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GuiltyFeat

GuiltyFeat

Joined May 2016

Just one more chapter before bed.
review
GuiltyFeat
Girl, Woman, Other | Bernardine Evaristo
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Panpan

I was about three quarters of the way through this when it only went and won the Booker. So I thought I better finish it. Probably the worst Booker winner Since The White Tiger.

A bit painful, inelegant, didactic and even inauthentic. The book projects an authority that it never earns. Writing is clumsy and cliché-cluttered. Stock characters are fleshed out with lists of identifiers rather than actual observations and insights. Not very good.

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GuiltyFeat
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Pickpick

A really astonishing novella that starts with an epidemic of Spanish Flu in Iceland in 1918 and spins it into a yarn about a lost boy and a then a generation of lost boys nearer the end of the century.

I was lucky enough to meet Sjón last night after seeing him on a panel with novelist David Grossman at the International Writers Festival in Jerusalem. Another amazing evening at the festival.

Cinfhen Hey, just read your ToB camp review!! Brilliant!!! I couldn‘t agree with you more. I haven‘t read Bowlaway but I‘d hate to see Daisy advance. Although it‘s a summer tournament and Daisy does make a good mindless beach read🏖 6mo
GuiltyFeat Thanks, @Cinfhen It was such a treat to take part even if the book they assigned me wasn‘t so great. 6mo
Cinfhen The summer picks are not that great overall 😝Last year @L_auren was a guest judge for the #ToB and she was fabulous!!! It‘s such a huge honor to be chosen. Congrats to you ♥️ 6mo
L_auren @GuiltyFeat ToB people unite!! 6mo
L_auren @Cinfhen Aw thank you!! I would have been so anxious if it wasn‘t for the Litsy community having my back. So grateful 💜 made it so I could enjoy the experience 6mo
22 likes5 comments
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GuiltyFeat
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Pickpick

Finished the book on shabbat. It‘s a sensual tale of identity and young love. Last night I went with my wife and daughter to a screening of the movie at the Jerusalem Cinematheque followed by an Q&A with the author, Professor Aciman. He was humble and charming, erudite and entertaining. What a fabulous evening as part of the Jerusalem Writers‘ Festival 2019.

Tanisha_A I loved this book. And I hear Mr. Aciman this year at Jaipur Literature Fest, such a delight! 7mo
Tanisha_A *heard 7mo
Smrloomis Nice. @Tanisha_A I imagine the Jaipur festival is lovely though I‘ve never been. Maybe someday! 🤞🏽 7mo
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GuiltyFeat @Tanisha_A Fabulous! He was so charming and humble. Enjoy! 7mo
Tanisha_A @Smrloomis You have to tell me whenever you plan to attend it. 🙂 7mo
Smrloomis @Tanisha_A thanks 😁👍🏽 I hear Jaipur is lovely and I love book festivals. I hope to make it someday soon! 7mo
Tanisha_A @Smrloomis Yay! I would love to show you around. 🥳 7mo
Tanisha_A @GuiltyFeat I think a sequel to this book is coming up! 7mo
Tanisha_A @Smrloomis Also, the next JLF is scheduled from Jan 23 - 27, 2020. Here is the link to their website - https://jaipurliteraturefestival.org/ 7mo
GuiltyFeat @Tanisha_A Yes! He spoke about it during the Q&A. It's out later this year. 7mo
21 likes1 stack add10 comments
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GuiltyFeat
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Pickpick

Had the joy of hearing Professor Sands talk about his astonishing book in a lecture at the law faculty of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem last night. After he graciously signed my copy, he introduced my wife and me to former Israeli Supreme Court Justice Gabriel Bach, aged 92, who was one of the prosecutors of Adolf Eichmann back in 1961. Wonderful evening.

