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WHAT ARE YOU CURRENTLY READING?
Sarah Waters has never been on my radar before, but her latest, The Paying Guests, is one of the hot titles this season. I finally got to the top of the library list and picked it up late last week—I had no idea that it was nearly 600 pages! I started reading it on Sunday morning and I’ve hardly put it down since. I’d heard that this is one of those books that’s best read with no preconceived notions, so I purposefully didn’t read any lengthy reviews beforehand—and I’m so glad that I stayed away from anything that hinted about the plot! All I’ll say here is that it’s a psychological drama taking place in early post-WWI London, and it focuses on a young women and her mother who are forced by lack of finances to take a boarding couple (“paying guests”) into their home. I’m about half-way through and had to stop reading at a pretty pivotal plot-point, so as soon as I’m done writing this post I’ll be digging into it again!
WHAT DID YOU RECENTLY FINISH READING?
We Are Not Ourselves by Matthew Thomas has been described as a family saga, and when I hear that term I usually think of plots spanning multiple generations and packed with lots of family members. That’s not the case with this novel—it mainly focuses on one woman, her husband, their son, and the changes each goes through over the course of a lifetime. That’s not to say it’s not a good book—it just wasn’t what I was expecting. This novel is getting a lot of buzz this fall and I can see why. The writing is masterful and although the characters are not necessarily likeable all the time, their actions and feelings rang true to me. Parts of this book were almost unbearably sad and I cried more than once while reading it. It’s hard for me to say that I enjoyed this book—in fact, I felt rather depressed when I finished it—but it takes a powerful, talented writer to bring out those feelings. If you’re looking for a light, breezy novel—this isn’t it! But if you’re looking for a good character study with lots to think about—this would be a great book club selection—consider giving this title a try.
I’ve always been interested in behind-the-scenes books and I’m also interested in journalism, so when I was offered an ARC of The News Sorority (published on 9/30/14) by Sheila Weller I jumped at the chance. It’s a nonfiction account of the careers of three female television journalists—Diane Sawyer, Katie Couric, and Christine Amanpour—and it was a fascinating story of how the roles of females in hard television news have changed over the years. Although the author didn’t interview any of her three subjects for this book, she did talk with dozens of others and the result seems to be a pretty well-rounded view of their careers. Yes, there’s some gossip, but not so much that it felt tabloid-ish. I particularly thought that the accounts of how each woman dealt with reporting the events of 9/11 was interesting. If you’re a news junkie (like I am!) and/or enjoy reading about how news is reported, I’d recommend this book.
WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU’LL READ NEXT?
As usual, I have absolutely no idea—it’ll all depend on what I’m in the mood for at the time!
How about you? Have you read any of these? What are you reading this week? Please share!