26 July 2013

Reading a Nook

Reading a novel on a Nook (or another tablet-type appliance) is not like reading a book. I haven't figured out the dimensions of difference, but, I'm not as satisfied after finishing the newest Maisie Dobbs mystery, Leaving Everything Most Loved on my Nook as I usually am after putting down a book.

Okay, it might be that this mystery is not up to Jacqueline Winspear's par.

The plot, while complicated and multi-cultural is pretty thin. It might be that Winspear's protagonist spends a lot of time pondering her place in the universe. All that time spent in self-analysis is probably one of the reasons she didn't nab the perp sooner than she did.

The book was also the beginning of a transition for Maisie Dobbs, who, at the end of the book closes her investigative business, farms out her two employees, marries off her widower father, puts off her fiancee-wanna-be, and boards a ship for India. (No word about what happened to the cute little MG she tooled around in.)

It could also be that so much of the cultural details from 1920's England seems missing from this story. That stuff made Maisie and her world so much richer than many stories. Winspear moved from England to California sometime after starting the Maisie Dobbs series and maybe she's out of touch with details about London buses, telephones, street scenes, and houses.

It could also be that I started reading this book a week or so ago at home and finished on a Saturday afternoon at the cabin called Sidetrack on a lake called Blake. Maybe the story deserves more concentrated attention.

Two immigrant women from India, roommates in a sort of shelter, are murdered in London. The brother of one of the women arrives in London and hires Maisie to help find the murderer. There are suspicious missionary types, wild children in a park, gifted healers, mystified London cops, a confessed murderer who seems an unlikely culprit, and Maisie trying to decide what her place is in the universe.

It just didn't seem, when I finished it, to be a great reading experience. Was it because of the Nook or something else? I really did miss the paper and turning pages with more than a tap on the right edge of the screen.

I don't know. Right now I want to return to concentrating on the loon who is calling on the lake. What do those calls mean?

Have you read Leaving Everything Most Loved? Have you read a book on a tablet? What did you think? Write. Tell this little bit of the world what you thought.

1 comment:

Ken Wedding said...

Dan Conrad wrote, "I've read books on tablet, but only when traveling and lacking room to carry books. Never do it if I have a choice.

"Having recently read Leaving Everything Most Loved in the hard copy, library version, I thought it among Winspeare's best and considered her back on track after a couple (particularly Mapping of Love and Death) that were a little disappointing.

"Maybe it's the Nook!"