Thursday, July 31, 2008

All Apologies

I must apologize for my fumble fingers that somehow resulted in the many weird indents in my quote from Jean Thompson's book, Throw Like a Girl. Sorry, sorry, sorry. My computer adventures are frustrating, but also exciting. I'm always hesitant to challenge myself to try new things. However, I'm committed to this blog project and I keep telling myself that eventually I will learn all the skills. Let's hope anyway...

In the mail today, I received a review copy of Two Marriages by Phillip Lopate. Huge excitement! I joined Library Thing's Early Reviewers group in June and this is the first book I've been sent. Can't wait to read it. I probably would have purchased this if I hadn't snagged a copy since I enjoy his essays. Any day that includes a free book is a good day indeed!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Review: Throw Like a Girl by Jean Thompson

Throw Like a Girl is a collection of short stories that illustrate the inner lives of women of all ages. All of these stories pull you in, lull into a familiar world and then take a sharp curve toward the unexpected. Jean Thompson expects you to hang on for this ride and you do, because as in all great story telling you must find out what comes next.

I'm older now than he was when he died. Things happen to the body over time that
are God's practical joke, and I don't much like this face I've got now. My life turned
out pretty ordinary. Not great, not awful, I'm not complaining. Nobody looking at me
now would guess there had ever been anything wild in me, anything as desperate as
that loving. I know we're meant to grow from experience, like a tree, send out roots
and branches of wisdom and patience and understanding. But my best and truest self
was a tree in blossom. All those years since, there's a sense in which they count for less,
even as they take up space, crowd out the past. That quick, there goes your life, like
a black-haired boy on a motorcycle, looking back until he's out of sight.
Jean Thompson, Lost

I love that last sentence. It slams right into my heart.

My favorite story in the this book was Pie of the Month. It combines small town America, elderly ladies making pie, the economy, immigration and war. I was cheering by the end of the story. Check out this collection, but fasten your seatbelt. It's quite a ride.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Library Books are Overdue Yet Again

In today's mail I received a nice note from one of the three (yes, I said three) libraries I frequent stating that I have overdue books. This is not an uncommon occurrence. Despite my best intentions, I often need to pay for my practice of borrowing much more than I can read in two weeks. As a result, I am flying through Unaccustomed Earth by Jumpha Lahiri. Luckily, I'm loving it. I also want to finish The Geography of Bliss by Eric Weiner. It's an interesting NF read about a man who travels the globe looking for the happiest places, and people on earth. Hint: they aren't at Disneyland! I will need to finish both of these before the local librarians issue a price for my head. At least it's giving me an excuse to leave Corelli and his everlasting Mandolin alone.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Welcome to the shelves

I'm excited to write this, my first blog post! I've been inspired by reading the book blogs of others and longing to participate. However, being nearly computer illiterate, I was not at all sure creating a blog would be as easy as the directions promised. We'll see...

Right now I'm reading :

  • Crazy School by Cornelia Read
  • Throw like a Girl by Jean Thompson
  • Bleak House by Charles Dickens
  • Books by Larry McMurtry
  • Corelli's Mandolin by Louis de Bernieries (book club selection)

I usually read several books at one time and pick them up according to my mood. I'm having the hardest time with Corelli's Mandolin. I just can't seem to connect with it. If anyone out there has read this and enjoyed it, please give me hope!

I hope to figure out how to add a blogroll and my list of books read in 2008. Please check back to monitor my stumbling progress into blog land.