Saturday, December 14

My Summer Holiday Reading List

Reviews for the books on my holiday reading list.  
Please share your summer reads in the comments below.

Dune Messiah by Frank Herbert

This is the 2nd book in Frank Herbert's classic sci-fi trilogy, Dune.  Dune is continuously hailed as the No. 1 sci-fi book of all times and for good reason.  

I adored the first book with its epic scale and complex plot weaving prophecy, subterfuge, religion, war and politics on the desert world of Arrakis.  Dune Messiah is just as compelling as the first and a much more manageable length so it can be happily devoured within a day or so.  

While it is a highly entertaining book, it's emotional impact makes it incomparably more important than the common pulp paperback fiction.  It is a series I will return to again and again for its great plot and superb writing.  

  The Penultimate Peril by Lemony Snicket

This is the 12th and second-last book is Lemony Snicket's grim Series of Unfortunate Events.  While I'm yet to finish the series, I've enjoyed every bit of it so far.  

The pace is quick, the wit knife-sharp and surprising.  Snicket's writing is full of ingenious side-steps, upside-down logic and hilariously memorable anecdotes.  The Baudelaire orphans are endearing heroes for whom I cheer for through every turn of their tragic story. 

Filth by Irvine Welsh

Have you heard about the new film adaptation?  As a lover of Welsh's classic Trainspotting, I jumped at the opportunity to read something else of his.  

What I adored about Trainspotting was the constant and confronting grittiness, the Scottish accent that pervades the narrative and the fast pace.  Unfortunately, Filth doesn't have any of these things.  After Trainspotting, it's grittiness seems wane and the voice suffers from its lack of rollicking dialect.  

I'm sure this book is good in its own right and nothing could lessen my appreciation of Welsh as a writer.  I just struggled to enjoy it as my expectations were set on something very different.  

 Esio Trot by Roald Dahl

I was thinking about a new children's story idea I'd like to write during the holidays and the mood of it reminded me of a Roald Dahl book.  Feeling I could use his inspiration, I checked out what my library had on stock.

I've never read Esio Trot before but I'm sure that when I get to it I won't be disappointed.  Roald Dahl is always sure-fire in his voice and imagination.  It's also only a little book so I'll probably enjoy it in one sitting with a cup of tea.  

Sweet Tooth by Ian McEwan

Ian McEwan is one of my favourite writers.  You might remember how much I raved about his masterpiece Atonement.  Set in 1972, Sweet Tooth is his latest release and I'm eager to discover how his voice has developed since then.  

It's a story of espionage and seducation.  I'll be definitely blogging about this one.  McEwan's writing is crystalline in its perfection and everything I've read of his has been charged with intrigue.  I was in the mood for a spy thriller, and who better to satisfy this craving than a literary master.  
Tampa by Allisa Nutting

It was this borderline pornographic front cover that compelled me to learn more about this book.  Published this year, Tampa is praised as presenting the female version of Nabakov's Humbert in Lolita with great success.  

Reviews suggest that Tampa will inspire controversy and discussion as a great book club read.  I'm excited to try Nutting's debut novel and see what sort of reaction it inspires.  

I'd love to hear about your holiday reading so leave a comment below to share.

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