Three Books in Three Days (3)

For the last book in this three-day roundup, I’ve picked a novella — one of my favourite literary forms. Too often, reviewers treat novellas either as mini-novels or bloated short stories (if they bother with them at all). Yet if you’re looking for a textbook example of classic novella form, John Calabro’s An Imperfect Man has it…

Three Books in Three Days (2)

Day Two of Thoughtful B’s three-day book marathon brings us The Meursault Investigation by Algerian author Kamel Daoud. This is a rich and thought-provoking work that invites a second reading. Translated from the French by John Cullen, it is both a novel of ideas and a generous depiction of human complexity. It’s intended as a riff on Albert Camus’ The Stranger —…

Three Books in Three Days (1)

Before the gorgeous summer of 2015 passes into autumn, I’d like to review three unusual books that brought me special pleasure this season. Two novels and one novella — each in its own way quite unique and deserving of attention — one a day for three days. It’s always a treat to read a fine…

Thoughtful B’s Biog Blitz

Hello, dear readers — apologies for a long but unavoidable absence. It was an overwhelming spring (book promotion) and a stressful early summer (family matters), so Thoughtful B. more or less kicked back and took the rest of the summer off, surrounded, of course, by reading — both e-books and the old-fashioned kind — along…

Travel As A Way of Life: Genni Gunn’s Tracks

Everyone who’s traveled knows the sensation of mild disorientation that accompanies landing in a strange place. Jet lag, unfamiliar languages, getting around in strange cities — the complete absence of the familiar can produce an almost physical sense of imbalance until the traveler gets lost in the pleasures of discovery. Genni Gunn’s essay collection Tracks:…

Miah: Julia Lin’s Stories of Fate

Back from a thought-provoking trip to China, I was more than happy to read Miah, Julia Lin’s first collection of short stories. The title means fate, and the characters are Taiwanese, who, like many Asians, suffered for years under the dominance of both China and Japan. Most of us are latecomers to the story brought…