Elmore Leonard said: I have a character in one of my books tell how she used to write historical romances ''full of rape and adverbs.''

Wednesday, 3 September 2008


Oh yes, at long last, I can consider myself a member of that oh-so-cool crew of e-book reading, techno-babble spouting, device-toting vixens (you know who you are). For I have in my hot little mitts, my very own SONY READER.


It is a thing of beauty. I have spent the evening in earnest contemplation of the manual, and all the advice available on-line for getting the Reader to a state of Mac compatibility. Which I've done (phew). All that remains is the actual reading.

Alongside the 100 free classics Sony were kind enough to send me (The Sonnets! Crime and Punishment! The complete Jane Austen...) I've got a couple of e-books I've been holding off on until the arrival of this, my precious, my baby, my Reader...

Rumors, Anna Godbersen
Dark Desires after Dusk, Kresley Cole
Never Romance a Rake, Liz Carlyle

Just to conclude - Woot!


RfP said...

eeks! excitement! I just hope you'll like the actual reading part :) I feel responsible, as one of your vixtructresses.

BTW, I'm snooping through your bookshelves. I can't figure out the rightmost book--The Ladies of What?

Meriam said...

The Ladies of Grace Adieu (a follow up collection of short stories after Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell). I haven't read it yet. JSaMN took me approximately 6 months...


Excellent word.

As for reading - yes, I should start, shouldn't I? I can't stop pulling it out of my bag and giving it a little stroke. Have read a little Kate Chopin (out of curiousity).

Marianne McA said...

LOL. I just went over to rfp's blog to post that I'd got mine, and to thank her again for recommending it.

They are beautiful, aren't they?

I haven't read anything on mine either - I've just spent the evening demonstrating it to all and sundry. (My mum and dad, particularly impressed in a slightly worrying 'that I should live to see this day' way. They forecast that printed books will go the way of the scroll.)
I don't care if I never read anything on it: it's a thing of beauty and a pleasure to own.

Haven't bought any books yet. My dh said I should buy one right away, just to get the hang of the thing, but I don't want to buy just anything - I want the first book to be special. (And in the meantime, there are enough of the 100 free books that I haven't read to keep me occupied for a good while.)

RfP said...

You two sound too distracted by the design to settle down and read :) It's like Christmas gifts--on the first day they get shown off instead of used.

Marianne, that's a great story--your parents are so impressed that they fear for paper itself? Try out the largest font size and maybe you'll convert them :)

Meriam, have you read Kate Chopin before? I read The Awakening for an undergrad class and then gobbled up more of her stories, but haven't reread her in a long time.

Meriam said...

The Guardian was blogging about it today, and some of the comments were similarly pessimistic about the future of printed books.

I still plan to buy books - but books that are beautifully produced, books my favourite authors write, the books I know I'm going to re-read. For my 'disposable' and taking a chance reading, the Reader is going to be an excellent space-saver.

Kate Chopin - surprisingly, I don't think so. Surprising because I've read so much *about* her, I just vaguely assumed I must have read something by her. As it turns out, maybe not.

Although I do have this book, somewhere, and I have read most of it, so maybe I've read some of her stories without realising?

RfP said...

I still plan to buy books - but books that are beautifully produced, books my favourite authors write, the books I know I'm going to re-read. For my 'disposable' and taking a chance reading, the Reader is going to be an excellent space-saver.

That's pretty much where I'm ending up. I don't keep (paper) books I won't re-read, and when my bookcases overflow I prune ruthlessly. I think e-books will let me keep *more* books, albeit in a different format.

I do have this book, somewhere, and I have read most of it, so maybe I've read some of her stories without realising?

I think your book includes Désirée's Baby, a short-short story that's often taught. It's one of those you can feel getting ready to take a more tragic step with each page. You'd probably remember it.

Meriam said...

Yes, I think you're right: I would have remembered it.

I'm enjoying The Awakening, though.

Janine said...

Color me green with envy. Congratulations on your new reader!

Tumperkin said...


I've got lots of the books on your shelves. The Clarkes, the Roth and is that The Vesuvius Club by Mark Gatiss I see?. AND I like Liz Carlyle - will you review Never Romance a Rake? Go on - she deserves to be reviewed and I've never gotten round to it. Maybe I'll do my favourite one of these days.

kmont said...

I want the red one they've got coming out. Jealous! Congrats though lol. Enjoy the heck out of it.

Meriam said...

A red one?! I don't want to be all bitter, because I love my reader, but I can't believe Sony are releasing a new version!

Meriam said...

Tumperkin - it is the Vesuvius Club. (And to my shame, I haven't read a single page of the Roth... yet).

I like Carlyle, too. I will attempt a review, if it catches my imagination.

What's your favourite? I've particularly enjoyed A Woman Scorned and The Devil to Pay.

Tumperkin said...

The Devil to Pay is my fave but I also liked The Devil you Know (possibly more cos it was my first Carlyle) and Two Little Lies.

