The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared
By: Jonas Jonasson
Format/Source: eBook; my purchase
After a long and eventful life, Allan Karlsson ends up in a nursing home, believing it to be his last stop. The only problem is that he’s still in good health, and in one day, he turns 100. A big celebration is in the works, but Allan really isn’t interested (and he’d like a bit more control over his vodka consumption). So he decides to escape. He climbs out the window in his slippers and embarks on a hilarious and entirely unexpected journey, involving, among other surprises, a suitcase stuffed with cash, some unpleasant criminals, a friendly hot-dog stand operator, and an elephant (not to mention a death by elephant).
It would be the adventure of a lifetime for anyone else, but Allan has a larger-than-life backstory: Not only has he witnessed some of the most important events of the twentieth century, but he has actually played a key role in them. Starting out in munitions as a boy, he somehow finds himself involved in many of the key explosions of the twentieth century and travels the world, sharing meals and more with everyone from Stalin, Churchill, and Truman to Mao, Franco, and de Gaulle. Quirky and utterly unique, The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared has charmed readers across the world.
This book was one of those novels I saw everywhere last summer: in the bookstores, online on book lists & on Twitter, in the subway. The premise sounded pretty quirky so I decided to keep an eye out for it. I recently got it for my Kobo and figured it would make a fun summer read 🙂
By: William Shakespeare
Format/Source: eBook; my copy
A peerless general is offered the consulship of Rome after his triumph over the city of Corioles. Too proud to respect the will of the people, however, he soon finds himself despised by the mob, and speaks out passionately against popular rule. Driven from the city as a traitor, he allies himself with his old enemies and begins to plot a merciless revenge.
Indeed, this is one of Shakespeare’s lesser know plays. The reason it came to my attention was because I saw the trailer from last year’s Coriolanus, which stars, and was directed by, Ralph Fiennes. It looked brilliant and Ralph Fiennes looks like the perfect actor cast in the role; the intensity of the title character immediately piqued my interest in the play itself.
This book is part of the William Shakespeare Reading Challenge 2014 that I am participating in.
Bookish and Not-So-Bookish Thoughts is a weekly blogging event hosted by Bookishly Boisterous. It allows book bloggers (and non-book bloggers) to write about pretty much anything, bookish or otherwise (i.e. share exciting plans for the weekend, rants on things they’ve encountered during the week, etc.).
This entry is brought to you by a casually-strolling Mario Goetz (not my gif, as always)
- Question: let’s say you won a book from a giveaway hosted by a blog and you never received it…do you email to inform the blogger about the situation? I know that some bloggers mention that it’s not their responsibility if the book never arrives or is lost and while this blogger never mentioned anything, I dunno if there’s any point to give the heads up anyhow…?
- Random shout-out/recommendation/pluggage: Lucy Clarke’s A Single Breath (review). A perfect summer read, IMO. And I had the opportunity to ask her a few questions about the book 🙂
- In some bookish news: Tom Rachman’s The Imperfectionists (review) is going to be adapted for television by BBC. Interesting, interesting…
- Book haul! Okay, in the past week or so, a lot of my pre-orders and other assortments of books pouring into my mailbox (hurray! 😀 ) Suffice to say, my TBR pile is now bursting and there is no room in my new bookshelf for all of these books xP
- Okay, I’m normally not one to watch musicals and movies involving music (weird, as I do love music)–I still have yet to finish watching The Fiddler on the Roof and the only musical I’ve watched is The Sound of Music–so Begin Again starring Mark Ruffalo and Keira Knightley sort of fell out of the periphery for me. However, I decided to look at the trailer again after hearing Keira Knightley sing “Tell Me If You Wanna Go Home” for the soundtrack. It’s really catchy (I can’t stop listening to it! 😛 ) and I think she has a nice voice:
- Speaking of movies, as if I wasn’t excited enough for Guardians of the Galaxy (the soundtrack, by the way, looks amazing), they release this trailer:
And now for my World Cup section of this week’s thoughts. I’m placing them behind a cut again in case you’re not a football fan 😉
The Art Restorer
By: Julián Sánchez
Format/Source: galley courtesy of Open Road Integrated Media via NetGalley
In this long-awaited sequel to The Antiquarian, the discovery of an enigma concealed in the paintings of the Spanish artist Sert proves the restoration of the past to be a fascinating but deadly business
Enrique Alonso travels from his new home in Manhattan to San Sebastián, Spain, to attend the reopening of the San Telmo museum, where his ex-wife, Bety, works in public relations. There he meets American Craig Bruckner, a retired art restorer studying the museum’s collection of works by Sert—a contemporary of Picasso and Dalí who worked for the most famous billionaires of his time and whose mural American Progress graces the walls of Rockefeller Center. When Bruckner is found drowned in La Concha bay, Bety suspects foul play and Enrique agrees to help her look into the man’s death. Their investigation reveals a mystery connected with Sert’s checkered past, which provides fertile ground for the new thriller Enrique is writing, and the plot develops in parallel to his research.
Enrique and Bety’s reconstruction of the artist’s clandestine activities during World War II leads them to Paris, Barcelona, and New York, and in the process forces them to face their own past. But they are not the only ones interested in Sert’s work, and it appears there is more to his paintings than meets the eye.
I requested for this book because the premise sounded really interesting–artists, set in Spain, a mystery. I actually have The Antiquarian on my want-to-read list but was approved a copy of this novel; I’m sure it won’t be too spoilerish that I’m reading the second novel in the series first 😉
This book will be available on 8 July 2014. This book is part of the Everything Espana Reading Challenge 2014 that I am participating in.
At the end of May I posted up a list of comics that are currently on my pull list. Today I’ll be focusing on the other comics that I’ve checked out or previously followed but later dropped (or put on hold to pick up at a later date via collected paperback):
Captain America (Marvel NOW!)
By: Rick Remender (writer), John Romita Jr. (art)
Thrust into a bizarre, inhospitable world far from home, the all-new, high-adventure, mind-melting, tough-as-nails, sci-fi, pulp-fantasy era of Captain America is NOW! With no country and no allies, what’s left for the Sentinel of Liberty to protect? The Saga of Dimension Z begins here!
This was one of the first comic books that I started collecting on my pull list; I had reviewed the Dimension Z storyline last year (review) and found it very interesting. It dragged a little bit towards the end of that arc, but after Captain America got out of Dimension Z, I was optimistic that the story would pick up. This was not the case. The story arc with Nuke was promising but it was over too quickly, and the prologue with the new bad guy (whose group I don’t even remember–suffice to say the parallels with present day politics continues) was too slow and uninteresting for me to bother continuing with the series. So sadly I dropped this title from the pull list.