I have finished Margaret Atwood’s Alias Grace! I have now read four of Atwood’s novels: The Handmaid’s Tale, Oryx and Crake, The Year of the Flood and now Alias Grace. Atwood is one of those writers, who the more you read their books, the more you understand the other books that they have written. There is a common sensibility and variations of (a) theme(s) that you would expect from work originating from the same writer; but more than that, you can see how it’s all related in some sort of private universe that we all are privileged to share. I’m looking forward to exploring more of this private universe with Life Before Man and Wilderness Tips, both of which I picked up at the Rogue Book Exchange a couple of weeks ago.
Right now though, I’m reading The Blackwater Lightship (by Colm Toibin.) I have a number of stacks and lists of books I “should” be reading for various challenges and memes; but this is the one that is called out to me. I didn’t know anything about it when I picked it up and I wonder if the cover art, with its muted golden hues, is what attracted me in somehow appealing to my mood. I looked up “Blackwater’ and discovered that it means, uh, sewage of the nastiest kind; and I was a bit wary of what this might portend in the book; but it tuns out that Blackwater is the name of the town setting! “The Blackwater Lightship” sounds like a rather romantic title though, doesn’t it? But there’s nothing particularly romantic about it: Declan is dying from AIDS and his sister, mother and grandmother have been called upon to bear witness and be with him in this (perhaps final) round of illness. The setting is in Ireland and the time is 1992 and so reasonable hope is not a factor in the atmosphere of the story.
I should finish The Blackwater Lightship tonight and then I have Man in the Dark, a short novel by Paul Auster here on-hand. I’m not sure I like Paul Auster, having read Invisible last week; but I think this is worth investigating before I move on.
Then I need to read Say Nice Things About Detroit (by Scott Lasser) for work. I head into the studio next week with Kevin Kenerly narrating :-)
I’m in the middle of We’re Alive, Season 1 (by Kc Wayland; performed by a full cast,) putting The Arthur Miller Collection (by Arthur Miller; performed by various full casts) on hold until after I’ve finished with the zombie podcasts. With Armchair Audies, Zombie Awareness Month and SYNC, I may have taken on too much; but I still may be able to pull it all off :-)