Texreader Wow. What an opportunity! 7mo
Cinfhen What a great event! 7mo
andrew61 Great photo. I read this book earlier this year and was overwhelmed by the story of the three families and the horror of franck. I was also fascinated by the creation of the two crimes, who knew how significant a comma could be and astonished of the humanity as he hugged frank's son. A brilliant writer. Did you listen to his podcast 'intrigue' on radio 4, its still available and id recommend. Thanks for sharing the photo. 7mo
GuiltyFeat @andrew61 He spoke about the podcast, The Ratline I think. I‘m going to start listening this week. 7mo
andrew61 @GuiltyFeat yes, it's a fascinating listen. I'd forgotten it was ratline, intrigue is the overall series - there had been a previous series about a Chinese politician. I'll be interested to read your thoughts. 7mo
26 likes2 stack adds5 comments
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GuiltyFeat
Bel Canto | Ann Patchett
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Pickpick

Perfectly lovely tale, patiently told, even if the ending was a little rushed. It takes place in some undefined country, but it seems undefined in other ways too.

It went on perhaps 50 pages longer than it needed, but there was enough magic to justify the raves I have read about this book over the past decade or more.

DivineDiana Love this cover! ❤️ 10mo
GuiltyFeat @DivineDiana Yes! Picked this up cheaply online and chose this version specifically for that cover. 10mo
39 likes1 stack add2 comments
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GuiltyFeat
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Mehso-so

This was a real disappointment. I‘d read a rave review which led me to believe it would be right up my street. In fact it‘s pretty basic, lacking any particular charm or wit or sense of originality.

Rather than being woven through with history, it sits awkwardly on top of the Kennedy assassination and fails to establish a credible back story.

Pretty weak and not the introduction to a new voice in crime fiction that I was hoping for.

Samplergal I thought it was weak as well. 10mo
29 likes1 comment
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GuiltyFeat
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Pickpick

It‘s teeny tiny. Around 30 small pages. But those 30 pages have just enough bite to let you know you got bit.

We‘re visiting ground we‘ve covered before (in Amsterdam and in Amis‘s The Information), but it doesn‘t matter much. Happy belated 70th birthday Mr McEwan.

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GuiltyFeat
Hilda and the Troll | Luke Pearson
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Pickpick

Read this in around 15 minutes. Then read it again. Then my daughter read it despite saying that she doesn‘t get graphic novels. She laughed throughout. Hilda is awesome. Discovering new heroines is awesome. I can‘t wait to read more of Hilda‘s adventures.

Such is the life of a reader.

quietjenn I love Hilda! 14mo
Cinfhen I‘m with Daisy...I don‘t get GN either 🤷🏼‍♀️ 14mo
21 likes2 stack adds2 comments
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GuiltyFeat
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Pickpick

Read it this morning in one go. The first of this year‘s Booker shortlist for me. Reminded me of James Elroy in its noir descriptions of 1940s LA... with extra poetry. Unusual, but successful, it‘s dark and it‘s about PTSD post WWII. But it‘s also about creeping fascism and the horror of McCarthyism and it felt urgent and contemporary without laying it on too thick.

Let me know if you want to borrow it @Cinfhen

Cinfhen I absolutely do!!! Thank you for the offer 😍and I like your lovely model. I‘m glad you enjoyed this book, as I recall you were not looking forward too much. 1y
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GuiltyFeat
Knockemstiff | Donald Ray Pollock
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Pickpick

I've read some crazy, outsider, efftup fiction before, but this was some next-level shizzle. Poverty, despair, drugs, violence, incest, bigotry, drugs again, drive-ins, infidelity, murder and a lot more drugs. And it's funny. Dark, mean, bleak and funny. These connected short stories are not for everyone, but I ate them up like diner pie with extra cream.

cobwebmoth Ha! This town isn't far from me. 😊 2y
36 likes5 stack adds1 comment
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Pachinko | Min Jin Lee
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Mehso-so

This ended up really annoying me as my investment in the first 300 pages of this family epic turned out to be wasted. All the author really wanted to do was have a rant about Japanese racism towards Koreans. I'm sure that's a perfectly legitimate topic, but why go to the bother of pretending to write with empathy about believable characters? The author showed no respect for her creations and left me feeling as cheated as a Pachinko parlor patron.

