Happy Wednesday everyone! By the way, how are you enjoying 2022 so far? I hope that you are all doing well and are all healthy despite the risks that surround us. I hope that the pandemic will end soon. I am also praying that 2022 will be a year of hope, healing, and recovery for everyone. I hope that it will be a great year. Wah, this will be the last WWW Wednesday update for April. Time does fly fast. I hope and pray that May will bring good tidings to everyone. I hope that the Philippines will vote for a good and visionary leader in the coming national elections.

As it is a Wednesday, it is time for another WWW Wednesday update. WWW Wednesday is a bookish meme originally hosted by SAM@TAKING ON A WORLD OF WORDS. The mechanics for WWW Wednesday are quite simple, you just have to answer three questions:

  1. What are you currently reading?
  2. What have you finished reading?
  3. What will you read next?

What are you currently reading?

It has been over a decade since I read my first book by the renowned Queen of Suspense, Agatha Christie. The book, Murder on the Orient Express, has restored my interest in suspense and mystery fiction. After the passage of a decade, Christie has become my second most-read author. I am now currently reading Death on the Nile, my 30th Christie book. I have just started reading the book which I recently acquired primarily because of the movie adaptation; I have other unread Christie books on my bookshelf but I opted for this one. I haven’t gotten far into it yet so I can’t share many impressions about it yet, well except perhaps for the most obvious. I can’t wait to witness how the suspense unfolds. If I am not done yet by Friday, do expect more of my thoughts on this week’s First Impression Friday.

What have you finished reading?

Again, I was able to complete two books in the past week. The first book I completed was my second novel by Hanya Yanagihara, To Paradise. When news of the book’s release in 2022 reached me, I was really excited because it has been five years since I read A Little Life, a book I loved despite its emotionally draining images. I was able to obtain a copy of the book recently without much fuss and when the opportunity to read the book came, I didn’t hesitate in immersing myself in Yanagahira’s prose despite some ambivalence brought about by divided opinions on the book. Upon reading the book, I can definitely see where the divide is coming from. To Paradise was comprised of three parts and followed three separate plotlines separated by a century each. The story took place mainly in Manhattan and partly in Hawaii. Like A Little Life, the book dealt with homosexual relationships; it was also one of the elements that connected the three storylines together. However, the connections between the three stories were tenuous at best. They could have been published separately without adversely affecting the book. Most of the characters didn’t grab my attention for they were mostly passive and naive. The writing was still impeccable. The third book, set in a dystopian Manhattan beset by plagues and a totalitarian regime, contained the book’s most brilliantly executed elements.

While searching for books to include in my 2022 Books I Look Forward To List, one of the titles that immediately grabbed my attention was Danya Kukafka’s Notes on an Execution. I was intrigued by the premise, hence, its addition to my own list. Moreover, it was listed in several most anticipated 2022 releases. Thankfully, I was able to obtain a copy of the book, making it the fourth book from my list that I read; I am now done with four out of the ten books. Anyway, Notes on an Execution followed the story of Ansel Packer who learn from the start of the book was about to be executed. The story then transports the readers to the past. Through the perspective of several female characters, we learn about Ansel, from his childhood (his mother Lavender) to his troubled teenage years (his one-time friend Saffron “Saffy” Singh) to his married life (his wife Jenny and her twin sister Hazel). There was also a mixture of third and second-person point-of-view. The second-person point of view created the psychological profile of Ansel. This was less of mystery fiction and more of philosophical fiction. It ruminated on life, death, and the significance of the death penalty. It was an interesting book but it fell flat on some points.

To close my April reading journey, I have picked Pat Barker’s The Silence of the Girls. This retelling of Greek mythology will be my first novel from the Booker Prize-winning writer. I was planning to read her Booker Prize-winning book The Ghost Road but since it is the last book of a trilogy, I have opted to go with The Silence of the Girls first. After much deliberation, I have decided to make May a European Literature month which will commence with Milan Kundera’s The Book of Laughter and Forgetting. This will be my third from the highly-heralded but equally controversial Czech writer. The book is also part of my 2022 Top 22 Reading List. Italian writer Natalia Ginzburg’s Family Sayings will immediately follow; I have been featuring this book in my WWW Wednesday updates for quite some time but I never really got around to reading it. Hopefully, I get to read my first Ginzburg novel.

That’s it for this week’s WWW Wednesday. I hope you are all doing great. Happy reading and always stay safe! Happy Wednesday again!