Sunday, April 17, 2011

You really can't judge a book by its cover, after all

It has been a while since I have posted, but not for lack of trying.  Here are three books with alluring covers that I did not finish, simply because there are so many books on my "to read" list and I was disappointed with these so much so that I didn't want to invest the time to finish them.

Freedom - I remember really liking The Corrections, by Franzen, so I was excited to take on the mammoth Freedom.  I figured, the more Franzen, the better.  Plus, the New York Times Book Review raved about it.  After 226 pages, I could not continue.  I found the book to be without plot, the characters without redemption, and the editing completely lacking.  Perhaps the tides turned in the latter half of the book.

West of Here - A truly beautiful cover, plus, it is all about the Pacific Northwest, an area I love.  Alas, I made it through only about 20 pages of what I found to be an uninteresting and inauspicious beginning.  Again, I probably could have given this one more of a chance, but there are just too many books on my list, and it did not capture my interest.

Swamplandia! - I was intrigued by Swamplandia!  With its fairy tale-like, yet menacing cover, I was enticed.  Plus, Karen Russell was voted this past year as one of The New Yorker's "20 Under 40."  Furthermore, the plot sounded quite original - a family of alligator wrestlers living in the swamps of the Everglades, and a coming of age story with a female protagonist.  I read the first half of the book which I found inventive, but at the same time it dragged on and on.

Luckily, I think I have stumbled on a few books in the last week that have redeemed my appreciation and awe for good writing.  Soon to post!  

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