I love for a book to just take me away, to absorb me to the extent that I think about the characters even when I’m not reading it. And to have me wanting to share my love for it when I’m talking to friends, or even writing about other things.
Recent examples of this have been:
- the mighty tome that is Sahntaram, the book I mentioned last week
- the first Ken Follett I read, that was called Pilllars of the Earth. I still enjoy Follett, but find his formula is so tight that I can’t read more than one every couple of years, though I love the sense of learning they carry too,
- A.L. Kennedy’s Everything You Need. Wow! I was amazed to find that she’s actually a funny woman. That book seemed so intense when I read it. Perhaps it was my state at the time reading too much in,
- The first time I read modern Irish writer Niall Willam’s Four Letters of Love I just had to start again, and read and cry and think. Wonderful.
- Norwegian Wood by Japanese master Harukai Murakami
Just because a book doesn’t garb you in this way doesn’t mean that it’s not a good read. But it is utterly lovely when it happens.
I’m a lover of the spare tight style you get with Hemingway, Orwell and others, but also I love the way an Indian book may meander off into such beautiful rich description that in becomes a story within a story.
Sometimes even I may feel that there’s an exciting flow of words, but that really has little to say. But then I’d have to say that as I have just come back to this post half written and realised that I don’t know where I’m taking it!
I’d best stop right here!