Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Heir to the Glimmering World and a book meme

Heir to the Glimmering World by Cynthia Ozick: I bought this book because of that wonderful title; unfortunately there is nothing that glimmers in this novel. Rose's story of growing up unattached and in a precarious position is interesting enough. That she finds her way to a house of equally unattached people, the Mitwissers -- fugitives from Nazi Germany -- as a research assistant, nanny to the children, and caretaker to the "madwoman in the attic" reminds me very much of Jane Eyre. But Rose is a frustrating heroine for me; she's so passive. When she gets to the house and finds out she has no salary at all, she still stays even though she has money to leave. When someone, who has no right to do so, demands that money of her, she gives it away. When her cousin Bertram shows up at the Mitwisser household, she allows him to come in and eventually usurp anything that makes her useful in that place. Ozick's writing is good and kept me reading the book, but for a novel that revolves around character to have its central character be nothing but a backdrop -- that was too much for me.

Book Meme

I got this meme from Amanda at A Patchwork of Books.

What are you reading right now?
I just finished The Book Thief by Markus Zusak and am now reading Over Sea, Under Stone by Susan Cooper -- it looks to be the first book in The Dark is Rising series.

Do you have any idea what you'll read when you're done with that? Next I will read either The Last Witchfinder or Children of God (which is the sequel to The Sparrow).

What's the worst thing you were ever forced to read? I have never ever been able to make it through chapter 1 of either Moby Dick or Ulyssess.

What's the one book you always recommend to just about anyone? The Sparrow. This book was recommended to me by babelbabe and I love it. Also Anne Fadiman's essays from Ex-Libris and from At Large and At Small.

Admit it, the librarians at your library know you on a first name basis, don't they? Of course. But then again I work there.

Is there a book you absolutely love, but for some reason, people never think it sounds interesting, or maybe they read it and don't like it at all? I'm always afraid to recommend books in case this happens. So mostly I don't unless I know the person's taste is pretty similar to mine.

Do you read books while you eat? While you bathe? While you watch movies or TV? While you listen to music? While you’re on the computer? I read everywhere.

When you were little, did other children tease you about your reading habits? I read a lot of biographies when I was a kid; other kids always preceded my first name with "Biography."

What’s the last thing you stayed up half the night reading because it was so good you couldn’t put it down? The Book Thief .


Hilda said...

Hello - I answered your meme and posted it on my Blog.


Katya said...

Cool -- I also like to know what other people are reading.

Iamthebookworm said...

One of the worst (meaning most boring for me) things I was forced to read was The Age of Jackson by Arthur Schlesinger in AP History in high school. No I did not finish it. I was also supposed to read the History of the Peloponession War by Thucydides for my ancient greek history class. No I did not finish that one either.

nutmeg said...

This post is a little freaky in that:

- I recently read The Book Thief and loved it.
- Just finished Over Sea, Under Stone and enjoyed it.
- Have the Last Witchfinder in the TBR pile too!
- And you know how I feel about he Fadiman's and The Sparrow.

I may not need to do the meme!

sari said...

I just saw The Book Thief today and wondered about it! I'll definately read it now.

BabelBabe said...

The Book Thief took a bit for me to get into , but once I did...

I have The Last Witchfinder on my radar now - may have to track it down at the library this week.

Katya said...

bb: I checked it out from the library once and couldn't get into it but sometimes books take me a couple of false starts. The Book Thief was that way for me.

Lisa Jean said...

The book I loved and am afraid to recommend is Geek Love. I guess I don't want people to think I'm weird for liking such an off the wall book.

Les said...

Ah! Wasn't The Book Thief just the BEST book ever?! I sold it to yet another customer today. And I used to handsell lots of copies of The Sparrow, too. GREAT book!

Katya said...

Lisa Jean: I own Geek Love but I've never read it -- maybe I'll pull it off my shelves.

Les: I loved The Book Thief. I wasn't sure I was going to at first but I did.