A connecting point between In the Woods and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is that they both feature strong female supporting characters who go on, in the books’ sequels, to become the main protagonists.
1. Please don’t put my ribcage on my ankles.
2. Please don’t peel my face off.
These are the two requests I would like to have honored by whoever does my autopsy (should I ever have one) that I came up with after witnessing an autopsy. Some things…just ain’t natural.
Then, this, from In the Woods, in an autopsy scene:
“I don’t think anyone ever quite gets over that first time, really, the mind’s violent revolt when the pathologist slices the scalp and the victim’s face folds away from the skull, malleable and meaningless as a Halloween mask.”
Yep, Tana French is right, you never quite get over your first time seeing an autopsy. Luckily for me, I’ve only ever watched one. Once they got past the initial incision, I was fine. That initial incision made me squirm though. Then, well, French put it better than I could, “the mind’s violent revolt” upon seeing them peel a person’s face down. It didn’t make me queasy per se, it was just a certain, unusual kind of wrong, like seeing water drip up.
Well, I finished R. Scott Bakker’s The Warrior Prophet, but I had to force myself to do it. I just could not get into that book, I found I didn’t have a care one way or another about the characters or what happened to them, and I was overly enthusiastic with his philosophical style of writing. A comment on sffworld.com that made a lot of sense to me was that the characters were “sterile.” That I definitely agree with. They were. It wasn’t that I didn’t like them or their motives, I just didn’t care. Like a tv rerun you watch for five minutes and then change the channel.
So, I am moving on. That’s right, I’m not finishing the trilogy. Hard for me to do, but I’m doing it. I’m going to take a break from fantasy for the time being, mostly to clear my head of Bakker’s works and discover again that there is lots of new, good fantasy out there. I’m diving into a genre I don’t read very often: mystery. I don’t read it very often because there is so rarely a mystery story out there that interests me, but when I find a good, man do I devour them. And the one I found, one that’s been staring at me from bookstore shelves for a while now, is definitely fantastic so far. I haven’t wanted to put it down; I’ve wanted to go deeper into the woods…
Tana French’s In the Woods, is a murder mystery set outside of Dublin, Ireland. So far, 55 pages in, I feel more connected to these characters than I did to any of Bakker’s characters after two whole novels. The story is engrossing and disturbing so far. Just what the doctor ordered to reinvigorate my reading. I’m loving it. If you are looking for a good read, check this one out. I hope it keeps getting better!