Monday, April 10, 2017

It's Monday, April 10th! What Are You Reading?: Been a While Edition!

Hosted by The Book Date!

I know time flies, but really? Looking back, I haven’t accounted for my reading since the beginning of March. 

Excuses:

I’ve been on vacation, which you’d think would translate into multiple books finished. Nope. 

I experienced a reading slump. First in a while. 

I wasted precious time I should have spent reading. Can’t get it back so onward…

What have I finished reading?

Rogue Lawyer by John Grisham. I really haven’t enjoyed a Grisham book since his first five and refused to read any since. Until now. This was a fun and carefree listen. I made excuses to wear my earbuds or drive in the car (which I don’t often do…drive, not make excuses). Yay!

The Noise of Time by Julian Barnes. I am a Barnes fan through and through from years back when I read The Sense of an Ending. I LOVED that book (the movie was pretty good and true to the story, by the way)! This was not that. The feeling I got from my first Barnes experience has been elusive. I will not give up on him! I suppose part of the problem was the character names. Russian, and they sounded too similar with just a few consonants or vowels rearranged to form a new name. It caused me to do a lot of unnecessary reviewing. [Did you read Memories of My Melancholy Whores with all the similar Latino names? While I liked that book very much, the character names lead to some confusion here too.] While the subject matter, Russian composers of classical music in the early 1900’s, was somewhat fascinating, these 180 pages just took too long to read. ACK!

What am I currently reading?

I love absolutely everything about what I am currently reading!!! It feels so good and right. I feel at peace and one with myself and my books!

A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles (of Rules of Civility notoriety and a book I adored). Don’t you just love when a book hooks you from the very first words? [rhetorical question because who doesn’t?] I am one hundred pages in and shirking the days’ responsibilities just to pick it up. It goes everywhere I do.

“When, in 1922, the thirty-year-old Count is deemed an unrepentant aristocrat by the Bolshevik tribunal, he is sentenced to house arrest in the Metropol, a grand hotel across the street from the Kremlin.” If he leaves, he will be shot. As his world narrows, he begins forging relationships with others living and working in the hotel while Russian history is being made outside his door. 

Tremendous so far, the writing and storytelling are fabulous!

Edgar and Lucy by Victor Lodato. Loving this book! The author is doing an outstanding job narrating his story. It’s a big book, in theme and size. Check it out on Goodreads for a quick description of it. It's complex. Talk about making excuses to drive! 

I am in the sweet spot right now. If heaven meant books, I’m Cloud Nine.

What will I read next?

A Gentleman in Moscow is for Book Club #2. This time Book Club #1 meets after BC#2, so I have about a week between them to read Love Medicine by Louise Erdrich (I loved LaRose). From what I understand, Love Medicine is an experience akin to Olive Kitteridge in that characters thread through separate short stories only in Erdrich style.

But I really need to make some headway on Imagine Me Gone by Adam Haslett because I have a date with him during the Chicago Humanities Festival on April 30th. 


That’s me! What about you? Tell me what you are reading! I love recommendations!

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Froth and Bubble


Life is mostly froth and
bubble. Two things stand 
like stone. Kindness in
another’s trouble.
Courage in your own.

Adam Lindsay Gordon

“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain for embracing, a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.
What do workers gain from their toil? I have seen the burden God has laid on the human race. He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart: yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end. I know that there is nothing better for people than to be happy and to do good while they live.”


The Book of Ecclesiastes 


Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Too Little, Too Late: 100 Word Alternate Submission for "No Means O"


So I wrote this one first, but it never really came together to my liking. I decided to throw it out. But wait! Why not show it too you instead? I do this all the time. Write a few pieces for a prompt, chill on them for a while hoping for additional inspiration or a better feeling about one or the others. Do you do this?

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His proposal had a pleasing pitch, but aborting a previously set date for a better offer left her kicking herself. Her mother’s old rules.

Dreaming of possibilities post-refusal, she left a letter to her buddy from across the hall overflowing with regret though almost missing what peeked from his doormat. 

A missive? Yes, disguised as a paper football like guys shot across desks during school.

Dare she?

A teacher, thus the childish origami. Syrupy words. Details of a supposedly impromptu kiss were daggers. 

Today, she was a voyeur, the outsider, and too late.


How to refold perfectly? Quick, QUICK!

Monday, April 3, 2017

Time is Stingy: 100 Word Challenge


I made a huge mistake the last time we were together. It was failing to appreciate it for what it was; the last time we would ever see each other.

I had a strategy for it, too. To trace your brows, lashes, lips, jaw with my thumbs all the way to your earlobes completely memorizing your face. Slowly. Feature by feature.

I suppose part of me realized it could be that day. Like the shared molecules that previously made up "us" vaporized before our view, I felt it. You?


Time refuses to give that back. It moves forward. Without us.

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This week, Tara at Thin Spiral Notebook charged us to write a piece about whatever we desired. The caveat? She refused to allow the letter "N" . Yeah, crazy hard! You try it. Go, go!