You could really spend a lot of time blogging, couldn’t you? I refer to my blog as a ‘fabulous time-waster’ because it is. It’s ace fun but the fact remains that while I’m busy writing book reviews, it’s time not spent on writing the stuff I’m paid to write. Which doesn’t matter because it’s my hobby and hobbies are meant to be fun, fabulous time-wasters. That said, if I participated in everything that the book-blogging world had to offer (memes, reading challenges, read-alongs, online book groups), my arse would become permanently affixed to my computer chair.
Until now, Tuesday has been ‘Top Ten Tuesday‘ for me. But it’s a new year and I thought I might just dabble in a few other memes (but limiting myself to just one a week because of the whole arse/ computer chair thing).
First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday, hosted by Diane at Bibliophile by the Sea caught my eye. You basically post the opening paragraph or two of a book you’re considering reading. I really like the idea of this because – Kindle. Samples. My samples are out of control. I have more than a hundred. I think of them as my ‘reading transit lounge’ – books that haven’t made it to my shelf but also haven’t been ignored. No one likes being in a state of limbo.
So every few weeks, I’m going to actually read a couple of those samples, participate in First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday and decide whether to buy or bin the book.
I’m kicking off with Someday Find Me by Nicci Cloke.
“There are certain rare moments when it is possible (or so it might seem) to leave your body behind. It might be in a moment of pure joy, with love in your heart or a new life in your arms. Or a moment of desperate sadness, with bad news in your ear or a loss weighing heavy on your soul. A moment of boundless passion, of uncontrollable rage, of icy shock. At these moments in our lives, one thing is true. They are moments when it is suddenly irrevocably clear that things can never be the same again; that a feeling or an action has changed the landscape of everything believed and lived in. It is a window out, but there is no way back in.
I watched myself that day, lying helpless on the bed. I watched them bend and lift me, pulling clothes over my cold body. I watched him watching too, from the corner of the room, a bag of my things in his hand. I watched his eyes meet mine, in a moment that stretched on for ever, in a moment when the light between us flickered and died, and then I watched him turn away, tears falling down his face. ‘I’m sorry,’ was all he could say.”
What do you think? Would you keep reading? Do the wildly different book covers for the hardback and e-book editions respectively, influence your decision? I must admit that I’m tempted by this one because it would fit in nicely with the What’s in a Name reading challenge.
And because I have an insane number of samples to work through, I’m also including The Year of the Gadfly by Jennifer Miller.
“The days were already growing shorter, prodding us toward summer’s end, when my mother and I left Boston for the sequestered town of Nye. She hummed to the radio and I sat strapped into the passenger seat, like a convict being shuttled between prisons. In the last six months my Beacon Hill neighborhood had shrunk to the size of a single room: Dr. Patrick’s office, with its greasy magazines and hieroglyphic water stains. The vast landscape that opened before us now wasn’t any more comforting. The mountainous peaks resembled teeth. The road stretched between them like a black tongue. And here we were, in our small vehicle, speeding toward that awful mouth.
From the maps and photographs I had uncovered at the Boston Public Library, I knew that Nye would be a nest of gloomy woods sunk into one of these mountains. The mountain had no name, which troubled me. Even the word ‘Nye’ sounded like a negation, an absence, a place conflicted about its own existence.
My mother (Ivy League MRS recipient and full-time philanthropy board member) was unimpressed by this detail. In fact, she was chipper as a Today Show host. ‘Isn’t it exciting, Iris! Starting high school on a new foot?'”
Again, two very different book jackets grace different editions of this novel. I picked up the sample in the first place because of the New England school theme – a particular weakness of mine. So, buy or bin?