Currently Reading

Now that summer is "over" (not really) and my pool has closed (really), my reading will probably slow down.  Luckily for you, I'm still slugging through the backlog of everything I read this summer, so enjoy :)

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Men Explain Things to Me by Rebecca Solnit - This is a collection of essays from esteemed writer Rebecca Solnit, beginning with her now famous essay, "Men Explain Things To Me".  In it, she coined the term "mansplaining".  Solnit's writing is sharp, clever, poignant at times.  She's incredibly intelligent and thoughtful.  What I took away from this collection as a whole was that the small things - men ignoring what women are saying, men "explaining" something they know nothing about, the silencing of women's voices - in fact lead to those larger misogynistic issues - domestic violence, rape, partner homicide.  Absolutely worth a read.

Fates & Furies by Lauren Groff - Oh man, did I love this book.  So good!  We start with the Fates half of the book.  About to graduate college, lothario Lotto falls in love with the virginal beauty Mathilde.  Their love for each other is all-encompassing, eclipsing everything else in their lives.  They host potluck dinners in their tiny New York apartment, only to disappear into the hallway to make love.  As the years pass, this hungry love for each other never wanes, but only seems to grow stronger.  As Lotto moves from an out-of-work actor to a successful playwright, Mathilde is always by his side, supporting him.  And yet, when we switch perspectives in the Furies half of the book, was anything what it seemed?  Without giving anything away, just know that the prose is stunning and that Groff beautifully explores what a marriage is and how our own perceptions of a person, of a relationship, can be incredibly far from the truth.

End of Watch by Stephen King - End of Watch is the third and final book in the Bill Hodges trilogy.  After Mr. Mercedes and Finders Keepers, I had a real affinity for these characters and knew I would be sad to see their story come to an end.  Bill and Holly are called to what appears to be a standard murder-suicide, but upon closer inspection, they discover that the victims were tied to the Mercedes massacre and that things may not be as they appear.  More supernatural than its previous books, End of Watch sees Brady Hartsfield somewhat awaken from his vegetative state and find a way to get revenge not just on Bill, but on the entire town.  This was dark, suspenseful, and a great ending for the trilogy.

The Familiar Volume 1: One Rainy Day in May by Mark Danielewski - Danielewski is an absolute favorite of mine.  He is a weird genius as far as I'm concerned.  The Familiar is (going to be) a 27-volume series.  Presumably, Volume 1 sets the stage.  There are a lot of things going on here, but the focus seems to be on Xanther, a 12-year-old girl who is somewhere on the spectrum.  Xanther's mother has decided to get a service dog for her, but when Xanther and her step-father head out into a rainstorm to pick up the dog, they end up finding another creature instead.  There's also some insanity involving a drug dealer in LA, something going on in Southeast Asia, and a pair of scientist/hippies living in a van in Texas with some kind of magic orb.  If this sounds crazy, that's because it is.  But I cannot wait to read the subsequent volumes.


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