I am back on the soil of Albion, as bloated as a goose fattened for Christmas. I ran once in my trip to the US and ate copious amounts of junk food, so I suppose this is my comeuppance for lethargy.
Jumping from excess to books, perhaps not seamlessly, I'm going to rabbit on a bit about what I've been reading. As you may know, I got a Kindle for my birthday. I stroke it lovingly every evening, whisper sweet nothings into its USB access port, and write it tender poetry every fortnight. It's a marvel of modern invention and I might make it an honorary second child.
My mind is awash with the many possibilities of what can be put on this thing, and I was initially unsure what to make my first official purchase. However, I am easily swayed and bow very easily to peer pressure, and young Molly had been talking favourably about Diana Gabaldon's Outlander series for some time. Neither one of us are fans of the romance genre, but as the series is also classified as historical fiction, we have assumed this umbrella instead, choosing to assiduously ignore the dreaded "r" word.
Let me just tell you - I couldn't get enough of the first book (Outlander) in this series. Despite being jet-lagged, forced into going back to work within 24 hours of my return from a month-long trip to the US, an at-times needy husband, and a demanding, tyrannical toddler, I read this book in less than a week. This book is nearly 700 pages long friends. That's some heavy reading for a flighty, ADD-addled person like me.
I admit, there are some cheesy as hell sex scenes. To wit:
"'Aye, Sassenach,' he muttered, answering my movements rather than my words. 'Ride ye I will!' His hands dropped to my breasts, squeezing and stroking, then slid down my sides. his whole weight rested on me now as he cupped and raised me for still greater penetration. I screamed then and he stopped my mouth with his, not a kiss, but another attack, forcing my mouth open, bruising my lips and rasping my face with bearded stubble. He thrust harder and faster, as though he would force my soul as he forced my body. In body or soul, somewhere he struck a spark, and an answering fury of passion and need sprang from the ashes of surrender. I arched upward to meet him, blow for blow. I bit his lip and tasted blood.
I felt his teeth then on my neck and dug my nails into his back. I raked him from nape to buttocks, spurring him to rear and scream in his turn. We savaged each other in desperate need, biting and clawing, trying to draw blood, trying each to pull the other into ourselves, tearing each other's flesh in the consuming desire to be one. My cry mingled with his, and we lost ourselves finally in each other in that last moment of dissolution and completion."
In Gabaldon's defense, can a sex scene in a non-erotic novel be written well sans "thrusting" and "savaging"? There is no "throbbing" in this passage, but I'm sure it's around somewhere.
Now I'm trying NOT to buy the second book in the series right away, because that's surely lame, right? Molly and I are book snobs perhaps, but seriously, it's hard to admit you really enjoy a book whose first edition cover was this:
It looks like one of my Mom's beach romance books from the early 90s; books that she fondly referred to as "crotch novels". That's one classy broad right there.
I have some works more appropriate for a book snob on my Kindle - Anna Karenina, The Early Stories: 1953-1975 (Updike), Jane Eyre, Native Son, Pride and Prejudice, Sister Carrie, Tess of the D'Urbervilles, Their Eyes Were Watching God, and a number of books obtained from what might be the best e-book website ever - http://manybooks.net/ . I've gone majorly nerd overboard there and I don't even want to visit there now as I know I won't go to bed until at least 3am if I do.
What are you reading? What do you want to read? If you have some written guilty pleasures, what are they? This isn't a pathetic appeal for comments, I want to know. Well, that, and I miss you. Not having a regular line to tweets and blogs for over a month has made me all wistful and what not. So, what say you?
*UPDATE*: Because I need more books like I need my left ovary to be more posterior, I stopped by my favourite charity shop today and bought four more bloody books. Oops. For the princely sum of £7.50 ($12.40) I now have "World Without End" by Ken Follett, "The Shipping News" by Annie Proulx, "The Edible Woman" by Margaret Atwood, and...and...er, "Lord John and the Private Matter" by one Diana Gabaldon. God help me.