Here’s my plan for the summer of 2008: I will read excessively. As I finish more books, I’ll add them to the list. I will tell you whether or not I recommend them, and if I feel the need, I will tell you why or why not and perhaps provide a summary or some quotes, or whatever is appropriate. Here goes.
Montana 1948 by Larry Watson
I must admit, it was the handwriting on the spine of the book that caught my eye. I read the testimonies, and the first one was very convincing. “Start at 10 P.M. By 11, you’re hooked. You finish in the wee hours, mesmerized by the fast-moving plot, the terse language, uncompromising characterization, and insights into life.” I added it to my pile and resolved to read it first. I was excited at just how rapidly that plot moved, and the twist, and how shocking it was that David’s seemingly content, perfect family unraveled. As the reviews suggested, it is very much like To Kill A Mockingbird. Having read both novels, though, I find this one more shocking because of the familial involvement.
Cat’s Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut
I appreciated the ending so much. The novel itself would have been hard to get into had there been fewer chapters (there are 127). But the plot just moved along. Some questions were answered before they’d even been asked. And then you’d find the question, and it would require your recollection of some stated fact that you found unimportant at the time, and then the narrator would make the connection for you. “It is not possible to make a mistake.” But that’s not the most memorable part. We shouldn’t be apathetic. Gosh, you have to read the book. The religion in the book seems like a cry for atheism, and a cry to think for yourself. The entire novel is a cry for empathy that knows no boundaries, because your karass will know no boundaries. One of my favourite quotes was: “Earth was Pabu’s favorite because it had people on it; and the people looked up at her and loved her and sympathized.”
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