Boooook blaaaaahhhhhgggg

Because what else is there today? Not necessarily in order…

Hamnet. What can I say? “Everyone” (almost) loves Hamnet and I am definitely in that category. Some people on goodreads complained that Shakespeare was never mentioned by name. I disagree completely with that complaint. I won’t try to analyze this book (I am not intellectually equipped to competently analyze literature). I just felt that it angled into Shakespeare’s life mainly through the imagined viewpoints of his wife and other family members. I loved this. I am not intimately familiar with Shakespeare’s plays even though my kids have acted in quite a few (mouse played Hamlet in an all-female cast a few years ago) and in a weird interim career, I supported production teams for a local youth theatre organization’s plays. Hamnet is completely a FICTIONAL work, as disclaimed by the author. Facts about Shakespeare’s family are not easily verifiable.

Ivory Shoals. Setting: Florida, weeks after the Civil War ends. A boy’s mother dies and he embarks on a solo journey across the swamplands of Florida from a small town in the Jacksonville area to the Tampa area to find the father he has never met. I love Florida (although I am always ready to leave after about a week) and I LOVE reading books set in Florida. I loved this book. I loved Swamplandia, which I read years ago and Carl Hiaasen is funny as all getout albeit a genre that I read only sometimes.

The Sweetness of Water. Setting: Georgia, weeks after the Civil War ends. I only gave this book four (out of five) stars. It was wonderful but some little bit of something was lacking to get me to five stars. But. More was good than bad and this author is a very young man and this is his first novel.

This Tender Land. I finished this after work today and at one point I told the GG that I was NOT crying because I was sad, it was because the book I had just finished made me cry. Note that it wasn’t a BAD ending. It just made me emotional. I was introduced to this author’s works a few years ago by my uber cousin UKW. This author often writes about Minnesota and Gitchee Gumee often makes an appearance (not in this book though). He often writes detective(?) series novels and I read three or four of the Cork O’Connor novels before I turned to other things. I will probably read more of those at some point. Although crimes did happen in this story, This Tender Land was not a detective story.

P.S. ALL of my cousins are uber cousins no matter what degree cousin they are. Just that on the Fin side, I have two female cousins who were born the same year as me. We grew up together, spending our summers on the shores of gitchee gumee, and were a dynamic trio as kids, not that we didn’t ever squabble. We are the proverbial three-legged stool.

3 Responses to “Boooook blaaaaahhhhhgggg”

  1. Jay Says:

    Nice gargoyles

  2. Margaret Says:

    I re-read the ending of “Hamnet” a number of times; I found it so amazing and poignant. “This Tender Land” was excellent and beautifully written, although I think I still prefer “Ordinary Grace.” I too read a couple of WKK detective novels but didn’t continue. Now I wonder why. They were pretty dark, as I recall.

  3. Mouse Says:

    Wait…I haven’t read Hamnet yet…but does anyone seriously not see the word “Hamnet” and make the logical connection?