What I read in November and December 2009

The Help by Kathryn Stockett. This was one of my first Kindle content purchases and I really really enjoyed it, which is a lot more than can be said of:

Midnight in Madrid by Noel Hynd, which I don’t think I’m going to finish.

I selected them using a lazy but simple criterion: they were both high up in the Amazon fiction bestseller rankings. I ended up being delighted by the one and very disappointed by the other.

Somewhere along the middle of that loved/hated spectrum was my third Kindle purchase: A Gate at the Stairs by Lorrie Moore. I really liked bits of it, but I didn’t enjoy the feeling I got that there were several pretty unconnected stories going on here.

Les contes de la Bécasse de Guy de Maupassant que j’ai lus plusieurs fois – la première fois en cours de français en 4ème ou en 3ème, c’est à dire il y a une éternité, et je les ai relus depuis plusieurs fois, pour resavourer (si c’est le terme) la cruauté si bien vue.

The lost symbol by Dan Brown. Mmmm, well, maybe the breathless dash through a city solving clues is reaching its limit as a concept here; it was pretty obvious to me where Robert Langdon and his equally dim female acolyte of the moment should be heading for from the start! And I probably missed the whole deep philosophical point the book was perhaps trying to make, but I got a real “so what?” feeling at the end of the book and felt completely cheated out of a decent thriller ending. Sorry, Mr Brown, not your best effort by a long chalk.

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. A lovely cozy read.

Dial M for Merde by Stephen Clarke – much like the others by him. I would probably enjoy these books more if the Paul West character (and the author?) didn’t make it quite so clear he thought he was God’s gift to all women…