What I’m Into | November 2016

What I’m reading

november-2016

This month’s theme seemed to be calling stories and anti-hagiographies. I picked up Nadia Bolz-Weber’s Accidental Saints: Finding God in All the Wrong People at the book store and finished it in two days. Sara Miles (of Take This Bread, one of my favorite finds of 2016) shows up in the book, and that didn’t surprise me in the least–the books aren’t the same at all, but there’s an undercurrent of surprise (of all the people you would expect to become religious in such specific ways, these are not two of them) and that really appeals to me. I also read Pastrix, the first book Nadia wrote. Then Jana Riess’ Flunking Sainthood, in which Jana tries and fails at all kinds of spiritual practices (the epilogue made me cry and I also felt a lot better at all the ways I fail, so thank you, Jana).

Lastly, one of my tutoring students was working on Toni Morrison’s Beloved, prompting me to read it too. It’s so intense, but so worth the read. The central questions (at least the way I read it) are: is there such a thing as an ex-slave? Can you ever escape your past? And what does it mean to be beloved?

What I’m watching

Besides the usual suspects (NCIS, NCIS LA, Hawaii 5-0, Scorpion, Criminal Minds (what a way to write Hotch out of the series..sigh), Brooklyn Nine-Nine):

Dr Strange, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, and Moana.

I liked all three of these movies. We caught an early viewing of Fantastic Beasts (10AM on a Saturday), and it was a great way to start the weekend. (My main complaint? Johnny Depp as Grindewald. The thing about evil is that it looks just like you and me–Grindewald didn’t need to be Johnny Depp-ed, in my opinion.) I went into Doctor Strange without any expectations, but turned out to really like the movie, although I rolled my eyes at all the Orientalism. And Moana was great. They did a much better job with the Polynesian aspects of her life than I honestly thought they would, and although there are certainly some valid critiques to be made, I really enjoyed it.

What I’m listening to

Slate’s Working podcast is doing a series of interviews with people whose jobs are going to become so much harder under a Trump administration. Last week, they talked to an abortion provider, and this week, an immigration lawyer working primarily with children. Both episodes are well worth the time spent.

What else I am doing with my life

Christmas, apparently! We got our Christmas tree the weekend after Thanksgiving. It’s a tiny tree, partially because we didn’t want a big one, and mostly because we have a smart car and the tree had to fit in the car, so a tiny tree it was! We decorated it that weekend, and so far, the animals have left it alone. (Let’s hope that stays that way.)

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2016 Summer Bucket List

We returned from our honeymoon on Monday. Reader, it was glorious. We had so much time to just relax, and hike, and talk, and read, and people-watch, and eat that I think everyone should go on a honeymoon at least once a year, whether you’re married or not. (I think other people might call these vacations, but like a true grad student, I don’t really know how to take time off. A honeymoon seemed like a good enough excuse, though.)

While driving back on Monday (so much driving!), I started thinking about what I wanted to do this summer. So here it is, my summer 2016 bucket list, in random order:

  • take L. to camp at Sequoia and/or King’s Canyon National Parks (this was a favorite family destination when we were growing up so obviously L. needs to go, too)
  • visit Santa Cruz
  • go to a baseball game (Go Giants!)
  • visit Lassen Volcanic National Park
  • experiment with spelt bread recipes
  • make my own yogurt
  • run a 5k (I’m on week 5 of couch to 5k now, which is like three weeks further than I’ve ever made it, so I’m hopeful)
  • ride another century
  • visit friends and family in the Netherlands this summer
  • write and submit an article to an academic journal
  • not get sunburned (which is harder than it looks, at least if you’re me. I went on a bike ride a couple of weeks ago, and cavilierly applied sunscreen, thinking I’d only be out for 90 minutes or so. Thanks to my abysmal sense of direction, 90 mins turned into 3,5 hours and my arms and legs got very red indeed. I’m going to aim at not repeating that experience). Also included in this goal is to avoid heat exhaustion/sunstroke
  • go to Yoga in the Park, put on by a local yoga studio here
  • go see a movie on Courthouse Square in Redwood City (the city puts on free movies on a big square in the summer–it’s a good mix of older and newer movies, and there should be at least a couple I’m interested in)
  • volunteer with CASA San Mateo (Court Appointed Special Advocates–I’ve talked with them and they’re amiable to me helping out. I get some hopefully relevant work experience, they get an extra pair of hands)
  • check out Cal Academy of Science’s new show, “Incoming!”, narrated by George Takei
  • attend at least one meet-up event
  • find a new book club
  • watch Love Between the Covers, a feature length documentary on romance novels, readers, and writers
  • keep writing cover letters until someone finally hires me