Not a fan of a Woman Scorned. Don't like Cole much (blond; moral - not my type).

She's a vivid, vivacious writer. A lot of her books have been Bs for me but they're always rich reads.

I'm reading My Reckless Heart at the moment - not a fan of the endless POV changes but it's well written - not rocking my world though. Shades of Jo Beverley in that regard.

Do I sense a theme in your favourite heroines? Stroppy and strong?

Meriam said...

Oh noes!

You know when you really, really love something and you give/ recommend it to someone else hoping that they'll love it as much as you...? And when they don't, you're absurdly and irrationally dismayed?

That is how I feel. Crushed!

You'll have to tell me exactly why My Reckless Heart doesn't work for you. (If you don't mind. It's one of my favourite books and no one I know has actually ever read it).

I haven't read the Devil You Know. I must pick it up. And yes, Two Little lies, I liked that very much, too.

Stroppy and strong? I don't know. I've never thought of it like that. Maybe 'difficult'?

Tumperkin said...

I don't dislike it. I'm just not blown away (to be honest anything high seas-related is a turn off for me). But it's accomplished writing and I would certainly pick up another of hers. My main issues:

- I'm not warming to the heroine. I don't dislike her - but crucially, I don't like her. Ice queens don't really do it for me (you know, 'poor me, everyone thinks I'm cold but I'm really passionate' - I don't KNOW anyone like that. It's such a romance convention)

- the POV switches aren't my cup of tea - they happen all the time and I don't like jumping in and out of heads. Have you read it recently? I felt like the POV switches gave it quite an old-fashioned feel.

But it's not a DNF or a wall banger or even a C. It's a B for me cos the quality of the writing does pull it up for me.

Jessica said...

I am on the fence about an ereader: I know I want one, and I don't care what, if anything, else it does besides display books.

But this one requires a "work around" to use with a Mac, and I, well, let's just say I still think a "Day Runner" is cutting edge in personal organization.

It'll be interesting to see what affect the Reader has on your consumption of paper book!

Oh, and I read The Awakening and I didn't see what the fuss was all about. Just my two cents.

Meriam said...

Oh, and I read The Awakening and I didn't see what the fuss was all about.

Oh, no! I liked it. I was thinking about blogging about it, but the fact that so many people have studied it puts me under too much pressure.

Truth be told, I'm a fan of late 19th century literature, so I perhaps I was predisposed.

You know, I've bee reading so much recently, thanks to the reader. Books I put off buying because I really didn't like the covers, for example (see: Holly's Courting Midnight).

The spur of the moment thing is a big influence: I read a positive review of a Blaze over at Dear Author and immediately bought it. (Miss Match by Jo Leigh - quite enjoyable, some only somewhat problematic). RfP recommended a Stephanie Laurens and I whizzed off to buy it - the immediacy means I don't really have time to second guess myself.

Actually, don't know if that's a good thing or a bad thing...

RfP said...

RfP recommended a Stephanie Laurens and I whizzed off to buy it - the immediacy means I don't really have time to second guess myself.

Cripes, you're going to hold that against me in a big way when you discover her sentences, her phrases, her very meaning it sometimes seems, have been thoroughly, perhaps even irretrievably, converted--have been transformed--into ever shorter, ever more repetitive clauses, in a slow--yet inexorable--advancement over a number of years, a lengthy sequence of books, a multitude of words.

But I still hope you'll like the angry heroine!

racyromancereviews said...

Oops -- sorry I misunderstood your Chopin remark.

That easy access to books with a press of a button? No waiting days for the UPS guy to show? No trudging out to the bookstore, standing in line, hoping you find what you want? Kind of terrifying!

Meriam said...

RfP - no worries. I know I'm highly suggestible, so I have no one to blame but myself. And you never know; I might even like it. I

Jessica - quite! It's a heady feeling.

To compound the problem, as I hate the idea of running out of books, I always make sure I buy one more than I need. So now I have a whole backlog of 'just in case' books on my ereader. (Just in case the internet breaks down, just in case I'm stranded, just in case I can't sleep...)

Meriam said...

Tumperkin, have you finished it yet?

I think part of my love for the book stems from a nostalgia unrelated to its actual merits, however, I would argue -

I don't think Jonna is an ice queen! She is who she is. Practical, introverted, somewhat repressed. I love the way her and Decker are constantly reassessing one another, how every new meeting leads to a better understand, a re-evaluation of their initial judgements/ assumptions.

Jonna might come across as an ice queen, but she's lonely, wealthy and she doesn't feel like she can trust anyone with her secrets, because the consequences of a betrayal would be so catastrophic.


Sorry! I'll stop banging on about it. (Although I love having another perspective) Do you think you'll try some of Goodman's other stuff?

RfP said...

Did you see that Kate Chopin's home burned down? Also, the National Park Service has a short bio with a number of provocative details.

Meriam said...

Provocative details? Like her useless husband dying of an overdose and her extra-marital affair?

I did not know about the house burning down, but I did read her bio after finishing The Awakening. Interesting lady.