Monday, September 29, 2008
The Thirteenth Tale has it all, there are ghosts, haunted houses, strange happenings and lots of deep, dark secrets. It is very much a modern day, gothic mystery. Although, this is not usually my pick in a genre, I especially enjoyed the many comments and references to Margaret's passion for books and stories. It was a great read and I'd recommend it any day to anyone that enjoys mysteries, antique books, and an intriguing story. Here is an interview with the author, Diane Setterfield which enhances the story even more.
What was the most unusual (for you) book you ever read? Either because the book itself was completely from out in left field somewhere, or was a genre you never read, or was the only book available on a long flight… whatever? What (not counting school textbooks, though literature read for classes counts) was furthest outside your usual comfort zone/familiar territory?
And, did you like it? Did it stretch your boundaries? Did you shut it with a shudder the instant you were done? Did it make you think? Have nightmares? Kick off a new obsession?The most unusual book I've ever read was A Suitable Boy:Novel by Vikram Seth. This was a selection for our book club and I happenned to be the host/facilitator. Now, the size of a book doesn't usually throw me, but if it did, this one would! Not being familiar with the Indian culture, I found this book very long and difficult to read - I literally used a glossary so that I could understand what was going on in the story, the foods, the clothing, the greetings, the traditions. I could have gotten through the book much easier if it had not been so long, at least 1500 pages. I did enjoy learning more about India but instead of completing the book, I got on the computer and found music, recipes and clothing to use for our book club meeting. It was terrific - the food and music!
Sunday, September 28, 2008
Thanks to all the other Sunday Salon readers for your comments - some made me a bit hesitant and some left me very eager to begin the book. Will let you know ...
Sunday, September 21, 2008
Friday, September 19, 2008
I lie on my bed to read, I go to the parlor to read then take a walk on the beach, I sit on the screened porch to read then take a walk on the beach, I sit on the front porch in a rocker or hammock to read and gaze, intermittingly out over the ocean. This absolutely the most perfect environment for reading and relaxation. To use my laptop, I have to come up to the room, as tv, phones, any electronic devices are not allowed in common areas here at the Sea View Inn on Pawley's Island. Their websites describes the atmosphere as "unspoiled." I am spoiled by technology so I do slip up to the room to post on my blog. But only for a short minute and a short post.
You are fed three fabulous meals, provided quiet time, ocean view and the most soothing breeze and all you have to do is bring your book or pillow and move from one area to the next. I could live here! Here is a quick laptop photo as I sit on my bed!
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Another newbie for me are the Diary of a Wimpy Kid novels by Jeff Kinney. I can't keep these books in and Jeff Kinney can't write fast enough for our kids. What is the story? It's about a middle schooler, Greg Heffley, who keeps a year long journal, which is totally hilarious and so dramatic, just as the lives of all adolescents! His mother makes him keep a diary and in it he tells about each day’s events, along with his comical illustrations. Greg’s character is typical of lots of middle school kids, thus it's popularity among 5th and 6th graders. Greg isn't your best student, he's not the worse one either, but he wants more than anyting to be popular! So desperate, even at the expense of others, he seizes his opportunities. This book appeals especially to your "not so eager readers" and has them eagerly awaiting Greg’s further adventures in Diary of A Wimpy Kid: Roderick Rules.
Two new authors for kids - great successes and highly entertaining.
"Today is the 7th anniversary of the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. I know that not all of you who read are in the U.S., but still, it’s vital that none of us who are decent people forget the scope of disaster that a few, evil people can cause–anywhere in the world. It’s not about religion, it’s not about politics, it’s about the acknowledgment that humans should try to work together, not tear each other apart, even when they disagree.
So, feeling my way to a question here … Terrorists aren’t just movie villains any more. Do real-world catastrophes such as 9/11 (and the bombs in Madrid, and the ones in London, and the war in Darfur, and … really, all the human-driven, mass loss-of-life events) affect what you choose to read? Personally, I used to enjoy reading Tom Clancy, but haven’t been able to stomach his fight-terrorist kinds of books since.
And, does the reality of that kind of heartless, vicious attack–which happen on smaller scales ALL the time–change the way you feel about villains in the books you read? Are they scarier? Or more two-dimensional and cookie-cutter in the face of the things you see on the news?"
Since 9/11, I've become more interested in the cultural differences in other countries, especially the differences that directly affect women. There has been a surplus of books dealing with Middle Eastern women, and maybe it's a good thing. It is an eyeopener for those of us that are successful, career oriented, women. What I've found most interesting is the respect for cultural values, even at the expense of freedom for some of the women featured in these books. I think it helps us to better understand what it feels like to be on the other side, as a normal, regular citizen from another country. What it feels like to walk in someone else's shoes.