Friday, July 18, 2008

A Reader's Call for Help/Minor Rant

I'm still on the road and looking for a good book. Kate Atkinson's newest doesn't come out until July 31 in the U.K., by which time I'll be back in the States and will have to wait another six weeks for it. Here's what I'm looking for today:
  • adult fiction
  • novel
Here's what I'm not looking for:

I just finished reading two well-received novels and can I just say that I'm officially over the 20th century protagonist. You know the type: New York (usually), drinking problem, alienated from family, usually some connection to an Eastern European country, misanthrope, sees an Analyst/is an Analyst*, wife leaves him (usually for perfectly understandable reasons), hates dogs and/or children, makes wry comments on the failings of (usually other) human beings.

I do not want a novel featuring/narrated by this type of protagonist.

Maybe my increasing intolerance for the 20th century anti-hero is the reason why detective fiction has become a consoling feature in my reading life. Adam Dalgliesh, Jackson Brodie, Paddy Meehan, and Kurt Wallander aren't perfect people. But they mean well, have some minor hope in humanity, and, in their own ways, think they're making a difference.

So, help me out here, readers. I'm desperate for a good read.
*Does anyone still see an Analyst in this day and age? I'll just add that I'm totally over Freud/Freudism in literature as well.
Please excuse the Nabokov movie image. Nabokov did the 20th century anti-hero right, in my opinion, but it's also time to move on. Seriously.