My reading goals are separate. The biggest one is to make a dent in the unread books on my shelves, but specifically:

  • Ron Chernow’s Hamilton 
  • Greg Prince’s Leonard Arrington and the Making of Mormon History 
  • Annie Clark Tanner’s A Mormon Mother
  • Kate Bowler’s Blessed: A History of the American Prosperity Gospel
  • Heather Hansen’s Prophets and Moguls, Rangers and Rogues, Bisons and Bears: 100 Years of the National Park Service 
  • Amy Wallace and Edwin Catmull’s Creativity, Inc. 
  • Robert Putnam’s Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis
  • Celeste Ng’s Everything I Never Told You
  • Annie Barrow’s The Truth According to Us
  • Frederick Backman’s My Grandmother Told Me to Tell You She’s Sorry
  • Elizabeth Kostova’s The Historian
  • Marilynn Robinson’s Lila
  • Kate Atkinson’s Life After Life

although I also reserve the right to reread the Harry Potter series for the fifth hundred time, and anything I might find on my no doubt frequent trips to the library. Hashtag spontaneity.

what I read in February and March

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Fiction

His Right Hand, by Mette Ivie Harrison. This is book number 2 in Harrison’s Linda Wallheim series. From Goodreads.com: “In the follow-up to the controversial and critically acclaimed mystery The Bishop’s Wife, Mormon housewife Linda Wallheim finds herself ruffling feathers in Draper, Utah, as she assists a murder investigation that is being derailed by transphobia within the LDS community.”

Honestly, I was a little apprehensive when I saw the premise of the book, because it centers around the life of a trans man and deals with transphobia in general, and it is really hard for straight, privileged people to get that right. Good intentions and sensitivity don’t always translate well on the page. I also kind of felt like Harrison made sure to include a paragraph or two about every difficult social or political issue the LDS Church is facing, whether or not it aided the story. But, as in the first book, she does a good job of portraying Draper, Utah, and the Mormon church more generally, as a space where people frequently get it wrong, but get back up and try again.

Mistborn: Secret History, by Brandon Sanderson. I love the Mistborn series, and this one talks about Kelsier’s legacy after his death. (Summary is intentionally vague because hell hath no fury but a nerd scorned, or spoiled.) I’m not necessarily a die-hard Kelsier fan, so I didn’t get that much out of this book. Recommended if you’re a Mistborn fan, because you’re probably a completionist, like me.

Calamity, by Brandon Sanderson. The third installment in the Reckoners series! I love this series so much.

Crazy Rich Asians and China Rich Girlfriend, by Kevin Kwan. Amusing read about the (imagined?) insanity that is the Asian (noveau) riche community. Crazy Rich Asians is slightly better, I felt–China Rich Girlfriend continues the story but seems more focused on cataloguing the excesses than developing characters. At the heart of each book, however, is a clear message that money does not happiness make.

Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda, by Becky Albertalli. Simon is 16 years old, and gay, and emailing with an anonymous, adorable boy in his school. He isn’t out, though, and when the emails fall into the wrong hands, he has to decide for himself who he wants to be. The book is half teen romance, half coming of age story, and a quick read.

(Cozy) Mysteries

Murder on the Links and The Monogram Murdersby Agatha Christie. The Monogram Murders is actually written by Sophie Hannah, in the Christie style. It’s a Poirot mystery, and although I felt Hannah’s Poirot was a little more gimmicky than the Christie version, it’s still a good mystery and recommended for Poirot fans.

Red Velvet Cupcake MurderPeach Cobbler Murder, Devil’s Food Cake Murder, and Wedding Cake Murder, by Joanne Fluke. Hannah Swensen is one of my favorite cozy mystery heroines, and the rereads were all in preparation for the latest installment, Wedding Cake Murder, in which we (gasp!) actually see a love triangle resolved. This wasn’t the best installment in the series, but definitely worth reading if you like the Swensen clan.

