Just finished The Book of Air and Shadows by Michael Gruber. Overall, I enjoyed the story. What I had to skip (after struggling through the first 10 or so pages) were the Bracegirdle and Ciphered Lettered strewn throughout the narrative. They’re English letters from the 17th C and I found them incredibly difficult to read and when I did manage to read a paragraph or two I had no idea by the end what the paragraph had started with. Imagine a new reader, slowly, laboriously decoding a story and you listening, trying to keep a thread of sense. Agonizing!</p><p>Compared to other mysterious/hidden/lost/found book/manuscript stories, this one earns a 3 out of 5–definitely not the best I’ve read. But on a sunny summer day, on the patio with a tonic and lime in hand, it does the trick.
Now I’m on to one of 2 finds at the library bookstore: Tracks by Louise Erdich or Lighthousekeeping by Jeanette Winterson. I’m leaning toward the latter.