Wednesday, August 3, 2011

On The Nightstand: Do You Wanna Join Me?

Hey Humble Readers...

How are things today?  It's been a challenging day here in the hobbit hole.  The poor wee girl is really hurting with her teeth today so there's been a lot of crying, screaming, whimpering, and thrashing about.  And she's been pretty sad, too.  (bah-dum-bum)

Last month I introduced the "On the Nightstand" feature, I honestly intended it to be a once a week thing.  That way I would be posting more (yay!), and I wouldn't be reviewing quite so many books at the same time (double yay!).  Well, things got away from me, and here we are a month later.  Oh well. 

Anyway, I have added a new element to these posts.  After a couple of requests, I have created a linky thing so if you want to join in the fun, then by all means please do!  Just post about what you've read recently and then come on back and link up. 

I Still Dream About You by Fannie Flagg *audio* (four out of five hairy hobbit toes) - We listened to this book on our trip out to K-town last month and I really enjoyed it.  The story of an aging former beauty queen who has decided that it's time for her to end it all.  She devises a thorough plan, including getting rid of all of her clothes, dishes and personal items, and closing down her bank account.  But every time she tries to put her plan in motion, something comes up to detain her.  And interwoven throughout is the mystery of the old mansion on the hill... Funny, heart-rending, and intriguing all at the same time.  The audio version is read by the author, and that's my favourite way to listen to a book.  The author always does the best job of it. 

The Physik Book of Deliverance Dane by Katherine Howe *audio* (four and a half out of five hairy hobbit toes) - We listened to most of this on our way back from K-town, and I actually just got around to finishing it yesterday.  I have to say I loved this book!  Set primarily in the early 1990s, it follows the story of Connie, a doctoral student studying colonial America, who is given the task to clean out her grandmother's old home so that it can be sold.  In the process of clearing out the old house, Connie comes across some interesting information that may point to the existance of a recipe book that could have belonged to one of the women convicted of witchcraft in Salem, MA.  An epic search entails, in which lives are threatened and romance is found.  I love stories that are set in multiple time frames, sometimes in the present and other times in the past.  The only thing I had against this book was that the actress who was doing the reading made half the characters sound like Audrey Hepburn. 

Standing In the Rainbow by Fannie Flagg - (four out of five hairy hobbit toes)  A funny collection of tales about a small town in Missouri, starting in 1946.  I really appreciated the quirky people in the town and how they all interacted.  The mom who hosts a daily raido program out of her living room, the family of touring gospel singers, the tractor salesman who dreams of being governor, and the children who grow up worried about bubble gum blowing contests and the senior prom.  This story is told in short little bites of chapters, and moves quickly.  I found myself smiling throughout, and I got seriously attached to one or two the characters.  It's one of those books that, when you get to the end, makes you want to know what comes next.

Telegraph Days by Larry McMurtry (two out of five hairy hobbit toes)  I really was disappointed with this book, especially as it started out really well.  The story of Nellie Courtright, a young woman, orphaned with her younger brother in No Man's Land, in what will become part of Oklahoma, just after the Civil War.  Her younger brother, by sheer fluke, wins a gun battle with a known gang of outlaws, and soon both are on the road to fame.  Throughout the book Nellie meets every possible notable figure from the wild west (and has sex with about half of them).  She works for Wild Bill Cody, watches the shoot out at the OK Corral, and ends up writing scripts for the earliest moving picture shows.  It just really struck me as very contrived and Nellie ended up driving me crazy. 

Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden (five out of five hairy hobbit toes) - I have loved this book many times, and honestly I wasn't planning on reading it just now.  But the book that I want to read is very similar to the Physik Book of Deliverance Dane, and so I needed something different in between.  If you haven't read this one yet, you must!  An amazing tale of a young girl sold into slavery who becomes the most famous of all the geisha.  Set against the backdrop of the Great Depression and WWII.  The movie version was very well done, but nothing beats the book!

Waiting on the nightstand is "A Discovery Of Witches" and "Room".

So, what have you been reading lately?  Why don't you tell us about it?

1 comment :

  1. I just read Andre Aggasi's biography - Open. I am not a tennis fan, nor did I follow his career. But, I love biographies and thought why not? It was really well written, interesting and entertaining. He hated tennis, had a father that forced him to play. He described his (tennis) matches in such detail you could feel his pain, anguish and celebrations. It was a nice surprise!


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