The Skeleton Takes a Bow and The Skeleton Haunts a House by Leigh Perry. This is a new-to-me series, in which an adjunct professor takes on mysteries–with a live, talking skeleton by her side. (I know it’s weird, but it works.) I loved them mostly for Perry’s take on the eternal quandary of being an adjunct, and felt a little nostalgic as I read it–but mostly relieved to no longer be one.

Off the Books and Played by the Book by Lucy Arlington. This series is set in Inspiration Valley, a cutesy small town with a prominent literary agency (and a sandwich shop where all the sandwiches are named after literary characters–anyone feel like a Hamlet?) and a “murder magnet” who solves mysteries on her day off. (I swear, all these hokey plots feel way less contrived when you’re reading them.)

Non-fiction

Building a Better Teacher: How Teaching Works (and How to Teach It to Everyone), by Elizabeth Green. This is actually a really fascinating book. I read it in tandem with Dana Goldstein’s The Teacher Wars, and where Goldstein discusses the political context of teaching (how we think about teaching, how non-profit, corporate, and government interests try to solve the US’s education problem, and how that effectively paralyzes public schools in a lot of cases), Green dives into charter schools, what teacher education programs look like, and what the ramifications are in the classroom. Recommended if you think teaching is either natural or easy, or if you want to know more about what people are doing to make the US ed system better.

As Texas Goes…: How the Lone Star State Hijacked the American Agenda, by Gail Collins. I listened to this one on audiobook. It’s a little dry in places, but it’s a fascinating look at the way Texas politics, legacy, and culture influences the greater US. From education to gun rights, what happens in Texas doesn’t stay in Texas.

The Great Fitness Experiment, by Charlotte Hilton Anderson. I read Charlotte’s blog for years and loved reading about all the crazy things she tried in the name of fitness. This is basically her blog in book form, with some extras thrown in. Fun and entertaining.

Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea, by Barbara Demick. This was a book club pick. It deals with, as the title says, ordinary lives in North Korea: six of them, to be exact. She manages to humanizes the terrible history of North Korea, which I realized I know very little about, and should rectify that.

 

what I read in January

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Fiction

Making Money, by Terry Pratchett. Former conman turned respectable pillar of the community Moist von Lipwig tries to run a bank. This is an old favorite of mine, and I never get tired reading about the exploits of Moist von Lipwig. (Related titles: Going Postal and Raising Steam by the same author.)

Dear Committee Members, by Julie Schumacher. This is an epistolary novel, in which the story is told through the countless letters of recommendation a professor is asked to write one year. If you work in academia, you’ll probably find it funny. It lagged a little in the middle, but the end more than made up for it and re-humanized the characters involved, which was sorely needed.

The Lure of the Moonflower, by Lauren Willig. My dad got me started on these female-centered historical spy novels/romances, set in Napoleon France, India under colonial rule, and Georgian England. There are twelve of them, and I’ve read them all. He dropped out halfway through the series (as much as I love them, the quality is a little uneven), but gave me this one for Christmas so I could finish the series. They’re fun, reasonably historically accurate, and this one made a nice wrap up of more than ten years of Pink Carnation history.

Gatefather, by Orson Scott Card. This is the third and last installment in Card’s Mithermages series. Danny North, an incredibly powerful Gatemage, has battled the Gate Thief, and won, but now faces another great danger. (It’s very epic, if you couldn’t tell.) I really enjoyed the worldbuilding in this series, I enjoyed the (semi-subtle) Mormon overtones visible in Card’s writing, I enjoyed (if also rolled my eyes) at the way the author weaves together theology and mythology. But for a book that had such an epic premise, the ending felt kind of flat for me. Not bad, just flat. Still worth reading if you like fantasy, though.

The Bands of Mourning, by Brandon Sanderson. Bands of Mourning is set in the same universe as Sanderson’s Mistborn series, just hundreds of years later (I think. A good chunk of time, in any case). It follows The Alloy of Law and Shadows of Self, and continues the story very neatly.

I’m being very circumspect about plot so I don’t spoil anything, but I’ll say this: Sanderson writes female characters pretty well, but falls into the same traps a lot of writers do (Warbreakers, as much as I liked it, inspired much ranting in that regard). It was nice to see Steris come into her own in this book, even if the same old ‘woman doesn’t know her value/worth until male tells her (and preferably marries her)’ trope came out to play.

