Wednesday, February 02, 2011


Like I said, I do read, I just don't have time to blog. Not even in the weekends, that only come - did you know? - once a week.

I've read:

Anna Katharine Green: The Mystery of the Hasty Arrow
On the Aldiko ranking scale I gave this three stars. I read it because the author seems like an interesting sort of pioneer in Wikipedia. It's an odd sort of book, it starts off very almost dull, only to become more dramatic and really flesh-and-bloody as it goes on. A young girl is shot with an arrow in the prestigious New York museum. The girl, while being really pivotal to the story, is never described to any other extent than being pretty, full of life, and then dead. I was first convinced this book would be very wooden, what with a rather dated detective hero and all, but was pleasantly surprised by the layers that were uncovered.

Mary Roberts Rhinehart: Dangerous Days
Three and a half Aldiko stars. It starts off rather brilliantly really, with great descriptions of how divided the US was before finally joining WW1. I was thinking that it could be used as a script for a film, how it would highlight areas of US history that aren't remembered any more - what with History being mostly the Wild West, WW2 or mob stories - but it gets disturbingly black and white and pro-war as it goes on. If you chose not to support the war or hate Germans you were a coward and a traitor.

Sven Å Christianson: I huvudet på en seriemördare
Very interesting book by a a highly qualified psychologist, who has conducted in-depth interviews with Swedish criminals convicted of serial offences - paedophiles, murderers, rapists. While never losing his compassion with the victims (including a scathing put-down of a journalist who wrote that Thomas Quick, before his more spectacular convictions, had only been convicted for petty crimes - Christianson acidly points out that raping little boys is anything but petty) he nonetheless can show compassion for the twisted souls that have committed these horrific crimes. More importantly, he wants to understand how they were shaped and educate us all so we can spot warning signs in children around us. However, the author names some criminals/victims and leaves others anonymous in a way that lacks logic, and seems sensationalist more than anything.

Jonas Jonasson: Hundraåringen som klev ut genom fönstret och försvann
Bokcirkelbok, och som en deltagare sa: "jag visste att jag inte skulle gilla den när min mamma sa att den var så dråplig". Jag tyckte den var rätt okej, ibland riktigt rolig. Men retrostilen var tröttsam, och ingen titulerar någon annan i dagens Sverige, hur mycket de än gjorde det på 60-talet. Uppskattade dock historielektionen. Tydligen är filmrättigheterna sålda -  och ja... det kan ju bli hur dåligt som helst faktiskt. Eller riktigt bra, om de lyfter fram det mörka mer än författaren själv gör.

Mary Roberts Rinhart: The Bat
This is the same book, almost exactly, as The Circular Staircase. Only in the 1920s. Bizarre. I bookmarked three charming passages that I can't be bothered to quote now but might if somone really really wants it.

Alexander McCall Smith: Tea-time for the Traditionally Built
I am having a rough time at work and feeling like three types of rubbish at least, so I borrowed this for comfort reading. Having kept away from McCall Smith for a while now helped me appreciate it more. It was sweet. It's the one where Mma Ramotswe's white van is finally scrapped and she investigates a football team that's losing.

Cory Doctorow: Jury Service
Futuristic, but bogged down in detail. One Aldiko star. Boring.

Stephan Mendel-Enk: Tre Apor
Bokcirkelbok. Jätteintressant med beskrivningar av judisk kultur i Sverige, ibland enormt gripande, men på det stora hela tyckte jag det var lite rörigt. Och jag brukar inte ha problem med att hänga med i upphackade tidslinjer, men det hade jag nu. I och för sig mår jag som sagt ruttet.

That may be it for now.

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