Sunday, July 17, 2011

Summer's Book Fails

Oh, Booklerner, I've missed you so. Truly. Even as I've unsuccessfully tried to ward off my annual case of chlorinated straw-hair, even as summer days melt into one big blur of heat shimmers off the tar, I've pined away, longing to get back to you, get bossy and opinionated, and tell unsuspecting readers what they should read.

Books: beware! Summer's heat wilts my neurons, leaving me with the attention span of an unmedicated, hyperactive 10-year-old boy. Books, if you want to be lovingly dog-eared, smeared with drips of blueberry frozen yogurt, and pruned by splashes of pool water, you'd better be up to the task. Enough of this "if you get past the first 30 pages, it gets really good" bulls#@t. What kind of malarkey is that? Books, if you want me, if you really want me, don't be coy; engage me from the start. Fill page one with funny, empathetic characters who quickly find themselves in ridiculous, conflict-ridden messes.

Two examples of the multitudes of popular books that didn't cut the muster for me: Jennifer Haigh's "The Condition," and Anita Shreve's "Rescue." Verdict? Snoozers!

But enough of the negative. Stay tuned for the must-reads of summer in my next post.

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