Monday, March 26, 2007

Saving Fish From Drowning...and, Treasure Island

Since I am trying to catch on my blog tonight. I thought I would put together a review of the books I have recently read.

First, Saving Fish From Drowning by Amy Tan. If you have never read her books, she is brilliant in her language. She has the gift to take you deep inside a character and see with their eyes. This book takes place mostly in forbidden Burma, now Myanmar (an interesting topic for me since I was in Thailand and near the border). This book certainly had a unique narrator; a character who is killed at the beginning. She was to take a group on a cultural tour to Burma and the group decides to go even though she has is in her honor. Well, the dead tour leader fills us in on her life and her friends. The voice is one of that perfect party friend that whispers tidbits of gossip into your ear. Just the voice of the book will keep the reader interested. I must say that it was the last third of the book that almost seemed outlandish because of what happens to the travelers. But, as I ponder this part of the book a little more, I have decided it is so outlandish because it revolves around ideas so foreign to me as an American. I have come to like the book as a whole. I would also highly recommend The Bonesetter's Daughter. That is a lovely, lovely book.

The other book I read recently was Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson. Since our trip to Tahiti and my discovery of Mutiny on the Bounty, I have been enthralled with books about ships and uncharted waters. I am sure I read this book when I was younger, but I can't remember being so drawn into the incredible adventure of this book. I was in Jim Hawkins shoes the whole time, enjoying the bravery of being amongst pirates on a caribbean island. As I read, I also realized that this was the book that inspired Disney's Pirates of the Caribbean. It is also the book that inspired the restaurant Long John Silver (that can be slightly distracting when you first start to read). If you like adventure and reading about fantastical will love this book. Then, read Mutiny and Blue Latitude. It will be hard not to feel the salty breeze on your face and the fine white sand between your toes. This is what a good book should be -- an escape from the real world.

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