Friday, November 4, 2011

R. I. P. VI Kicks the Bucket

Wow, what a speedy couple of months since Carl's Sixth R.I.P. challenge began!  I was blessed with about two whole days of truly autumn-like weather, and as I'm writing this, it's actually raining (or in other words, Drop-Everything-And-Read Weather).  But before I begin my own personal rainy-day reading party (which in reality consists of reading for about 20 minutes until I'm on the verge of falling asleep, and getting up to do some mundane energizing task or errand for a while and then picking up my book again), I should report on my spooking, chilling, thrilling book choices for the challenge:

1.  The Island of Dr. Moreau by H.G. Wells.  Amazingly, I wrote a review for this one.

2.  Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie.  This was my second Agatha Christie book, and my first introduction to Hercule Poirot.  I'm not sure what else I want to say other than it's short but sweet.  And you need that every once in a while.

3.  The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie.  Shockingly, I wrote a review for this one, also.

4.  The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. Perfect balance of mystery, thrills, history, and pathos.  It has elements that reminded me of The Neverending Story and Inkheart, but then it evolves into its own unique story.  My favorite character was Fermin, who cracked me up.

5.  Perfume by Patrick Suskind.  Weird and creepy tale.  I've never read a book that started out so wonderful and then took such a dramatic nosedive.  I felt like it could have been a powerful short story but was ineffectively drawn out into novel length.   

6.  The Castle of Otranto by Horace Walpole.  Holy cow, another actual review.  Although, the shortness of the review makes it not so surprising...

7.  Interview with the Vampire by Anne Rice. I read this for a buddy read with Suey of It's All About Books, which is good, because I needed some moral support.  (Her summary and review can be found here.) This was pretty far out of my comfort zone on so many levels.  I don't even like vampires (Sorry Edward!  I loved you for the first couple of books...So sorry that Robert Pattinson played you in the movies because that didn't help...), and horror is not a genre I enjoy.  But it's good to escape my bubble every now and again.
There's a depth to the story that I'm sure I didn't quite fathom, but what kept me reading was Louis, the vampire being interviewed, and his quest for knowledge.  He asks all of the questions common to us mortals:  Where did I come from?  What is my purpose here?  Who am I really?  What moral code, if any, should I follow?  Is there a God?  What is love?  Etc., etc.  But what makes it more powerful is that he's asking all of these in a state of immortality, trying to apply them to vampirehood.  He's pretty much a "good-guy" but he makes some bad choices, usually when he thinks his actions will further his quest for the meaning of "life."  Does he find the answers he's looking for?  I'm not entirely sure--it's  a process or a journey, just like for us mortals.   I just know that the interviewer kinda misses the whole point of the interview...


  1. At some point I will read Interview with a Vampire. I read Murder on the Orient Express last year for RIP. Like you said, it is sweet. It is the only Christie I have read and I don't think it was really my cup of tea. You did a great job with RIP!

  2. Holy wow you read a lot of books for the challenge! I just picked up Angel's Game this weekend and look forward to reading it (one day). I was hoping to read the Island of Dr. Moreau for dueling monsters, but... Bah! Kudos on all the fantastic reading.

  3. It's been ages since I read Interview with the Vampire but I liked your thoughts on it. It reminds be how different the book and movie really were.

  4. Congrats on finishing! I'm glad to read your comment about Perfume. I've been curious about that one and I think I'll skip it. There's too many other great books out there.

  5. Awesome little sum up of Interview. I'm glad you pushed through it with me. Louis was a pretty good guy for a vampire. Way to go on all the rest of these books too!