Thursday, January 25, 2007

Year End Wrap Up – 15 Books for 2006! aka Better Late Than Never!

Great year! I exceeded my goal of reading slightly more than 1 book every month. For some reason, I lost steam after October with nothing read for the remaining year (although I started several books, none of them grabbed me enough to finish by year’s end.

Book 14: Kafka On the Shore

By Haruki Murakami
(Translated from Japanese by Philip Gabriel)

Mostly agree with dsgran’s summarized review of the same book see Book 7, except I wouldn’t call it a great book, per se, although it definitely had some great moments. Not as satisfying as The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, disappointing in its unevenness and loose ends, and kind of lame in resorting to the clichéd device of “raining fish” (á la Magnolia). I also did not quite buy the March-November-Harold-and-Maude romance. Nevertheless, I kept getting drawn into Murakami’s surreal flights of unpredictability and the fascinating characters, such as the strangely androgynous Oshima and the cat-man Mr. Nakata. And then before I knew it, I finished the book!

Book 15: Necessary Betrayals

By Guillaume Vigneault

Picked this one up at the library after noting a decent review of it a while ago. It’s the debut novel of a young writer who lives and works as a bartender in the Plateau, the uber hip neighbourhood me & olman live.

Sadly, the book wasn’t so hip and it didn’t have much to do with living in the Plateau, or even Montreal, for that matter. Most of it takes place in the States because two brothers decide to go on a road trip and pick up a young woman along the way.

The older brother is old, not because he’s in his 30’s, but because he’s all washed-up due to some tragic event in his past. So he broods a lot while his younger brother is impulsive and slightly nuts. The woman is annoying because she is young, beautiful and hot, but she’s also surprisingly deep and smart. Of course, she has a big heart too because she falls in love with the older, washed up brother instead of the younger, wilder one even though she had sex with the younger one first, but it didn’t mean anything.

Ok, I think you’ve heard enough. This book pretty much felt like it was written by a bartender in his early-twenties who lives in the Plateau. It’s just too bad this one in particular had to be my last book for 2006.

1 comment:

caropops said...

I think your reviews are hilarious, MB. Short, pithy, and unpretentious. And very, very funny.