Monday, April 18, 2016

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

I've had a really fun and productive reading week.

I finished Distant Star, by Roberto Bolano, which I truly enjoyed and have started re-reading in advance of Wednesday's book club conversation. Speaking of my book clubs, Wednesday is the last meeting of my crime reading group and I'm all sad because it's been so much fun and the people are great. Contrast that with a book club I attended for the first time last week, a general fiction book club, which was so bad I will never return. The problem? The people were incredibly not-nice. One woman even made fun of the way I speak, because apparently my bland non-New-England-accented speaking voice is hilarious to Upper West Siders. Ugh!

I also finished Anne-Marie O'Connor's The Lady in Gold, about Gustav Klimt's Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I, which was at the center of a highly contentious legal case to restore it to its original owners after the Austrian government took it away during the Nazi era. It was pretty good; great story anyway. I've seen the painting at the Neue Gallerie in New York and now I want to go back and see it again. Extraordinary.
This week I'm still working on In the Courtyard of the Kabbalist, by Ruchama King Feuerman, which I'm enjoying and hope to finish.

On the nightstand this week is Joshua Hammer's The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu, a neat book with a dumb title about the struggle to preserve precious manuscripts from Al-Qaeda in Africa. I got it for review from Simon & Schuster. It's a mix of history, suspense, current events and bibliophilia, a nearly impossible-to-resist combination.

And I'm still working through Charlotte Brontë: A Fiery Heart, by Claire Harman. I picked up a hardcover copy at HousingWorks Books because my galley copy is getting trashed at the gym- I tend to bring my galleys to read at the gym because the books always wind up in terrible shape after several months of sitting on the elliptical. This time I really want a nice copy for my shelf though!

That's it for me! What are you reading this week?


Lisa Hayden Espenschade said...

I enjoyed Distant Star, too: it was my first Bolaño book and felt like a good start. (I haven't read more Bolaño, though there are a couple books on the shelf...)

And I'm very sorry to hear about your book club experience!

Rachel Reads said...

I'm sorry you had such a bad book club experience! It's weird trying a new book club.

I found the title of The Bad Ass Librarians very off-putting too. I look forward to your review!