I have so many ‘good intentions’; I will start exercising tomorrow, I will remember to send birthday cards this year, etc. And I had a good intention of writing this post at least 2 weeks ago, but well here we are with about 3 hours of this month left to write my list of books I read last month…
It was a bit of a disappointing reading month, I have discarded several part-read books, the ones I managed to get through are:
Fat Chance by Nick Spalding
“Meet Zoe and Greg Milton, a married couple who have let themselves go. Zoe was a stunner in her high school days, but the intervening decades have added seventy pounds, and removed most of her self-esteem.
Greg’s rugby playing days are well and truly behind him, thanks to countless beers and fast food.
When Elise, a radio DJ and Zoe’s best friend, tells them about a new competition, it seems like the perfect opportunity to turn their lives around. Fat Chance will pit six hefty couples against one another to see who can collectively lose the most weight and walk away with a cash prize.
So begins six months of abject misery, tears, and frustration -that might turn out to be the best thing that ever happened to them.”
The book is told in diary entries form both Zoe and Greg, and I am a bit of a sucker for books written this way – well done Bridget Jones/Helen Fielding – it is written in a fun way, re-telling a number of embarrassing incidents that happen along the way. It was a quick read and I was of course rooting for them both to do well, I did find it a bit lecturey at times about the importance of eating healthy and the need to exercise but all in all it was okay.
Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage by Haruki Murakami
“Tsukuru Tazaki had four best friends at school. By chance all of their names contained a colour. The two boys were called Akamatsu, meaning’red pine’, and Oumi, ‘blue sea’, while the girls’ names were Shirane, ‘white root’, and Kurono, ‘black field’. Tazaki was the only last name with no colour in it. One day Tsukuru Tazaki’s friends announced that they didn’t want to see him, or talk to him, ever again. Since that day Tsukuru has been floating through life, unable to form intimate connections with anyone. But then he meets Sara, who tells him that the time has come to find out what happened all those years ago.”
This was a very strange book, and really quite slow at times, but something kept me going which is surprising for me as I am such a quitter with books, but I was determined to get to the end and find out why his friends and abandoned him and if he would find a bit of oomph within himself and have some fun and look at things positively. But all I got was disappointed, an odd reason to abandon a friend and a really weak ending. Damn.
Mercy by Jodi Picoult
“Police chief of a small Massachusetts town, Cameron McDonald makes the toughest arrest of his life when his own cousin Jamie comes to him and confesses outright that he has a killed his terminally ill wife out of mercy.
Now, a heated murder trial plunges the town into upheaval, and drives a wedge into a contented marriage; Cameron, aiding the prosecution in their case against Jamie, is suddenly at odds with his devoted wife, Allie — seduced by the idea of a man so in love with his wife that he’s grant all her wishes, even her wish to end her life. And when an explicable attraction leads to a shocking betrayal, Allie faces the hardest questions of the heart; when does love cross the line of moral obligation? And what does it mean to truly love another?”.
This was more disappointment for me, I was ready for one of Jodi Picoults thought provoking dilemmas – this one about euthanasia – but this actual story was just really a base to write another tedious story alongside – a story about a man not giving a crap about betraying his wife, and only realising he wants her when the other woman leaves him, and then there never seems to be any guilt just pity for himself. Ugh what an irritating story.
Desert Flower by Waris Dirie
“Waris Dirie ran away from her oppressive life in the African desert when she was barely in her teens, illiterate and impoverished, with nothing to her name but a tattered shawl. She traveled alone across the dangerous Somali desert to Mogadishu – the first leg of a remarkable journey that would take her to London, where she worked as a house servant; then to nearly every corner of the globe as an internationally renowned fashion model; and ultimately to New York City, where she became a human roghts ambassador for the U.N. Desert Flower is her extraordinary story.”
I quite enjoyed this book, it was another quick read and a bit too simply written but the subject/story was interesting; form the beginning of her life in Somalia and then her strength and determination to leave her country and seek a better and completely different life. Some parts were amusing, some parts very sad and also blood-boiling – like the female circumcision. Yep not a bad book, you are left admiring this impressive woman.