Books I’ve Read Lately

Haven’t done one of these in literal years

Lee Child, PersuaderYou know, in theory, I enjoy suspense thrillers about implacable killers who wander the world writing wrongs. But I’ve never been able to get into Jack Reacher, and, honestly, that remains true. In this one Jack gets involved in an improbable plan to write a wrong from his military police days, and it involves hanging out in a big house with some arms dealers and basically just fucking around doing nothing for page after page.

J. Courtney Sullivan, Friends and Strangers – Sullivan is so underrated, and she’s only gotten better since her first book, Commencement. She writes subtle, nuanced comedies of manners about, well, people who are exactly like me. This one is about the friendship that springs up between a college student and a young mother who’re both at turning points in their lives. The relationship is just on the other side of the realistic: the kind of thing we’d like to exist, but usually doesn’t. Some very well-drawn people interact in surprising and interesting ways. Also the young mother is a blocked writer, working on her third book. For me, very relatable =]

Francoise Gillot, Life With Picasso – Memoir by a young painter who was Picasso’s lover for twelve years and the model for many of his works. At times got tedious, but I liked it for two things: the description of how a person with, well, mediocre looks and personal charm could win over and ensnare a young woman, as much through his pity as for his own sake, and, as she watches with bemusement, all the while thinking she’s above this relationship and can escape at any moment, manages to cut her off from her family and pull her deeper and deeper into his clutches. Oh, and his thoughts about art are interesting too.

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