The Orenda – Joseph Boyden

the-orenda-joseph-boydenAt times a slow-moving story of a Jesuit priest inserted into the ongoing conflict between the Huron and Iroquois (Haudenosaunee). The story is bloody to be sure but there is an interesting veneration of violence in how vanquished foes are tortured, using the word “caress”.

Note from Amy: later won 2014 Canada Reads

The Rosie Project – George Simsion

the-rosie-project-george-simsionAn engaging story set in Australia and NY, about difficulties in relationships by someone who probably has Aspergers syndrome. The interesting feature is the degree to which one’s odd personality can be compensated for (sorry for the awkward sentence).

Note from Amy: Sequel is the Rosie Effect.

December 2013

Cuckoo’s Calling – Robert Galbraith (aka JK Rowling)
A classic contemporary murder mystery in the Mickey Spillane tradition: hard-boiled private investigator in London with a fabulous name – Cormoran Strike. He is an amputee from Army service, and is investigating an apparent suicide. Excellent context of London, usually Soho in the rain.

The Secret History – Donna Tartt
A psychological story about 6 self-absorbed college students in the 1980s: alcohol, drugs and murder.
The Goldfinch – Donna Tartt
A really excellent, multi-faceted book. The first 1/4 is an exceptional description of paralysis due to grief. The book then described a self-absorbed and self-destructive life style. Then the final 1/4 becomes a thriller and the end is perfectly philosophical. Overall, excellent story telling and highly recommended.
The Bell – Iris Murdoch
Beautifully written, especially in the beginning of the book. Dora is an annoying ditz, someone who acts without thinking.