Saturday, 3 December 2016

My Back Pages - November

I read five books last month bringing my year to date total to 61, well past the 50 I estimated at the beginning of the year. And I've yet to get through December.

The month started out with The Nix, the debut novel by Nathan Hill which has been receiving a lot off positive reviews. In it Hill flips back and fourth from the 1968 Chicago protests and 2011 in a desperate search for the truth behind why his mother abandoned him at an early age. In between Hill takes on politics, the media and addiction as well as other aspects of society. It's a well-spun tale and I quite enjoyed reading it.

Next up was the auto-biographical I Am Brian Wilson of Beach Boys fame. This was somewhat of a scattered affair but an interesting read nonetheless. Wilson - or his ghostwriter - however is no Hemingway.

Then it was on to one of my favourite authors, Ian Rankin and his latest tale of now retired Inspector John Rebus, Rather Be The Devil. I never tire of these stories and this is the 21st in the series. I hope there will be more.

I'd never heard of Tana French but I'd seen her The Trespasser here and there and read some positive reviews. This apparently is the sixth in her series of thrillers about the the Dublin murder squad. I was riveted. I'll have to investigate here previous novels in the series.

I closed out the month with The Sun and The Moon and The Rolling Stones by Rich Cohen. I know. Just what we need. Another book about the Rolling Stones. But Cohen, who toured with the Stones, worked on the screenplay for the HBO series Vinyl with Jagger and Scorsese brings and interesting perspective to a well-worn tale. I enjoyed reading this.

So here's how I rated my November reads:

The Nix - Nathan Hill ****
I Am Brian Wilson - Brian Wilson ***
Rather Be The Devil - Ian Rankin *****
The Trespasser - Tana French ****
The Sun and The Moon and The Rolling Stones - Rich Cohen ****

Let me know what you've been turning the pages of. I'm always on the lookout for something new and Different. Happy reading.
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