yep, TBR = to be read. Now I'm on to Updike's "Rabbit is Rich" and I can already tell you it's a 5 star book. Perfect dialog. Deeply flawed characters. Stuff I love! It takes place during the US stagflation years, and the setting is expertly realized. If there is an aspect of Updike's "Rabbit" books (there's four of them) that's intimidating, it's that the setting is elaborate. Some people hate that, I know. But when it's done with great skill, I don't have a problem with it. Now that I'm on vacation, I'm going to try to read 100 pages a day. Let's see if I can do it. (I'll be lucky to finish 50, haha!) You know, I always wonder at books like these that hit the opening pages perfectly. Just the first paragraph or two is usually enough to know that the story will hold. I think it has to do with the authentic authorial voice. It can sound many different ways, but you'll always recognize when it is (or isn't) there. I suppose you have to be in the target audience. Obviously this book can't possibly work for everyone. As a writer though, the trick is to get that authenticity into your own work. It's easier to say it than to do it.