Divergent, by Veronica Roth. Divergent has been made into a movie, and it’s a very well-known young adult book that I had resisted reading until now. Shame on me, because my snobbish rejection wasn’t actually warranted–it’s a pretty good book. In the Divergent world, people are separated into ‘factions’ that value different things: Abnegation values selflessness, Candor values honesty, Dauntless values courage, Erudite values learning and libraries, and Amity values peacefulness. The catch is that you grow up in one faction, and then you choose whether to stay, or to join another one, at sixteen. The story revolves around one girl, Beatrice Prior, and her surprising choice.

Also, as an aside, I would probably be an Erudite. I’m too non-confrontational to be Candor, too un-athletic to be Dauntless, too selfish to be Abnegation (although I’m also a people pleaser so who knows?), and too sarcastic and prone to doom-thinking to be Amity. (In the Harry Potter world, I’m a Ravenclaw. I’m pretty sure I like following the rules too much to be Gryffindor. Although Hermione made it, so again, who knows?)

Cozy Mysteries

Gluten for Punishment, by Nancy J Parra. You know the gluten-free thing has jumped the shark when there’s a cozy mystery about it. (I was relieved to read that the protagonist hadn’t read Wheat Belly but actually had celiac.) Fun and fast read.

On Borrowed Time, by Jenn McKinlay. Another installment of the Briar Creek crime-fighting librarian!

Suspendered Sentence, by Laura Bradford. I swear, until right this second, I read the title as Suspended Sentence, and I’m afraid I’m going to have to downgrade my ranking for this book because this pun is terrible.

Anyway, it’s a cozy mystery set in Amish country in Pennsylvania. I find these books fascinating bits of Americana, because they require the people in question (the Amish) to become two-dimensional characters upon which fully modernized and technologically connected people can project a longing for simplicity and grace. Although Bradford is better than most, and her Amish actually experience and express negative emotions, like anger and jealousy. (Not to mention a murder, since it’s a cozy mystery, after all.)

Non-fiction

The Child Catchers: Rescue, Trafficking, and the New Gospel of Adoption, by Kathryn Joyce. Joyce (author of the book Quiverfull: Inside the Christian Patriarchy Movement) takes on international adoption in this book, asking questions about good intentions gone awry, the potential and reality of human/child trafficking, and how to move forward and do good. It’s branded as an exposé, and although I’m skeptical of exposés, I picked it up and read it anyway. If you keep in mind that it’s not meant to be a fair-handed treatment of adoption, but rather an exploration of what happens when too many people feel the means justifies the ends, you’ll end up learning a lot.

When Everything Changed: The Amazing Journey of American Women from 1960 to the Present, by Gail Collins. The book opens with an anecdote of how a woman wasn’t allowed to pay her boss’ traffic fine because she was wearing pants. (Her husband had to go pay it so they could just go home, and was warned to keep her in line by the judge.) Collins takes us through years of change, chronicling how in just one generation, expectations of what women could or could not, should or should not do drastically changed. Collins weaves in historical research, oral histories, and popular culture in an interesting and eloquent way. It’s rather balanced (you can tell the author is mostly a fan of the changes, since she never would have got to her position as the New York Times’ first female editor of the Editorial Page without them, but she also writes about the unintended consequences along the way), and when the author criticizes the parties involved, she does so in an affirming way. I would have loved a chapter on the Internet and the way female participation online has changed public life, but I guess you can’t cover everything.

You’re Never Weird on the Internet (Almost) by Felicia Day. This is a memoir that chronicles Day’s upbringing (weird), university career (disciplined), acting career (quirky), and various interests (nerdy). I listened to the audiobook, which I would highly recommend, as it’s read by Day herself. I loved the peeks into Day’s weird and wonderful life. I’m not a gamer (all I play is Mario Kart and Yoshi), but I’ve watched The Guild and Dr Horrible (not to mention some Supernatural) and I know enough about the culture to be intrigued. Recommended for all the nerds out there who feel like they don’t belong.

book list May 2015

Screenshot 2015-06-11 10.22.05Now that June is almost over, let me get to May.

