I initially started reading this after I saw the film, a bad habit of mine when I'm intrigued by a story. Knowing the major beats of a story before reI initially started reading this after I saw the film, a bad habit of mine when I'm intrigued by a story. Knowing the major beats of a story before reading it usually leaves the book abandoned early on, either because the writing isn't up the visuals, or the characters aren't richer and more fulfilling than the version presented on the screen. I was more than pleasantly surprised that this wasn't the case with Gone Girl, that knowing what was going to happen(or a skeletal frame of a much beefier story in print) actually enhanced the experience. I could let myself really absorb the two pivotal characters of the book--Amy and Nick--and get inside their heads in a way the film, though excellent, only hinted at. Without spoiling it for those who haven't seen the movie or read the book, this is a perfectly crafted tale with fully realized, searing characters who leap off the page. I honestly can't say more than that, but if you like trying to unravel a psychological mystery--one in which the facts are always at the mercy of dueling versions of the truth--you'll enjoy this read....more
I'm getting out of the habit of reviewing books, but there's no harm in a few words to explain why I would give this book five stars despite having toI'm getting out of the habit of reviewing books, but there's no harm in a few words to explain why I would give this book five stars despite having to stop reading at point point because it was too disturbing, even for me. Actually, I just did. That Stephen King is a popular author sometimes guilty of losing the plot is an old chestnut. I wondered in recent years if the prolific writer of my teenage years might still have some stories in him after his retirement, and whether he would be able to spin a tale as well as he once did. He does, and he can. In fact, he's better now than he's ever been. Even when he's not writing about the supernatural, he knows how to build suspense and horrify with his imagination. The Mercedes Killer is one of the most disturbing monsters he's ever written, and he's entirely human. Everything awful about him is presented in stark detail, even his origins, and King managed to make me me feel both revulsion and pity for this creature. King took me way outside my comfort zone, and that was balanced perfectly with his equally human and imperfect protagonists, including a character even he didn't expect to become as vital to the story as she did. As a horror novel, as a detective story, as a story period, this was one of the best I've read in quite a while....more
I first began reading Of Human Bondage many years ago when a wise romantic at work suggested it as a prescription for my perpetually toxic relationshiI first began reading Of Human Bondage many years ago when a wise romantic at work suggested it as a prescription for my perpetually toxic relationship with an ex I couldn't seem to shake loose from my life. It's the story of a young man's life from childhood to middle age told a hundred years ago in a style no modern writer would use, but I didn't find the book difficult. I was actually very engaged by Philip Carey's early life and time in school, but life got in the way. For years, I told myself it was my duty to return to the book and finish it, and now that I finally have, I am incredibly grateful it was recommended to me.
This is, simply put, a young man's life in pages, from the defining moments of his childhood to the moment he decides the pattern of the rest of his life. I won't spoil whether he finds contentment or not, but for a book taking place a century ago, his lifelong struggle to find meaning and contentment is timeless. I found myself marking passages, sometimes even entire pages, because Maugham had a rare gift for seeing the world as it is and stating it plainly. He doesn't shy away from the ugliness and cruelty of human nature, but these are, as Philip would have said, part of the tapestry.
I would have rated the book more highly because I think it's a beautifully told story, but it falls short of perfection. There are more than few sections I found myself skimming because I lost interest, but the book always earned my interest back, and it was worth the patience. What I found tedious might be of interest to others, though, and the book as a whole is worthy of being called a classic....more
I can't recommend this series highly enough to everyone I know, primarily because Terry Moore has a rare talent for creating characters who feel so reI can't recommend this series highly enough to everyone I know, primarily because Terry Moore has a rare talent for creating characters who feel so real you can't help but empathize with them and learn something about yourself in the process. The main story concerns the complicated relationships between a group of friends as forces within and without threaten to tear them apart. Neil Gaiman famously said that what most people don't know about relationships could fill a book, and Strangers in Paradise is that book. I can't say it better than that. What's truly remarkable, especially if you're someone who longs to see more LGBT characters in fiction, is that Terry Moore started writing this ages ago, and his through line--that love is precious, whether it's romantic love between two women or a deeply forged friendship--remains as relevant and necessary today as when he began telling the story of Katchoo, Francine, and David....more
I thought this book was amazing. It manages to weave compelling characters, a realistic apocalypse, themes about human interconnectedness and our needI thought this book was amazing. It manages to weave compelling characters, a realistic apocalypse, themes about human interconnectedness and our need for more than survival... in short, just a really brilliant read....more
This sequel to the more ambitious android novel vN was an enjoyable read, with a likable and interesting protagonist, but it also suffers the same narThis sequel to the more ambitious android novel vN was an enjoyable read, with a likable and interesting protagonist, but it also suffers the same narrative problem as the first. The story seems to be building to something, but when that something finally happens, it feels almost rushed. Nonetheless, I really enjoyed returning to the setting, even if the story knocks your feet out from under you roughly a third of the way through and leaves you feeling(at first), like certain events from the first novel were ultimately pointless. ...more