By now, I hope you have heard of Friday Reads/#fridayreads (the number sign is for a hashtag on Twitter). If not, here’s a little explanation: readers around the world join together in community to support one another and celebrate the simple joys of reading. It has grown to be a huge event, and readers can win prizes for participating. Bethanne Patrick (@thebookmaven) started it, and now over 5,000 readers post at any of the listed sites what they are reading or plan to read.
What I have noticed over the last year of book blogging is that different readers have real issues with what they read. I see bloggers apologize for a certain book or phase of reading. I say, read. Period. Whether it’s a magazine you’ve saved up for Friday afternoon or evening or a mystery, romance novel, sci-fi, or New York Times bestseller, Friday is about doing what we love most: reading.
In that spirit, I invite you not only to share your #fridayreads on Twitter or Facebook (just like the page and comment) or the Friday Reads blog (my intention isn’t to take away from that), but also to come here and talk about just what the heck you feel like reading on this hallowed day that starts the weekend.
How this will work –
Readers: Leave me a comment. Tell me what you’re reading. Ask for recommendations if you’re stuck.
Bloggers: I’ll open a Google form. Leave a link, and I’ll make it visible, so others can check out what you’re reading on Fridays to take you away from your hectic week.
What I will do –
First, I’ll make a recommendation based on my week’s reading. If I’ve reviewed it, I’ll link to the review. If not, I’ll give you a synopsis and why I think it would make a great kick-your-shoes-off Friday read.
Second, I’ll tell you what I want to read on a Friday afternoon. It always varies. It depends on the weather and how clean my house is or how much that week has drained me.
Ready? I’m recommending you read… (drumroll please)
Flavia de Luce is back. Who is Flavia? She is a 12-year-old sleuth in rural England after World War I. But don’t let this book fool you – it’s not for children. Alan Bradley first introduced readers to Flavia in The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie and The Weed that Strings the Hangman’s Bag. With only her chemistry lab and her mother’s old bicycle to accompany her, Flavia finds herself in the midst of all sorts of trouble, yet she handles it with panache. And Flavia? She always gets her guy.
I loved this book. I haven’t reviewed it because I was saving it for today. Friday is a perfect mystery day to me, and this mystery is, without a doubt, one of the most unique I have ever come across. Even if you haven’t read the first two, I think you’d be fine starting with this one.
Flavia has her fortune told by a gypsy woman and is frightened by what the woman tells her. She runs out, and in doing so, causes damage to the woman’s caravan. Feeling guilty, she allows the gypsy to stay on the de Luce property, and later that night, after an odd run-in with a local “fishy” character in the library, Flavia visits the gypsy woman, only to find she has been beaten nearly to death. As Flavia investigates, I really saw her character develop, and though she plays tough, saying:
Alone at last! Whenever I’m with other people, part of me shrinks a little. Only when I am alone can I fully enjoy my own company…
I have the distinct impression that Flavia is tiring of being odd man out, and I am curious to see if Bradley gives Flavia a sidekick in the next book.
Flavia is a quirky, fun character, and I think her sense of humor is just too much! Upon finding a murder victim impaled on a statue of Poseidon and his trident, she describes him as smelling fishy and appearing “fish belly white”:
There are probably people abroad on the earth at this very moment who would be tempted to joke “There’s something fishy here.” But I am not one of them.
Isn’t she hilarious? I would definitely recommend this book, and if you have read it or do read it, please let me know what you think.
You had to ask. I wouldn’t even let myself check out any library books because I have so much to read at home right now, thanks to Monday’s trip to Murder by the Book. I think I’ll start with Ian Rankin’s The Complaints and follow it up with Steve Hamilton’s The Lock Artist, thanks to recommendations from Jenn’s Bookshelves and Jen’s Book Thoughts (Jen/ns tend to think alike, I guess). Have you read either of these? What do you think?
What #fridayreads are you looking forward to escaping with?
jenn aka the picky girl