What Am I Reading – Chapter Eighteen

Hi Everybody,

It’s been awhile since we’ve had this series, and I’m still reading Miracle Creek by Angie Kim and Confessions of a Bad Ugly Singer by Collette McLafferty.

Today, I’ve got two new books to talk about, so let’s get started!

Dalva by Jim Harrison is about a woman who gave up her son for adoption years ago. At age 45, the title character embarks on a journey that will take her back to the bosom of her family, the half-Sioux man whom she loved when she was a teenager, and her great-grandfather whose journals recounts the annihilation of the Plains Indians. She discovers a story that stretches all across the country, and finds a way to heal her wounded soul.

I’ve gotten to about 20 pages, and it’s interesting so far. From what I’ve read of his past titles, Harrison tends to have a masculine style of writing, but it’s nice to see him depicting women beyond one defining character trait. The book was published in 1988, nine years after Legends of the Fall, so it’s an improvement so far. He’s still digressing, yet it’s only with certain characters, so at least he knows when and when not to use it. I look forward to reading it more.

And now, let’s go to the second and final book of this latest installment…

A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius by Dave Eggers is his extraordinary memoir. At age 21, both of his parents died within five weeks of each other, and he became the legal guardian of his 8-year-old brother Toph. Along with their older siblings, Dave and Toph move to California, and they get an apartment. This is the story of how he raises his brother and of the love that holds his family together.

I was prepared for some sadness with this book, but I wasn’t expecting the funny bits. Even though Dave can come off like an egotist at times, his fantasies of how he would murder all of his enemies were surprisingly hilarious.

This was mainly because of the audiobook narrator Dion Graham. There’s a reason why Graham is one of the most prolific ones around. He’s gotten a lot of accolades for his works, and they are pretty versatile. He has recorded audiobooks for young adult novels like Concrete Rose by Angie Thomas to Death by Black Hole by Neil deGrasse Tyson. Graham has also worked on audiobooks by authors like Dave Eggers, and I can see why. He embodies whatever he’s saying. Even when Eggers digresses (he tends to do this a lot), Graham gives a reason to why those happen with appropriate tones. Also, his choking sounds left me in pieces. I look forward hearing his voice more on this audiobook.

We have now come to the end of the eighteenth chapter of “What Am I Reading?”

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Published by emilyblakowski

I work at two public libraries in southeast Michigan, and I facilitate a book club for one of them. I also hold a Bachelor's degree in History and Theatre from Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, MI; a Master's degree in Library and Information Science from Wayne State University in Detroit, MI; and a Graduate Certificate in Archival Administration also from Wayne. In my downtime, I love hanging out with friends, listening to music (like classic rock and K-pop), and watching shows like "Monty Python's Flying Circus"!

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