Tamra Thanks for the honest review. I was anticipating reading this, but lately I‘ve read unfavorable to so-so reviews like yours. (edited) 2y
39 likes1 comment
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GuiltyFeat
Telling Stories | Tim Burgess
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Pickpick

Tim Burgess is clearly bonkers. These loose-limbed ramblings about his shambolic rocking and rolling are as close to full-on, stream of consciousness hokum as anything Joyce or Ms. Woolf published. Plus neither Ulysses nor To The Lighthouse include a page-long digression on the logistics of rectal ingestion of class A drugs. It may be hard to follow at times with scant regard for chronology, but it feels authentic.

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GuiltyFeat
A Killing in the Hills | Julia Keller
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Panpan

This was utterly horrible. Every paragraph felt like a sentence written in draft format, then written again in the longest form possible and then written one more time for luck. I'm not sure if the editor was supposed to choose, but they seem to have all made the final version. I have never been so exhausted by dreary, expository nonsense with every point hammered home with a wrecking ball. Manipulative, boring, repetitive and just plain shite.

Suet624 Ugh. 2y
emilyhaldi Lol, love this review 😆 2y
39 likes2 comments
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GuiltyFeat
Judge Dredd: The Complete Case Files 09 | John Wagner, Alan Grant
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Pickpick

These early Dredd stories are all from the time when I was too scared to read 2000AD. I was still traumatized by the images of Dredd's brother Rico which I'd seen in an even earlier issue and which still give me nightmares. The stories are all prototypical Dredd stuff with 1st appearances of Judge Anderson and Judge Death punctuated with the usual Walter the Wobot shtick. Good fun and I'll buy more of these if I can find them at the right price.

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GuiltyFeat
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Pickpick

Bought this because of the good reviews and the absolutely gorgeous presentation. As a biography, it's about as straightforward a history of a life as it's possible to imagine. That's not necessarily a criticism, but, as with any life, there are longueurs and repetitions. The analysis of Lear's nonsense is deft and illuminating (like the Dong's nose) and probably the best thing here. Mostly, though, I just like how the book feels in my hands.

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GuiltyFeat
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Pickpick

Super efficient procedural with informers grilled, leads chased down and bad guys braced. Fat Ollie makes his biggest contribution so far and he's an interesting addition to the team leaving Carella conflicted. In the hands of any other writer, he'd be a two-dimensional bit-player. The closing scene where Ollie acts without hesitation while Carella and Kling pause, is simple and stunning. Love these books.

SusanInTiburon I‘ve only read a couple by McBain, and enjoyed them. Do you have any favorites? 2y
GuiltyFeat @SusanInTiburon I started with the first in the 87th Precinct series about 5 years ago and I‘m up to the 31st one now. They‘re pretty uniformly terrific and they make excellent palette cleansers between meatier books. 2y
37 likes2 comments
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GuiltyFeat
Ties | Domenico Starnone
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Pickpick

Positively Lahirian. This was a great read and an interesting follow up to Jhumpa Lahiri's own book about learning Italian. She introduces her own translation here and explains why the book attracted her. There are certainly similarities of tone. This was a layered novella that used different points of view to tell a connected story of brokenness and togetherness. It's not a tale about happy people, but did offer some pleasure to the reader.

emtobiasz Oh, what a striking cover! 2y
35 likes1 comment
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GuiltyFeat
Dark Knight III: the Master Race | Frank Miller, Brian Azzarello
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Mehso-so

Blade Runner came back after 30-some years. Star Wars has a new lease of life. Couldn't The Dark Knight still work? Perhaps, but it doesn't. This has nothing of the original in it except an odd moment or two where Carrie shines. This is just a big dumb comic like a lot of other big dumb comics. The most damning thing I could say now about this project is that it's just nothing special.

