Which books have you read so far (end of Jan)?

  1. Howl's Moving Castle - Diana Wynne Jones

I kind of may have for a little bit forgotten that I was wanting to try 52 Books in 52 Weeks this year and needed a quick read or two to catch up. I already knew I loved and could breeze through this book, so tit was an easy pick. That said, I probably would have reread it anyway.

Whether or not you've seen the movie, or intend to, or liked it, I recommend reading the book. The next time you hear someone complain that a movie was nothing like the book, you will laugh for about five years. The best way I can describe it is that someone had an idea for a movie and also had read this book and wanted to animate certain scenes; they're totally different stories. And the characters... if you saw the movie and liked Howl as a character well enough, but thought to yourself "where's my movie about that guy" during the tantrum/green slime scene (me!), pick up the book immediately.

The movie was cute, don't get me wrong, but the book really made me laugh and love these characters for all of their strengths and for all of their many, many flaws. Though, having read the next book, I wouldn't let Sophie hear me call them that.

  1. Castle in the Air - Diana Wynne Jones

Not going to lie, I knew what was up going into this. And, to be honest, I recommend that, or rereading the book. There are some moments that are just infinitely funnier when you know.

I don't have a lot to say about this book, even though I did enjoy it. It was a quick, easy, fun read if absolutely nothing else. Which, despite me actually saying more about the next one, is more than I can say for...

  1. House of Many Ways - Diana Wynne Jones

After coming off of the other two, I was (and am!) really bummed at how much I didn't enjoy this book. Nothing ever seemed to be happening, I didn't care about the mains...

Going back to the movie version of Howl's Moving Castle, the reason I liked the tantrum scene and wanted movie Howl to be that guy more was because he was powerful and flawed in a ridiculous way. In that "show me, don't tell me" line of that, we're are told a few times more that he's vain and selfish and stuff, but he seems like a nice enough guy outside of that moment. It never really comes back, it seems like, and I had really wanted it to, whether or not he actually grew out of it as a character. And that's sort of the problem I had with House of Many Ways as a story; there are so many things that you pick up on and think 'oh, this is going to be important or a big deal later!' and either they don't, or they don't in any way that's really satisfying.

  1. Rant: An Oral Biography of Buster Casey - Chuck Palahniuk

I brought this for an old coworker who'd stopped by a few weeks back to borrow. Somehow, we'd got into the idea of street/community demolition derbies, and I remembered this book, because Party Crashing, right? But the more I thought about it, the less I could remember about the later parts of the books. Or, rather, I could remember, what happened, but couldn't remember how it had gotten from Point A to Point C. So I figured either I'd never actually finished it, or just hadn't been paying attention when I read it, and decided to read it again before I saw the old coworker to pass it on to him.

Having reread it, knowing I finished it, knowing I was paying attention, I still have that feeling. How did I get from Point A to Point C? I was on my way from Point A to Point B, turned the page to a new chapter, and suddenly I was slamming face-first into the wall that was Point C, I don't know. Whatever. Rolling with it.

/r/52book Thread