Lately I’ve been lamenting the fact that I couldn’t find any great books to read, books I would treasure and read with enjoyment, books I would be drawn to re-read and delight in over and over.
It seems now I can’t find the time to read all the wonderful books I’ve stumbled upon. It’s like wandering into a room to find a feast spread out, to be sampled and savored and enjoyed.
From famine to feast, it seems. Here’s a summary of just four of the gems I’ve read lately:
Unusual Uses for OIive Oil
Many years ago I discovered the writing of Alexander McCall Smith through his wonderful No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency series. So I was thrilled to discover he’d written another series of novels.
This time the hero is Professor Dr von Inglefeld, a professor in the Institute of Romance Philology. He’s on a never ending quest to gain the academic recognition he thinks he richly deserves. Sadly for him, his efforts to that end, or any other, often go awry. McCall Smith does a wonderful job highlighting the absurdities that can flourish in academia.
The professor’s complete lack of understanding of life brings to mind another comic creation, Wodehouse’s Bertie Wooster. I owe a debt to the creators of both for the enjoyment I received from reading their works.
Having long loved Jane Austen’s classic, I was intrigued to come across this modern retelling, written by none other than Alexander McCall Smith.
While many reviewers didn’t care for this version of the story, I rather enjoyed it. Emma is still as bossy and controlling as ever, convinced she knows best and that the world will bend to her will. The familiar characters are around, driving cars and drinking cappuccino, but together they bring Emma to greater self-awareness and growth. Better than the original? No. Worth the read? Absolutely.
Some time ago I took a quiz that tells you what famous writers your writing style is like. I got Rudyard Kipling and Anne Rice. Ever since then, I’d been curious about Anne Rice’s work. When I came across Angel Time, I thought I should give her a try.
I wasn’t disappointed.
Angel Time tells the story of Toby O’Dare, who works as a contract killer. He’s soulless, remorseless, and so far, impossible to catch.
Then Toby is given a chance to redeem himself. An angel appears to him, offering him a chance to travel to the 13th century to right a wrong. Toby jumps at the chance, and starts his dangerous journey through loyalty and betrayal, selflessness and love. Loved this book and how it delved into the mind of the serial killer, the events that led him to his life of evil, and the salvation that was offered to him that led him out.
The Girl who saved King of Sweden
Jonas Jonasson has written a delightful and insightful tale of a South African girl who started life as a latrine cleaner to become the possessor of a nuclear bomb. She ends up in Sweden with her unwanted possession, and meets up and falls in love with a man who doesn’t exist, at least, not in the eyes of the law. The twists and turns of this story, and the cleverness of the heroine made for truly entertaining reading. I’m so pleased Jonasson has written other works.
Anyone have any suggestions for fun books they’ve read recently?