I got a little bit read the past week and a wide variety at that! As always there is a video available and I forgot in the video about one book so you’ll get that one here!
First off I finally finished my reread of All Creatures Great and Small by James Herriot. This is one was just relaxing for me. I read this as a kid when I loved anything and everything animals. The whole book is the stories and memories of the first few years of Mr. Herriot’s veterinary practice when he was an apprentice to an established vet. I don’t know much about the man, but I know as a kid I enjoyed these stories and as an adult they were just the ticket to help me relax at work on the kindle. They even had me giggling at times, the antics and fights these people got into were ridiculous.
The next one I read was definitely not as enjoyable – At the End of the World : A True Story of Murder in the Arctic by Lawrence Millman. This pegs itself as a recounting of a series of murders committed by two men decide they are God and Jesus Christ. They kill several of the individuals that stood up to them and kept the rest of their tribe in fear. Now I didn’t learn a whole lot about the murders. The reason for that and the reason I don’t recommend this is because Mr. Millman spends the whole book jumping down a rabbit path of complaining about technology, proud of the fact he owns no cell phone and instead likes to mention his own abilities like mushroom hunting. It started, by the end, to sound like an old man complaining about cell phones and technology. A hard, do not recommend from me.
I followed that up with Mapping the Interior by Stephen Graham Jones, which even though I didn’t love, I did enjoy. The only fault I’ll give this story, right off the bat, is the writing style which didn’t work for me. It was too conversational and too loose. The sentences would stop go off, and then start again at a comma. Besides that I thought this horror story was really creepy and had some great strengths. The main character sees his dad, in full Native American Dancer regalia, walk across a room and down a hall. The problem is that his dad has been dead since he was a very small child. The book goes places you don’t expect, and making it definitely more of a horror book to me than a ghost story. If you don’t mind that choppy writing it might be a good one to try.
I read yet another short story after this, Gwendy’s Button Box by Stephen King. This was alright. In fact I would have really enjoyed this if it had been part of a collection. As it was it’s been sold for something like 20 or 25 dollars, alone and in hardback. That… seems a little over the top for me. The premise is not an unfamiliar one. Gwendy is given a box by a mysterious man with a series of buttons and levers that do powerful things. Then it’s her life as she struggles to hide this box and if she wants to use the power or not. Honestly it was almost kind of dull, Gwendy is a very good girl and as such rarely uses the box. Sadly the one time she uses it in action is all because of a murder and someone trying to rape her (ugh) and after that there is very little of note. So a ‘meh’ one for me. Someone else might have gotten more out of it.
Lastly, what I finished today, was Iris Grace: How Thulla the Cat saved a Little Girl and Her Family by Arabella Carter-Johnson. Honestly there wasn’t a lot of Thulla, but that’s alright. I came for the cat and enjoyed the novel for the little girl and Arabella’s story. This looks at how Arabella dealt with and is raising her daughter who is on the severe side of the Autism Spectrum. Things you would never think off like how an autism affects infants, is talked about here. It felt honest and there was just something lovely in the writing that flowed. She doesn’t shy away from talking about her mistakes but also manages to capture their successes. She also includes images of Iris’s paintings within which are beautiful. If parenting memoirs are a thing you enjoy, especially about raising a child with special needs I really recommend this one.
That’s it, not too shabby a week! How did everyone else’s reading go? Happy 4th and late Happy Canada Day, wasn’t that recently? Thanks for reading!