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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

Trains and Lovers: A Novel

Trains and Lovers: A Novel - Alexander McCall Smith I usually enjoy his books, but this one was lukewarm at best. First, I could barely tell the narrators apart. They all sounded like McCall Smith telling us about what he thinks of the world and relationships and technology; no distinct personalities. Second, I doubted the premise that 4 people in a train would tell so much about themselves to complete strangers. Maybe one stranger, but not a group. And in the woman's telling of her parents' lives, she told much more than she would probably know about their internal worlds. I got the feeling that McCall Smith had some stubs of stories hanging about and he wanted a place to put them, so he created this improbable framework on which to hang them. And third, to cram 4 stories into the such a short book, they had to be understandably shortened, but I felt left hanging on a couple of them. Perhaps he's used to that because he often writes in serial format, but knowing there was going to be no further installments in these stories made them seem unfinished.