A co-worker asked me on the way out this morning asked me how I deal with novels I have difficulty getting into. I told her I flip to any page midway into the book if the beginning is putting me to sleep, as not every writer is effective coming out of the gate, but if the book is worth reading you ought to recognize it by mid-span after a page or two, and then, hopefully engaged somewhat, go back to the beginning.
She said at first that she kept forgetting what she'd read of a novel, later adding that this is assigned reading, something she's supposed to do a twenty page essay on.
The novel is Diane A.S. Stuckart's Portrait Of A Lady, which she had on hand. It's a historical mystery, a genre that doesn't really appeal to me that much personally, but it didn't look too bad at first glance, the series primary hero-sleuth being Leonardo di Vinci, here, with the detecting only a tad bit more multi-talented than I've historically imagined.
My co-worker, a back to school mom, indicated that this wasn't an every book issue, just this novel.
Heading home, I thought that perhaps she ought to work backwards from the essay to the novel if that's what it took, generating some potential themes that might catch her fancy even if the storyline didn't.
I'd like to hear any suggestions of how others approach a problem such as she has.
Looking at reviews about the the story) began looking less apppealing to me the more I read, what is depicted as historical fiction reading more like historical romance the more I read.
I hope the essay is to be double spaced, I can't see why a book like this was chosen by the instructor.
Any words of wisdom I can pass along would be appreciated.