Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Return to Reading Mysteries

After Candy died I did not feel like reading.  I just felt blah and when I would pick up a Swedish mystery they seemed too violent.  So I must be feeling better because I was ready for another Van Veeteren story.

On my last road trip I caught up on my Sound Opinions podcasts and on one of the episodes they had a researcher on who had just done a study about teens and depression.  They found that teens who listen to music are more likely to be depressed.  They also found that teens that read are less likely to be depressed.  Music doesn't make someone depressed - just that music is passive so if you are sad it's easier to sit and listen.  Reading is active so you may not want to read if you are sad.  I would agree.  Now, of course, reading isn't as active as exercise but you still need some ooomph to move your eyes across a page of text.  Something to consider if you find yourself in a reading slump.

"The Return" is so classic.  It's not about the body with no head.  It's about how society reacts to group think and guilt and innocence.  It's also about surly Van Veeteren and how he can solve a crime from a hospital bed.  Personal life informing professional life also pokes through with some of the characters.  I like this series.  The author is Swedish, the town is fictional, but I like to picture Sweden.

Nancy Pearl's podcast this month is great (as usual) and offers suggestions for book group books.  I also enjoyed the recent Books on the Nightstand podcasts while driving.  The shorter work of fiction must be in vogue because the hosts said on a few occasions that they had finished something in one, or two, sittings.  Some new titles to check out for the Novella Group!

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