Thursday, January 1, 2009

Books I Heard in 2009: A Spot of Bother

I'm going to try something different this year. Rather than open up a new Word doc and start listing and giving my impressions of the books I've read and/or listened to as I finish reading and/or listening to them, I'm just going to do that right here. Cut out the middle man, as it were.

And so, without further ado:

A Spot of Bother by Mark Haddon

So, a few years ago, I read the novel that really put Haddon on the map, the one that made such a huge splash, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. And I was wholly and completely underwhelmed. (It's about the tenth one down, FYI.) So it was with some hesitancy that I picked this one up at our library. But I was running out of audiobooks, and there it was, and god forbid I ever have to take a walk without something to listen to, so...

Oh, wow. What a good book. What a good story. Nothing earthshattering or anything like that. But the whole thing, from opening to ending, felt real. Palpably real. A conceit that could have been cheesy (a family imploding around the occasion of one family member's wedding), and plot twists that could have been even cheesier, and yet I just didn't feel that way about it, at all. It was fun, and I liked these people, and I felt for them. Haddon totally redeemed himself in my book. (And I'm sure he's sleeping easier tonight knowing that, right?)


kristenspina said...

So, out of curiousity—how do you listen while you walk? Portable cd player? iPod?

TC said...

iPod. Downloaded from iTunes. Onto my iPhone. While iWalk. ;-)

In all seriousness, it actually took me a fairly long time to figure out how to organize a 10-plus-CD audiobook on iTunes in order to be able to listen to it with as few interruptions as possible...and in the right order! But it's The Best Thing Ever, in my opinion, once you get used to the idea of hearing a book not in your own voice, but in someone else's. (And once you realize that that means sometimes people misread a line in your opinion, or even mispronounce a word...something that still bugs me, even several years into my Love of Audiobooks era.)

But once you get past that sort of toleration curve, I really think it's a huge boon. Allows me to experience so many books I never would have had the time to get to otherwise.

Aimee said...

A Spot of Bother is definitely worth a read. I recommend it highly.