Monday, October 31, 2016

It's Monday! What Are YOU Reading?: Halloween!

[Blogger’s Note: This should probably be, “It’s Autumn! What Are You Reading?”; it’s been so long since I have set down a I am reading post. I’ll play along like I am supposed to then add some additional books I’ve read at the end just in case you make it that far! If you wanted further detail, I am writing this while making my world famous hot wings for a Bears tailgate tonight. Terrifying, I know. Not because it’s Halloween or has anything to do with the wings. It has everything to do with how horrible the Bears are this season (and all seasons where J. Cutler is involved). What can I say? Chicago sports fans tend to be long suffering. And I wouldn’t be going if certain family members weren’t requiring it!]

What did I read last week?

Commonwealth by Ann Patchett. While it was good as Patchett perennially is, nothing she writes with compare with Bel Canto, for me. Still. It is a worth reading family drama.

Little Birds- Erotica by Anais Nin. I am still fanning myself. This is by far the hottest stuff I have ever laid hands on (in book form. Sorry, had to be sassy.)! This book left me sassy and feeling and a whole lot of other things you’ll only know if you pick up this book or have already read it. If someone writes sex better than Nin, will you please tell me? Uh, now!

Levels of Life by Julian Barnes. A few years ago, I told you The Sense of an Ending was one of my favorite all-time books. I loved it. This one is just so different from that one. I am not sure it is telling a story, or a cohesive one. It is short, has a poetic vibe, and  the writing is lovely as is Barnes’ style. It is worth a look!

What am I currently reading?

Upstream: Essays by Mary Oliver. I first fell in love with her and didn’t even know it during a Millenium Park yoga gathering several years back. The instructor began the class with a meditation on our backs in Savasana. My eyes, which are normally closed, remained open as she recited “Wild Geese” two times through. First slowly, then at a more quick clip. She ended the same way reciting two times. I felt it burn into my soul and ran home to look it up. I didn’t know the name of the poem right then. I used the phrases I could remember. “Wild Geese”. It is in a collections titled Dream Work. Subsquent to that moment, I have read four collections by Oliver. Each one a delicacy that made my heart sing for joy. This is her first work in essay form (methinks). I can’t wait for more time hunkering down with her.

Strangers on a Train by Patricia Highsmith. Is Highsmith generally an underrated mystery writer? Maybe I only found her because I finally read The Talented Mr. Ripley this year. And if that one gave you the willys, this one will do the same and then some. I am about halfway into the audiobook version, and it is reminding me that there is nothing like a good, suspenseful, subtle stalker tale! Highsmith rules the creepy stuff!

What am I planning to read next?

The Lesser Bohemians by Eimear McBride, and/or The Nix by Nathan Hill. By the way, both of these have awesome cover art! I have The Sellout by Paul Beatty, also the recent Man Booker award winner, downloaded and queued up for when I finish Strangers

Other great books I read this fall are:

The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead: Beyond outstanding.

Nutshell by Ian McEwan: A fresh and unique writing perspective. Typical McEwan = beautifully written.

The Nest by Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney: It was a good, not great, story about a dysfunctional family and inheritance.

The Girl With the Lower Back Tattoo by Amy Schumer: This was a fantastic book. Poignant, funny, sassy. As only Schumer can be.

Lafayette in the Somewhat United States by Sarah Vowell: There is no one out there like her. No one compares. I’ve never learned so much U.S. history while enjoying myself as reading her books (this was my third). Ever!

Ripley Under Ground by Patricia Highsmith: Because I just had to know what happened next. And next. And next.

Happy reading! I better not nibble on any more wings otherwise I will severely disappoint those counting on me!

[After sufficient sampling, I can attest they came out as fabulous and tasty as ever. YUM!]

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