Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Ken Bruen (ed): Dublin Noir: The Celtic Tiger vs. the Ugly American

My husband got me this book for - oh God, it was either my birthday, which would make this late blogging of it REALLY embarrassing, or else Christmas, which is only a little bit embarrassing. It's a collection of short stories by mostly NA authors, written as you can tell in the noir genre and with Ireland as the subject theme.

My poor husband was on to me for the first few weeks to find out if I liked it, but I didn't read it straight away (this is unusual for me) because I wanted to save it as a back-up book for times of drought. By the time he'd given up I did start reading it, and frankly wasn't too enamoured with it so it got pushed to the side for a while. I finished it this month anyway (by this month I mean March, the time of writing), and have been left with a resounding impression of Meh.

Sunday, April 03, 2011

Christine de Pizan: The City of Ladies and Thorstein Veblen: The Theory of the Leisure Class

I'm putting these in the same post because I happened to read them back-to-back and found a similar theme. I started with The City of Ladies on 8th of March - International Women's Day - and finished with Veblen's two days later. Both books have been hailed as feminist literature, and reading them so close together sparked lots of comparisons in my mind. All brilliant, all very intellectual. Sadly, I can't remember any of them now, I don't think.

Friday, April 01, 2011

Charles Dickens: Hunted Down

Hunted Down was in the Aldiko's mystery section, so I had to read it. It's one of Dickens's typical magazine stories, I suppose, very Victorian damsel-in-distress, sudden ending, swift punishment of the villain, self-sacrificing death and so on. Actually it's quite gripping up to the ending, which is pretty lame. The worst side of Dickens is his Deus ex Machina-trait, and this was full of it. Suddenly people turn out to be the unfairly impoverished good child's rich relations and so on. (This is my first Dickens post, but I have read more of his, I promise, so I know it's a pattern.) Anyway, still enjoyable and dramatic. Also, like all Dickens, in one way or other historically interesting. I liked the descriptions, however brief, of the office work/life insurance business.