Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Nevermore: B.A. Paris, Lisabeth Salander, Graveyard Book, Never Let Me Go, Astrophysics, and October Sky

Reported by Jeanne

B.A. Paris’ debut novel Behind Closed Doors was recommended again by a Nevermore member.  The story revolves around a husband and wife who seem to have the perfect marriage, but astute readers will see dark undercurrents early on in the book.  Our reader said she had to take a sneak peek at the ending but still enjoyed the book.

Many of those in Nevermore have been fans of Stieg Larsson’s Lisbeth Salander books, so there was great interest the new books in the series written by David Lagercrantz.  The Girl Who Takes an Eye for an Eye was praised by our reader for catching the essence of the original characters.  However, the plot was deemed a bit thin and more than a bit implausible. 

The Newbery Award-winning The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman is keeping another reader entertained.  The story revolves around Bod, an orphan boy who is being raised by the inhabitants of a graveyard after the murder of his parents.  She said it was the perfect book for this time of year, and she was enjoying the relationship between Bod and the various spirits.

Our next reader was impressed with Never Let Me Go  by Kazuo Ishiguro but said that it was a difficult book to talk about without revealing spoilers.  She did say that it was set in the 1990s but sort of an alternate time. The story takes place in Hailsham, which is an English boarding school for special students, and follows three students in particular as they grow up and learn their purpose in life. She picked up the book because she wanted to read something by the winner of the  2017 Nobel Prize in Literature.

Astrophysics for People  in a Hurry by Neil deGrasse Tyson might as well have been titled “Brain Surgery for People in a Hurry,” according to our reader.  He felt the title indicated the book could be read and understood quickly while there is a lot of information packed inside 224 pages.  That’s not to say that the book isn’t good, just that it takes a while to absorb it all.  

Finally, one member praised October Sky by Homer Hickam, which was first published under the title Rocket Boys.   The details Hickam’s youth in Coalwood, WV, a mining town in the Appalachian Mountains.  Homer was in high school when the Russians launched Sputnik, and that event captured the young man’s imagination.  He and some classmates set out to build their own rockets for the state science fair in hopes of earning a way out of a fading coal town.  Our reader found it to be a wonderful book and is looking forward to seeing the movie—which she had actually seen some years ago and hadn’t liked, but after reading the book she’s now anxious to see it again.

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