Wednesday, September 23, 2015

More Book News


As I've written before, I usually don't quit books. I press ahead and finish them, because you just never know when a book might improve and gather a head of steam that propels the reader toward a surprising ending.

But I quit a book yesterday. I'd been reading "Remembering Blue," by Connie May Fowler, a Florida author whose book "Sugar Cage" I read and enjoyed years ago. "Blue" was actually given to me by my blog pal Ms. Moon, who pulled it off her shelf when I visited her in February. I seem to remember she was lukewarm about it at the time, so hopefully she will understand when I say that I just couldn't make headway in it at all. I read slightly more than 100 pages, and while Fowler writes beautifully about Florida's landscape and wildlife, I found the plot and the characters incredibly tedious. They didn't seem real to me. The overall effect was overly idealized and romanticized, kind of like watching a sappy old movie through a vaseline-coated lens.

So, yeah. Don't hate me, Ms. Moon!

Speaking of reading, did anyone see the story about the failure of the e-book apocalypse? Apparently print book publishing is alive and well. I'm glad, because I've never warmed to e-books (or audio books, for that matter) and I really like my print.

Print books do wear out, though -- I continued our library weeding yesterday, pulling some worn, oversized picture-book copies of "Alice in Wonderland," "Dracula" and "Don Quixote." No one had checked them out in at least five years, and they were so big, we thought it unlikely they would get used again. They were bigger than the average child's book bag. We still have all three books in regular-sized editions, so the big ol' picture books are going away.

(Photo: Flask Walk in Hampstead, earlier this month.)

7 comments:

alphabet soup said...

Thanks for the link about e-books, I’ve only ever bothered to read one on my tablet and it was such a performance I’ve never repeated it. The link page also took me to an article about Carmen Balcells, a literary agent to many well-known Spanish language writers; I’m an avid reader of Latin American writers. Not in the Spanish language you understand….
Ms Soup

e said...

I would love to break in to Ms. Soup's treasured collection of Latin American writers, which I can read in Spanish...I had the same experience with Fowler's novel, so you aren't alone there.

Ms. Moon said...

As I may have said, I was being overly kind when I said that this one not one of Ms. Fowler's best.
It's sort of shockingly bad. She is an author who started out with huge promise. I don't know what happened because her last three have been just almost unreadable.
Toss it.
Life is too short.
And instead of hating you, I love you all the more!

ellen abbott said...

I'm still plugging through The Familiar, determined to finish it. less than 200 pages to go.

Sharon Anck said...

I've quit reading a book or two myself so I know how you feel. If I find the characters hard to like or the story unbelievable, I'm done with it.
I love today's photo. I do love the Hampstead area.

The Bug said...

It's been a long time since I read an actual book - I'm all about the audio & e books these days. I like that I can crochet & "read" a book at the same time :)

My favorite Florida author is Carl Hiaasen. Heh.

jenny_o said...

I'm surprised but happy to read that e-books have not been the total apocalypse that I feared they would be to printed books. I think they certainly have their uses (I'm thinking of two of my relatives who have pain issues and long medical waits, and they found their e-readers wonderful) but as long as I can hold a real book in my hands that is what I'll be reading :)