Poor Astoria

In hindsight, I should have suspended one of my library holds when they both came in on the same day. The two books are of such widely different styles and pacing that I’m having difficulty reading both simultaneously.

Since I’m enjoying How I Live Now a whole lot, I’m opening it more frequently than Astoria, and I’m afraid that Astoria may expire unfinished. Maybe that’s not a bad thing. I’ve started many books that I never finished.

(It’s too bad that I can’t return a library eBook early. I understand why I can’t, however.)

At Writers’ Group yesterday, Mariah said something I’d never heard before: When a person has seen a movie based on a book, and has also read the book, they will usually prefer the version they were exposed to first. The reason, she explained, is that people form mental images of the characters and places based on what they’ve been shown first. I think that’s a sound theory.

As I’m reading How I Live Now, I see the actors and the sets from the movie. I can’t say, yet, which version I prefer. With the movie so fresh in my mind, I’m fascinated by the differences I run across. Daisy’s fear of germs, and her constant had washing, are completely absent from the book. She’s a lot less closed off to her cousins, even from the beginning. In the movie, she firmly refuses to go fishing with the family. In the book, she hates fishing, but thinks the fishing trip sound fun. (And, it is.)

The book focuses on the mental telepathy only hinted at in the movie.

Maybe it was just me, but the movie gave me the impression that it was a coordinated terrorist attack – or maybe a war limited to Britain and parts of western Europe. (Part of this, I think, was the sight of armed soldiers at the airport – something I associate with terrorism prevention.) If only Daisy had gone home to New York, she would have been safely away from the fighting. In the book, it is very clear that it was an all-out world war, with several cities in North America and Europe under attack.

I am still loving How I Live Now. Maybe I’ll breeze through it fast enough that I can get into the beginning of Astoria.

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