Monday, September 09, 2002

A Desert in Bohemia

I just finished reading A Desert in Bohemia by Jill Paton Walsh, a beautiful novel beginning in Central Europe in 1945. It is set in a place called Comenia, which she describes in an author's note as follows: "There is no such country as the one describe in this novel; rather, there have been several such countries." This novel is full of beauty and magic and humanity as it describes the darkest of times. One of the things that I love about Jill Paton Walsh's writing is how it seems to follow many threads at once, gradually weaving them into a single story. I think that I loved this one almost as much as her earlier novel A School For Lovers, which I have read many times.

In the last couple of weeks, I have also read a couple of crime novels, kindly lent to me by Peggy whom I talk to on the bus. One was The Forgotten by Faye Kellerman, about hate crimes and white supremacists. It was a bit too heavy on the religious aspect of Judaism to be a light read, and the kinky sex stuff, though there was only a little of it, was a bit too weird for me. But it was reasonably good and fast-paced. The other book was The Associate by Phillip Margolin, and it was just what the doctor ordered for a long bus ride home: full of lawyers, conspiracies, ex-cops, seemingly unrelated murders, and all that good stuff. Both of these books are currently on bestseller racks in grocery stores and pharmacies everywhere. Enjoy!

Incidentally, it's Grant's birthday today, and one of the things I gave him was Timothy Findley's Spadework. So we'll see how he enjoys that, and I will probably read it eventually. Also, for everyone who told me (after my blasting of "Shopaholic") to read about her visit to Manhattan, thank you! I have borrowed it from Emma and will let you know what I think of it.