Greetings and welcome to the You Just Never Know Edition of You Are What You Read.
I am sure that you all have heard this week all about the sale of the Da Vinci oil painting of Christ for 450 million dollars. How could you not? It’s everywhere. And I am sure that like me, you scratch your head and wonder just who these people are. Also, is this painting going to live in some weird art collector’s basement art bunker with the other treasures he/she is hoarding? This kind of behavior just makes me sad. I mean it’s a meh sort of Da Vinci but it’s still a Da Vinci. People should have a chance to enjoy it.
Anyway, with all that going on you may not have heard about the $10 flea market find that could net North Carolinian lawyer Frank Abrahams some millions of his own should he decide to sell. Bought in 2011, Frank just liked the look of these cowboys chillaxing with guns, hats, cigars and menacing manner with rosy cheeks. He hung it in the guest room of his home which he uses for Airbnb guests. He would laughingly tell them it was a photo of Jesse James and friends.
Well, it turned out he wasn’t far off.
Because really this is not just a picture of Billy the Kid, it is also a picture of the man who would be responsible for taking him out, Pat Garrett.
Before Garrett became the sheriff of Lincoln County, he and the Kid were gambling buds who hung together. But once Garrett took the job, he warned his friend to skedaddle from New Mexico because he would have to remain honorable to the circumstances of his employment. No special back room deals going on here.
As we all know it didn’t end well for the Kid who was shot and killed by his former friend in July of 1881.
This is not the only new photo of the man who also went by the names William Bonney and Frank McCarty. Seven years ago, a man found a photograph of Billy the Kid playing, of all things, croquet with his gang. This one is valued at about 5 million dollars.
I kind of find it hard to take a gang seriously who play croquet when they aren’t out murdering folks, stealing cattle, and robbing banks but there you have it.
Thug Croquet, Anyone?
You just never know People. If you should want to learn more about this remarkable find you can read all about it at the New York Times.
This will be the last You Are What You Read for 2017. I’ll see you all back here in January. Happy Hellidaze to you all.
This week we have some American history (only fitting after all), England, more England, feasting, ghosts, and some more England. Because it would seem we cannot get enough England.
Let us begin!
Kim has just finished reading Forge by Laurie Halse Anderson. “This book is part of the Seeds of America trilogy which is a Young Adult series. I was captivated by the Valley Forge setting because you get to experience American history. As this book is set during the year of 1777, it was very helpful to have definitions for vocabulary words provided at the end of the book, such as victuals, meaning food. I can't wait to read the next in this trilogy!”
Kaitlin from the Rock is here. “I read the book The Girl in the Red Coat, by Kate Hamer. It's about Carmel, a young British girl who disappears when she and her mother are at a festival near their hometown. The story alternates between the viewpoint of Carmel and Beth, her mother, as time ticks by. Carmel, on her strange journey with people she believes are her new family, and Beth, on her own mental and emotional journey to keep moving forward. I loved this book. It was a real page-turner for me, which is a rare feat given how exhausted my eyes are by the end of the day!”
Miss Elisabeth of the CL is read some grown-up stuff this last weekend. “This weekend I thoroughly enjoyed Eloisa James’ newest book Wilde in Love, despite teasing from my husband, who called it ‘The Lord of Pectorals’ due to the gentlemen on the front pulling a Mr. Darcy from the BBC Pride and Prejudice miniseries. This is the first book in a new series about the Wildes of Lindow Castle, eight siblings who are fabulously wealthy, devastatingly attractive, and wickedly smart. This series opener starts with the return of Lord Alaric Wilde to England after many years exploring the world. Much to his chagrin, the journals he’s published about his exploits have made him terribly famous, and his return ship is greeted by dozens of women, all hopeful he will fall madly in love them. The one woman who won’t fall in love with him is Miss Willa Ffynche, a stunning debutant whose rejected 14 marriage proposals and has a deep love of reading and bawdy jokes. When these two meet, sparks fly. James is a witty author, and peppers her books with enough giggles, thrills, and steamy love scenes to satisfy the most demanding romance fan. I can’t wait to read the next book in the series, coming in 2018!”
Pat T is looking to the task at hand. “I came upon the perfect book if you would like an alternative to the traditional Thanksgiving feast. Friendsgiving by Alexandra Shytsman offers tips from table decorating, timeline for shopping/prepping the food and most especially delectable recipes such as slow-roasted pork shoulder, buttermilk biscuits with lemon zest, and kale-butternut squash salad. Traditional or contemporary, whatever holiday feast you make, hoping it’s filled with good food and good conversation as you celebrate with family and friends!”
Jeanne has just finished Jason Reynold's new book, Long Way Down. “From the cover to the last page, Reynolds has written a beautifully crafted; emotionally charged story of truth and honesty, but also of violence and loss. Fifteen-year-old Will has lost his older brother to a gang shooting and he intends to follow the three street rules; no crying, no snitching, seek revenge. But when Will enters his building's elevator, determined to carry out his plan, he is met with ghosts from his past that were also victims of gun violence. They each tell their stories and the message is clear, 'Think again.' Reynolds writes from his heart in verse that makes this story visible; like his wish for young men and young women to be visible and cared for. I was going to read this during my breakfast, but I found I couldn't swallow.”
Spunky Jill M enjoyed Ladies in Lavender. “I decided to try a something new in our collection this month and since I love patron recommendations, I ventured into movie land! Ladies in Lavender, a comedy/drama, based on a short story by William J. Locke, follows two sisters whose quiet life on the shores of Cornwall is turned on its head when they find a handsome young man washed ashore on their beach. Believed to have been swept off an ocean liner, Andrea, a gifted violinist, deeply touches each of the sisters in his own quiet manner. Starring Judi Dench and Maggie Smith as the spinster sisters, I found this movie filled with poignancy, aspiration, and humor throughout. It is a wonderful movie to enjoy, especially as we begin our winter hibernation!”