Written by Books

White Teeth

Well I’ve finished the first book on my list of yesterday. I did start it last week however – I wouldn’t have ordinarily been able to get through 440 pages within 24 hours without devoting a lot of time to it.
As it was, in typical fashion, I was left with ten pages to go when I got off the tube this morning. Being already a couple of minutes late for work, I couldn’t stroll along Carnaby Street (warning – crashed my browser) in a leisurely manner finishing it, so that pleasure had to wait until lunchtime.
White Teeth has been sitting on my bookshelf for quite some time, since in many ways it seemed a daunting read. Sometimes you’re all set up to attack something that doesn’t feel to easy – Moby Dick, War & Peace, etc. But other times you just want something that’s around 250 pages long, is not too intellectual, and goes down nice and easily. I bought it on a whim in Tesco a year or so ago, mainly because it was priced at the unlikely �3.84 price point. I note that the “.84” pricing policy is still adhered to in Tesco. I have no idea why. Anyway, I finally pulled it off my shelf last week since the Channel 4 series starts on the 17th, and I hate to have seen a TV series but not read the book.
I must admit, slightly to my surprise, I thoroughly enjoyed it. I say “surprise” because although it was roundly praised in reviews, and is no doubt multi-award winning, I hadn’t exactly had glowing reviews from people I know who’d read it. A couple of people told me the middle section was tricky going, one person admitted to fast forwarding towards the end of it, and another didn’t even finish it all, disenchanted by the “dialect” used. Can’t say that I found any of these problems, and the end came totally out of the blue for me.
Zadie Smith’s new book The Autograph Man has just been (or is just about to be) published in hard back. I have plenty of literature to keep me occupied at the moment, so the paperback next summer is more my thing.