Book 62: One Good Turn by Kate Atkinson
Hi Kate! Remember me, it's your Number One Fan Boy. I just finished One Good Turn and here's a funny thing -- I hope you think it's a funny thing -- I read this book in 2008, but I didn't remember that until Goodreads told me so.
I checked the archives of my reading lists (yes, I really call it my archives) and Goodreads was right. It's not that I'm obsessive-compulsive or anything like that, but the book was on my reading pile (pile 3, the one comprised of books to read now) and I thought, "Well, do I put it back or read it again?" And I went ahead and read it again. It was on the pile. I mean it could have been, must have been, fate.
I'm glad I did. Since I had originally read it before Case Histories, which introduces Jackson Brodie, I was missing important perspective on Jackson and Julia. I'm glad you included her in this book. I wasn't expecting that, but it provided important insight into her relationship with Jackson. (Although I guess that's off now.)
I hope this won't mean a demotion -- from Number One Fan Boy -- but I didn't like One Good Turn quite as well as Case Histories or When Will There Be Good News? Still, an average book by Kate Atkinson is better than the best book by a lot of authors. I really believe that!
Many of the characteristics that I've begun to associate with you as a writer are present: your humor, your Dickensian use of minor characters and your ability to take a good many, seemingly discrete events and wrap them all together into a satisfying whole. (I especially like how you even make fun of that last characteristic near the end of this novel.)
So that's it. I know you have a book coming out this fall and I am SO EAGER to read it. Meantime, I can feed my addiction by reading a couple of your early books that I still haven't read. At least, I don't think I have! Ha! Ha! I'm just being funny too. Of course I haven't read them. (I think.)
Still, and Always, Your Number One Fan Boy!