Having suffered a little from literary fiction indigestion in 2011, I decided this year to pace myself better and to ensure that I also was reading some lighter fare. 'State of Wonder' by Ann Patchett turned out to be one of those books that I found engaging from its opening pages and could hardly put down. I loved the strength of the story-line, its characters and most of all the Amazon setting. Part of this immediate connection is likely because I worked for a number of environmental charities and continued a commitment to the welfare of indigenous peoples, especially in this region.
I didn't quite expect to get on so well with 'Half Blood Blues' but was pleasantly surprised I found it quite accessible despite the fact that I'm not really a fan of jazz. Felt she did an excellent job of capturing the setting.
Finally, I've just finished Painter of Silence. I found the writing exquisite but I found myself feeling quite outside the story and characters. It did start to come together for me in the final third. I figure that it's one of those novels that I can admire for its writing but at the end of the day is just not my cup of tea.