Friday, October 18, 2013

The two books for month #2

I read two books for month #2, in addition to my bookclub book (We’re reading The Handmaid’s Tale in case you were wondering.) Here are my thoughts on them!

Book #1 The Kid by Dan Savage I saw this in my interlibrary ebook loan system so I checked it out (ha!) on a whim. It was written in the late 90s so it’s pretty outdated, but it mostly serves as a platform to provide some light autobiographical details about Dan in addition to chronicling the adoption process of two gay dads in the Pacific Northwest. It provided some interesting anecdotes and that is a process I knew very little about.

Of course, now it’s pretty likely that some of the rules and regulations described have changed but it was still interesting reading. Dan had his typical dry wit and it was a pleasurable and sometimes humorous read. I find it particularly interesting that I was reading it while I was learning about Rutherford B. Hayes and it featured a chapter called, I think, Rutherford B. Finger. Apparently Dan’s proctologist is the great whateverson of our 19th President! How funny. I thought that was an interesting coinkydink.

Book #2 Dr. Sleep by Stephen King I have two schools of thought on this book. On the one hand, I really enjoyed reading more about Danny Torrance and what he grew into as an adult. I thought making him a (recover(ed)ing alcoholic was a believable, if somewhat predictable, path to take. I loved most of the parts with him, his new life, etc etc. What I didn’t like? Well, the basic premise of the book itself. The supernatural justification for writing it to begin with. The True Knot? Felt shoehorned in, haphazard, and never once like any sort of legitimate threat. Like most of King’s books this absolutely fizzled in the last 15% or so and went out with not even quite a whisper so much as a cough.

I love King. I really, really do. But his strengths lie in his *characters*. I would have loved a 400 pages book that dealt with Danny and his life post The Shining. Just a guy, fighting his (not literal) demons and going through recovery and starting over. That’s the book I want to read. King is GREAT at thinking up grand and terrifying ideas but often the execution and especially the ending fall flat. Maybe this is why the Dark Tower are some of my favorite books of his, they have so much world building and character development that in the grand scheme of things to actual supernatural/hinky stuff take a far back seat.


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