Sunday, 15 May 2011

The Sunday Salon - A Quarter through the Ban!

It's May! That means I've made it an entire three months without buying any books! That's about two months and three weeks longer than anybody, including myself, thought I'd manage, so I'm thoroughly proud of myself :-) Due to RAK, my fiance buying me books, and my awesome best mate's new job, where she basically gets free books and passes them on to me, there's still been a lot of books coming into my house. Also, I've been borrowing a lot from the library, so not making too much of a dent in my TBR shelves, but ah well.

Reading wise, I've done pretty well this week I reckon. I managed to post two reviews (three if you count the one that's coming on the end of this post), which is a vast improvement on the past few weeks, and I finished four books! I read Emma for the ongoing Classics Circuit  Dueling Authors tour, and really loved it. It was a lot different from the other Austen I've read in a lot of ways, and now I'm all motivated to read Persuasion, the final Austen left on my TBR! My other review was of a novelette which the author had sent to me. Despite some stumbling blocks at the beginning, and its' serious subject matter, I'm glad I got to read Of No Consequence by Sonia Rumzi. I also finished Laura's Esquivel's Like Water for Chocolate, which I just adored, and which I will definitely attempt to review this week!

I started reading Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency by Douglas Adams. The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy and all of its' sequels, are massive favourites of mine, and literally the only books absolutely guaranteed to make me laugh out loud, wherever I am, and I was totally shocked to find that I had both Dirk Gently and The Long Dark Teatime of the Soul on my shelves, and have yet to read them. So far, I am really enjoying it - I've not laughed as much as I did at Hitchhikers, but I still had a bit of a giggle in the train station! I'm also battling with the idea of starting a reading project of The Canterbury Tales by Chaucer. I'm very scared of the language, though, so it remains to be seen if I go with the original, or get hold of a retelling from somewhere... I'm trying not to wuss out, and just go for it with the middle English... wish me luck!

Anyway, the final book I finished this week, was (finally) Delirium by Lauren Oliver. I sort of feel like I'm the last person in the world to read this book. A while back, everyone was reading it, and totally hyping it up, and then Lauren Oliver came to my local library, and I totally forgot to go! (how annoyed am I with myself??!). Anyway, then I was sent a copy last month, as an RAK, and its' been staring at me, in all its' pretty pale blue glory, ever since. So this week, I finally got around to it, and I liked it. In case there's a person left in the world who hasn't heard about Delirium already, here's the basic outline.

Set in a dystopian world, where a 'cure' for love has been discovered. The borders of the U.S have been sealed for the past 50 years, and when children reach the age of 18, they are evaluated, and then 'cured' of the ability to love. After their evaluation, they are sent a list of 'matches', one of whom they must accept for marriage. They are assigned everything from whether or not they go to college, to how many children they have, by the government. Lena Haloway is preparing for her eighteenth birthday, and the 'safety' of the cure, when she accidentally meets Alex...

I'm not sure what I was expecting from Delirium, and to be honest, I'm still not sure exactly how I felt about it. The ending, like Oliver's first novel, Before I Fall, isn't happy, and it definitely wasn't what I was expecting, but the more I think about it, the more comfortable I am with it. Throughout the novel, I felt that most of the time, the story was going mroe or less where I expected it to, and so I liked the fact that the ending veered away from what I was expecting. In my eyes, at least, the ending helped to validate Lena as a character, and moved her away from the Bella Swan type of girl, who can only function if there's a guy around to motivate her!

To be honest, Delirium did have a little bit of a Twilight-esque vibe through it; mostly just the whole forbidden love angle, but the further through it I got, the more I appreciated the other threads of the story, such as her family situation and issues with her mother, as well as her relationship with her best friend, Hana.

I didn't love it as much as I'd hoped, but it was still an enjoyable (and very quick!) read, and I really like the fact that Lauren Oliver dares to be different with her endings!

Thanks to An Avid Reader's Musings for sending me the book!

Happy Sunday, everyone! :-)

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