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Austen to Zafón

Reading widely since 1972.

Currently reading

A London Family, 1870-1900: A Trilogy
Molly Hughes
The Cellist of Sarajevo
Steven Galloway
Lives of a Cell: Notes of a Biology Watcher
Lewis Thomas
All the Names
José Saramago, Margaret Jull Costa
A History of the World in 100 Objects
Neil MacGregor
Down the Garden Path
Beverley Nichols
Virtue Betray'd, Or, Anna Bullen
John Banks
Year of Wonders
Geraldine Brooks
Swallows and Amazons
Arthur Ransome
Illusion in java
Gene Fowler

The Mountain Lion (New York Review Books Classics)

The Mountain Lion (New York Review Books Classic) - Jean Stafford I'm not sure what to think about this 1940s coming-of-age novel. I found it difficult to like or care about any of the characters and so I wasn't moved by the various betrayals and tragedies. And yet the descriptions of complicated sibling co-dependence and rivalry, sexual tension, family dynamics, and cultural expectations of boys and girls were compelling and illuminating. I tried to think of my mother being a young girl in that era, in California and in a relatively wealthy family with certain social constraints and obligations. She was much younger than these characters by about 10 years, but going into the 1950s, I think there were still a lot of the same rules and norms. It was interesting, as the story moved from L.A. to a Colorado ranch, to learn about how ranch life worked, how cold the people could be about the animals in their care and the people in their employ. No one gave anyone else much quarter. An interesting read, but not a favorite.