I always dreamed of a being sick episode where I spend the day lying in bed, reading and occasionally sipping something, electral maybe. Well it hardly happened. The head was fit to burst I could barely focus on words in size 1000, forget normal books, and the final annoyance was that electral made my feet swell up because it has too much salt it. The ultimate ignominy I swear. Not as if I was pregnant.
Now that I am officially recuperating, and people in the office take one look at me and ask me to go home (which I am doing gladly, having always been able to work rather more efficiently from home), I have this time on me. My eyes can focus. I can read. My mum is not allowing me to do much work around the house. I pottered around, went to the office for meetings in the morning, came back early and prepared desultorily for my class and read this and that.
I went over to my bookshelf, newly neatly arranged with some form of order, and wondered. I finished Alice in Wonderland which I bought for the child. I tried Through the looking glass again. I have always been ashamed that I could not complete reading it when I was a child (we had the complete works; a fat green unwieldy monster of a book but a gem nevertheless if you like to read Hunting of the snark etc. ). I am ashamed no more. Through the looking glass is just bad, okay, honest opinion. I had read a Douglas Adams last week, moment of weakness. It added to my hallucinations and I decided to stay the hell away from him till my mind cleared. I read Chatura Rao (Meanwhile, Upriver) recommended by wordjunkie. I thought it was over-long but a good effort and definitely better than the other women from the subcontinent who have been getting awards and considerable media focus. I read Murakami. Now there is something there.
I sometimes like clever books. Whats a clever book? No, not Rushdie. Although he is quite clever in Grimus for example with his anagrams and so on. Shashi Deshpande is not clever somehow although she goes deep into relationships and so forth and is a very believable writer. Ghosh I think is very clever. So much research goes in, and I really like his books, most of all Hungry Tide.
So anyway the Murakami I read was not like that. Of course his running book is autobiographical for the most part and it is about running so that one is an instant hit with me. This one that I read this week called "After Dark" was in essence his first real book (not counting the running one) that I read. It was expensive and I was not sure I would like it. You never know with famous writers, some of them are so difficult to read that its just not worth the effort. I bought it anyway last month and took this opportunity to read it, and may I say, I really liked it. Simple language. Some clever things with mirrors and so on but nothing too clever. Thankfully nothing too gory in terms of sex. That is a problem with male authors, when they start getting deep into descriptions of sexual acts, yawn, boring. And no, not like I am a prude, its fine, does not generally bother me too much, but it felt quite refreshing when it was absent. I am going to read more of his books. Though they will set me back a tidy packet.
I also read Charlie and the chocolate factory and we followed it up (very rare occurrence in our household!) with the movie which the monster & I watched on my computer (not from the internet, I bought the DVD, I only ever watch movies like that, strong proponent of not downloading stuff from shady semi-legal ftp sites). Johnny Depp in a vaguely gay act was cute, as always. The story and the book were really enjoyable too (I have read it before, had forgotten some of it). I expected I would like the chocolates themselves more than I finally did. But then my current taste in chocolate is pure, unadulterated with nuts, sort-of-dark stuff. Yeah, and Five Stars which I have loved despite the tendency to stick to teeth, all my life. Charlie Bucket, the monster thinks, is a very funny name indeed. The moral of being good and sharing and good things ensuing forth has been pretty much ignored. I read many other Raold Dahl kiddie books though it was all before the typhoid I had much fun with them.
Right now the question is back again. What on earth do I read now? Adiga, Deshpande, Feynmann, Wodehouse, Marquez, all stare back accusingly at me...