Oct 9, 2011

Sunday Salon: What Rules Your Reading?

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There was a modern production of Hamlet on PBS or one of the TV channels the other night - Hamlet in a black suit, his stepfather in royal dress up, and his mother in a long elegant blue gown. Don't you want to watch it, my husband asked. No, I said, it's way too dreary and I've had the classics up to here - I drew an imaginary line on my forehead.

So now I read cozies, mysteries and thrillers, as well as what we call women's fiction, and good travel writing, plus an occasional memoir. I don't really want to re-read 1984, Sense and Sensibility, Macbeth, or Gulliver's Travels. It took me about six months after graduate school to read a book with pleasure again. I was so used to taking a book apart at the seams to analyze it that I couldn't read any book without trying to do the same even though I didn't need to. That was umpteen years ago, however, and I've since overcome that tendency. Some could say I lean towards overly generalizing in my book comments nowadays.

What am I reading right now? A couple of historical novels including

a novel about family, friendship, love, and loss by British writer, Lucinda Riley. The Girl on the Cliff is published by Penguin.

The Time In Between: A Novel is an Atria publication by Maria Duenas, translated from the Spanish. It's about a couturier who becomes an undercove agent for the Allies during WWII.

Postcards from Nam is a novel about Vietnam, told by a fictional Vietnamese lawyer in DC who receives postcards from an unknown person in Thailand, known only by his signature, "Nam." The book is an AmazonEncore publication.

These are a few of the books on my shelves. What have you been reading this past week?


  1. Since blogging, I would have to say that a lot of what rules my reading is excitement from other bloggers about a book!

  2. I'm with you on not wanting to journey again through the tomes you mentioned. I don't want to analyze my reading these days, either.

    After graduate school, I grabbed the lightest, fluffiest books I could find.

    Nowadays, I do venture into literary fiction, but my choices are usually mysteries or women's fiction.


  3. Interesting books on your list. I'm always discovering "new" books from fellow bloggers.

  4. I love to read the book that someone said changed their life or they couldn't get the characters out of their head. I would hate to feel that I had to analyze everything I read. I think your reviews are great...exactly what I want in one...not too much...just right!

  5. I have to be in the right mood to tackle the classics, so I know exactly how you feel.

  6. I like the sound of The Girl On The Cliff, hope it's a good one. Have a great week and happy reading :)

    PS thanks for popping by my blog and yes I loved The Language of Flowers

  7. I have never heard of Paris Paris, all these books look lovely and are going on my TBR list. Funny how what is going on in our lives determines what we read.

  8. I have never heard of Paris Paris, all these books look lovely and are going on my TBR list. Funny how what is going on in our lives determines what we read.

  9. Happy Sunday on Monday!
    The covers of those three books look interesting, but The Time in Between is the best sounding one. So I'll look forward to your review.

    I think this whole month will have me busy with Mysteries of Udolpho as it is quite a thick tome. But I'm ok with it. I'm an enjoying it immensely, and only wish I had more time to devote to it.
    Enjoy your week :)

  10. I'm glad you able to read for enjoyment now.

    My mood rules my reading.

  11. The Time Between sounds very interesting. I've picked up and put down two classics in the last 2 months that did not hold my interest and I don't feel bad one iota ;o)

  12. Boy, I know what you mean! I didn't do lit for graduate school, but undergrad was enough to turn me off "classics" for many years. I still read them -- mostly to complete one or another of my book lists. But I make myself read them for enjoyment, not analysis. And I find that I am seldom inclined to write a review of a classic -- that still feels too much like homework.

  13. Sometimes classic novels pull me in, but I do like a lot of contemporary fiction. I'm drawn to female writers, so I guess that makes it women's fiction. Why is it women's fiction if women write it or read it and just regular fiction if it's by anyone else?

  14. I usually just go by the mood. Sometimes I'm in mood for something heavy, and sometimes I'm in for something fun and light. It varies. When things are going tough, I always drift to easy reads.

  15. I have a copy of The Time in Between that is calling my name every time I walk past it!

  16. I love classics - but then, I never even did A level English, and I did a science degree - so I guess I wasn't put off for life by the few I studied at school.

    What rules my reading? At the moment self-imposed rules of only reading from my shelves, unless I've borrowed a book from a friend or the library.


I love getting comments and your thoughts...