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White Tears: A novel | Hari Kunzru
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Pickpick

I was completely wrong-footed by this and then thrilled by the direction the narrative took. A tale of spoiled white music collectors morphed into a scorching revenge ghost story about cultural appropriation and the birth of the Blues. Delightfully unexpected and subversive, timely and powerful.

Lola Sold 2y
38 likes1 comment
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GuiltyFeat
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Pickpick

Mosley usually delivers, but this was the best of his that I'd read in a while and the best of the Leonid McGill stories. All the modern noir tropes are there - the hero who fights better than anyone else, the friend who is the most feared hitman on the planet, the friend who can hack anything anywhere and the friend in the police who can get him out of any jam. And yet, there is something more about these stories.

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GuiltyFeat
The Hate U Give | Angie Thomas
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Pickpick

There are some important and powerful moments here, like teaching African American children how to behave in front of the police and having them recite parts of the Black Panthers' Ten-Point Plan. Valuable, real, shocking. But there's also a lot of hand-wringing over what to wear to prom and the best way to respond to a Tumblr post.

I know I'm not the target audience, but I want to believe that you shouldn't have to try so hard to reach them.

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Moving Kings: A Novel | Joshua Cohen
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Mehso-so

Some of this was very inside, using Hebrew slang and army slang at times, but it also tried to universalize the experience of the conscript - not knowing why or who you have served. I don't think the novel succeeds throughout, it's tonally inconsistent and sometimes the stream of consciousness just feels ill-disciplined, but it's part of an interesting trend where American Jewish novelists address Israel directly for the first time.

Cinfhen Not familiar with author or book... 2y
GuiltyFeat @Cinfhen he was on Granta‘s 2017 list of young American writers. I‘ve had some interesting successes working through the authors. https://www.theguardian.com/books/2017/apr/26/granta-list-best-young-american-no... 2y
Cinfhen Interesting list, I‘d say I was familiar with 2/3 the list and have read a handful of titles. Thanks for sharing list... 2y
34 likes3 comments
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GuiltyFeat
Blackjack | Andrew H. Vachss
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Panpan

I've read enough Andrew Vachss to know that he isn't always at the top of his game, but this was completely rubbish. It never made sense and the elements never cohered in this weird mash up of streetwise mercenaries taking on a supernatural cloud of murder... or something. Then the whole thing concludes 40 pages before the end of the book, so Vachss rehashes an old short story and tacks it on as an "epilogue". Really poor stuff.

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GuiltyFeat
Autumn | Ali Smith
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Pickpick

Outstanding. This is modern literary fiction at its finest. Urgent, funny, current, literary, with the added bonus of using a large enough font to make reading super-comfortable. And how could I not love a novel where one of the main characters begins every conversation with, "What are you reading?"

I don't know where Ms. Smith is going with this proposed quartet, but I am already excited about reading the next one, and the two after that.

susanw Yes, to everything you said. 2y
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Kingdom Cons | Yuri Herrera
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Pickpick

Possibly my first ever Mexican writer. This was longlisted for the Tournament of Books, so I picked it up, but at 103 pages it was hardly around long enough to leave a lasting impression. Some nice courtly intrigue and a light, accessible translation, but all too brief for my tastes.

