A couple academic mysteries

5 February 2005 at 11:34 Leave a comment

Veronica Stallwood
Oxford Exit

Amanda Cross
Puzzled Heart

I should have known from the fact that Veronica Stallwood’s works were almost all entitled “Oxford” something that this wasn’t going to be my kind of book. I thought, “author protagonist, libraries and librarians (my favorite place/people!), sounds good.”

I now know that I find author protagonists…tacky. I’m sure it works sometimes, but in this case it does seem so very icky and dreary. Well, her comments about writing as well as her writing reveal her to be what I call a “writer” in my good moods, a “hack” in my bad ones. The kind of writer who sits in a chair everyday and writes something, anything. I prefer the kind of writer that I classify as an “author”. Someone who waits to have something to say before they sit down to write.

It didn’t help that the murder reveals him/herself through a creative writing class. I have a hard time with first person bits in general, but I really don’t like them when the “I” is the bad guy.

Frankly, I could barely read it. I didn’t care about Kate Ivory. I didn’t care who did it. I just didn’t care.

I had no better luck with Amanda Cross’s Puzzled Heart.

I thought I hadn’t read any of hers, but now I remember I picked one up at the library at university and put it back down. Her writing style is turgid, and she seems to have no feeling for people at all. There’s just no passion here. When there is supposed to be passion or compassion, it is communicated by the character’s inability to reason well. Emotion as handicap.

Couldn’t read this one either.

Bad day at the library.


Entry filed under: reading.

Torturous logic Emotional judgment

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What I’ve been reading:

  • James Boswell, The Life of Samuel Johnson, L.L.D. (London, 14 King William Street, Strand: William P. Nimmo, 1876). 4 years ago
  • Marsilio Ficino, Letters of Marsilio Ficino, v. 3, trans. Language Dept. School of Economic Science, London (New York: Gingko Press, 1985). 4 years ago
  • Italo Calvino, Six Memos for the Next Millennium (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1988). 4 years ago
  • Stephanie Kallos, Broken for You (New York: Grove Press, 2004). 5 years ago
  • Marsilio Ficino, Letters of Marsilio Ficino, v. 2, trans. Language Dept. School of Economic Science, London (New York: Gingko Press, 1985) 5 years ago

T. Anderson Painter

I am a misanthrope. No one ever believes me, but this seems to prove my point.



2003-2013 T. Anderson Painter
all rights reserved

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