You’ve all been waiting for it, and it’s finally here. Another batch of four books that I will recommend to you, this time with pictures that aren’t entirely unrelated, oh no, quite the opposite.
Here we go, ladies and gents;
Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell – A big, black book written by Susanna Clarke. This is a book I’ve tried to convince a good few of my friends to read, quite a few times. I’ve even bought it for some of them, but they just don’t get into it. Maybe it’s because it looks rather dark and ominous, quite an intimidating book. Judging by the cover it appears to be a troublesome an long read. In all honesty I haven’t met a single swede who have actually read this book, and it’s not very well-known here. But it is certainly a very nice read. Long, yes, but enjoyable all the way. When most people say magic nowadays, we think of fireballs and great, flashing lights. Or Harry Potter. This book is very much magic, and very much english, but it’s nothing like the more famous boy-who-lived, the magic is portrayed in a very realistic way, so to speak. I know magic doesn’t exist and thus can’t be realistic, but the thing is that it’s not flashy, and it’s not fancy, it’s just very believeable, and the whole book just smells like good old, english common sense.
Listen, it might be hard to chew throught the first bunch of pages, but once you get into this book you’ll fall in love with it. It’s been a while since I read it now, so I wont be going speaking much about the story in general, but that’s what you’ll have to find yourself. And it’s so worth it.
The Sunset limited – This book by Cormac McCarthy is not your regular book. In fact, it’s not really a book in the literal sense, it’s a play, which means that you’ll be reading the speech of the characters. This play has two characters.
Now, I haven’t seen this play with my very own eyes, I have only read the manuscript. But the thing is that though the text might seem meager, being only speech, it’s really not. You get to focus on the actual conversation between Black and White, and they get so much character just through their way of speech, their opinions and choice of words, or silence.
Before the play/novel actually starts, Black saves White from jumping onto the tracks of the Sunset Limited. The Sunset Limited is a train. The entire novel then plays out at Black’s place where they discuss their various views on life and White’s attempted suicide. For those of you who want something less texty, read it. And all the rest of you; Read it too. How you manage to get to know the characters so well without actors actually playing them in front of you, it’s quite amazing.
Night Watch – Yes, Terry Pratchett again. One of his books was in the last bunch, and I’ll be damn if one isn’t in the next. The fact that I have read two of his books and that those happen to be two of my favorite books of all time seems promising for the third, which is standing in my bookshelf, just waiting to be picked.
Anyhow, Night Watch, in this book, Sir Samuel Vimes, gets caught in a temporal anomaly. This happens while he’s chasing Carcer, a cold-blooded killer, with brains, on the 30th anniversary of the revolution on the twenty-fifth of May. This sends him back 30 years in time (And so in time for the actual revolution) which he took part of as a boy in the night watch of Ankh-Morpork. Though this time he will take the role of his former mentor, John Keels, who in the original timeline died during the revolution, and go through it one more time, and- It is all very hard to explain since this kind of stuff only makes sense in a Discworld novel. But it is not only funny, it is also touching and exciting and rather epic, actually. It’s a great read.
Shutter Island (Patient 67) – Alright, I must warn you to read about this book on wikipedia if you haven’t read it yet, as it ruins a great part of the puzzle, so to speak, but if you don’t plan to read it, have already seen the movie, or simply don’t care, go ahead.
This book was written by Dennis Lehane and first published back in April in 2003. I actually had this book in my shelf for several years before starting to read it (Which I did just recently), and I must admit I wasn’t too tempted to until I came across it at my local bookstore. I’d been planning to watch the movie, Shutter Island, but never got around to, and then I just idly browse throught the titles at the store I see a book called “Shutter Island”. And I also see that the author seems familiar. The thing is that the swedish translation of the book wasn’t called Shutter Island, it was called Patient 67, so I never realized the two were one and the same until I found the book at the store and read that the “original swedish title” was, in fact, Patient 67.
So I grabbed it straight after finishing Night Watch.
The book itself isn’t actually all that good I think, not all the way through, and before you begin to suspect what is actually going on, it gets a bit boring, and not a lot of things happen during the first half of the book. Once you get through those 50% though, it gets exciting. You still need the previous 50% for it to make sense though, and the closer you get to the end the better it gets, until you’re actually kind of, well, what can you say. It makes so much sense, yet you didn’t suspect it until very close to the end, at least not seriously, I know I didn’t.
Well, I wont spoil it for you, and I’m all done here, so I shall be going to do something else, perhaps sleep, perhaps not. More books will come as I remember them, or read them, so stay tuned.