OK, so I did it. I figured it would be only a matter of time, truly, until I rejoined Book of the Month. I mean, how many times can a book-loving woman really ignore the allure of this service’s advertising on my social feeds? Add to that, quarantine, and the feeling like my life is being dictated by some force outside of myself and you have 1. a not very happy camper and 2. a method with which to distract myself with a new book every month. (Disclaimer: I have definitely purchased myself, on average, more than one book a month in quarantine. And you know what, no shame!)
Anyways, it was August. Let me repeat that for those in the back who many not appreciate the significance but it was AUGUST before I caved to my inner longing and decided to re-sign up for Book of the Month. And, it did not disappoint!
My first book back
The book I selected for my first book back with Book of the Month club was The Night Swim by Megan Goldin. Alongside/with the help of my book bestie, Brittany, I have been reading thriller/murder mystery books that may alarm someone just looking at my reading list but, let me tell you, that has provided a nourishing distraction to my confinement brain. This book was of no exception. I dove head-first into it; I let the painful realities of the Still girls’ lives fill my brain in terrible, heart wrenching ways; and I found ways/made time to crack open the book and advance the story line at every lunch break/waking hour that’s acceptable to read and still maintain a full time job.
What I appreciated about this book
First and foremost, my dark and twisty places recognized a familiar presence in the prose. The second thing I loved about this book is that I made an emotional connection as I reached out to save, to hug, to participate, and to stand up for individual characters (and perhaps not the people you might be thinking of if you have read the book). It’s very easy to get someones blood pumping at the climax of a story with the bad guy running after your main character in a dark woods; it’s not so easy to make a reader feel for a man, hardened by life, who is standing up to do the right thing. Finally, as a beach girl, a sister and a journalist, I could see myself in so many places in this book.
What I didn’t
There were a few typos, from a word that appeared twice in a row to a the “the” should have been a “that” all of which just make my editor brain slightly disjointed. They were things that are easily missed by that can really f*** your day up as you read over your pet project and see that she’s got a few imperfections. Moral of the story: Always do one more read (preferably by another set of eyes).
I knew who the bad guy was. I didn’t know all the details though so, kudos to the author for keeping things a surprise. I would have written it a bit differently. I can see how the author wants to put everything together and tie it with a bow, but life is not like that. It’s messy and there’s not always an ending that can work out for everyone. For me, it’s a bit inconceivable that the “bad guy” (which I’m using for no spoilers) chose the ending he did. I can conceptualize it, but it feels a little flat in terms of true human emotions, not dynamic enough.
But perhaps that’s exactly what I needed in quarantine.
If you’d like to join me on Book of the Month club, click this link and let’s read together!
Otherwise, what are you reading these days?