Book Two: Faithful Place

Faithful Place, Tana French

Oh, Ms. French, I am so glad I gave you a second chance. And now this third chance. Because I am totally in love with you. Maybe you still don't know quite how to end a book with a bang, and maybe the who in this whodunnit was a tad obvious, but I'll forgive you that as long as you continue to write so well and create compelling characters.

Book One: Left Neglected

Left Neglected, Lisa Genova

If this book is a portent of the year to come, then I am scared. In short, it was poopy. No wait, let me explain. It had a compelling premise. Sarah, a workaholic mom, is forced to slow down after a traumatic brain injury that leaves her unable to recognize anything on her left side. And in case you don't get that, the author is going to tell you that again and again and again. And again. And again. And again. And again. And again.

Are you tired of me writing that? Because that's how much Lisa Genova felt the need to explain the left sided absence. Again and again and again. One of the problems is that it's told in the first person, so Sarah just keeps saying repeatedly "I can't see anything on my left. Did you know I have no concept of my left? You guys, I have no idea what my left is! OMG, what the hell does 'left' mean anyway?" GAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!

And also the writing is just so very dull. It felt like reading the most uninspired blog of all time. And okay, another thing, she just couldn't stop mentioning brands, so much so that I honestly wondered if they were sponsored. And either way, that's really just the height of tedium. And so heavy handed! The first 50 or so pages are just one long dirge that attempt to demonstrate just how busy and type-A Sarah is. With no sense of humor whatsoever. In short: all tell, no show.

Lastly, you can see the ending coming a mile away. And I don't like that.

Book Fiftyone: The Forgotten Affairs of Youth

The Forgotten Affairs of Youth, Alexander McCall Smith

Can we pretend that I finished fifty two books this year? Because, seriously, I was soooooo close. I actually did finish this one many days ago. And in the meantime I am halfway through one book, a quarter of the way through another, and a quarter of the way through a third. That adds up to one completed book, no? And I rarely read more than one book at once, but for some reason I found myself in the midst of three, and I blame that for the reason why I just couldn't manage to finish any of them. Ah well. I still feel great about my year given that I carried a baby for half the year and then birthed it and then cared for it for the other half!

So yeah, about this book! I loved it! I love all the Isabel Dalhousie books enthusiastically! In this one Isabel helps a new friend find information about her birth parents while she and Jamie plan their wedding, their baby Charlie is growing up, and Isabel philosophizes and overthinks (in the best way) everything. I like this yearly slipping into of her little world in Edinburgh and now I can't wait for next year's installment.