First up is the Christian Bauman novel In Hoboken. It’s the story of Thatcher, a young folk singer recently discharged from the army, who moves in with his friend James in Hoboken (of course). The book chronicles Thatcher and the people he meets, including members of the music community and Orris, a mental patient who at times feels like the most real character.
Overall, I found the book well written and enjoyable, but the plot ambles along never really going anywhere. It ends kind of flat, failing to wrap up or even address some of the issues in the characters’ lives.
The second thing I’ve been reading is Marvel’s title, Secret Warriors.
Nick Fury has discovered that the only person he can trust is himself and it’s kind of crazy awesome. So far we’ve had a new team of young heroes, Skrulls, and Hydra. I like how this book is trolling the back alleys of Marvel’s Dark Reign. I’m hoping to see this book cross over into the rest of the Marvel universe (and vice versa). It would be great to see Captain America and others all show up.
Well, off to the pile of comic books and books remaining.
I almost forgot to mention, I recently also finished Stewart O’Nan’s a Prayer for the Dying. A beautiful but heartbreaking book that can be difficult to read. Essentially it’s a tale of a small town after the U.S. Civil War that experiences a diphtheria outbreak and is threatened by wildfires. Written in the second person, the book grapples with the moral implications of what must be done and then often asks, how do you live with it?
Overall, this is one of the best books I’ve read in the past year or so. That being said, there were times I had to put it down. What happens throughout the story is sometimes depressing and disheartening. Not only do you feel for Jacob, the main character, but you cringe as you feel the novel’s world sliding slowly out of control.
That being said, I’m starting to really admire O’Nan and his writing. He can change voice, style, and subject so easily from book to book, yet still manages to produce great work.