I’m still catching up on books that I read last year. In a perfect world, you would have read a thoughtful post about each of these books. Instead, you get this post.
First up, Ben Tanzer’s Most Likely You’ll Go Your Way and I’ll Go Mine:
Ben Tanzer is a funny guy, but Most Likely is a mostly serious look at modern-day relationships, romantic and familial. The title is taken from a Bob Dylan song, and pop culture references are sprinkled liberally throughout. When dispensing relationship advice, one character speaks in a Yoda inspired sentence structure. It’s a sweet look at life in the big city.
The next novel getting short shrift here is Haruki Murakami’s Norwegian Wood.
I came late to the work of Murakami, but I’ve loved what I have read. One of my many reading goals it work my way through his work. The Murakami books that I have read so far have all had a surreal/Eastern Spiritual element to them. Norwegian Wood is a straightforward story involving love triangles and the resulting angst. The titular Beatles song is featured in the book, too. Murakami works all kinds of music into his novels (those that I’ve read at least), which is one of the reasons that I love his work.
And finally, I provide inadequate mention of Greg Melville’s Greasy Rider: .
Greasy Rider is a typical travelogue/road story, complete with the irritable travel companion chosen for his availability rather than his compatibility. Melville converted a used Mercedes diesel to run on used restaurant cooking oil and decided to become the first person to drive cross country powered solely on recycled veggie oil. The author fails to point out that running a car on this type of fuel is – um – illegal, however green it may appear (I had to have that fact pointed out to me elsewhere). Along the way, Melville breaks up the trip by reporting on the world of alternative energy through relevant field trips. Stops include Al Gore’s house, the Department of Energy’s underwhelming alternative energy research center, and a wind farm. It’s a light-hearted read about issues that we’re all going to know more about soon.