Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Atonement - Ian McEwan

One of the movies in theaters right now that I am anxious to see is Anna Karenina.  Keira Knightly stars in the novel adaptation directed by Joe Wright.  This pairing of Knightly in front of the camera and Wright behind has already produced together two of what I believe to be the best films of the twenty-first century thus far.  The pair teamed up first on Pride and Prejudice and then Atonement.  The former is well known, particularly to anyone who has participated in a girls' night since its release in 2005.  The latter, though critically acclaimed, seems to have garnered less common knowledge notoriety since its 2007 debut, at least among my peers.  While nearly everyone has heard of Pride and Prejudice, when I mention Atonement, most people have no memory of it.  Despite my adoration for the film rendition of Ian McEwan's story, I must admit I had not read the book until now.  I was only vaguely aware that it had been based on a book, but was reminded when McEwan released his newest work, Sweet Tooth, earlier this month.  Before I allow myself to indulge in the newest McEwan work, I determined to visit the source of one of my favorite films.

For those unfamiliar with the story, I offer a brief recap.  Briony Tallis, younger sister to Cecilia, spends her childhood days fantasizing and writing.  One summer day, Briony witnesses a series of events which lead to a life changing accusation.  Atonement centers on just that: Briony's lifelong need to find atonement for her actions.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Anne of the Island - L.M. Montgomery

November has settled in nicely.  I find it hard to believe there are only six weeks remaining in the year.  And, after today, only five books remaining to reach my goal.  The reality of that amazes me.  For the first time, I can predict every remaining piece of the puzzle.  It is an exciting place to have reached!  I have plans for some exciting posts come the end of the year, so make sure you stay tuned to see what comes next.

In the mean time, I should not jump ahead so - one page at a time, as it were.  I have continued on with the Anne of Green Gables series.  If you remember, I read the first two books, Anne of Green Gables and Anne of Avonlea earlier this fall.  They are easy reads and take me back to my childhood.  As Anne Shirley's story continues in this third installation, we see her college years in Kingston and Anne's love life finally blooms.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Reading Lolita in Tehran - Azar Nafisi

As mentioned in a previous post, I recently came across a list of books for book lovers.  Reading Lolita in Tehran was referenced as a book that anyone in a book club has already read, but was still worth mentioning.  While under usual circumstances a statement like that would have turned me off to a book suggestion, something about Azar Nafisi's work intrigued me.  Reading Lolita tells the true story of Nafisi's time in  Iran as an English literature professor and as the organizer of a small women's book club.  The memoir covers Iranian history from a civilian viewpoint from the pre-revolutionary days to the mid-nineties.  Iran once again has become a popular topic of discussion in the foreign policy conversation and I did not know much about it.  This seemed like a wonderful opportunity to learn simultaneous to enjoying Nafisi's literary insight.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Son - Lois Lowry

Looking back, I can hardly believe I had not read The Giver until this year.  The Newberry Award winner captivates with its elegant simplicity and introspective message.  Upon completion, I immediately read sequels Gathering Blue and Messenger, which, though not to the level of The Giver, were also quite enjoyable.  The series reaches its conclusion in new release Son, which Lowry just published this year after a long gap between books.  Lowry had promised a book which would bring the first three to a cohesive conclusion.  While she did that, and her writing remains superior to so many others, I found myself somewhat unsatisfied by her conclusion.