I’ve tried to get into a few books in the last few weeks. I went back to Leon Uris’s Trinity because I wanted to see why I loved this book so much the first time I read it, 13 years ago, and even more than that wanted get lost in a story that already feels familiar. Then Rex brought home a crime novel — not normally my thing — but the writer has written 3 books, all of which have been nominated for the Edgar prize, and I learned that his books are more “literary” in nature. So I’m reading John Hart’s first book, The King of Lies. The writing is good and I’m intrigued. I hope I finish it.
Last week Lan Samantha Chang, the director of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, came through town and I went to see her talk about her job and her life in Iowa. Interesting lady. She’s traveling around to promote her new book, All is Forgotten, Nothing is Lost, which tells a story within a prestigious creative writing program, so I thought I’d give it a try as well. It’s “okay” but tiresome. The word “acolyte” is overused and starting to bug me, but on a larger scale, reading about the neuroses, competition, and ass-kissing of a top writing program is not striking the right cord with me. I’m supposed to feel some empathy for these characters, but honestly I just want them all to appreciate their good fortune and to stop whining!