Book Talk: Wallflower, Gone Girl, & Blood Engines

Ashley Walton —  September 18, 2012 — Leave a comment

In Book Talk, I recap what I’ve read lately and what I’d recommend to whom. I’m always looking for new books, so I’d love suggestions for what I should read next!

For anyone:

The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

I’m not gonna lie. I’m one of those people who saw the trailer for the upcoming film and thought “Oh no! I’ve gotta read the book before the movie comes out!” But then of course I refused to buy the movie book cover. It’s a book I’d always intented to read but had never gotten around to, and I’m glad I finally did. This book reminded me of The Catcher in the Rye, but with a more innocent narrator. It had some parts that made me feel more alive, and it had other parts that made me deeply sad. It’s one of the best books I’ve read in a while. It’s not just for angsty teenagers.

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

When I tell most people that this was my book of choice while honeymooning, they think I’m a bit odd, but this is a perfect travel book. Essentially, it’s about a marriage that’s falling apart and a mystery or two. The plot and narrators are so interesting and entangled. It’s no surprise that the writer is a psychologist—the book delves into creepy and uncomfortable corners of the brain. The calmness of the narration and the internal justifications for people’s actions are what makes it so terrifying. I found myself sympathizing and even empathizing with characters who ended up being quite psychotic. And for the majority of the book, you’re not sure who the sane characters are. Masterful. Ever since I read it, I’ve been looking for another book that balances popcorn entertainment with cerebral writing so well. Alas, I haven’t found one. (Recommendations, please!)

For the urban Fantasy lover:

Blood Engines by Tim Pratt

This is the best witchy book I’ve ever read. I was sucked into a world that wasn’t about good and evil but about power and ambiguity. I liked characters who did some pretty rotten things, and I couldn’t tell who had any sort of moral fiber or ethics. In the end, this is a plot-driven novel, where you follow characters as they explore magical places and seek to put together pieces of a puzzle. I thoroughly enjoyed all the details of a world that has its roots in real traditions and pagan rituals, but stopped short of over-explanation. It has some mildly adult content such as language and sexual scenes, so if any of that is bothersome, you’ll want to duck out.

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Ashley Walton

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Tarantino fanatic. Grammar snob. Tetris Master.

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