Two Hits, One Miss

Even though I’ve had a short week at work it truly seemed like it was never going to end. Alas, it’s over now and I can get back to my books and plans for the weekend.

I haven’t forgotten that I said I’d report back on the books I read while on was on vacation so here it goes. I read seven books in two weeks; two mysteries and four fiction and enjoyed two novels a great deal.

A Month in the Country by J.L. Carr is set in 1920 England. Tom Birkin has just returned from WWI and to escape London and his broken marriage he goes to a small village to uncover a medieval church mural. Tom becomes absorbed by his work and finds himself healing through art, nature and love. This is a very moving story, perhaps because of its sheer simplicity, but one that I highly recommend.

The other hit was Sleep, Pale Sister by Joanne Harris. First I have to say that I like Joanne Harris’ writing a lot, and I also love novels set in Victorian England. If those two factors don’t appeal to you then maybe this isn’t for you. This is a much darker novel than others Harris has written, and it’s actually her first novel now being reissued. This Gothic novel has an artist obsessed with painting young girls. He finds the perfect model in Effie, and soon makes her his wife but all is not quite as it seems and their lives start to unravel. Obsessions, bordellos, and dark magic drive this book making it a fast read.

Now for the Miss. One book didn’t do it for me at all. Please, forgive me if it’s a book you love or one of your favorites.

Jewel by Brett Lott. Tedious and rambling even if it did have Oprah’s stamp of approval. I couldn’t finish this book and promptly left it on the plane. If you are on a Northwest Airline flight soon and find this book nestled under your seat then I hope you’ve brought other reading material with you.

Now off to enjoy the weekend.