I have a lot of catching up to do on my reading goal, so this post is going to be a short one. Things in March got a little off track, as I felt very much more like watching movies than I did reading. And I'm not even talking about good movies, I'm talking about watching the entire Transporter and Mission: Impossible series. Those were dark days, but I've since gotten my Kindle recharged and am determined to get back on track
This is the one that really got me hung up. It took me a little more than a month to read this one. I really did enjoy it, although it did delve into a lot of details on a lot of things that didn't feel overly necessary. There was one chapter in particular where Clancy went into a lot of detail to introduce a new character, only to have him die in a helicopter crash mere pages later. Worth the read, but I'm not sure I can say when I'll be ready to read the next in the Jack Ryan series.
The Hunt for Red October, by Tom Clancy -
I'm allowing myself to re-read a maximum of one book per month this year, and in April I decided to crack open this classic again. I read it for the first time almost exactly ten years ago, and I loved it even more this time than I did then. Some things you love and you can't really put a finger on exactly why, and this is one of those books for me. It gives me a strange sense of nostalgia for a time that I didn't even live in, reading about Sal Paradise and Dean Moriarty discovering themselves and America, living life on their own terms with all of the good and the bad that comes with it. It's the perfect balance of hopeful youth and mild despondence. More than that, though, it reminded me of my life when I read it the first time, in April of 2002, and all of the good and bad that came along with it. I look forward to reading it again, perhaps in April of 2022, and feeling those same emotions about this current time in my life.
On the Road, by Jack Kerouac -
I almost violated my rule on only re-reading one book per month by opening up Ender's Game again. January was reading that this month, and it made me want to go back to this wonderful book. Instead, I read this collection of short stories from the Ender series. The first two stories are a more in-depth introduction to Ender's dad, John Paul, and how he was almost recruited for Battle School when he was just a child and how he met Ender's mother while attending college. The third story is the original version of Ender's Game, and really just focuses on the period after Ender begins training with his own Dragon Team in Battle School. The final story takes place several hundred years after the events of Ender's Game, and explores a little bit of Ender's life while in exile. I enjoyed all the stories, but they were really just a taste of the brilliance of the full version of Ender's Game. Definitely worth a read just to fill out your understanding of the series, and certainly a quick read, but nothing amazing.
First Meetings, by Orson Scott Card -
Haruki Murakami is one of my all-time favorite authors, but this is the one book if his that got away from me. The English version of this book was published in 2007 and I remember first trying to read it while January and I were on our makeup honeymoon on Sanibel Island. For whatever reason I just couldn't get into this book back then and I ended up putting it down after only reading a quarter or so of it. I picked it back up this month, all these years later, to give it another shot. I must have just not been in a reading mood the first time around, because this time I got through it all very easily. It's pretty typical of Murakami's work, featuring a cast of interesting characters with their own quirks and mysteries, but I can't say it was my favorite of his books. Worth the read if you've read everything else he's written and just want more of the same, but there's no new ground covered here. If you haven't read The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle or A Wild Sheep Chase yet, I'd recommend those instead.
After Dark, by Haruki Murakami -