Sunday, March 7, 2010

February – DeNiro's Game by Rawi Hage

So, this month we met and discussed Rawi Hage's DeNiro's Game…sort of. See, when the members of The Third Tuesday Book Club don't really like a book, let's just say the conversation turns to other worthy, upstanding, socially relevant topics, such as vamporn (this is exactly what it sounds like, and is directly related to True Blood—TV series and Harris' book series), Sex and the City, Lost, and yes—even Twilight.

Anyways, we did manage to get in a bit of discussion. I think it's a safe assumption at this point to say that we didn't like the book much at all. It was impossible for any of us to relate to the characters, and because of this—it was hard for us to care what happened to them. Helen did bring up a good point that deserves further exploration: we have NO idea what it's like to grow up in a war-torn country. While this is true, and I would never argue this point, I still feel that main characters George and Bassaum did little, if any thing at all to change their conditions. Especially George, who had family in France, and an offer of a visa and way out. Instead of embracing the chance to leave, and change his situation, he opts for the cheap feeling of power gained by joining and moving up the ranks of a local militia group. George, who could have gotten away from the horror instead chooses—and yes, I am actively suggesting that he chooses—to end up a coked-up rapist and pillager, a deliverer of horror and violence, and a killer—of innocents and himself.

The other character, Bassaum, is a cowardly snake. He lies, cheats, steals, and expects us to feel sorry for him. And we don't. We can't. So despite the fact that we don't know what it's like to grow up in a war-torn country, we still cannot identify with Bassaum and George. Not because we cannot empathize with their situations, but because we cannot support the decisions that they make during times of strife.

This book was like a cheap ripoff of Housseni's The Kite Runner, so if you really loved this book, go ahead and give DeNiro's Game a try. Other than that, I can't say that I'd recommend this book, and it pales in comparison to Housseni's work.

Now, as mentioned, The Third Tuesday Book Club sometimes ends up going way, WAY off topic, and Hage's novel really brought this out in all of us this month. Since no one was feeling the book, we just chatted about all of the things that we like most, and Trisha has asked me to share some exciting dates with you.

Charlaine Harris' latest installment of the Sookie Stackhouse Series, Dead in the Family, will be released on May 4, 2010.
True Blood: Season 2 will be released on May 25, 2010.
Season 3 of True Blood will start June 13 on HBO.
New Moon is released on DVD on March 20, 2010.
Season 1 of True Blood will be airing on the Space Network—for those of you without HBO, myself included—on March 14, 2010.

So, yes—these are the things that we love, besides books, of course. Some of you have asked me to re-post the order in which we are selecting books, so without further ado:

April – Darline
Darline has selected Stones from the River by Ursula Hegi.

May – Vanessa
Vanessa has selected Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay

June – Paddy
Paddy has selected The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

July – Lynn
Lynn has selected The Help by Kathryn Stockett

Aug – Sue (TBA)
Sept – Trisha (TBA)
Oct – Jenn (TBA)
Nov – Jeanette (TBA)
Jan – Helen (TBA)
Feb – Christine (TBA)

As well, please remember that, despite our name, we are actually meeting on the fourth Tuesday in March. We will be discussing Jane Johnson's The Tenth Gift. See everyone on March 23, at the usual spot at 7:30.


Anonymous said...

Great blog, Jenn. I totally agree with your comments. I recently read The Cellist of Sarajevo, and while I did not grow up in a war-torn country, this book had me on the edge of my seat waiting to find out who survived - both physically and emotionally. It's no bigger than De Niro's Game, but it totally draws you in to the characters and their lives. A much better read! - Lynn

trisha said...

Once again thanks for the blog, very nice. Another date to remember is May 7th when Sephora opens in White Oaks Mall!!