I’ve decided to leave Brittney Reads up, but all future reviews and bookish stuff will be posted on my main blog, Palimpsest Smile.
It feels increasingly silly compartmentalizing my interest in books and my interest in everything else, especially when I have to compartmentalize my personality in so many other situations.
Do not discourage children from reading because you feel they are reading the wrong thing. Fiction you do not like is a route to other books you may prefer. And not everyone has the same taste as you.
This morning I finished reading Twilight by William Gay. It came recommended by reputation, Gay being a favorite author and departed acquaintance of a friend of mine. I had checked it out of the library back in October of last year but returned it unread. I’m sad I let that opportunity slide by, but glad that I finally wised up and read the thing.
Twilight is about Tyler and Corrie, teenage siblings who disinter their father on the suspicion that Fenton Breece, the creepy town undertaker, ripped them off and didn’t include the vault they paid for. They discover this and many more unsettling and perverse trespasses against their local dead. When Tyler steals a sheaf of photos depicting Breece toying with dead women in sickening ways, Breece hires resident murderous ne’er-do-well Granville Sutter to recover the evidence. Pretty soon Tyler is fleeing Sutter through a blighted landscape known as the Harrikin, hoping to get to the next town over and a less corrupt police force before Sutter kills him. It’s a macabre, tense, and astoundingly well-written adventure through rural Tennessee in the 1950s, and it’s both well worth your time and hard to forget.
I’m from rural Tennessee and have spent most of my life living in small towns, and I could imagine the Harrikin vividly as the creepy backwoods areas I’ve explored on late-night drives with Timber Timbre on the stereo. The dialogue in this novel is perfect, recalling old men I knew in my childhood who rhapsodized about their youthful exploits. The setting is perfect, riddled with tumbledown abandoned houses, witchy old women, lingering shadows, and whistling crevices leading to God knows where. The characters are perfect: Corrie with her tragic but well-meaning greed, Sutter with his devious lunacy, poor Tyler who gets roped into the whole mess. It’s pretty much a perfect book.
I just realized that it’s been two months since I announced that I was going on hiatus to get some from the Internet. I think it’s about time I get back to Brittney Reads and talking about awesome books.
If you want to see the blogging I’ve done professionally in the interim, please check out the Linebaugh Public Library System webpage and click on the blogs tab. I’m co-administrator of our readers’ advisory blogs and contribute mostly to the YA blog.
And to see what I’ve been reading, click over to my Goodreads! (You can add me as a friend while you’re there, if you like.)