July Reading

Well, I managed to read five books this month — three novels, one non-fiction book, and one classic.  Not exactly a balanced group of books, but I am not stressing too much about that.  Instead, I choose to concentrate on the fact that I read five books.

  1. Between Assassinations by Aravind Adiga  was a series of short stories that told the story of a town in India between the assassinations of Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi.  It was a great book, providing a real feel for the place and the time.  If you are interested in India or in learning about life in a different place, I would recommend it highly.
  2. Soul of the Fire by Terry Goodkind  was the fifth book in the Sword of Truth series.  It has been a long time since I read a book in this series, and I found I was really ready to learn more about Richard and Kahlan and their struggles.  I was disconcerted by the fact that much of this book was about different characters, but I have been assured that Goodkind used this book to introduce new characters and that I will come to care about them as I continue reading.  I am sure this is true.
  3. The Collectors by David Baldacci was a very quick read but a good one.  An odd collection of men, with a little help from a con artist, manage to uncover a spy ring.  I enjoyed it a lot.  My only complaint was that the book started telling two stories and brought only one to conclusion.  Obviously the other story is continued in another book.  Both stories were interesting, so I am not really unhappy about this.  But it seems a little dishonest to leave us hanging,
  4. Share or Die edited by Malcolm Harris with Neal Gorenflo was a series of essays about sharing, about working cooperatively in today’s world.  The essays were written by young people, and sometimes that bothered me a little.  As happens, they seemed to think that they had the answers.  And in many cases they did.  But in other cases, they had the same ideas we had 40 years ago.  The big thing I took from this book was the impact the Internet has on the world.  Ideas that were limited to a small geographic area in the late 60s can now spread across the country easily.  Like minds can find each other, learn from each other, and take their ideas to the next level almost overnight.
  5. Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen was fun.  I like the way it was written; the author tells the story in a normal fashion, and then she comments on it, referring to Catherine as the heroine.  I would never have read this or the other Austen books I have if I had not seen the movie The Jane Austen Book Club.  Now that I have read these books, I find myself wanting to watch the movie again.

I am really interested to see the variety of books I am reading this year.  As I have said previously, it is slower going trying to read more classics and non-fiction.  But it is fun to explore books I would never otherwise have read.  I look forward to seeing what I read in August.

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