Lola I absolutely love his writing. This is actually the first he wrote but the last published in the US in translation. Lisa Dillman‘s translation is beautiful; I have sought out her other English transitions of Spanish. If you want more Yuri, Signs Preceding the End of the World (which has a note by LD about doing the translation) and The Transmigration of Bodies (my favorite of the three) are both excellent. 2y
Lola Another great little (and creepy in the best way) book translated by Lisa Dillman (Spanish author) is 2y
GuiltyFeat Thanks @Lola I really noticed the quality of the translation and I was intrigued enough to consider exploring further. 2y
41 likes1 stack add3 comments
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GuiltyFeat
Six Four | Hideo Yokoyama
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Mehso-so

Pages and pages of endless exposition with very little actual plot in between. This was barely a crime novel choosing instead to focus on the workplace politics of the press liaison team. I'm not sure how I got through this. Leaving aside the fact that the protagonist detective solves nothing and contributes little to the movement of whatever plot there is, this was very hard to take seriously. Silly fluff that took up too much of my time.

Cinfhen Oh no @emilyhaldi we may need to rethink this book choice!?!!?? #Booked2018 #JapaneseThriller 2y
keithmalek Based on what you wrote about it, I'm surprised you even gave it a rating of So-so. What does it take to get you to Pan a book? 2y
GuiltyFeat @Cinfhen you can definitely skip it. It‘s a tough slog that took me the whole of Shabbat and an hour afterwards to finish. 2y
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GuiltyFeat @keithmalek I wavered at the end because it wasn‘t hateful like, say, Gone Girl or Milk & Honey. It just wasn‘t terribly good. 2y
Cinfhen Thanks, Daniel...a whole of Shabbat plus an hour is a whole lot of reading time!!! Do you have a #JapaneseThriller you would recommend?!???! 2y
emilyhaldi Uh oh! @Cinfhen 😬 2y
34 likes6 comments
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GuiltyFeat
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Mehso-so

Notes for a first novel. Lots of ideas and some properly funny lines, but it felt underdone. It's rare that I think an author needed another 50 pages to flesh things out and tell an actual story rather than carve out a loosely contained series of vignettes. I don't mind things being left unresolved, because they weren't properly cooked to begin with. It was a book that demanded too little investment.

2BR02B Sorry you found this one... difficult to digest. 2y
2BR02B (Also, sorry for the bad vitamin pun) 2y
GuiltyFeat @2BR02B You never need to apologize for a pun with me. 2y
41 likes3 comments
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Lab Girl | Hope Jahren
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Pickpick

A real treat of a memoir that might have evaporated into mawkishness, but was rescued by the author's winning charm and self awareness. Just like the seeds and the trees researched and discussed, the author grows and blossoms throughout forever seeking the light and ultimately triumphing over adversity. It's a fine piece of work that delights and illuminates. Earthy, hardy and potentially perennial.

2BR02B Excellent review! I'll plant this one on my TBR stack. 2y
44 likes1 comment
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Fever Dream | Samanta Schweblin
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Mehso-so

The clue is in the title. It's a fever dream. If you forget the title of the book, there's no need to worry, it's also made explicit every couple of pages. On the plus side, it's unnerving, weirdly familiar and all done in under 150 pages.

BarbaraBB Love the review although I liked the book a lot better than you did 😀 2y
37 likes1 stack add1 comment
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Forest Dark: A Novel | Nicole Krauss
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Mehso-so

I was a little disappointed by this interconnected set of shaggy dog stories, but more than a little delighted to hear Ms Krauss read from it tonight at the Jerusalem launch of the book‘s Hebrew edition.

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GuiltyFeat
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In London for the weekend celebrating my wife‘s grandmother‘s 100th birthday.

Picked up a few essentials.

Texreader Wow! What a book haul!! 2y
Alfoster And 100! That‘s fabulous!😍😍😍 2y
mrozzz 👌🏻👍🏻😄 2y
58 likes3 comments
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GuiltyFeat
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Pickpick

If I hadn't already purchased this, I might never have read another Tess Monaghan story after the last one. Which is lucky, because this was several degrees smarter.

This was political and plotty, with enough actual detecting and making things happen among all the coincidences and accidental witnesses. I actually feel good about continuing on with the series now even if the writing is still a little self-conscious and uneven.

