What I Read in December

December is the most festive month of the year, but also the busiest for anyone that has goes to college or work. This is also the time where we want to finish things, like that very boring book you started in August and wanted to give a second chance.

The Year of the Flood by Margaret Atwood

The Year of the Flood is the second book from the MaddAddam trilogy, by Margaret Atwood. It tells the story of Ren, a trapeze dancer in the sex club Scales and Tails, and Toby, who worked and AnooYoo, a high-end spa. Both of them survived the virus that killed almost all humans in the first book. They were also former Gardeners of God, a religious group that went against the big corporations by believing that humans should praise the Earth, not hurt animals, and remember all living beings that were extinct.

To be honest, this book was kind of boring. I much preferred the first one (Oryx and Crake) because it seemed more Margaret Atwood, and less Hollywood Blockbuster. I feel there was so much potential in this narrative, but the wannabe action scenes ruin it. It takes over half of the book (which is quite big) for us to hear about Jimmy again, and figure out how the characters are related to each other.

I still haven’t read the third book, but I hope is a little bit better. Hopefully it focusses more either on environmental issues, the urban and state violence or the crazy money and status-hungry pharmaceutical companies. I feel like, the fact she tried to embrace it all, was one of the things that made it so bleh.

Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf

Mrs. Dalloway is considered a masterpiece and one of the most important books by Virginia Woolf. It follows a group of people throughout the day in which Mrs. Dalloway is hosting a ball. The main character is Clarissa Dalloway, the wife of a conservative member of the House of Commons, and the mother of 17-year-old Elizabeth.

Is this the most exciting book ever? No. But it is beautifully written. The narrator is always in first person, and is constantly changing. Virginia managed to write in such a way that is almost imperceptible to notice when it changes the person who is talking.

At first this might seem like a shallow book, but as the pages go by, you realize it talks more than just about organizing a ball.

That Kind of Mother by Rumaan Alam

That Kind of Mother by Rumaan Alam has been called “an outstanding depiction of motherhood” by the Washington Post. It tells the story of Rebecca Stone, a poet who has her first child, Jacob, in 1985. To help her with the kid she hires Priscilla, a black woman who worked at the hospital she gave birth, and with whom she quickly become friends. A few years later Priscilla dies while giving birth to her second child. Rebecca then adopts the baby, and finds out what is white privilege, and how unprepared she was for being a white mom to a black son.

I first started reading this book in August, but stopped at chapter 4. To be honest, it was a boring and slow read until this point, but then started to get better. But still, it was boring until the last three pages (the excitement to finish it helped). No shade to the author or the narrative, I just definitely wasn’t the target audience. I’m not a mom and never dealt with any kind of adoption. If you’re wondering *Carol, why did you buy this book then? *, well, it was on sale. Three books for the price of two on the Miami International Airport bookstore.

If you ever read this book, please tell me what you thought about it. I feel like I’ve never been so curious about someone else’s opinion.


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