anyway, enough ranting. I know better than to keep reading series when they get like this. I have one more book here, and unless it blows me away, I'm done.
8. The End Of Alice - (2/28) A.M. Homes 272p
Powerful. Disgusting. Disturbing. Fascinating. Compelling. Unputdownable. Funny? Yes. Shocking. Graphic. GRAPHIC. Unapologetic. Erotic. Brilliantly done.
I love dark books, but even I have a line, and I thought that line was pedophilia. I guess I was wrong. I LOVED this book. Homes is an astonishingly good writer, and I just cannot get enough. This book brings you right in and really never lets you go. The narrator was amazingly constructed and as awful as the things he did were, I couldn't help but root for him in the end (for his redemption, of course.) (Incidentally, this book was voted by Henry Sutton of the Guardian as having a top 10 unreliable narrator sharing the list with Holden Caufield, and the incomparable Patrick Bateman.)
There were parts I had to read through my fingers. Times I had to read paragraphs one or two sentences at a time, my stomach recoiling. It's like Homes is saying, look, this is part of life. Deal with it.
I'm in awe of her skill. This is my first favorite of 2010.
I'd love to be able to recommend this book, because it's so well-done. But to be honest, I'd be VERY cautious about who I recommend it too. If you love Chuck Palahnuik and American Psycho, you're probably safe.