I gave up. Full confession. I tried, I really did. I even broke down and got an audio version to listen to during my commute to and from work. But I just couldn’t take it. I think it in part an effect of this little reading challenge project I set for myself. This was the fourth Jane Austen book in as many months for me. … Continue reading Jane Austen Read All-a-long Book 4: Emma
What makes a book a classic? Lionel Shriver was a guest on my favorite BBC program A Good Read. You can listen to the program here. It was the dullest episode of my favorite program ever. Knowing something of what Ms. Shriver is like in person, I almost didn’t listen, but I thought I’d be open-minded, give it a try. The conceit of A Good … Continue reading Sunday Rant and Ramble: Lionel Shriver Makes me Mad; A New Cat Arrives; Tournament of Books Results
It took me almost three months to read this book. The little page counter/timer on my Kindle claimed that I should have been able to read the entire book in just about three hours, but even when using the audio read-a-loud feature, I never made it more than a few pages at a time without falling asleep. Okay, I was reading in bed, sometimes lying … Continue reading Earthlight by Arthur C. Clarke
Things start out very well. A great opening line. A paragraph that grabs you like it’s not going to let go. This wonderful bit: It’s not the moment that is the tragedy. It’s the memory. Things don’t go wrong either, not exactly. They just don’t quite go anywhere. I’m a dissenter. Jacqueline Woodson’s novel for adults Another Brooklyn has gotten nothing but the highest of praise. … Continue reading Another Brooklyn by Jacqueline Woodson
Two days after I gave up on Paul Beatty’s satirical novel The Sellout, it won the Mann-Booker Prize, the first American novel to do so. My general rule of thumb is that the books on the long list that don’t win the Man Booker Prize are generally much better reads than the winner is. I have not read the rest of the long list, so I can’t … Continue reading Two Award Winners I Didn’t Finish
This post is more of a ramble than a rant, so don’t worry. It’s been a busy week, getting ready for the 20th anniversary party C.J. and I threw yesterday, so there have not been many posts here lately. I’m hoping to have a good amount of down time today, enough to relax and get a bunch of robo-posts ready for the week. Some I’m … Continue reading Sunday Salon: Catching up with This Week’s Reading and Lionel Shriver Wears a Funny Hat.
Was it okay for Bernadine Evaristo to write this book? I ask this question in light of the ongoing controversy over cultural appropriation, specifically who has the right to write about whom. If you haven’t been following this issue lately you might want to check out Lionel Shriver’s keynote speech at the Brisbane Writers Festival and Yassmin Abdel-Magied’s essay explaining why she walked out on … Continue reading Mr. Loverman by Bernadine Evaristo
Usually, I make it my policy not to correct people on Facebook, though there are many people who are frankly wrong out there. Except for the occasional stray bit of punctuation, and spelling “a lot” as a single word, I make it my policy to let things slide. Though many people want to make the world a better place through linking, I believe sites like … Continue reading Sunday Salon: I Trolled Someone On Facebook And I Liked It.
This book is not really about Paris. I read somewhere that A Moveable Feast is selling quite well in the aftermath of the Paris Attacks, but I think that group of readers will be disappointed. A Moveable Feast could be set in any city with lots of cafes. It really doesn’t have much to do with Paris at all. My partner C.J. spent his high school years … Continue reading A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway
Hanya Yanagihara’s editor asked her to make changes to A Little Life, specifically to tone down the abuse in the second half of the book and to cut several hundred pages from manuscript. Ms. Yanagihara refused, according to an article in The Guardian. Had she taken her editor’s advice, her book would have been better, in my opinion. Author’s listen to your editors. Still, A … Continue reading A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara
I once dated a guy in A.A. who broke things off with me because I wasn’t an addict. He said that since I was not an alcoholic, I could never really understand him. There’s not really anything you can say to that. I’m not going to become an alcoholic just so I can win you over, not matter how blue your eyes are. (They were really blue, … Continue reading Sunday Salon: A Little Link Hate With Added Dating Advice From a Rambling Old Pro
Clovis is one sick puppy. We think he probably ate something that has upset him. If you’ve ever had a Bassett hound, or really any dog I suppose, then you know they will eat anything they can find and the not being able to chew it is no problem. Very likely he found an old plum under the plum tree and went for it. He … Continue reading Sunday Salon: One Sick Puppy, One Wandering Cat, and Bingeing on Cool Museum Visits.