MOTIVATION for READING: Occasionally, I read a book review — or only the FIRST line of a review and stop. I rush to goodreads and add to my tbr and sometimes, I open bookmooch to see if I can score a copy. In this example, I was reading Softdrink’s blog and read only a bit of her review for this novel; I was thrilled when I was able to bookmooch it.
I’m counting this for the Twenty in Ten Challenge to fulfill a BLAME spot. And by ‘blame’, I really mean ‘gollygee thankyousomuch Softdrink for recommending this to me and sharing your thoughts so enthusiastically because I am very glad to have read it!’
WHAT’s it ABOUT: An unknown guy is brought into a psychiatric hospital in Spain; he thinks he is Christopher Columbus. His nurse is charmed (to say the least) by his stories. AND, some investigator with Interpol (who has secrets of his own) is on the hunt for him.
And that’s all I’m going to tell you…
Well, I suppose I could add that it has history, drama, tension, sex, drama, escapades, intrigue, confusion, mental illness, terrorists, history, romance, sexual tension, charm, a bit of religion but not much, the Inquisition, ships, travel, sister relationships, love, attraction, mental illness treatments, ocean stuff, poetry and drama. And dolphins. Not necessarily in that order.
I was charmed. The interweaving of the stories across the centuries was brilliant. The believability and inconceivableness could have been confusing but it was clever. And it wasn’t the kind of cleverness where you think “well, isn’t the author being clever” but the other more impressive awe-inspiring clever: competent and capable; not show-offy.
She’d like to shake him – get the remaining stories to fall onto the ground. Then they could stand around and look at the bones of his stories, all haphazard and abstruse on the pebbles. In the clear light of day, they could perhaps make sense of these bones, put them in order, find the end, and even more important, find the beginning before the beginning.
LINKS: I have already linked to FizzyThoughts above, she will direct you to Rebecca’s – or you can go directly to her review here, and there are more: Kim – the wonderful sophisticated dork, Jeanne recommends reading with a glass of wine – which is a fabulous suggestion. Oh, may I just suggest you click on Fyrefly’s book blog search engine; I set it up for you.
FAVORITE THINGS AND QUESTIONS FOR THOSE WHO HAVE ALSO READ (which may or may not be spoilers….)
THOLE (to endure, to put up with, to tolerate. Scottish) – this word was one I discovered in the book I read immediately before this one and WOWZA! Aint it cool when you see a word, you know it, and you know you just learned it? Unfortunately, I can’t find my notes (and now I’m already wondering if it wasn’t in Oryx & Crake which is what I read after WFC.) oh well. I do love when I can link books with random connections. It makes me ponder the grander questions in life. “Was this supposed to happen? What does it MEAN?!”
I was thinking of who should play the parts in the movie (no, I have no idea if such is in the works…) Of course Penelope Cruz could be Isabella. And I think Matthew McConaughey would be excellent as Columbus. I’m not sure about Consuela – Natalie Portman? Kate Beckinsale, perhaps…
Finally, the possible spoiler but I don’t think so: I kept wondering if what Columbus was so scared of – the big horrible something that was going to happen if he got on those ships to sail the Western seas and discovered a new way to the Indies and Japan but that he would not be harmed… I was wondering BIG PICTURE, if he was sensing the massacres of the natives, etc and all the other atrocities on the Americas that get blamed on Columbus. Did you think that? Just wonderin’…
RATING: Five Pieces of Pie. I loved it.
[THANK YOU JL for telling me that you like my reviews – that I don’t tell much of what a book is about but tell just enough that you really want to go find out what the heck I’m talking about. I’m paraphrasing our convo here but I *think* that is what you meant and what I was going for here again. I really think you would like this one. And maybe JM would, too! hee hee]