Hi, I'm Angi
Welcome to my corner of the internet! My passions include travel, photography, books, music, Japanese language and culture, Italian language and culture, and art.

Here at Abbott Lane you'll find my thoughts on these topics and much more. Thanks for stopping by to visit!

Best Books: May

It's a new month, and that means that it's time to reflect on the books I read from last month. May was an average month for me, with five books read. During the first half of the month I did quite a bit of reading, but the second half of the month I tapered off a bit.

This is the second month this year that I forced my way through a book I really really disliked, and what I'm discovering is that reading a bad book really shakes up my reading mojo. I have a lot of trouble getting back into reading after spending time with a book I dislike. So I'm going to try to bail more often if something isn't speaking to me, so I can move forward without too much damage to my reading desire.

In any case, here are my favorite May reads!

The Houseguest - Amparo Dávila
I loved loved loved these stories! Dávila's work has often been overshadowed by male writers from Latin America, but she was extremely involved in the Mexican literary scene of the 50s and 60s. This is the first book of hers available in English translation. Many of the stories feature women who are being stalked by unseen entities, though I wouldn't necessarily call this a collection of horror stories. They are more closely linked, in my mind, to the uncanny. They are unsettling, mostly because many of the women in these stories, when expressing their concerns about their safety to others, aren't believed or are dismissed, and the question of whether the entities are real or a figment of their imagination hangs in the air.

Washington Black - Esi Edugyan
Washington Black is a bit of in oddity. It's grounded in reality, but there's a quality to the writing and the plot that makes it feel like an adult fairy tale or magical realism. It doesn't quite feel real. This isn't to its detriment however. The book tells the story of a young slave boy in Barbados who is taken in as an apprentice by a gentlemen scientist. They travel around the world together, collecting specimen for scientific study, all while trying to outrun the specter of slavery and the consequences of decisions they've made.

Other books read: Husk - Messum; An Unkindness of Ghosts - Solomon; Come Closer - Gran.