Sunday, July 2, 2017

What I Read in June

Another month, another four books.  I just finished up the last one this morning.  It's definitely more difficult for me to find time to read now that the girls are out of school.

I know there are a lot of people who don't like dystopian novels so I've created a dystopian scale with The Handmaid's Tale and The Hunger Games at a 10.  The Circle, on my scale, would fall at a 5 or a 6.  So it's not full out dystopian.  If that helps you at all.

I consider The Circle more of a fun read.  I didn't love it, but it was enjoyable enough.  Mae, the main character of the book, is hired to work for The Circle, the world's most powerful internet company.  It gives us, the readers, a glimpse at what our future world could possibly turn in to.  I found this aspect of the book to be the most interesting.  For example, what if there were high resolution hidden cameras everywhere?  Could crime be significantly reduced?  But at what cost to privacy?  I also liked how the author touched upon "internet fame" and its consequences.

I didn't particularly care for the main character, Mae.  I found her to be a bit naive and too willing to comply without asking any questions.  The Portugal incident really stands out as a good example.  Now, I don't know if it's because of my age and experience or the fact that I'm a cynic, but I would have been fired after the Portugal incident.  I would have laughed and thought it was a joke because . . . seriously?  I also could not stand Mae's friend, Annie, and was annoyed with the author for giving someone in their late 20s, with no prior tax experience, a senior management position supposedly dealing with international taxing issues.  I kept thinking this was a cover for something else and in the end, Annie does reveal that she's been involved with a genealogy project.  I found the character and her role annoying.    

This book, which describes the world in 2145 after global warming and solar radiation have melted the ice caps, was originally published in 1962.  It isn't a lengthy book and if you enjoy classics, I would recommend it.  It does fall heavily into the post-apocalyptic genre.  Global warming is obviously a hot topic in today's world.  It was interesting to read the author's take on it written more than 50 years ago.    

I randomly stumbled upon this book and wanted to read it right away.  Maybe a little weird.  (Me, not the book.)  This is true crime with possibly a bit of American sociology thrown in there.  The book jumped out at me because I remembered reading the news articles.  I couldn't put this one down.  The author humanizes the victims, who were all escorts and quite often not viewed as worthy as other victims of serial killers.  There's a lot of detail but I didn't find it repetitive or too long.  Definitely fascinating.

This was an interesting read.  When I first read the book blurb, I couldn't figure out how this hit-and-run plot could be made into a suspenseful thriller.  Props to the author for the first twist - very clever!  (Something seemed off to me and found myself going back to reread earlier chapters, which isn't so easy on a kindle and made me wish I was reading paper.)  I do have to admit that the ending wasn't a complete shock to me.  Maybe because I had been looking for what could be a twist.  It was still a really good book though.  My only complaint was the subplot with the cops.  I understand how they play a role in the novel but all the detail of their personal lives felt like filler to me.

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1 comment:

Christi said...

I felt the same way about The Circle. Mae was just such a puppet! I would have been fired after the kayak in the dark incident. Seriously, you are denying the world information because you were by yourself and didn't take photos or snap chat it?

I just read the 5th book in the Chief Inspector Gamache series. Have you read that one? It's set in Quebec in a quirky little village. Now I'm reading Vinegar Girl - a modern take on Taming of the Shrew.