Oh dear, I've gone and done it again! Kept putting off writing about these books... and now it's a month later and oops! Plus for some reason it feels like I read so many in January (and some rather quickly), it won't be easy recreating the sensations when I read them each... damn! Here goes...
The two latest books in the True Blood series, they weren't in the box set I gave my sister for her birthday, so she got them herself and left them here for me to read after Christmas. The first one doesn't really seem to have much of a plot at all. The story is all over the place, should be more a selection of short stories, would have been more coherent. Dead and Gone is much better (there's a fairy war!!! and the 'shifters reveal themselves to the world!), the characters feel more involved in their story (and you actually care about what's going on), and the Sookie-Eric possibility kind of gets a friendly push! ;o)
But I still prefer the TV series. The rest of the characters are much better developed there. And I must say I'm very curious to see how they're going to deviate or remain faithful to the books as the seasons advance! (vampires and werewolves? bah! were-tigers and fairies coming up!!!)
The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown
I'm not going to try very hard to remember this one. No need. LOUSY! Worse than the other two Prof Langton novels. I just picked it up out of curiousity (my cousin gave it to my mom as a b-day present). I knew it wasn't going to be that great (my dad actually symbolically tossed it in the trash when he finished it, my mom fished it out 'cause she figured I'd want to read it), but this bad? Ouch! It makes even less sense that the previous ones, it had less of a cohesive narrative and the characters weren't as engaging. Langton himself spent way too much time spouting exposition. And you don't really see any growth in the character! I was curious about it because I wanted to see how they wrapped up the relationship in the DaVinci Code, but no mention whatsoever of that romance. Thanks but I prefer my characters (even in crazy fictional adventures) to be more coherent! Oh, and it's so transparent I figured out who the bad guy "really was" not even halfway in. Bah!
La Isla Bajo el Mar by Isabel Allende
Lovely! I simply adore most of Isabel Allende's books. I jump on them as soon as I spot a new one in the book stores. This -her latest- is my favourite of those she's written in recent years. It's very vivid, feels very much alive!!! The story is that of Zarité, a slave -daughter of an enslaved African mother and her master-, a lover and a mother (to her own child and that of her master and mistress) and a believer/practitioner of voodoo. It's the story of the end of the sugar plantations and the French colony of Saint Domingue (Haiti! first country -after the US- to become independent from its European master, and entirely through a slave revolution), and that of Créole society in New Orleans as French/Spanish colony and then as a US territory. It's a story of fathers and sons whose ideas are in complete opposition to each other. It's a story of love and loss, of slavery and freedom. And it's a damn good story!
Here's a video of the presentation in Madrid, I believe it should be out in English in April.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling
Hadn't read this since I first got it 2 1/2 years ago (has it been that long?!), but having just re-watched The Half Blood Prince on dvd (Xmas! yay!) I wanted to dive back into the story, to re-live the "what happens next?" feeling, and to see if I could figure out where the hell they plan to cut the book in half to make two movies (apparently right after our trio is captured by... oops!). I actually enjoyed it much more than the first time, I guess I read it too fast then (devoured it would be more accurate), and was very much annoyed by the slow middle portion in the forest. Didn't bother me so much this time! It's a pity Harry Potter's adventures are over (although I can think of 3 wonderful young actors who are probably quite relieved and ready to move on), but weren't they wonderful while they lasted? Hmm... I just realised I didn't read the epilogue! Have to go back and finish it then! :p
I think I'll be re-reading the whole series later on this year as a prep for the END... snif!
I've got this nagging feeling I might have forgotten one... it really felt like I'd read more than 5 books. Perhaps because I was more than 1/2 way through another one (which will go towards the February list, and yes, I've already started writing that post!). Oh well. If I did forget one then it can't have been that great! lol.
I've also noticed that my linguistic reading patterns are a bit unbalanced. For a trilingual who feels equally at home in English, Spanish and French... I'm reading way too much in English compared to the other two languages! So February is going to be my non-Anglo month. Nothing in English (or even originally written in English and then translated, I usually avoid those unless receive them as gifts). I've got a couple of books in French to read, the others all in Spanish but they include a couple of Swedish books and a Japanese one (all translations of course).