1. The Bishop’s Wife, by Mette Ivie Harrison. Linda lives in Utah County, is married to the bishop (lay leader) of her local Mormon congregation, and through him becomes privy to a disturbing situation in the ward that might even include a murder. Goodreads describes it as a “both a fascinating look at the lives of modern Mormons as well as a grim and cunningly twisted mystery.” It was an enjoyable read, though more psychological thriller than true mystery, I think. I’m planning to read the second installment when it comes out, but I do think you need major familiarity with Mormonism in order to get the most out of the book. In some ways, though, it’s just nice to read something that’s based on a true crime story, involves Mormons, yet doesn’t rely on 19th century tropes. You’d be surprised at how rare that is.

2. The Girls of Atomic City: The Untold Story of the Women Who Helped Win World War II, by Denise Kiernan. This book deals with the women who worked at Oak Ridge, Tennessee, a ‘secret city’ associated with the Manhatten Project. None of these women knew what they were working on, only that it was vital to the war effort, and Kiernan describes both the camaraderie that developed in this put-up town and the secrets that enveloped every worker there. Kiernan describes them as heroes, and perhaps in deference to her subjects’ feelings, doesn’t spend much time on the complicated legacy of the Manhatten Project. But all in all it’s not a bad book, even if the first half is much stronger than the second.

3. Bertie’s Guide to Life and Mothers, by Alexander McCall Smith. Another delightful installment in McCall Smith’s serial 44 Scotland Street series–and this time, Bertie gets some freedom from his overbearing, helicopter, tiger mom.

4. Mr. Churchill’s Secretary,
5. Princess Elizabeth’s Spy, and
6. His Majesty’s Hope, by Susan Elia MacNeal. This is the Maggie Hope series, featuring a brilliant British-American mathematician that is enlisted to spy for the British during WWII. I don’t think they’re quite up to par with the Bess Crawford or Maisie Dobbs series (both dealing more with WWI) but if you like historical cozy mysteries with a literary bent, they’re worth picking up.

7. Children of the Jacaranda Tree, by Sahar Delijani. This was a book club read, and it provoked an interesting discussion. It deals with the Iranian Revolution, as seen through a variety of children-turned-adults that are left to deal with the aftermath. It’s a poignant book, but also very scattered. Definitely one to read with attention, and if your copy includes a family tree, bookmark it for easy access.

8. The Paper Magician, by Charlie N. Holmberg. Ceony is a magician’s apprentice, who is learning her trade (paper magic, or folding, which is much cooler than it sounds), but also forced to battle supreme evil. The books (there are three of them so far) are set in a parallel world that’s meant to mimic early 20th century England, I think. Though Holmberg creates quite a satisfying magical universe, ultimately, these books veered too much towards romance for me to be able to recommend them whole-heartedly. But I did read all three of them, so take that for what it’s worth.

9. Lizzy and Jane, by Katherine Reay. This isn’t a Pride and Prejudice parody/homage, at least not a straight-up one. Lizzy is a head chef in her own restaurant, yet struggling to find her purpose. Jane is a marketing specialist and battling cancer. The two haven’t really been true sisters since their mother died, and when Lizzy comes to visit, tensions flare up all over again. I quibbled with the elaborate foreshadowing in the book, since that meant I knew exactly how the story would play out, but I loved Reay’s food descriptions and enjoyed the book anyway. Perfect plane reading.

10. Sidney Chambers and the Problem of Evil, by James Runcie. I’ve talked about these books before: this one deals with serial killers, art theft, and baby kidnapping.

11. A Song for Issy Bradley, by Carys Bray. This is another Mormon novel, set in England, and dealing with a perfect Mormon family that isn’t quite as perfect after all. Well written, well executed, with a sensitivity that helped carry a sad plot without being overwhelming or too weepy. Recommended.

April’s book list

April was a slow month for me, with a total of seven books.

April1. Flesh and Blood, by Patricia Cornwell. Cornwell’s Scarpetta mysteries have been very conspiracy-prone of late, so I was glad to see this one return to the realm of “normal” thriller-mystery. An unsettling end means that I’m wanting the next one to come out soon. Recommended for Patricia Cornwell fans!

2. Princess Academy: The Forgotten Sisters, by Shannon Hale. Smart, insightful, and subtly feminist in all the right ways. If I have daughters (or if anyone around me has daughters), you can bet I’m giving them all the Shannon Hale young adult books I can find.

