As of this post, I will finally be caught up from my ill-advised and not-on-purpose week away. As of tomorrow, I can start devoting posts to single titles--or maybe two at a go if I've had a good day of reading. But, for a while I hope, no more of these multi-book posts. They kinda hurt.
'The Forgotten Waltz' by Anne Enright is a book that I will freely admit I wanted to read because I kinda loved the cover. Sadly, the cover has fuck all to do with the contents of the book. Yes, there's a middle-class, middle-ish-aged lady on the cover, but that's all the cover model has in common with Gina, the protagonist. And, worse, the whole book is a rather depressing detailing of Gina's affair with a married man. It's quite well-written and I'm sure there are readers out there who enjoy this sort of thing, but I'm not one of them. Gina was not, to me, at all a sympathetic character. I never really understood her motivations for much of anything that she did. To be fair, I don't think she ever really understood them, either. I kept reading, hoping for some redemption or something, but never got it.
'No Proper Lady' by Isabel Cooper is an historical romance with elements of time travel and paranormal. The premise is quite good, the characters are realistic and sympathetic, and the whole reading experience was pleasant from start to finish. I don't really want to say much more, because this is really one worth reading for yourself. I also admit to quite liking the cover, mainly because the half-undone gown isn't just for titillation, it's showing the heroine's tattoo and a quite impressive bruise. I like this proof that ass-kicking has its cost.
'The Aviary' by Kathleen O'Dell is a lovely, fairy-tale-ish MR. I thought, at the beginning, that it was going to be a rip-off of 'The Secret Garden', but it's not. It has magic and birds and kidnapping and ghosts and all kinds of other really interesting stuff. It's set in 1903 (which I only found out after looking up a film that is mentioned in the book), which it has to be in order for it to be at all believable. Not the truly magic stuff, but the stage magic and kidnapping elements would never work in a contemporary setting.
And...oh...I know there was one more. Crap. What was it? Well, it's obviously not so superfantastico that it can't wait until tomorrow.