Thursday, 23 October 2014

Not Blogging, but...

struggling to cope.  Work demanding; not sleeping well; house a mess and depressing me.  List of things to do seems insurmountable.  Everyone grumpy at home.  And the things I enjoy are getting squeezed out.  This poem in my head a lot:

Not Waving but Drowning

BY STEVIE SMITH
Nobody heard him, the dead man,   
But still he lay moaning:
I was much further out than you thought   
And not waving but drowning.

Poor chap, he always loved larking
And now he’s dead
It must have been too cold for him his heart gave way,   
They said.

Oh, no no no, it was too cold always   
(Still the dead one lay moaning)   
I was much too far out all my life   
And not waving but drowning.


Half term soon.  Will return when I'm in a more positive frame of mind.

Sunday, 5 October 2014

The Year in Books: Easy Reading October


I've been on an enforced blogging break recently - busy with work and barely getting to essential household maintenance never mind blogging.  But time this morning for a quick books post, joining in again with Laura at Circle of Pine Trees.

In September, I eventually finished 'The Goldfinch'.  It was hard work in the end and I didn't enjoy the last 300 pages much.  I ceased to care very much for Theo and skipped over the rather complex business of how the painting was found; lost again and then returned for a large reward. There were too many characters; too much violence for my taste; and the aspects of the novel I was enjoying, such as the Theo's relationship with Hobie and Alice, were not really developed.

So my October choices are much lighter, easy reading.  Many other readers who post on The Year in Books have recommended 'The Rosie Project', so I'm now reading it too.  I love it and am already nearly half way through.  Don is utterly charming and a much more pleasant companion than Theo (Is it just me who considers characters in books in this way - especially when there is a first person narrator?)  But I am a little uncomfortable with the humour in this book.  Should we be laughing at the results of Don's social blunders because of his Asperger's Syndrome?  My experience of teaching children with Asperger's suggests that their lives are much more challenging than this.  My other September read was 'The Reason I Jump', which was written by a Japanese boy and translated by David Mitchell, gives a better insight into autistic spectrum brains.

I have also borrowed from the library 'How to Build a Girl' by Caitlin Moran which I'm looking forward to - I love her writing.  And I have reserved  'We are all Completely Beside Ourselves' by Karen Joy Fowler . I know nothing at all about this book but the title is intriguing.

Nothing too demanding then: I'm beginning to wonder if my capacity to cope with more serious intellectual books is declining and that is why I didn't like 'The Goldfinch while others loved it.