I had planned to write more about books, but I've discovered that I don't like reviewing books and I don't like reading detailed reviews. I don't want to know every plot line or character. I want to read the book (or not) and find out for myself.
I just finished reading The Smell of the Night by Andrea Camilleri. When I read the first book in this series of detective novels set in Sicily, I wasn't enchanted. But I kept thinking about the book and found myself looking for the others. Inspector Montalbano is a strange guy. He loves good food and never seems to miss a meal. He has a long-distance, long-suffering girlfriend. I'm happy to be an armchair traveller these days, so I love being taken to Sicily.
The Count of Monte Cristo has me in its thrall, but it is a long, long, long, long, long book. I've been reading it on my Kindle for months. I don't read it every day. I read it in chunks. I'm a mood and place reader (I only read paperbacks in the bath), so unless I can read a book in a short time, like a day or two, I read several books at a time and jump back and forth between them. The Count of Monte Cristo is full of adventures and excitement, almost on every page. I think I can see where it's going, but I like the trip.
I also just finished One Writer's Garden, recommended by another blogger. I'm a former gardener and I enjoy reading gardening narratives. This book is about the garden created by Eudora Welty's mother, Chestina. As Eudora grew, she helped her mother in the garden and took over its care when her mother became unable to. As Eudora aged, she wasn't able to tend the garden either and it fell into disarray. She arranged for her house to be given to the state of Mississippi and a restoration of the garden began. The books is a biography of the garden, of Ms. Welty and her mother, and of the gardening trends of the early to mid 1900s. With lots of gorgeous photographs.
My husband and I are renting a condo in Boston for the month of May. We're running back and forth between Boston and Philadelphia, where we live, because we had to leave our old cat in Philly in the care of a pet / house sitter and because we can't leave our business for an entire month. We used to live in Boston and miss it very much. But my family is closer to Philadelphia, so that's where we've chosen to live. While in Boston, I thought it would be fun to read a Boston-based book. So I just finished the second of Dennis Lehane's Kenzie and Gennaro detective books, Darkness, Take My Hand. It's full of actions and evil. The author grew up in Dorchester, a part of Boston I don't know well, and sets his books there. There are forays into the parts of Boston I do know well and that's always fun. I don't particularly like Robert B. Parker's Spencer books, but I love the local detail in them (I know exactly where that ship-shaped restaurant is on Route 1!).
There are several other books that are partly read, but I'm writing this in Boston and don't have them in front of me. It seems unfair to tell you that I'm reading a biography of Ngaio Marsh without telling you which one.
I'd love to know if you've read any of these books and what you thought of them. If you have any recommendations for me, please share.