Ahhhhh it’s May!!!! And do you know what that means?? Only 6 months left until Mario and I get married!!! *has a quiet but happy freak out about how many things are left to do*
I have been falling a little behind on my reading lately because I’ve been working on a lot of other stuff, and yes, I KNOW I have been failing to share it with you guys. Don’t worry, I will rectify that soon. For some reason, my blogging mojo always seems to fall to its lowest point in April. I blame Easter!
Nonetheless, I really enjoyed my April books. Here they are:
The Hobbit (fantasy)
Bilbo Baggins is a respectable Hobbit who leads a quiet life, until a wizard and company of dwarves arrive on his doorstep, hoping to enlist his services as a burglar. The quest that Bilbo joins has him wishing more than once for his nice, cosy Hobbit-hole, especially when he comes face-to-face with the terrible dragon Smaug. Luckily, he finds something that helps him on his way. Something…. precious….
I love The Hobbit (and The Lord of the Rings) so much, because they were one of the first and best things that my Dad read to me when I was young. Tolkien is truly the master and, arguably, the creator of the fantasy genre, and his influence can be seen in almost every fantasy epic written since his works were published. The incredibly rich backstory and history that he conceived for these novels makes you feel so immersed in his world.
The Hobbit is a pleasure to read – much shorter than The Lord of the Rings, and more whimsical. My copy is an illustrated edition given to me many years ago by a very dear friend, and I treasure it. :)
The Colour of Magic (fantasy)
The Discworld rests of the back of four giant elephants, who in turn stand on the back of A’Tuin the turtle as he (or she) swims through space. On the Discworld, Rincewind the failed wizard takes on the job of escorting the very rich, and very naive tourist, Twoflower, and his walking luggage, on a tour of the Discworld’s many sights.
I picked up The Colour of Magic after I heard that Terry Pratchett had passed away. Although I have always loved the fantasy genre, I had never read any of his work before, so I decided to start at the beginning of the Discworld series.
The novel is separated into four short stories, each detailing an adventure of Rincewind and Twoflower. Each of the stories is only loosely connected with the others.
I feel a bit like a heathen saying this, but it wasn’t really my cup of tea. I enjoyed it well enough, but I don’t think I’ll be picking up any more of the series. I still have Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman’s Good Omens on my list of books to read though, so it will be interesting to see how that goes.
Have you read much Terry Pratchett? What are your thoughts??
The Children Act (fiction)
Fiona Maye is a judge of the High Court, dealing primarily with family law matters. When an urgent case comes before her, regarding a young Jehovah’s Witness who is refusing a life-saving blood transfusion, Fiona is unprepared for how the situation will affect her on a personal level.
The Children Act was my first Ian McEwan, although I have several of his other books (Atonement, anyone?) on my shelf. I loved the complex legal and moral arguments presented in this novel, and I found the main character – a strong, professional woman (for the most part) – to be very personable. The subject matter was fascinating, and the resolution satisfying. I am looking forward to reading more of McEwan’s books (I was reassured that I didn’t cry in this one at all, because I have heard that Atonement is a real tear-jerker).
Dr Kay Scarpetta is a chief medical officer on the forensic trail of a serial murderer and rapist in Richmond, Virginia. As she helps the police to hone in on the killer, she finds herself becoming more personally involved in the case, as someone seems to be trying to implicate her in serious misconduct.
This was such an enjoyable read (if you love books about murder, that is. Anyone? No? Just me then). As with the The Children Act, Postmortem has a strong, smart, capable and professional woman as the protagonist, and I just love that.
This novel is said to be one of the first to feature ‘forensic crime’ – a breed of detective novel that is focused more on the crime lab than the streets. The genre has given rise to legions of CSI-type shows. Although Postmortem was published in 1990, it really doesn’t show its age too much. It was a gripping, scary serial-killer romp, and I loved it. The book was followed by a long series, and I think I will check out some of the sequels.
One small note – there was some language in the novel that made me a little uncomfortable, particularly with reference to one of Scarpetta’s homosexual colleagues. It is interesting to note, however, that Cornwell herself is gay (although she had not publicly acknowledged this at the time). So I don’t know how I feel about that, but I wanted to mention.
So that’s that for the month of April. I need to step up my game a little bit in May, because I am falling behind on my Goodreads reading challenge (add me on Goodreads if you have it, I love to see what you’re reading!). I’ve been slowly working my way through The Wind-Up Bird Chronicles, A Clash of Kings and Uglies, so my aim is to finish all three of those by the end of this month. Wish me luck! :)