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January 31, 2008

Books for January

2008 Finishes: Books , Bookish , What, me? Have an opinion?

Apparently I only finished two this month. Ah well; it's been a crazy busy month, and I'm currently in the middle of about four books, so February's list should be longer!

Magic Hour by Kristin Hannah
Genre: Mystery, women's fic
Pages: 469
Rating: 4.5
Ellie is a small town police chief who is totally out of her league when a potentially feral child wanders out of the forest into her town. Her sister, Julia, is a top child psychiatrist whose glittering career is disrupted when one of her patients kills several other children and then herself. She returns to her hometown in disgrace to try to help Ellie and the child. Along the way, both Julia and Ellie are transformed. Some of the small-town characters are cutesy and cliched, but the main characters are all surprisingly complex, and the story of the child is riveting. This one gets extra points for making me cry - something that doesn't often happen with books. But don't worry, the ending is perfect.

The Magician's Nephew by C.S. Lewis
Genre: Juvenile, fantasy
Pages: 202
Rating: 4.3
I'd actually never read this one before. I read three or four of the Narnia books as a kid, and liked them, but lost interest somehow and never finished the series. I recently decided to read/reread them all. The edition my library has start with The Magician's Nephew as the beginning of the series (anyone want to weigh in on that debate?), so I started with that this time. (I'd started with Lion, Witch last time.) I don't think this novel was Lewis's best, but it was definitely very good. I think reading these books as an adult makes the humor even better - I loved the running commentary about what a great day the housemaid was having, for one thing. And, of course, it was very interesting to read about the creation of Narnia.

Posted by Kat at January 31, 2008 09:26 AM

I just finished this book, too, although it's the sixth one I've read. Maybe because I've been remarkably irked by the way the series has been progressing, I found this one a nice change of pace with less overt hostility toward women and minorities than in previous volumes. (And, yes, I know he was just a product of his times, but still...)

I can understand why some publishers place this book first these days, but I like to read things in the order that the author wrote them.

Posted by: sprite at January 31, 2008 12:05 PM
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