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GuiltyFeat
Sing, Unburied, Sing | Jesmyn Ward
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Pickpick

My first response to this is that it wasn't as good as Salvage the Bones which is harsh as I believe that book to be one of the finest novels I have ever read. There was just too much familiar ground. The ghosts, the slave narrative, the drugs, the neglect. I read large chunks of this with a genuine sense of dread that worse things would happen, but in the end, the worst thing that happened was life caried on just as miserably as before.

Notafraidofwords Great review. I️ agree. Misery had no beginning or end for any of them. I️t will continue for generations ... 2y
Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks I have Salvage the Bones and was thinking about starting it... her writing is phenomenal ❤️ 2y
56 likes2 comments
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Real Tigers | Mick Herron
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Pickpick

Outstanding third entry in the series. Herron has already established that no one is expendable - heroes and villains can be dispatched at any point. He backs this up with the strongest plot so far with the slow horses of Slough House caught up in an internal war within the security services played out with real spooks and soldiers. The set pieces are executed with panache and it's fun, with at least one moment when I laughed out loud.

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Pond | Claire-Louise Bennett
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Pickpick

Both Karl Ove Knausgaard and Nicole Krauss mentioned this in their recent New Yorker interviews, so I ordered it and it came in this minimalist edition from Fitzcarraldo. The stories are beautifully and deliberately composed, but decidedly off-kilter. Then they began to wash over me and I felt less like the narrator was nuts and more like she had tapped into the bonkers, self-deluding and obsessive nature of every lonely and insecure person ever.

LitLogophile Your review definitely put this on my TBR! I ❤️story collections and that description is very intriguing. 2y
GuiltyFeat @LitLogophile happy to have passed on the recommendation. Let me know how you get on with it. 2y
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IQ | Joe Ide
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Mehso-so

Super derivative and culturally inappropriate. The author even makes jokes about when it's OK to use the n-word despite not being African American and employing it liberally in the mouths of his gangbangers and gangster rappers.

Isaiah Quintabe (IQ, geddit?) is just your average genius-level hoodrat who is an autodidact polymath with a criminal background, a heart of gold and an unparalleled sense of integrity. Just poorly written nonsense.

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March: Book Three | Andrew Aydin, John Lewis
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Pickpick

Read the first one last year and read it again today along with volumes two and three. Simply a remarkable achievement. Angry-making and inspiring, this is a story that must be told and retold about the heroic actions and non-violent beliefs of people who sought justice and equality. Stunning.

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The Golden House | Salman Rushdie
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There's no one quite like Sir Salman. The Golden House is a glorious Rushdiyan tragedy where every thought references some delicious piece of popular culture from points throughout history.

In one memorable paragraph, Rushdie gets from classical Greek myth to The Tempest via a complete lyric from Lieber and Stoller's "Stand By Me". The Golden House is everything I could have hoped for from a new Salman Rushdie novel.

mrozzz Loved this book!! 2y
51 likes1 stack add1 comment
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GuiltyFeat
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Pickpick

I thought this was very fine. Perhaps the most Israeli novel I have ever read, combining a deep love of the country with real ambivalence for the things such love demands of its people. It's a bold narrative choice to write a number of chapters from the POV of Ariel Sharon... while he was in permanent vegetative state, but that's just the kind of book this is. Probably not for everyone, but very definitely for me.

Suet624 Halfway through this and really liking it. Great review. (edited) 2y
Cinfhen Excellent review, looking forward to reading this one 2y
44 likes2 comments
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GuiltyFeat
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Mehso-so

My first Travis McGee in a few years. They haven't aged nearly as well as other contemporaneous stuff. Trav is a big lunk, and this was a bit of a plod. It reminded me most of the worst aspects of Fleming's Bond books, but at least there the dubious sexual politics was handled with a little more panache.

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GuiltyFeat
Moving Kings: A Novel | Joshua Cohen
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Just took delivery of another batch of books from my pilot chum who flies to the Middle East as my personal private book courier.

