Books I read this summer:
- Perfume: The Story of a Murderer by Patrick Suskind, translated by
Every year I read one book that manages to make me lower my expectations and then sucker-punch me a few on the nose. This was that book. Seductive, passionate, delicious, glorious, magnificent, a triumph, and it will cause you to lean against the wall and smell and try to catch your breath as it drowns you. Truly, truly wonderful. 10/10. (PS: it might offend the religious, but I'm in that group and I was OK.)
- The Mysterious Affair at Styles by Agatha Christie.
I promised myself I'd read all of Agatha Christie's work by the time I was thirty. This is her first, and is pretty good, with the exception of one silly red herring. I read it in a day. Nothing like a good mystery novel. Oh, yeah, bet you a dollar you won't guess the murderer. 8/10.
- The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
Fun, if a little silly. The only part that really works is the actual rape and murder at the book's beginning, and a little bit of that murder's consequences. The rest is just a slightly more literate version of a trashy romance novel. It's easy to see why it got so much acclaim - that our beloved dead are in a (controversially) better place. Didn't really click for me, though, even if that IS what I believe in. 6/10.
- The Giver by Lois Lowry
Thanks to my sister for giving me this. What can I say? Lowry uses a book's limitations (no sight, no sound) to her advantage and does it well. The story itself concerns a boy who gets ready to be assigned his "role" in a dystopia unlike someone like Philip Dick would write. I liked it, even if it is for children. It lacks depth, but for some reason that's OK. 8/10.
- The Holcroft Covenant by Robert Ludlum
Typical Ludlum: great plot, good story but 2D characters (or, more specifically, characters-that-never-change-or-fall-in-love-in-3-days). The action is amazing though, and it's definitely an interesting, but also entertaining, read. 8/10.