Books We Really Liked But Can’t Remember Anything/Much About

Let the self-shaming begin, I suppose.  ¯\_(ツ)_/¯


  • The Water and the Wild by K. E. Ormsbee. Nafiza convinced me to read it (and gave me her copy!), and I loved it. The writing was beautiful and complex, the plot twisty, the relationships reluctant and developing… but large swaths of the plot and most characters’ names now elude me.
  • Behind You by Jacqueline Woodson. This sequel to If You Come Softly is so achingly beautiful that I read it at a sloth’s pace, savouring. I can describe most of the characters, their interactions, and their emotional ups and downs in the aftermath of Miah’s death, but the plot? Not so much.
  • Singing the Dogstar Blues by Alison Goodman. Characters, yes. Worldbuilding, mostly. Plot details, no.
  • Captain Corelli’s Mandolin by Louis de Bernieres. My Greek History professor recommended this book, which is set during and after WWII and concerns a gay Italian soldier posted to the occupied Greek island of Cephallonia, and a local Greek woman. And maybe her beloved? As for the rest, I have no idea. I don’t even remember how I got this book. (Used. So probably in Steveston, but I have no memory of finding it. Did I accidentally steal my professor’s copy? Shame, Janet, shame.)
  • I don’t remember the title or the author, and searches on WorldCat and other book databases have not yielded results. The plot: a (preteen?) girl is on vacation with her family in Crete. Her parents go on day trips; she stays back to lounge at the pool, at least in part because she is concealing the eating disorder caused by a verbally abusive gymnastics coach. She keeps slipping into dreams (they’re so not dreams) where she joins the bull dancers who danced and died in Minoan Crete. If this description rings a bell, please let me know. Best guesses also appreciated! If you read this in five years, I will still want to know, seriously, please comment. Also there is an earthquake and her bull dancer friends escape, and the story ends with our protagonist in her own time, determined to eat again, coach be damned, and she meets a boy in a wheelchair also on vacation who is most definitely one of the bull dancers she knew; he has some cheesy pun about “you gotta take the bull by the horns!”


May I be brief about this and say 80% of whatever I read in school? No? Okay, I admit that I remember little about the following books, except for the feeling of THAT WAS GOOD they left me with:

  1. Kitchen by Banana Yoshimoto
    I liked it but I can’t remember what it was about for the life of me.
  2. Raised by Wolves by Jennifer Lyn Barnes
    There are wolves in there….and about it.
  3. Beatrice and Virgil by Yann Martel
    I remember reading it and not getting it and now I’ve added to the conundrum and forgotten it. Whoops.
  4. Wintersmith by Terry Pratchett
    No idea la la la la.
  5. The Way of All Flesh by Samuel Butler
    No, this isn’t erotica but it beats me what it is about. I read it for school and promptly forgot all about it.

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