The Search Warrant was my first Modiano. I found the book on the ‘New Arrival’ display on a bookstore I often visit. Cramped between John Green’s and Rainbow Rowell’s books, Patrick Modiano’s The Search Warrant seemed out of place. And indeed, it was.
This book was first published in 1997 as Dora Bruder. How did a book published almost two decades ago got its place among the newcomers? Because it has ‘Winner of the Nobel Prize 2014 in Literature’ on the cover.
The author in the story found a notice of a missing girl in an issue of Paris Soir. The girl, is a 15 year old Jewish named Dora Bruder who ran away from a convent where her parents put her during an interim occupation by Nazi in 1940. The year is 1996 and the author determinately tracked down this girl, to know what happened to her, why she ran away, was she caught and sent to the camp? This was an impossible task but I like what he wrote about being patient
Have you ever started a book hating the characters and then by the end of it, you ended up rooting and loving them? This is how I feel about Fitzgerald’s ‘Tender is the Night’. As I pledge to read more classics, Fitzgerald is one of the authors that works I always want to read.
The book consists of three books and with each book, the story gets deeper and more revealing. It opens with a scene at a beach in South of France with a 17 year-old actress, Rosemary Hoyt. She travels with her mother and at that beach she falls in love with Dick Diver, a charismatic man in his thirties. Rosemary was charmed by not only Dick, but also his beautiful wife, Nicole. At first, I disliked Rosemary for being so naive and hopelessly in love, but then as the story got more complex, her naive love was necessary for providing a contrast between hers and Dick and Nicole’s love.
Jane Eyre is like a myth to me. Maybe like Moby Dick or Hamlet. Books or works that I hear too often and scare me because they are important piece of literature. Last year I resolved to read more notable classic literatures and since Penguin published the book and its cover is illustrated by Ruben Toledo, I decided to buy it. I thought: if I don’t like it, at least it’ll look good on my shelf.
But not only does it look good, Jane Eyre is exceptional. It begins like a Cinderella story. Jane is 10 when her mother died, she was left orphaned and she lived with her uncle, Mr.Reed and his family. In the household, only his uncle is kind to her. After he passed away, Mrs. Reed wants to get rid of Jane but she can’t because of her husband’s dying wish. So Jane has to endure abuse – mentally and physically from her aunt and her three cousins. The only one whoo is kind to her is Bessie the maid. Later, after an incident, Jane is sent to a charity school far from home. Jane is glad to be able to leave Reed’s house and – this is why I like Jane – she confronts Mrs.Reed and tells her that she will never call her ‘aunt’ again, that she hates her and her children.
When I picked up this book, I had no idea who Hanya Yanagihara was and what A Little Life was about. Little did I know I was picking up a book that would become my best read in 2015.
A Little Life tells a story of four best friends who come to New York from a small town in Massachusetts to make their ways. Broke and full of hopes, their first years in New York remind me of how it was like being a college student. There is handsome, kind-hearted, aspiring actor Willem, quick-witted and sometimes cruel artist JB, a young frustrated yet sensitive and talented architect Malcolm, and enigmatic, intelligent, mysterious, kind lawyer Jude, who is the centre of the group yet the most closed one.
It was just a couple years back I realised that Virgin Suicides was based on a book written by Jeffrey Eugenides. I planned to read it and finally bought the book last week. The book is republished by Picador Modern Classic and has a beautiful cover that I think suits the atmosphere of the story (by then I hadn’t read it – only remembered the nuance of the movie I had seen 13 years ago – melancholic and dreamy).
The Virgin Suicides was narrated by one of the teen boys who were obsessed with the Lisbon girls: Mary, Therese, Lux, Bonnie and Cecilia. The boys spent their days and nights watching the girls’ house and saw them as something unreal. It could be seen since the beginning that the girls weren’t brought up normally. Their mother was very strict and religious; their father – a math teacher in their school – always listened to his wife and didn’t have much say about how things ran at their household.