If the theme of last month's library books was picture books The theme of my May library book selection is definitely trashy reads. I am not in the mood for any literary classics at the moment! These three were all easy page turners, ideal for the commute or settling down in bed with.
Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert
I massively missed the boat with this when the film came out and everyone and their mother were reading it, because I'm so individual and cool like that (obviously!) but I love travel writing and 'I gave up all my worldly posessions and found the good life in insert-remote-country-here' books, so I figured despite the hype and subsequent hate this book got it would be right up my street.
The first part where the author lives in Italy really appealed to me, and I tore through it. Having spent time travelling in Italy myself between leaving Uni and starting work I loved reading about the places she visited and all the pizza and pasta and gelato and the sunshine. The rest of it though, where she is living in India and Bali and meditating and being enlightened? Not so much my cup of tea. It just seemed quite repetitive and a tad self indulgent.
I guess I wanted to learn more about the countries and cultures she visited, and less about the author herself. I like my Earthly pleasures I'm afraid and I'm much less bothered about spiritual enlightenment! Basically if the book had been less 'Eat, Pray, Love' and more 'Eat, Eat, Eat' that would have suited me perfectly!
Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris
This is another book I am massively late in reading, as the hype and TV series were a few years ago now. It's the story of Sookie the mind reading waitress, and Bill the 'I'm really quite nice and normal' vampire, set in a Louisiana where Vampires are just about sort of legally allowed to exist, and attempting to 'mainstream' and live in human society.
I loved the murder mystery element to this book, and that definitely kept me turning the pages and annoying my boyfriend when he wanted to go to bed and I just needed to read another chapter. I also really liked the characterisation of Sookie, who as a beautiful, blonde arse-kicking young woman could have easily been so bland, but Harris manages to make her a believable outsider and an interesting and well rounded character despite the fact that obviously every single male in the book was in love with her (my personal pet hate in a female main character!)
This book was the perfect trashy read, and I would definitely pick up another in the series.
Agatha Raisin and the Deadly Dance by MC Beaton
I absolutely love murder mysteries. I'm less interested in gruesome dark crime thrillers though, and much more into a light and fluffy home counties murder - think Midsummer Murders in book form! However I still like my characters to be well written, and the stories to be a little bit believable, and to be honest there is an awful lot of dross in this genre! Unfortunately for me this book fell squarely under the dross category. The writing felt poor, and very much missed the 'show, don't tl' lesson at school, and I could not work out if the main character was supposed to be wholly unlikeable and unsympathetic, or if that was just how she came across to me. If you like this genre I would 100% recommend Simon Brett's Feathering Mysteries or Donna Leon's Brunetti series over the Agatha Raisin books any day.
What are you reading this month?