A narrative about the difficult relationship between a mother and her daughter. Themes of frustration and anger, sadness and loss. It was a typical Booker nomination- worthy and wordy. I listened to it- I wouldn’t have stayed with it had I been reading the book, but I quite liked driving and letting the words wash over me. It resonates with my relationship with my own mother: ‘…no way to baste her in guilt… she mostly can’t recall what I am talking about…’
Slow starter but when it takes off it’s explosive. You might think you’ve got T.M. Logan’s plot all worked out. And it appears you have. Until that final ‘it’s all in the detail’ twist. Love this author.
A delicious tale about Dr Jeckell’s and Mr Hyde’s daughters, Frankenstein and Frankenstein ‘s bride and a whole host of other characters involved in a mystery that is being investigated by Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson. Gothic fiction at its very clever best. I loved it!
Having read Madeline Miller’s Song of Achilles earlier in the year, it was interesting to read events from the Gods viewpoint, although I had to keep Googling them as they entered the narrative to remind myself of their role in Greek legend, which slowed the reading down a tad. It was good to catch up with Odysseus and get to know him from another angle- from the female view of Circe and Penelope, which although played up the traditional great and wily warrior role, also showed him in a less favourable and likeable light. A couple of lines, where Circe is describing the character of Penelope stayed with me:
‘I asked her how she did it once, how she understood the world so clearly. she told me that it was a matter of keeping very still and showing no emotions, leaving room for others to reveal themselves.’ (p.265).
Everyday ‘A’ wakes up in a different body; the bodies of a myriad of different characters, some likeable, some not. A has come to terms with this and its consequences, until he meets Rhiannon whilst in the body of Rhiannon’s boyfriend Justin.
There was a lot that I liked about this book. I liked Alexander Lin, the last character in the book. I liked it that he played in a band. I liked his post-it quotes. Especially the one from George Bernard Shaw:
Dance is the perpendicular expression of a horizontal desire p.353
I liked the way that Levithan dealt with some of the issues, making the reader question their own feelings and behaviours: Rhiannon was reluctant to kiss A when in a girls body; she was awkward when he was fat; it becomes complicated when he wakes up in the body of a transgender teenager given that he can wake up in the body of either a boy of girl.
I liked the way that he did wake up as Rhiannon, but that there was no build up- it just happened in the middle of the book, then moved seamlessly to the next character. I liked that A could have taken huge advantage of this situation, but he didn’t.
I liked the ending
Ultimately A’s issues are no different from the issues dealt with by other teenagers, but he comes at them from a different angle; with an added dimension.