Monday, September 03, 2007

Random Monday Again

Yet another Random Monday post today I'm afraid. My hectic schedule of work days continues and looks like it will continue for the foreseeable future. While this is good for the bank balance, it does mean that I have less time to post, and less time to do things about which to post. So you'll have to bear with me. I have no idea how I'm going to manage to get the work done for the course I've signed up for, which starts in 2 weeks, but I'll worry about that nearer the time.

I have been knitting, though nothing very exciting. I have finished the Hot Lava Cardigan however and I actually like it. I promise I will get Pete to take a picture of it for you - I tried to get a photo of myself wearing it and let's just say that I don't have a glittering future in self-portrait taking.

I am experimenting this afternoon (a day off!!!!!!!) with wet finishing some hand-spun yarn. I am taking photos as I go so once the results are in I shall let you know how it went.

I can't remember what I was reading last time I posted. Ok, I've been and checked and it was Moon Tunnel by Jim Kelly. I have finished that and I did enjoy it. Philip Dryden is a great character and the books are well-plotted.

Now, I'm reading Buried by Mark Billingham. I'm not enjoying this so much. I think it's because it is very much the police procedural, which is not my favourite crime genre (or should that be sub-genre?). Anyway, I 've read each of Billingham's books as they've come out in paperback and the last one Lifeless was my favourite, but I think that's because it took Tom Thorne out of the police station and onto the streets of London. I like Thorne as a character, but this one seems to lack pace and tension. Still I'm only half-way through so it may pick up. I think part of the problem is that I'm struggling to empathise with the missing boy - he seems very one dimensional. Perhaps there's a reason for that which I haven't got to yet. Anyway the jury is still out.

The jury is definitely not still out on the other book I've been reading this week. Actually I've been listening to it as it's an audio book, but I have say that it has little to recommend it. Shadow Man by Cody McFadyen is a dreadful book. I did listen to it all the way to the end but it was very difficult. Perhaps it would read more easily but the narrator calmly describing how the serial killer tortured and killed his victims did not make for pleasant listening. It seemed gratuitously violent and voyeuristic and I shall not read / listen to one of his books again. I don't know if it was because he is a man but the woman who is the central character in this book just did not seem believable to me and some of the things she did and thought made me very uncomfortable. The other thing I did not like about this book is something that bugs me in general aboout fiction. I hate books where all the characters are damn near perfect. Oh, the main character, who went by the unlikely (and irritating) name of Smoky, was scarred both physically and mentally, but all the others were beautiful, handsome, loving, generous, flaky but in a good way, brilliant, etc etc. Why can't somebody in one of these books screw up now and again, or be ugly, or even just ordinary - just once. And the most annoying thing was the way the climax was set up.

Spoiler Alert - if you think you might want to read this book ( and I recommend that you don't) then don't carry on reading this because I'm going to give away the end...........................

The serial killer sends some associates to scare / kill the wife of one of the FBI agents hunting them, along with a little girl she is looking after. To do this they kill the two agents who are supposed to be watching the house. But our heroic team arrive in time and save the woman and the girl. Then they fly off to another part of California, find out who the killer is and come back. Surprise , surprise, they've forgotten to replace the two dead agents outside the house and the serial killer now has the woman and the little girl hostage. Doh!

Is that sloppy plotting or are the FBI really that thick? I'm hoping that it's the plotting thing, you know, in case I should ever need the services of the FBI.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Agree with you on Shadow Man, I did not like it one bit.

I am not sure about Billingham. He's very popular and I've read three (or so) of them and enjoyed aspects of the writing and plots. I just found that first one so sick in its central premise however good the rest of the book -- I can never decide whether he's essentially another "voyeuristic" read or not.

Is Moon Tunnel Jim Kelly's latest? I enjoyed the first two (three?) of these. I'm going to have to try to work out if this is a new one I want to read, or one I've already read...