Wednesday, August 5, 2015

A Quick Word....

I've been reading greedily and saving my blogging for over here, so I thought I'd pop in and share some recent Instagram posts about Kate Atkinson's A God in Ruins until I'm ready for a more sustained instalment.

Of course, you probably already know that you should read everything Atkinson has written, but if you didn't, wouldn't the first paragraph in the excerpt below convince you to give her a try?

I snapped a photo of it to remind myself to annotate it, finding myself with no pencil nearby, and then thought you might like to use the line next time you need to make a speedy escape from social boredom.

In the photo below, I'm telling my Instagram friends what I think of Atkinson, burbling about "what she does with narrative and chronology while never letting go of brilliant storytelling." In each of her novels, the highly popular Jackson Brodie mysteries and the more strictly literary (although I question and dislike that supposed binary), she experiments with style, but the boundary-pushing never comes at the expense of story nor does it detract at all from our ability to empathize with her characters.

And my, she can keep us on our toes as readers. Catch her narrator being sly, winking at us....

As in this page that I photographed, below,

and commented on in the same Instagram post. Sly, sly, and more sly, and I'm sure you'll find as much pleasure as I did in catching examples of the little echoes she leaves for readers to spot, or not...

More to come soon, I hope. Also need to say a few words about Ferrante's and Knausgaard's. And I just read Atul Gawande's Being Mortal and I think it's ever so important. right now, I'm reading a charming, rather philosophical novel about reading and life and barging down the Seine in search of lost love. Yes, I want skeptical about the too-preciousotential of Nina George's The Little Paris Bookshop, but it won me over by several chapters in. And selfishly, I'm diving back into those pages as soon as. Click Publsh here....But if you leave any comments, you know I'll be back to read them....



  1. I just finished Storm murders and Ford's Hotel on the corner of bitter and sweet,and now am reading Karen Slaughter's Blindsighted (on the beach) and Ferrante No 1 . Can't wait your review,life was not easy for a girl in Naples some time ago,no?
    I visited Naples 42 years ago......

  2. Why haven't I managed to get 'round to Slaughter's books yet -- I've heard so much good about them. How was Hotel on the . . . ?
    I've never been to Naples. I can only imagine how changed you might find it now and I wonder what similarities persist.

  3. about things that happend during World War II in USA in Japanese community. I read something about it before but didn't understand how painful it must be for all involved. It is about war,love,duty,family. It is simple but really bitter sweet,light to read but a lot to think about

  4. Oh yes, We have a Canadian novel, Joy Kogawa's Obasan, that woke the whole country up to the shame of our WWII treatment of Japanese-Canadians -- the book was held up in Parliament in the Reconciliation process.
    Another novel that deals with this (set in the US Pacific Northwest), although more about its reverberations in subsequent years is David Guterson's Snow Falling on Cedars (also made into a movie).