The Given Day, Dennis Lehane
I bought The Given Day, by Dennis Lehane on the Kindle for reading over the December holidays. On the Kindle, you don't have page numbers but the % of how much of the book you have finished. I never paid any attention to the size of this particular book but knew it had to be big as it was taking me forever to finish. I finally finished yesterday and went to Amazon to check out the size. 720 pages! Lesson learned. See size before buying.
The book could have probably been a bit smaller but a wonderful story nonetheless. The book is set in Boston, post WWI. There are a variety of characters that are clearly perfect for the time that the book takes place. Historical fiction as the story unfolds through actual events that took place in 1919.
A story surrounding 2 families, one black and one Irish. Murders, lust, politics, power…all the makings of a good novel. Lehane interweaves the tales of these families with historical data such as the unions coming in to play in the Boston police department, the molasses disaster, John Hoover at the FBI, Calvin Coolidge then the Governor of Massachusetts, Babe Ruth and the uprising of the new Italian immigrants.
Wonderful book, great writer. But keep in mind, 720 pages.
I love love love Dennis Lehane. Regardless of length, I’ve just Kindled it!
I saw on Amy’s blog that it was one of her faves for 2009. Certainly easierto carry around and read on a Kindle.
I find several things wonderful about the Kindle experience, especially in respect to your point about no page numbers. Amazon’s approach apparently has been to enhance ( as opposed to change) the tactile experience of reading a book while minimizing the effect of such a dramatic change on our psyche.. Given the ergonomics of the set in one’s hands, the kindle can “go away” for “digital page” after “digital page”. Paper and hardbacks remind one every couple of minutes that you are in the process of reading by virtue of the page turning ritual. However a left or right thumb click dramatically eliminates these “consciousness” breaks from the read. Brilliant Amazon planning.When I do “come back”, from whatever genre I am reading, and glance at the bottom of the page I take note of the % of the book I have finished. In this way I am not dreading 100 down and 200 to go but rather “Wow, can’t believe I am 1/3 done already”. It makes me want to pick the read back up and maybe knock off another 5 or 10% if time permits. With all the other backlogs that life brings to us, I find the Kindle to be one of the great paradigm changers of the decade. No page count, no backlog. Just read until 100% gets done. Love it.
Kindle is truly brilliant.