With more Impending Doom due later this week, we are doing our best to soldier on and keep our chins up. We wish to ask the Weather Gods for some sort of encouraging sign. Actually any sort of encouraging sign would do. Oh and as for the PA Rodent, not for nothing, but your street cred is in the toilet. This week we have some friends, some dealing, a Quaker or two, a destination, and memory loss.
Let us begin!
Erin is reading with a look toward a feminist slant. “2013 is going to be my year of reading memoirs as I am almost finished with my sixth: She Matters: A Life in Friendships by Susanna Sonnenberg. This book details the author’s friendships with women beginning with girls on the playground all the way up through the bonds she makes with fellow mothers. Her friendships are intense…some are almost like love affairs. As someone who has always reveled in the company of my own female friends, I find this book to be a fascinating exploration of the unruly, magnificent, and sometimes all-encompassing friendships women enjoy with other women.”
Barbara M. Still no Paris. Still no Nazis. Discuss. “Diamonds weren’t always 'a girl’s best friend'. De Beers, the giant diamond conglomerate made sure, through clever marketing, that diamonds became synonymous with everlasting love. The book I’m reading Precious Objects: A Story of Diamonds, Family, and a Way of Life by Alicia Oltuski tells the history of the diamond trade and gives a behind-the-scenes look at that industry. Alicia Oluuski’s father and grandfather were both diamond dealers first in Germany and then on Forty-Seventh street in New York City and she tells the story of that industry from an insider’s point of view. For what it’s worth, I think emeralds are prettier.”
Sweet Ann is happy. This is good. She has just finished The Last Runaway by Tracy Chavalier. “I enjoy historical fiction and I liked this book. Honor Bright was heading to Ohio from England accompanying her sister, Grace, who was meeting her fiancé. Grace died of Yellow Fever soon after reaching the states and Honor continued on to Ohio with plans to stay with her intended brother -in-law. Honor, who is a Quaker, finds slavery horrific. She is willing to help runaway slaves, who know that in general Quakers will help them. Many complications for Honor and the people who care for her will arise from this decision. Although the writing is simplistic, the story is good. You will remember Honor after you finish this novel.”
Jeanne is reading Insane City by Dave Barry. “Seth Weinstein and his Groom Posse are on their way to his destination wedding in Miami. Seth is about to marry his fabulously beautiful and successful girlfriend, Tina, whose galactically wealthy and extremely influential parents do not approve of Tina's choice of mate, but they are paying anyway. From the beginning, when the wedding party arrives at Reagan International, the book reads more like an insane stand-up comedy act than a novel with the Posse's airport hijinks and Tina's sister's ‘habit.’ But Barry does give us plots and sub-plots that include redirected affections, large strippers, Russian gangsters and Haitian refugees. The book manages friendships, social issues and conflicts in a manner that is at once funny and entertaining, but also gives the reader plenty to think about.”
Miss Elisabeth of The CL is practically giddy. “I’m currently reading The Rook, by Daniel O’Malley, and I can’t put it down. The book is AMAZING. I haven’t liked an adult book this much in several months. The book follows a young woman who works for the supernatural version of MI5 – a highly covert, secret organization that protects Great Britain from supernatural harm. When the book starts, she wakes up alone in a park, covered in bruises, surrounded by dead bodies wearing latex gloves, and with no memory of who she is or how she got there. An international tale of mystery, intrigue, memory loss, and some extremely pissed off Belgians, this book is just plain marvelous.”