3. Sidney Chambers and the Shadow of Death

and

4. Sidney Chambers and the Perils of the Night, by James Runcie. This is a new-to-me series, and I’m liking the cleverness of the series. Canon Chambers is a very likeable character, Runcie’s portrayal of small-town life in the shadow of Cambridge add a wonderful sense of scenery, and most of the mysteries fit well in this imagined environment. (The second book gets involved with some international espionage, so take that for what it’s worth.)

5. The Square Root of Murder, by Ada Madison. Delightful cozy mystery series, this time math-themed, instead of knitting/book/quilting/whatever themed.

6. The Raven Boys, by Maggie Stiefvater. I’ve been seeing her books touted for years, but only picked one up after I read this online and thought I should read more of her writing. See my comments about Shannon Hale, above.

7. A River in the Sky, by Elizabeth Peters. I don’t know if I just missed this one because my library’s Overdrive system didn’t have it, or it was written to fit back between prior novels, but I saw it at the library and picked it up. I’m a fan of Elizabeth Peter’s Egypt mysteries, and though this one is set in Palestine, it fits nicely and was a fun, quick read.

Tell me, what should I make sure to include on May’s list of books?

what I read in March

What better way to get back into the swing of blogging than a monthly recap of the books I’ve read?

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It’ll be a short recap, actually, because the majority of books read in March belong to the Amelia Peabody series of cozy mysteries. Written by Elizabeth Peters, these books deal with an archeologist family, headed by matriarch Amelia Peabody, and surrounded by a cast of characters that make for highly enjoyable reading. If you like cozy mysteries at all, go read this series–it’s better than most. (Cozy mysteries can be both delightful and terrible, and these are definitely the former.) They go very well with dissertation writing–after a day of teasing out complex problems, it was very nice to spend a couple hours in twentieth century Egypt with Amelia and co.

1. Lord of the Silent (Elizabeth Peters)
2. Children of the Storm (Elizabeth Peters)
3. Guardian of the Horizon (Elizabeth Peters)
4. The Serpent on the Crown (Elizabeth Peters)
5. Tomb of the Golden Bird (Elizabeth Peters)

And then, for the more literary part of my month), I also read

6. Shakespeare Saved My Life (Laura Bates). Bates is a Shakespeare scholar that found herself teaching Shakespeare to inmates in solitary confinement in a maximum security prison. I really wanted to like this book, and there were parts that were really interesting, but overall, I felt like Bates was trying too hard and I wanted to throw the book across the room after the third time she very earnestly told us how incredibly insightful these prisoners were. If you’re interested in Shakespeare in prison, I recommend a podcast from This American Life (Act V): I feel like it did a better job of showcasing the complexity that surrounds the rehabilitation of serious offenders.

7. Where’d You Go, Bernadette? (Maria Semple). Architect turned neurotic stay-at-home-mom wreaks havoc on her life, and everyone else’s.
It took me a very long time to get around to reading this book. I really liked 3/4 of this book, and I’m recommending it based on that. The characters are eccentric but believable, and the use of correspondence to tell most of the story is clever and well-executed. The ending is a bit blah, but that could just be me.

8. Death at Wentwater Court (Carola Dunn). I listened to this one through Overdrive, mostly while walking the dog. Short, enjoyable cozy mystery set in 1920s England.

9. The Good Earth (Pearl S. Buck). I was hooked on half of the book, cheering for the family, until Lotus was brought on the scene and I wanted to shake some sense into Wang Lung. Want to read something that will make your blood boil? The way women are treated in this book should qualify. (Also, this was a book club read. During the meeting, the lone guy present told us that this was the book that made him realize the importance of family planning and birth control. All the women in attendance just looked at him, because yes, thanks for catching on.)

There were two books I didn’t finish this month (rare for me!): Allure of Deceit (Susan Froetschel) and The Rosie Effect (Graehem Simsion). Allure tried too hard for my liking: part murder mystery, part psychological thriller, part exposé, I felt like it didn’t deliver on any of the fronts and stopped reading it halfway through. And although I really, really liked The Rosie Project, the second installment felt too formulaic and frankly too unbelievable for me to want to continue. I felt like the author sat down, brainstormed a list of challenges that could happen to someone on the spectrum, and then proceeded to throw them at his character all at once. If you’ve read and liked The Rosie Effect, let me know if I should reconsider and see it through.