I think I am doing pretty good so far at the readathon!
6. My Brilliant Friend, by Elena Ferrante
Readathon category: a book by an author that uses a pseudonym
Finally the time came for me to read The Neapolitan Novels of Elena Ferrante – at least the two that are translated in greek. I believe you all know the story: everyone loves these books, noone knows who the Ferrante is, someone discovered who she is and everyone hates him now bla bla bla. A nice drama that of course only helps the books be more popular.
Moving on to the book now: this is the story that Elena Greko writes about her life in 50s Napoli, focusing on her friendship with Lila, an interesting character. The two girls grow up in a poor neighborhood. Elena is the nice and quiet girl, Lila is the smart troublemaker. The first book goes up until they are both 16 years old.
What is so interesting about this book? I don’t know! I don’t know why everyone loves it. I know that I love these kind of stories in general. The first book had an aura of A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, which is my favorite book. Poor neighborhood, the two children try to think of ways to get out of poverty, the education they want but it is hard to get… But on top of that, the very realistic relationship of the two girls. Because that is how friendship is. Elena love Lila, it feels some times as if her world revolves around Lila. But also she is jealous of her and in competition with her.
I can go on and on, but I will stop and just say: read the books.
I know I will re-read them at some point, something that I rarely do anymore with new books.
⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
7. Through the woods, by Emily Carroll
Readathon category: a book by an author that is younger than 35 years old today
While reading the 2nd Ferrante book, I also read this awesome comic book.
It is comic book with 5 short horror stories, all drawn with a different drawing style.
And the have the good kind of horror.
The one that makes you not wanting to read that book at night.
The kind of stories you say around a campfire because they end in a very creepy way.
I read it as an ebook but I will buy it for sure. Finally, a really creepy book!
Congrats to Emily Carroll for her ideas.
I totally recommend it!
⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
8. The Story of a New Name, by Elena Ferrante
Readathon category: a book that is part of a series of 4 or more books
I don’t want to spoil the story, so I won’t say much. This book follows Elena and Lila at the ages 16 to 20-ish (I think). I have to admit, at some point I started doubting what I read. I wondered “am I reading a soap-opera now?”. I started paying more attention after that and understood why this book, which talks about bad marriages, cheating, flirting, love (everything that points to a soap opera book) is so acclaimed. Little women (my second favorite book) is not referred in these books by accident – it is kind of a modern and of course more edgy and raw “little women”.
The only bad thing is the next two books are not yet translated in greek yet and I am definitely not reading them in english. I need her to talk in my language, I feel like Elena and I are friends now.
⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
9. The Diary of a Teenage Girl: An Account in Words and Pictures, by Phoebe Gloeckner
Readathon category: a book bought from a bookstore you usually don’t shop
About the book: it is the author’s real story, taking place in 70s San Francisco. It is supposed to be shocking because of the teenage sex and drugs.
I actually found it mostly boring.
It is not the first book I read about teenagers having “shocking” sex and taking drugs.
I think it should be much shorter, it started and ended good but in the middle it was an endless blah blah about how she is in love with the 35-year-old guy she is having sex with, letters from her ex father-in-law that don’t connect to the rest of the story, some poems… I liked more 100 Strokes of the Brush Before Bed, which is a very similar book.
⭐ ⭐ ⭐
10. American Gods, by Neil Gaiman
Readathon category: a book based on a myth or fairytale
This book tortured me!
I am reading it since December! And it is not like I hated it. I liked many parts. I was reading one page after the other and then I got stuck on some long description or lyrical dream or something, I got bored, read something else. And 3 months passed like this. In the end I got frustrated. I didn’t read the last chapter, I decided that I will like it more in a tv-series form, so I will wait to see the end there.
When I look back (probably because I was reading it with big breaks), I remember just a bunch of nice and interesting story parts (in prison, in the polish house, in the carousel, in the funeral home, in the small cold town) that had the same main character, but that they are almost disconnected with each other.
This Neil Gaiman is confusing me. I know I like this kind of books. But this one made me tired and I did not like The Ocean at the End of the Lane. On the other hand I really liked Neverwhere. I have to read more of his books to see if I like him or not.
Anyway, it is over now. I am looking forward to the tv-series.
⭐ ⭐ ⭐ 1/2
Overall female writers ratio: 7/10 (70%)