I give this book a three star because it has a solid mystery that made me stay listening until the bitter end. Bitter end, you ask? I bought this book...moreI give this book a three star because it has a solid mystery that made me stay listening until the bitter end. Bitter end, you ask? I bought this book in a frenzy of audible.com $4.95 sale clicking. I didn't read the reviews or look at the author's website before buying the book. If I had KNOWN the author was a CHristian author, I would have passed it by. The rampant evangelism in the book had me wishing I was reading it and could skim through all the dogmatic crap just to find out "who did it." I was kind of disappointed that I had the right person pegged all along, and the red herrings were all just there for fluff. I found myself actively gagging when one character looked at another and saw he was a "true Christian and not capable of committing murder"--and multiple references to "knowing it in her/his heart." There were a few procedural issues with the police chief as well. Once I start reading a book, I have a hard time putting it down unless it is extremely awful, and that is why I kept listening to the book. She needs to work on her portrayal of non-Christians. I found her agnostic character flat, bland and completely unrealistic, her portrayal of a hippie-looking judge unbelievable and the basic motive for the murders sketchy. And I listened to the whole damn thing. There was enough there to keep me engaged through my many eye-rolls.(less)
Listened to this on audible. I am sure that I missed some sections while I focused on other things, and it didn't seem to make much difference to my l...moreListened to this on audible. I am sure that I missed some sections while I focused on other things, and it didn't seem to make much difference to my listening. I wouldn't consider this a great book, but it was fun to listen to. Sure, Some of the characters fall flat, but I definitely caught myself saying, "oh, no!!!" With a (okay, very predictable) twist. Even knowing something trite was around the corner was okay, though, because it is such a short book and listening to Simon Vance made it worth the time.(less)
Listened to this on audible while working in the garden. I found this quite gripping and fast paced. It is unlike the other couple of books I have rea...moreListened to this on audible while working in the garden. I found this quite gripping and fast paced. It is unlike the other couple of books I have read by the same author, but I found myself caring deeply about what might happen to the characters. It would have been a little better if she had taken risks by killing one of the main characters and not have such a "happy" ending. You do have to suspend your disbelief a bit on some of the scenes in this book--but otherwise it is a nicely done story,(less)
What a terrific story! Others have talked about the convoluted nature of the story, but that is what makes Walters' work so much fun to read--or liste...moreWhat a terrific story! Others have talked about the convoluted nature of the story, but that is what makes Walters' work so much fun to read--or listen to. You have to pay close attention to everything she writes, but all the pieces are there to put it together. It's a brilliant new take on Oedipus, and, while not everything is wrapped up in a neat little package, the main plot points are pretty well explained. I also liked that she made reference to a character from "The Ice House" in this story. While she is not writing a traditional series with a singular detective or journalist as her protagonists, I feel like I am in the "same world" with both books. (less)
Listened to the Simon Prebble Narration of this book while gardening. Good story, decent plot with some surprising and fun twists. Characters are beli...moreListened to the Simon Prebble Narration of this book while gardening. Good story, decent plot with some surprising and fun twists. Characters are believable with enough of them likable that I found myself caring about them enough to continue reading. Sort of wish Walters was into writing series.(less)
I actually listened to the audible version of this book, and I found myself wishing I had the written version to look at. Every once in a while, there...moreI actually listened to the audible version of this book, and I found myself wishing I had the written version to look at. Every once in a while, there would be a phrase that I wanted to linger over and re-read and savor. I did hit the rewind 30 second button pretty regularly.
I didn't want to stop listening once I started, and found myself doing extra yard work and house work just so I had an excuse to keep going. The story is very compelling and utterly romantic. The unexpected journey that Harold takes--leaving his house to drop a letter in the mail only to just not stop walking--enables Harold and his wife Maureen to heal some very old wounds. Definitely worth your time to pick up this little gem.(less)
This book is definitely not a mainstream novel, but falls clearly into the "literary" novel pile. The book called to me when I was doing other things,...moreThis book is definitely not a mainstream novel, but falls clearly into the "literary" novel pile. The book called to me when I was doing other things, and I found myself wondering about Enda and the priest. I have to admit to sitting upright when I clicked the "next" page on my kindle only to find out that the book was at the end. We are so used to having things spelled out for us that it is sometimes hard to finish a book with so many things left to my own imagination.
If you are looking for a "regular" story, you won't find it here. The plot is pretty much: a man dies, a woman tells their story, and a priest goes fishing. But the telling of it is lyrical and sweet. The four or so hours it might take you to read it is well worth the time.(less)
After looking at a banned book list for something to read in celebration of banned book week, I was met with a huge number of familiar books. Resolved...moreAfter looking at a banned book list for something to read in celebration of banned book week, I was met with a huge number of familiar books. Resolved to read something I had never heard of, I picked The Color of Earth without reading any of the descriptions. The cover art looked promising, and, hey, it was a banned book so it had to have something worthy to say, right?
It was both disappointing and surprising to realize I had actually purchased a manhwa--or Korean Graphic Novel. I am not a particular fan of the genre, and I typically only read them if I am promised some payoff that goes beyond a simple romance and pretty pictures. (Think Chicken with Plums.) Or, if I order them by mistake and it is still banned books week and I haven't picked up a book I haven't read before....
So, I sat down this morning to take a look at it and really didn't put it down until I had finished it. I had to take a break for lunch and some errands, but I kept coming back to it as soon as I was done with the immediate task.
The Color of Earth is a fascinating look at Korean culture and moires. While it is clearly of a bygone era, it does not feel dated and I can imagine that the various issues are still treated with the same delicacy and heady euphemisms today. I had close Korean girlfriend when I was growing up, and her shocked sensibilities about anything sexual or boys remind me very much of Ehwa's response.
The drawings are detailed, and in spite of my general tendency toward grumpiness at the form, I was pulled into their charm. It was good enough that I immediately ordered the other two books in the trilogy so I can complete the story.
Why was this book banned? The book is about a girl's coming of age--learning that boys have penises and girls do not, a rather clear image of a boy having a wet dream, of another jacking off in his pants in front of the girl, her finger covered in blood to show she has started her period, and another girl lifting her skirt to show a boy her 'persimmon seed.'. There is even another seen where Ehwa's best friend shows her her 'seed' aka clitoris and offers Ehwa the chance to touch it. They are subtlety drawn, but you can not miss the content. In each case, the images are delicately balanced with the language to support them as human nature and rights of passage. I can see any number of people freaking out at the frank content. But,I thought they were all tastefully drawn and nothing out of the ordinary life experience for most of us.
Ehwa's sense of innocence and wonder is rather refreshing in the face of the rather crude men surrounding her life. But, she has an awesome mother and role model who seems to be bucking tradition in her own way. It was a quick read--being mostly pictures and all--but like any good book, I am certain I will find myself musing on the content for some time to come.(less)
I'm just going to have to admit this is not the highest priority read for me. My husband and I picked it up as one of our "read-aloud" to each other b...moreI'm just going to have to admit this is not the highest priority read for me. My husband and I picked it up as one of our "read-aloud" to each other books, and only got through 70 pages or so. The zombie bits added in are done with a perfect Austen voice, and there were times where I had to look at the original to figure out what was being changed. However, it has been long enough since i last read Pride and Prejudice, that I was distracted by trying to separate the two. I suspect that someone who has recently read P&P or has it well in their head will have more fun with it. I think it's charming in its own way, and my hubby or I will occasionally call out "Ladies, the Pentagram of Death!" and chuckle when the mood strikes us. (less)