4/11/2012

Oh Kindle, How I Love You

I was on the fence for so long with my Kindle (prior to buying it, that is). I can think of at least 3 posts off hand that I could link to if I wasn't lazy where I dithered about going the e-reader route. But oh, how I love it now that I have it. Honestly, when I have paper books to read these days, I almost grumble just a little. The main reason? I can hold my Kindle with one hand (and still turn pages!) which means I can read while driving a car around on the floor, or holding a bottle, or burping a baby, or building Lego...you get the idea. I can be mom and still read.

Admittedly, I am a slightly distracted mom when reading, so I don't do it often, but the last two days have been a big exception to that and I lay the blame purely at the feet of incredible books. And since incredible books need to be read by any and everyone out there, I will share.

The first culprit was The Rose Garden. I read The Winter Sea by this author and adored it, so this had been on my list for a while. A few weeks back, Jen mentioned that it was on sale and that was enough for me! Both are time-travel-ish romances -- but they're so much more than just romance. They're the kind of book that make you think you should never even bother putting words on paper because you will never achieve the beauty of writing that Kearsley does. And they both leave you a little bereft because, sure, the characters are all just where they should be, but they're now out of your life, and, well, you miss them. (Certainly this is the reason I re-read so many books, and these are definitely going to join the ranks of the re-readable, but still, it's a bittersweet thing to get to the end of a beautiful book.)

Next up was Divergent. I have to admit I was on the fence about undertaking this one. See, everyone's out there comparing it to The Hunger Games...and really, I think that does a disservice to both. Yes, it's dystopian. Yes, the main character is female. Beyond that? No similarity whatsoever. It's like saying A Tale of Two Cities is like the Scarlet Pimpernel because they both take place during the French Revolution. Did I like The Hunger Games? Yeah, but I don't think I'll be re-reading them anytime soon - maybe just before each movie to refresh my memory. Did I like Divergent? Nope - I adored it - evidenced by the fact that I inhaled it. I downloaded it last night just before bed and finished it this afternoon before supper. (No, I did not win mother or housekeeper of the year today.) What I loved most about Divergent is that the characters are real, but they're strong. Even in their insecurity they're strong - they don't lay about whining and wringing their hands because they're confused. They just admit they're confused, mull it over, choose a course of action and go - even if they know that they may end up regretting and/or changing that course along the way. (I have no tolerance for perpetual hand wringers in my fiction...and really, in real life. If, occasionally, you need a hand wringing moment, that's one thing, but when it's the primary facet of your personality? We will never be friends.)

Beyond that, I loved the fact that Divergent actually explores the human condition - more so than Hunger Games ever managed to. And it looks at the good and the bad and the bad that comes out of good intentions and the good that can still eek out of bad intentions and at the end of the day there is still a hope for redemption.

Plus, of all the male heroes out there right now (Edward, Peeta, whomever), Four is actually a man. He is actually someone I could see saying to my non-existent teenaged daughter, "Yes, you know what, you can model your ideal mate on his characteristics." Is he flawed? Sure. But he knows it and he purposefully works to overcome it.

After the run of stinkers I've been working through lately, it was refreshing to get a breath of two beautiful books. But I probably need to go back to the stinkers for a while...I get more done.

2 comments:

Rachel said...

I was also resistant to getting it being that I love the feel of books but now I have it...I love my kindle too!

Jen said...

Love my Kindle, too.

So glad you enjoyed the books. I know I have recommended books in the past that you didn't like.

My one comment on The Hunger Games books and the whining - that didn't bother me (as much as Bella in Twilight, which is why I didn't get past the first book in that series). I read it as true teenage angst. Because while generally I agree with you on the idea of hand wringing, I remember being slightly hand wringy in my later teens. I'm less so as an adult. But I guess I sort of identified with Katniss in that and given that she was fighting for her life and the lives of those she loved, I was willing to forgive a bit of hand wringing.

That said, I do adore Divergent, too, and Four is the bomb.