#lifeisawesome

Kristelh This looks like a great collection. 2y
Tonton Wow, very nice stack! 2y
43 likes2 comments
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GuiltyFeat
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Pickpick

My brother was so worried about me reading my first Richard Dawkins a couple of weeks ago that he bought me this as a present. It's the perfect counterpoint. Rabbi Sacks makes a strong case for the co-existence of religion and science, each offering something different but vital. Brim full of wisdom both secular and divine, this was a gentle, non-confrontational read. That approach alone puts it ahead of Dawkins' slightly more belligerent framing.

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The Blood Miracles | Lisa McInerney
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Pickpick

I guess I would have preferred for this to go off in a new direction rather than offer a new perspective on characters we'd already met. The dialog is still top class, but the plotting got a little overwrought and Ryan's back and forth between the women who continuously want to have sex with him despite his weakness and general stupidity is hardly the stuff of Shakespearean tragedy. Still, entertaining, just less so than the previous volume.

ReadingEnvy Great cover, but I'm not sure I want to recover that ground, hmm. 2y
33 likes1 stack add1 comment
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The Hollow Man: A Novel | Oliver Harris
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Can't quite remember how I got to this, but it rattled along at a fair pace even as the convoluted plot became more and more absurd. The author tried to make London one of the characters in the story, but he may have been trying a little too hard. Still there were plenty of references to places I recognized - shout-outs to Edgware, Hampstead High Street and the Finchley Road. Pleasantly surprised to find this is the first of a series.

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Exit West: A Novel | Mohsin Hamid
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Mehso-so

Oddly bloodless tale of migrants and their migrations. This never really seemed to get going which may itself have been a metaphor for the transient lives of our protagonists, but it felt kind of weightless which is the exact opposite of how I remember The Reluctant Fundamentalist.

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GuiltyFeat
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Pickpick

Fairly straightforward tale of jealousy, incest, pedophilia and homicidal insanity, all wrapped up in under 160 pages. Each of these mini-masterpieces is the template for countless TV episodes and B-movie screenplays, but they have never been delivered with more brutal concision than in these perfect paperbacks.

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The Power | Naomi Alderman
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Full disclosure: I had Friday night dinner with the author's father in August 1985. OK, I get that's not much of a disclosure, but I've never been able to say that before, so I thought I'd just throw it out there.

The Power is a delightfully subversive novel. It works on its own terms both as a thriller and as a piece of classic sci-fi, forcing the reader to consider prejudice, privilege and patriarchy without seeming worthy or didactic. Brava.

CaroPi I love this book. One of my favourite this year. I was cracking myself with the end... Sadly none of my friends are readers so I can't share my experience with them... 2y
ReadingEnvy I just got this from Book of the Month! 2y
48 likes2 stack adds2 comments
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Pickpick

Been waiting for this one for a while. Turns out, it's a bit of a shaggy dog story where the plot is less important than the telling. Stylish enough, although there were too many bits pilfered from other places, like Minority Report or La Femme Nikita, and, while the endless pop cultural references were aimed squarely at me, even I found them a little tired and tiring. Mostly fun with around 50 more pages at the end than seemed necessary.

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Pickpick

Turtle Alveston may well go down as one of literature's great heroes after this emotionally taxing, and relentless debut. But, as terrific as Turtle is, her father, Martin Alveston, is surely this novel's most extraordinary creation - a grotesque, complex, evil villain of genuine menace, even when off-screen. He is both wholly believable and worryingly plausible. A disturbing read, for sure, but undeniably impressive.

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Annihilation | Jeff VanderMeer
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Genuinely creepy and fantastical. I wasn't quite sure what to expect, but it managed to be unsettling without menace, unlike, say, House of Leaves which was terrifying. I wasn't sure if I would like this enough to want to read the next two in the trilogy, but I'm going to order them now in these great looking hardback editions.

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