Monday, November 15, 2021

Novellas in November: My Reading So Far


This month I have been participating in the Novellas in November 2021 reading event. The event celebrates the short novel, or novella. For this event the idea is to aim for 150 pages or under, with a firm upper limit of 200 pages.

The event started on November 1 and continues through November  28th. The host blogs are 746 Books and Bookish Beck. Each week has a theme but anyone who participates can read and review any type of novella at anytime in the month.

These are the themes:

  • 1–7 November: Contemporary fiction (1980 to present)
  • 8–14 November: Short nonfiction 
  • 15–21 November: Literature in translation 
  • 22–28 November: Short classics 

I have reviewed one novella so far: The Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes.

These are the other novellas I have read in November 2021:

  • Carte Blanche by Carlo Lucarelli  (contemporary fiction, historical crime fiction, literature in translation, 94 pages)
  • Montalbano's First Case by Andrea Camilleri (contemporary fiction, crime fiction, literature in translation, 122 pages)
  • Constructive Living by David K. Reynolds (short nonfiction, 106 pages)
  • Train Dreams by Denis Johnson (contemporary fiction, 114 pages)
  • The Concrete Jungle by Charles Stross (contemporary fiction, science fiction, 57 pages)
  • Tamburlaine Must Die by Louise Welsh (contemporary fiction, historical crime fiction, 149 pages)
  • The Silent Gondoliers by William Goldman (contemporary fiction, 110 pages but there are a number of full page illustrations so not really that long)

I will be sharing my thoughts on all of these before the end of the month.


Cath said...

The cover of that Goldman book is amazing and I'm drawn to reading that. I love Montalbano but haven't read that 'first case' novella. I have however watched the 'Young Montalbano' TV series so I wonder if they based one of them on that.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I read NIGHT TRAIN some years ago. But I remember little about it. I love this length.

TracyK said...

Cath, I don't know if you are familiar with The Princess Bride by Goldman, which was made into a movie, but The Silent Gondoliers is written in the same style. It has a nice ending and I enjoyed it.

I also liked Montalbano's First Case. It is his first case on arriving in Vigata as Chief Inspector. I don't know anything about the TV shows.

TracyK said...

Patti, I used to think both novellas and short stories were too short, and I wanted a more extended plot. But now I am enjoying novellas as well as short stories.

Margot Kinberg said...

You're making great progress, Tracy. It's funny; I don't usually read a lot of novellas, but they really are a good length for some stories. And they give the reader a sense of the authors style. I hope you'll enjoy these!

col2910 said...

You have been busy. I'm scratching my head wondering if I have that Lucarelli or not.

TracyK said...

Margot, I have been reading novellas faster than I thought I could.

TracyK said...

Col, I have been busy, although I need to get some review posts out.

Unless you have gotten rid of it, you have the Lucarelli book (LOGGING THE LIBRARY - PART TWENTY-THREE). Also you did a very nice post on Italian crime fiction in your TBR, here...

Sam Sattler said...

I generally like novellas even though I don't read all that many of them. I do sometimes wish they had been longer - the ones I've become totally immersed in - because I hate to leave their world so soon.

TracyK said...

Sam, I have had that experience before, wishing a short novel would go on longer. But sometimes they are the pefect length.

I did not realize how many I had around the house, unread, and this was the perfect time to try more of them. I plan to aim at one novella a month, at a minimum, and one graphic novel a month, starting in 2022. I will probably be less strict on the length then. For this month I am aiming staying under 150.

col2910 said...

Tracy, thanks. I suppose I should/could have looked myself!

TracyK said...

That's OK, Col, I enjoyed looking it up and especially reading the SIX SLICES OF ITALIAN CRIME post. Most of the authors there I haven't read yet, but I do have books by some of them.