Sunday, 28 November 2010

Three Reviews

I have a new laptop and internet connection! Yay! I can now keep up with blogging, bloggers and all the other stuff that we rely on on the web.
Now a quick confession - I won't be able to finish the November Novella challenge on time, I have a couple more books to read, but won't have time to finish them this week as I have a bookgroup read that I have to finish as its the first book we're reading in a new group. However I hope to be finished the novellas by next week.

Now, I've finished three books in the last week so I'm going to do a quick round up of all three here then I'll be up-to-date with my blogging.

The Return of the Water Spirit by Pepetela

This teeny book (100 pages) from the African Writers series is rich in political, social and spiritual comment.Carmina and Jaoa live a spiritless life, shunned by his parents for their lack of religion she strives for power and money in the world of politics and trading. While he stays home playing Civilization on his computer. Around them the world is falling down, buildings collapse one-by-one, despite housing so many people the buildings drift to the ground, the people in them unharmed. A local girl, living close to a lagoon which has formed in the area, hears a deep music which gains in happiness and momentum as more buildings fall.
A good little read, although the symbols and infered meaning are very obvious and not skillfully placed.

A Man Without a Country - Kurt Vonnegut
For the 11 in 11 challenge over at library thing one of my sections to select books from is about reading more of authors that you have enjoyed previously and need to rediscover. I saw this memoir in the library and grabbed it as my first read from this section, I will probably read another Vonnegut fiction in the next year, but it was good to read something from the author.
Written in 2004 Vonnegut gives us his views on the world around him in a series of short commentaries. He writes about eveything from the First and Second World Wars to modern technology to George W Bush. He mangagrs to make many good, serious points whilst still keeping a light and readable tone.
My favourite part was when he explained why life should be enjoyed by 'farting about', taking long trips to buy a single envelope and then a single stamp for the pleasure of the trip and the conversations around you.

The Death and Life of Charlie St Cloud
Inspired by Vivienne's post I grabbed this from the library, and then wallowed in it all of last Sunday, when I curled up with it and a blanket.
Charlie at 15 caused the death of his brother Sam, in his final moments he promised his brother that he wouldn't leave him and never has. Meeting every evening, the pair play catch and live in the moment before their lives were taken away.
Everything changes when one day the beautiful Tess arrives in the graveyard and Charlie has to decide between living in the past or moving on.
Yes, it's corny. Yes, you've read books like it before. And, yes you can guess the ending just from what I've written above. But it's like a blanket, something to snuggle up with on a lazy, grey Sunday afternoon.
This also counts as an 11 in 11 challenge book as one of my categories is reads inspied by others.

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