I am going to be honest (as always) and say that I chose this as my first read of 2018 because I had such high hopes. Unfortunately, I wasn’t completely in love with these stories. I say stories because this is a collection of short stories about women that has a feminist/dystopian undertone.
Imagine a world where going to Middle Earth and spending the day with Hobbits was normal. What if, while at school if you are learning about the Great Wall of China, you could actually visit that place all while you are safe in the comfort of your own home. Imagine if you could have two lives, one that’s in the real world, and one that’s in a virtual alternate world where the possibilities are endless. Imagine living in a game.
Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders
Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars
This book is unlike anything I have ever read before. It is haunting, poetic and philosophical. It is a historical fiction about the death of President Lincoln’s son, Willie and his afterlife experiences in the bardo or cemetery. It deals with the question of life and death and coping with loss. What I found most entertaining was the structure of the novel. Some parts of it takes sentences from different historical letters, biographies, and textbooks and arranges them to tell a narrative. I also enjoyed reading from the perspective of all of the different spirits that reside in the cemetery and their individual stories.
Christmas is right around the corner, and one of my favourite stories to read, or watch, is The Nutcracker. The story originated in Germany in 1816 by E.T.A Hoffmann and was later transformed into a ballet in 1892 by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovshy, Marius Petipa, and Lev Ivanov. It tells the story of Clara a young girl who on Christmas Eve receives a Toy soldier Nutcracker from her uncle Drosselys. Later that night, her nutcracker defeats the evil mouse king and his mice army and she is rushed away to a magical land there many dolls perform for her including The Sugar Plum Fairy and her Cavalier.