An Alchemist (extra_aram) wrote,
An Alchemist

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Latest Fiction Reading

Just finished The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera.  I was very disappointed.  Didn't like his style.  Didn't think he had anything interesting to "say."  What a waste.  I wish I could say that his novel really made me think, but, instead, it just annoyed me.

New Stuff:

I am borrowing wife's novel: The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova; I am totally getting wrapped up in it.  I love the voice of the protagonist, and I really like her Kostova's story-telling style.  I think she really balances exposition and a somewhat spare, but eloquent descriptive voice.   And she keeps up with a fast story-telling pace, which I really am enjoying. 

This makes me giddy like a 12-year old girl with a crush.  I might be in love with this new book.  And, in general I am not at all interested in this Gothic, Faux-horror stuff.  But, Kostova is doing a great job at reeling me in, like some sort of Giant Marlin.  I have not read a new author, who is simply a very good story-teller, since I picked up Kushiel's Dart by Jacqueline Carey several years ago.

Just bought:
1. The final novel in Cormac McCarthy's Border Trilogy: Cities Of the Plain 
2. Annie Proulx's short story collection Close Range, from which, the story for the film Brokeback Mountain, was taken as the basis of the screenplay (which she collaborated on).

They are queued up to read.

I just added to my ToBuy List  a new novel I came across by a local Fantasy writer, named Catherynne Valente.  Her recent novel is The Orphan's Tale.  I am a little wary about this book, because as I read the excerpt, from the Prelude, though I found it to be punctuated with moments of clear brilliance, several sentences made me want to (almost literally) gag. 

I am totally obsessive with "my writers" having a clear, fairly clean style (i.e. it shall not be overembellished, pretentious crap).  But I read the Amazon reviews and a few people said that if I just keep reading past the first 50 pages, I shall be richly rewarded.  And, I remember having the same feeling when I first picked up Kushiel's Dart by J. Carey.  But I found, after a while, that Carey's vaguely psuedo-Medieval writing style/voice, which at first struck me as rediculous, in those novels actually did come to enhance the story she was telling.

So, I shall pick up Valente's novel, The Orphan's Tale, and try her out.  I have high hopes.  Discovering a new writer you like/love is like "falling in love all over again with someone new."  It's a wonderful experience.  And, I have found, moments like that are actually, significant highlights and turning points in my life (e.g. Tolkien, Carey, Irving, McCarthy, Tom Robbins, Jeanette Winterson, Hemingway, and a few others). 

So, reader of my LJ, Tell me something interesting about what you have just read or are reading.  Please, tell me. 
Tags: books, fiction, literature
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