There are apparently quite a few people in my town who really want to read Ivo Andric's The Bridge on the Drina. It was very difficult to borrow from the library, which is surprising because usually, these books are not in that much demand. Mostly people who want to read them have already read them - there isn't a huge waiting list for most of them or anything.
I can't really figure out what all the hype is about for this one. I read it very quickly, over the course of 5 days or so (thanks to a drive to Connecticut where both kids were pretty quiet), and I just couldn't get into it. The book's main character is this bridge that connects this town in Bosnia. It spans quite a bit of time, from when the bridge was built, through the development of Bosnia and the various conflicts there, and through to 1914 when the bridge is destroyed in war. The book is very, VERY bloody and violent. There was one scene in particular toward the beginning of the book that almost gave me a panic attack.
Books like this where the action centers around an object, rather than a character, are hard for me because I can't really get interested in the object the way I would a story about a person. There needs to be some continuity among the people for me to start to care about it. The book definitely helped me learn about a time in Bosnian history that I didn't know about before, but I just didn't particularly enjoy it. (I wonder if the other folks in my town also reading the book feel the same!)