Agate, thanks for writing your blog, I am always interested in finding worthy books ( as in not a waste of time to read!) You made one comment about a Maeve Binchy novel, which really hit home with me...that she had her "eye on the movies". I think that is so true of many writers these days. They are either trying to get the movie deal or they are trying to be too arty. I asked my sister, why can't anybody just tell a good story anymore? Cold Mountain was good for that (even though it did become a movie), but it was a real read first.