Last week I was at the library and they had a display that read, in effect, “Short on time? Try these short novels!” There were a couple of dozen books on display, each at around 200 pages or less. I picked up a couple and, two days later, I was back for  more! The short novel or novella is a great way to sample a writer without having to commit to a  300-400 page book. It takes quite a bit of literary craftsmanship to write the short story, novella or short novel. In essence, the writer is still on the hook to deliver the story with enough detail to make it all work; but there is no room for extensive backstory or digressive ruminations. What also marks the short forms as different from their full-length cousins is that they often leave more room for the reader to project or imagine things into the novel. For instance, “3:10 to Yuma” (short story by Elmore Leonard) has been made into a  film three times and, each time the essence of the story remains the same; but what the writers added-in created vastly different results.

Anyway, I’ve read five books in the past five days:

  1. Comedy in a Minor Key (by Hans Neilson) 
  2. The Bad Beginning (by Lemony Snickey)
  3. Heartstones (by Ruth Rendell)
  4. The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven (by Alexie Sherman) 
  5. Go With Me (by Castle Freeman, Jr.)

I’ve been chattering about them on twitter each morning and plan on continuing for awhile, though this morning was a no-go since I really had to write and post a  review last night! Anyway, the thought has occurred to me that as the next read on my list is a 500 page lit-fic novel, I may be subconsciously proscrastinating. It sounds ridiculous, I know! I love to read! I love Margaret Atwwod! And yet, here I am looking at 84 Charing Cross Road (by Helene Hanff), a re-read for me, instead!

  1. 84 Charing Cross Road (by Helen Hanff)
  2. Alias Grace (by Margaret Atwood) – Mount TBR
  3. Emma (by Jane Austen) – Back to the Classics; Mount TBR
  4. Enough About Love (by Herve LeTellier)
  5. The Kite Runner (by Khaled Hosseini) – What’s in a Name? Challenge #5
  6. The Royal Road to Fotheringhay (by Jean Plaidy) – Mount TBR
  7. Pest Control (by Bill Hughes) – What’s in a Name? Challenge #5
  8. The Religion (by Tim Willocks) – Mount TBR
  9. The Time Traveler’s Wife (by Audrey Neffenegger) – Mount TBR
  10. Netherland (by Joseph O’Neill)


I’m in the middle of both The Arthur Miller Collection (by Arthur Miller; performed by various full casts) and Thunderball (by Ian Fleming; narrated by Simon Vance.) I just found out that I may not be able to make Saturday night’s #ShakenNotStirred tweetchat and viewing party because of a scheduling conflict. I’m going to try to work it out; but I suspect that I will not be watching Sean Connery with The Bond Girls this week-end 😦

  1. We’re Alive, Season 1 (by Kc Wayland; performed by a full cast) – Audio Drama
  2. Zombiestan (by Mainak Dhar; narrated by John Lee)
  3. Vacation (by Matthew Costello; narrated by Peter Macon)
  4. The Bone House (by Brian Freeman; narrated by Joe Barrett) – Thriller/Suspense
  5. Silent Scream (by Karen Rose; narrated by Marguerite Gavin) – Thriller/Suspense
  6. My Dog Tulip (by J.R. Ackerley; narrated by Ralph Cosham) – Biography/Memoir
  7. The 4% Universe (by Richard Penak; narrated by Ray Porter) – Non-Fiction
  8. My Korean Deli (by Ben Ryder Howe; narrated by Bronson Pinchot) – Non-Fiction
  9. The 13-1/2 Lives of Captain Bluebear (by Walter Moers; narrated by Bronson Pinchot) – Fantasy
  10. Rumo and His Miraculous Adventures (by Walter Moers; narrated by Bronson Pinchot) – Fantasy

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s