Before I start talking about books, what do you think of this blog background? I think I like it, although I had to mess around with the HTML code for my own blog template to get the margins right. The right margin on the sidebar is still a little too far to the right, but I'm not sure what else to do, so it can just stay that way. It's readable, I believe. Is this background more ME do you think?
So, BOOKS. It tickles me that so many of you read and enjoy "discussing" books on my blog. As you know, I've been reading lately, and some of what I've been reading have been your suggestions. I really enjoyed The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo. It took me a little bit to get into it because the book starts with a bunch of background on Sweden's business and financial systems, but once I got past that, it was hard to put it down. In fact, I promptly ordered the next book, The Girl Who Played With Fire, and again it was hard to put down. I don't know why, but I didn't read the author bio until the end of the second book, and that's when I learned that Stieg Larsson, the author, died not long after turning in manuscripts for the first three books. Do you know what that means? I only have one more book to read and that's the end! Here in the U.S., The Girl Who Kicked a Hornet's Nest will be released in about a month, although it's been out in Europe for some months now. In fact, when I was sitting in the surgeon's waiting room the other day, a man came in carrying the book, and I had serious thoughts of mugging him to get it! If you enjoy reading and haven't read the first one yet, pick it up next time you're at the library or bookstore.
Another book I've enjoyed lately is The Unquiet Bones. I'm not sure how I found this one, but I think it might have been an Amazon recommendation. The book is set in medieval England and the main character is Hugh de Singleton, a younger son of landed gentry who must make his own way in the world. While studying for the clergy at Oxford, he becomes interested in surgery. Hugh continues studying on his own and then undertakes more formal surgical studies in France. Upon returning to Oxford, he opens a small practice. One thing leads to another, and he ends up investigating the death of an unidentified woman whose bones are discovered in the privy pit of a nearby castle. Some Amazon reviewers criticized the story as being unrealistic, but for those of us who enjoy mystery and history--especially English history--I think this is an enjoyable book. In fact, I've ordered the second book in the series, a Corpse at St. Andrew's Chapel--it should get here before too long.
Because I belong to a book club that meets at my local quilt shop, I'm always on the lookout for quilt-related fiction. I came across this book on Amazon and saw that it had seven customer reviews and each reviewer gave the book five stars, so I ordered it.
Have you read it? The reason I ask is that I got to page 38 and put it down. I found I didn't really relate to the main character--I just kept wanting to slap her. As far as I could tell, the woman was suffering from depression and knew it but felt seeking treatment was somehow disgraceful. However, even that much wasn't entirely clear--there seemed to be several mysteries involved that the authors were trying to keep mysterous--to the point that I was just getting a little bored. I wouldn't really MIND picking it up and trying again if I thought there was a good reason to do so, and that's why I ask if any of you have read it. If you have, if you liked it, let me know.
Have YOU read anything new lately that you can recommend to the rest of us?