Monday, May 5, 2014

Why every book need not give you a heart attack on page one

by Stephen Woodfin)

One of the benefits I have discovered from browsing’s list of books day in and day out for selections to post for the Book of the Moment Club is that I have a chance to find favorite books of mine from years passed that now are available as audiobooks.

Such was my experience yesterday when I ran across Eventide by Kent Haruf narrated by George Hearn.


If you don’t know the writing of Kent Haruf, do yourself a favor and become acquainted with it. Haruf writes in a spare, elegant prose, one which fits perfectly with the mood of the story he weaves. It is a tale of simple, yet profound, interactions among people, set in the wide-openness of the western United States.

It is not a shoot ‘em up, car-racing type of book.

I mention this because yesterday, on a whim, my wife and I took in the recent movie Brick Mansions, the last picture of Paul Walker.

Brick Mansions

I’m not sure what we expected the flick to be about it, and now that I’ve seen it, I’m still unsure.

However, it was a thrill a minute, or a second.

One fight followed by another; one chase scene ended so another could begin; one gun battle started when the blasts of the last continued to reverberate among the dystopian ghetto of Detroit only a few years hence.

Brick Mansions was sort of like Steven Seagal meets Jason Bourne. Which is not really a bad combination if what you are in the mood for is an adrenaline dose and a short cut road to justice.

Sometimes I am in the mood for that.

But other times, I want to read a book that takes its time, explores deeper mysteries, forces me to fill in the blanks with my imagination.

Not every story needs a fight scene or car chase on page one.