Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Tale of the tape

I’ve been a fan of Anita Shreve’s work since coming across “The Weight of Water”. I, along with legions of Oprah devotees, discussed “The Pilot’s Wife.” And I think “The Last Time They Met” is one of the most engrossing, well-constructed novels I’ve ever read.
Her latest creation “Testimony” (ISBN 9780316059862) cements her status in my book.
The story ostensibly revolves around a sex tape filmed at a private high school in small-town Vermont. But this is not the tale of that tape. It is instead a thoroughly fascinating examination of the effects our actions have — and just how far-reaching those ripples can be. It’s an idea that does give one pause.
I was somewhat reminded of Mitch Albom’s “The Five People You Meet in Heaven” (ISBN 9780786868711) and its theme that those who have the greatest effect on our lives are not necessarily the ones you might think.

To Amanda D.: Thanks for the suggestions. I’m definitely going to look them up. My hope of engrossing nonfiction has been renewed. My previous foray out of the fiction stacks resulted in “The Woman Who Can’t Forget: The Extraordinary Story of Living with the Most Remarkable Memory Known to Science--a Memoir” (ISBN 9781416561767) by Jill Price. I wanted to understand what a burden that would be; I was disappointed. I wanted to care about her challenges; I didn’t. I wanted to be amazed by her “gift”; I wasn’t. While I appreciate her struggles, I found her story ultimately very forgettable.

- Tricia Ambrose

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Blogger Amanda D. said...

I've only read one Anita Shreve book, "A Wedding in December," but thought it was great. Her descriptions of the location (a bed and breakfast in New England) as well as her characterizations and subtle plot twists made it a memorable book. I'll have to check out "The Last Time They Met."
-Mentor's Reader

January 30, 2009 at 9:26 AM 

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