May 03, 2009

Weekend Reading

My reading this weekend was a little all over the place. I had to travel to see my aunt in hospital as she has just had major surgery (and doing well at this stage thankfully) and to help look after my young cousin so I was quite distracted and my mind really was elsewhere. But - my reading is something that always helps me when I am worrying about other things the only problem was that this weekend nothing was really keeping my focus so I just kept picking up book after book to see if it would do the trick.
I have been reading Drood by Dan Simmons (amazing - I'll write another post about it soon) but it was way too large and daunting to take away with me this weekend.
So, first I started with The Light Years by Elizabeth Jane Howard. This is a book I first read ages and ages ago but I remember really enjoying it so I have been meaning to re-read it for a while now.
I then moved on to Handle With Care by Jodi Picoult - I had promised myself that I was not going to read this one. I have been so disappointed with her last few books that I didn't feel like wasting my time on this latest one. But, I was in a town which did not have a great selection in terms of books and I know I can rely on Jodi to have a nice neat formula with predictable characters to follow so I picked it up. I have to say that I have read quite a bit of it over the weekend - it is predictable and ridiculous really but it got my mind off other things so I guess it did the trick!
When I got home last night I turned to the latest book by Kazuo Ishiguro - Nocturnes. This is a book of short stories and I have only read the first two at this stage so I am reserving my judgement until I have finished the whole book.
So, back home - and thinking I need to put together a bit of a reading plan so I stop reading all over the place!


megan said...

Hope your aunty is doing well :)

I really like Jodi Picoult - she's my guilty pleasure! I even met her last year at a book signing - she was so sweet!

Her earlier books were wonderful, but I do agree that the last few have been a bit lacking. I would have usually broken my book-buying ban to pick up Handle With Care, and I think it says a lot that I haven't.

I also accidentally read the Guardian's digested read version of the book (don't read until you're finished, because it does have loads of spoilers!!) and it put me off a bit.

Looking forward to hearing what you thought once you finish it.

claire said...

I am so jealous that you're reading Nocturnes. I am doing my best to hold off because I want my own copy and won't borrow this from the library. And as I don't like paying for full price, I will wait for a bargain (I'm really cheap, given that I don't have a job, hehe). So anyway, I do hope to hear some good things. And I hope your aunt is well. :D

Steph said...

Well, even if your reading has been scattered, it sounds like you've been getting quite a bit of it done! I'm really excited to hear your thoughts on Drood - Tony read The Terror a while back and really enjoyed it a good deal. This one sounds like it might be a bit more up my alley, content-wise, but I can't wait to hear you final thoughts on it. Also, I hope your aunt continues to recover well!

Karen said...

Hi Megan - many thanks. My aunt is in good spirits - just waiting for some test results which hopefully will be good.
It sounds like you are feeling very similar to me in regards to Picoult and her latest books - it's very disappointing isn't it? My father is a journalist and writes book reviews for the paper he works for - apparently he didn't give this one much of a rap - but I'm pushing on regardless at this stage!

Hi Claire - I just finished Nocturnes (will write a review post soon) but I have to say I am a little disappointed. I think I was expecting so much more. I keep thinking have I missed something in my reading?? I would be more than happy to send you my copy - just email me with your details and I will send it if you like?? My email address is

Hi Steph - I am really loving Drood - it's just taking me so long to get through it!

Marg said...

I've just finished reading The Terror and really enjoyed it, but like Drood it was LOOONNGGG! I was also reading it at the same time I was reading another book that is more than 800 pages long and for a while there it felt as though I wasn't getting any reading done at all! I am hoping to get to Drood as well in due

Serena said...

I haven't finished Droos yet, and I got my first jodi picoult book in the mail a couple of weeks ago.

Happy reading

Tara said...

So glad your aunt is doing well. I really enjoyed the EJH Cazalet series and hope to reread them someday. I think I want to try this new Picoult book, but like you I have been disappointed by her last few books. Perhaps she should slow down a bit...

Karen said...

Hi Marg - I don't know how you could have been reading two huge books like that at the same time!! I've been reading other shorter books while I've been working my way through Drood - just to keep myself sane! I highly recommend it though - it is fantastic.

Hi Serena - which Jodi Picoult book will you be reading??

Hi Tara - that's exactly what I think! She's turning out a book a year isn't she?? I think it's just turned into a bit of a formula now unfortunately.

Anonymous said...

well wishes to your auntie...hope she's on the mend.

you got some varied reading done over the weekend--i barely had time for one book because i was drowning in laundry.

now, on to this whole DROOD thing. i've been reading about it everywhere and have no idea what it is! do i really need to pick it up? is it that great?! tell me, tell me!

Tamara said...

Karen, I was hoping you'd have something exciting to say about Jodi's book - I have enjoyed them as a good safe read while travelling or dealing with other head stuff. Did you make a decision on the Zombie book??? after everyone gave you such a variety of advice, what did you think?

Karen said...

Hi Tamara - yes, that's exactly why I picked up the Jodi P book this past weekend! I stopped reading it as soon as I got back home though so I haven't got any more to report at the moment. I have decided I will give P&P and Zombies a go - will see how I go with that!

Iliana said...

Karen, I hope your aunt is recovering and will be out of the hospital soon. You know, I do think there are certain reads that are just perfect for times like this. When I've had family in the hospital the only thing I can read are cozy mysteries. I need something easy, yes, maybe predictable but just something that will take my mind off of everything but won't require a lot either!

Karen said...

Hi Iliana - that's exactly the sort of reading I was looking for - something to get me through but not challenge me too much. My aunt is doing really well now thank you - out of hospital and recovering at home.