Today is book club day. It’s my turn to host, so I’ve been helping clean up for company. We’re going to be talking about The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie, which I reviewed here last week.
But this short post is not about that. It’s about the two books I’m currently reading, A Feast for Crows (the fourth installment of the Game of Thrones novels) and Joseph Anton: a Memoir (Salman Rushdie’s memoir).
I devoured the first three GOT novels but am finding the fourth less appetizing. I’ve read nearly 700 pages of this 775-page doorstopper and so far have learned nothing about the four characters left hanging from the edges of cliffs at the end of GOT #3: John Snow, Bran Stark, Tyrion Lannister, and Daenerys Targaryen. I read that during its writing, George R.R. Martin decided to split what was becoming a 1,000-plus page novel into two, so I’m hoping that in GOT #5, A Dance with Dragons, I’ll finally catch up with the characters I most care about.
GOT #4 fairly drags, being concerned with a host of lesser characters acting out minor place-holding subplots on the fringes of Westeros. Oh, sure, many chapters are about Cersei, Jamie, Sansa, Arya, Brienne, and Samwell, all of whom move the main plot along, but the lesser characters and subplots drag on and on. Also: is it just me, or is there an overabundance of courtly kniggit talk in A Feast for Crows? I’m up to here with sigils and shields and Valyrian longswords with names and courtly lineages and Good Ser This and Good Ser That.
And yet I can’t put it down. Salman Rushdie’s memoir is far more interesting, but I’m just reading a page here and there during short breaks from A Feast for Crows. I can’t explain it, but there it is. Apparently my appetite for courtly kniggit talk is stronger than I knew.
BTW, if “bogdown” is not a word, it should be. Would it be presumptuous of me to claim credit for it? Thank you, I think I will.
In non-book news, yesterday I rode my motorcycle for the first time since knee surgery. I have enough range of motion now to rest my left foot on the peg and shift gears with it, and I seem to have more than enough strength to hold 850 pounds of Goldwing upright at stoplights. So I have to say it’s a go. Biker boy is back. Now for the bicycles … I’m doing well with the stationary bikes at physical therapy, but am I ready to tackle my Specialized yet? I’ll find out tomorrow morning.
© 2013, Paul Woodford. All rights reserved.