Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Two Duds in a Row

Not gonna lie, the last two books I've read have been less than life-changing. I'll still have you all know that I have not bought a book since I started this thing. It's getting harder!

The Opium Clerk was the first in my series of duds. It just didn't do much for me and the story was hard to follow.

Most recently, today I finished Dragonfly. That's what I get for picking up a book at TJ's Consignment for $0.25!

I had this English teacher in high school, Mr. Grigsby. Besides being a grammar freak he also had this pet peeve about books that were too descriptive. He was a bare bones kind of guy. Back then I thought that was berserk, but now I know better.

Take a gander at the opening sentences of Dragonfly:

"Bad thing were starting to happen again in Uncle Henry's basement. These were things that had happened before, when the wind swung round, when the trees all felt the blood rush to their leaves after the exertion of August and the idling of September; when the chuckle-dark harvest moon shaped pumpkins in its own image, brought its secret wine flush to the scarecrows' cheeks; when the rich bounties of the land lay plump for the taking and the light left them alone for longer and longer at a time."

Chuckle-dark harvest moon? Now keep in mind that the entire book is written in this fashion.

I now understand Mr. Grigsby's beef with descriptive reading material. Some description is good, but sometimes writers can cross the line. And it's a very thin line.

Plus side of the book: it talked a lot about kingdoms of Light and Dark. It made several Biblical references and eventually light overcame the darkness. Story of my life. I was pleasantly surprised to find that it was such a strong theme throughout the entire story.

Next up I'm going to take a swing on the non-fiction side with:

Swiped this from my folks while I was home for Christmas. I'm a little skeptical. I hope it's not the same thing over and over again, coinciding with stuff I already know. I really hope not.

Here's to reading!

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