Every cloud has a silver lining. I was out sick for the better part of last week with a truly nasty bout of flu. While I managed a slow trickle of essential e-mail and the like, my poor brain was far too addled to accomplish anything truly productive (let alone publish coherent posts). Like most busy adults, my usual strategy for dealing with minor ailments of this sort is to ignore it until it goes away and simply plow ahead. This time, I let myself be sick.
This in turn enabled me to do something I hadn't done in ages: I read a novel cover to cover over the course of a few days. I had forgotten how truly wonderful a feeling that was. The book, The Rules of Civility by first-time author Amor Towles, came highly recommended by the well-read Annie, aka Ms. P&C of Poetic and Chic blog. It didn't disappoint.
Set in glamorous New York City of 1938, the smart, sassy protagonist is short on cash but long on wit and ambition. It's not a perfect book (you'll encounter a cliché or two) and the author was clearly influenced by Fitzgerald but it is nonetheless a thoroughly enjoyable read for anyone who enjoys a stylish story with plot twists that reveal the grit that sometimes lies beneath a polished surface.
Cold and flu season is upon us so if you have the misfortune of finding yourself under the weather (and even if you don't), let yourself be sick if you can and keep this book in mind. It turned out for me to be just what the doctor ordered.
The Luxe Chronicles