Wednesday, March 6, 2013

reading and waiting

The latest reading:

A Darker Domain, by Val McDermid. McDermid writes very dark, grim mysteries - the books in her Tony Hill series are so disturbing and graphic that I've never been able to re-read one. Outside that series she tends to tone it down a bit, and such was the case with this one. It was a solid procedural with an appealing heroine; nothing life-changing, and I will probably forget I've read it in a few months, but a good afternoon-with-tea read.

Before the Poison, by Peter Robinson. This was another stand-alone book by someone who usually writes a series. For the most part I enjoy Robinson's Inspector Banks books quite a bit (there's an occasional stinker but they're generally fun), but this? Blech. Our self-pitying hero has moved back to his native Yorkshire from LA, with oodles of money, and he becomes obsessed with the previous owners of the house. His love interest is an appalling human being: she's married, and tries to start an affair with the hero to hurt her husband, and when they finally do sleep together she says, "I'm so happy this isn't an affair," the basis for which statement is that she has rented - not moved into, mind, just rented - a place where she can move when she leaves the house she shares with the man to whom she is still legally married in every way. Apparently in England putting your name on a lease is all it takes to obtain a legal divorce! Who knew? (Eyeroll.) The main plot is no great feat of originality either; at one point our hero recruits a young, damaged, heavily-pierced, computer expert woman to do his research, and I just stared at the book in disbelief. Really? All the books in the world to steal from, and you're going to pick that one?

Auschwitz: A Doctor's Eyewitness Account, by Miklos Nyiszli. Oh, God, humanity, you are wretched.

And I didn't finish The Happiness Project: Or, Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun, by Gretchen Rubin. It wasn't terrible, or overly self-congratulatory the ways blogs-turned-books usually are. It just bored me, and when I realized that I set it aside.

Monday I had a breast MRI to follow up on September's inconclusive mammogram findings. Because I had such a terrible panic reaction to last year's MRI, I asked Berowne to drive me in so I could take an Ativan beforehand. It helped, quite a bit; in the last ten minutes I realized that all my weight was pretty much on my face, and started to get incredibly uncomfortable and the headache began to build, which is no fun when you have BANGBANGBANG going on, but the techs told me over the headphones, "Eight and a half minutes left," and I was able to hold on. Then Berowne took me out for lunch. I am dating a very nice guy.

Now we just wait for the results. Last time they kept me hanging for four days; the nurse thought this time around they'd let me know sooner. I've been plowing through a re-read of Midnight's Children, which is a pretty good distraction, but it's still going to be a tense few days. And the results could, of course, change everything. Either way, I've got a great support system. Fingers crossed.   

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