Apr 10, 2015

What I've Been Reading


I've been really trying to work reading back into my normal life recently. Turns out the easiest way to do that is to pick up a bestselling thriller about marriage, revenge, and the dangers of marrying a sociopath. (Don't do it, by the way.) Gone Girl was really great, though some people find some problems with the story. Honestly, I just really like to be that person who says the book was better after they watch the movie, so I did. And the book was better, but the movie was still sufficiently creepy. 

While I'm on the topic of reading so I can retain my moral superiority, I also devoured Paper Towns because the movie is coming out in June. This is my third John Green novel and probably my favorite so far. I have a complicated relationship with John Green because I would love to hang out with him and I watch all his videos on YouTube (like ALL of them), but when it comes to reading his books... I don't love them. I could listen to him talk about writing all day, but I am never really impressed. If someone told me they really liked me but didn't care for my writing I probably would think either 1. they were lying to me, or 2. my work is not where it should be. I'm not trying to say he isn't a good writer, because I am struggling and not famous, but I think over the years his books and voice will change and I'm looking forward to following and supporting the impending transition. Anyway, writing is such a personal experience. Even writing fiction is like breaking off teeny pieces of your world and puzzling them together in a different way. It would be hard for me to separate myself from my work. Maybe that's a sign of naivety, I don't know. Sometimes I think it has everything to do with his content and the fact that I am 24, but I feel like that shouldn't matter. Who knows. 

This book hit me differently. There was a mystery and a boy pining after a girl he barely knows. I totally get pining. I pined hard. Pining involves never stopping to imagine the actual functionality of the relationship. This book was all about relationships and trying not to define them before you've experienced them. This book had real momentum. Anyway, John Green, if you ever read this, write some creative nonfiction, a memoir or otherwise, I would probably love it. 

Creative nonfiction, guys! Sarah Vowell, in my life at least, is famous for sharing her stories on This American Life. Most notably she did a beautiful and funny show on how she and her sister road-tripped across the southern United States following the Trail of Tears and trying to reconcile their conflicting heritages. That story and more, including one where Ira Glass tries to teach her how to drive, are in this book. It took me awhile to finish it all, but it was a really satisfying read.

Next up: I'm finishing all of the John Green titles with An Abundance of Katherines and Will Grayson, Will Grayson and also trying to take another chunk out of this huuuuge Raymond Carver short story collection that I borrowed from the bookshelves at my work over a year ago. Oops.

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