So I finished Wide Sargasso Sea which I... did not like. Author Jean Rhys means to tell the story of Antoinette Mason, the woman married to Mr. Rochester in Jane Eyre- her childhood, the early days of their marriage, and the reasons he locks her in the attic. It probably stands alone OK but for me it's impossible to imagine it without having read Jane. I don't read Jane as realistic fiction- I see it as a fairy tale- so I can't get myself worked up over the "injustice" of her situation. Therefore going into detail about how awful Rochester is and how pitiable and wronged she is doesn't really work for me. It's a book I've meant to read for a long time, and I'm glad I did, but I'll move on now!
I'm still working on Sisterland, by Curtis Sittenfeld, and I started reading The Jasmine Isle, by Ioanna Karystiani, a tragic love story set in early 20th century Greece. I'm enjoying it but it's a slow read, written in a very loose and impressionist style that you have to follow closely. In other words it's not a light book but worth the time you put into it. Karystiani has a new book out, Back to Delphi, which is my piles too. I also started Serve the People! by Yan Lianke, a satire set in China at the height of the cult of Mao, about a dutiful functionary who has an affair with his superior's wife. It's fun.