New books! A Reliable Wife & The Girl She Used To Be

Posted 3 April, 2010 by DLWhite in Writers Read 1 Comment

Last week I was craving the feel of an actual book in my hands. For more than a year, I’ve been reading books via the Kindle App on my iPod Touch. It’s a great way to carry my Reading and To Be Read libraries around with me. I find opportunities to read at the oddest times and the oddest places. It’s nice to not have to dig a book out of my purse. Sometimes though, I just want to hold a book in my hands. I love the smell of a new book, a spine that hasn’t been cracked, pages that almost feather and the printing dust that flies out of the crevices when you fan them.

I’ve been eying a few books at Indiebound and Amazon. I finally bit the bullet and picked up one I’d been wanting to read but hadn’t because of the reviews. I decided to let my own interests gauge what I read, and since A Reliable Wife is a historical novel and I like that sort of thing, I picked it up. It is a hefty 291 pages. I am nearly halfway through.

Goolrick spins an interesting yarn. His description of the yarn, however, goes on and on and on. One of the issues I have with so many writers is the overdose of imagery and detail. Perhaps it is my short span of attention, but I find myself skipping half a page here, a full page or two there, of just description. I’m one who believes that setting is another character in a story, and you must give readers an accurate representation of what’s happening around your characters, what’s happening in between your dialog. I made a note this morning, in my Goodreads status update that I felt this book could be half as long and just as good. The attention to detail is amazing and yet, to me, slightly overdone.

The story itself is riveting so far! Ralph Truitt is a man who has been rich for so long he hardly notices anymore, except that most of the town works for him in some fashion. He is a lonely man, not old but not spry. He’s not had a companion in more than 20 years and uh……………it shows. Goolrick writes about Truitt’s desires the way only a man can. I almost feel the man’s pain! He seems painfully self aware of what others have and he does not. He feels as if people pity him or laugh at him behind his back. Living alone in the desolate prairie, where the snow piles high every winter and traps people in their own homes, on their own land begins to drive people mad. Without a companion, Truitt would spend the rest of his days alone and surely go mad with the rest of them.

Catherine Land is the woman who response to Truitt’s advertisement for ‘A Reliable Wife’. A simple woman is all Truitt asks for. A simple woman is what he thinks he’s getting. Oh, but Ms Land has some tricks up her sleeves.  She presents herself as something she is not. She has a scheme, a plan in her mind that must be carried out. The first part is to marry Truitt. I’m to the point where the plan she has set in motion has met a snag. And now I’m wondering how this is going to work out.

Such an interesting read, though I can’t help but think I’d have been done by now, had I bought this book on Kindle. I’ve realized that I love to lie in bed and read, and with my beside lamp on the fritz and the overhead light a little too bright, the atmosphere in my bedroom is just not very conducive to reading. Or writing, for that matter.

In all, I’m enjoying the story, skipping massive amounts of excessive (for me) detail, and already trying to predict the end. Can’t wait to finish so I can give it a proper review!  Preview this book on Goodreads  [HERE]

The other book I picked up is The Girl She Used To Be, by David Cristofano. I haven’t even cracked it open yet, but it is the tale of a girl whose family was in the Witness Protection Program. She is found, by someone she used to know and, against her better judgement and advisement, dives all at once back into her old life. I’m a fan of crime drama and thrillers, and since Grisham and Lescroart don’t have anything new for me to read, we’ll see if this one fills the void momentarily.

It’s a lovely Saturday in Atlanta. A perfect day to take the books outside and soak up some sun!

One Response to “New books! A Reliable Wife & The Girl She Used To Be”

  1. Wow, operating two blogs–I’m very impressed! I will have to check out your writing suggestions because I think I would like the kind of books you read (based on the way that you write).

    Also, I totally know what you mean. I’m intrigued by the Kindle and think it’s neat you can carry several books in the form of one sleek modern book reader, but there’s nothing like the smell of an old book. I totally do as you do and run my fingers across the binding and love the feel of the pages between my fingertips. I just hope we’ll always have our libraries :)