Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick
You know, when Amy likes something, I almost immediately like it more because of it. Are there bloggers you trust in this way? I’m not saying I wouldn’t have liked Silver Linings Playbook, because I almost certainly would have, but the whole time I was reading it, I had Amy’s voice in the back of my head saying how much she loved it. The book is everything she said it is! It’s sad and charming and full of heart. Within the book is the subtext that there’s a fine line between what is considered mentally unstable and what is considered perfectly normal by society.
I read some of the things that were changed in the movie, and I have to say, it makes me much less excited to see the movie. One of my favorite characters is Cliff, the main character’s therapist, and I’m really sad to hear that he’s portrayed as a kind of useless/bad therapist. He is not perfect in the novel, but he is by no means a horrible therapist. Their relationship is actually just really sweet. I’ll still watch it, because I do love all the actors in it, and I do hope I enjoy it, but I won’t be terribly surprised if I don’t.
Stuck in the Middle With You: A Memoir of Parenting in Three Genders by Jennifer Finney Boylan
As the dusk jacket copy for Stuck in the Middle With You says, Jennifer Finney Boylan was “a father for ten years, a mother for eight, and for a time in between, neither, or both (“the parental version of the schnoodle, or the cockapoo”).” Jennifer Finney Boylan has written eloquently about her experiences going through her sex change, but this books put the same transition in the context of her role as a parent. Through telling her story, and her family’s story, and interviewing other people about their experiences with their own parents or as parents, she tells a beautiful story about what it means to be a parent. I love Jennifer Finney Boylan’s writing and I immediately want to read everything she’s ever written. I think this should be required reading. It is just that good.
Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta
Is this book called Jellicoe Road or On the Jellicoe Road? I am still confused. It’s still surprising to me that I managed to remain unspoiled for this book, because I have read so many reviews of it over the years. It’s really as good as everyone says it is. And it’s really true that it’s confusing and difficult to get through, and really deserves a second read. You’re only given the information the main character has, so as she learns things, suddenly everything you’ve been told takes on a new meaning. It’s hard to pay attention to everything at first, because the narratives don’t really seem to make sense together. Read it. Please don’t give it the 100 page test. Also, don’t expect a supernatural twist! I kept thinking there was something supernatural coming. Time shift? Zombies? Vampires? I don’t know. And I don’t know why I thought that, but this is just about normal people, no mysterious creatures or time travel.
I feel like this book deserves more, but I didn’t take notes while I was reading it and it’s already been a week or so since I finished. Also, it would be really hard to talk about this one without spoiling it.
Seraphina by Rachel Hartman
This book is one of the best I’ve ever read. I was so completely drawn into this world where dragons can shape shift to look like humans and I just want to read more and more and more. In fact, I might reread it. I listened to it on audio and I’m sure I missed things. Two of my favorite reads this year (Seraphina and The Raven Boys) have been on audio and I want to read them both in print before the sequels come out. I think I’ll save my longer posts about both of them for when I do reread and take notes.