07 September 2011

A Few Good Reads...

A few months ago, I was invited to join a book club. Ah, ladies who read! How neat is that!? I had no idea what to expect. I've never been in a book club before. (In case you didn't know, I tend to approach new experiences with much contemplative caution.) So, I guess ya gotta read—I was doing more of that. Check. I guess you talk about books—I can talk, lots! Check. This is at your sister's house? (Sisters [a concept this only child had not yet grasped*]. Hmm. Asked Tom [also an only]—"What if they're mean to me?" His answer: "Just punch 'em in the nose and come on home.") Check! So, off I went.

As everyone else would expect, the ladies were very kind, funny, candid, intelligent, and welcoming. And they enjoyed the 'punch 'em in the nose' story. And there was wine. And food. And no one's told me about this kind of thing before?! Tah dah and thank you!—IAM IN!

That first month I joined, we were supposed to be reading "The Help." I just couldn't get into it. Yeah, sounds like sacrilege now, especially due to the book's and movie's popularity. I just couldn't get into the written dialect. I am now in the process of listening to the audio book (which I am enjoying) so I can go see the movie.

Yep, I've taken to listening to some of the club selections. Knowing me, I am more likely to listen to an audio book while sewing and crafting, than sitting down with a book. (It's hard to multi-task with my nose in a book, well, other than laundry or running the dishwasher. I'm sorry, it just looks like I'm doing nuthin'.) Once I knew which titles were upcoming, I'd check with the library for books on CD, check them out, and listen to them.

Fast forward to recent reads. Last month was "Water for Elephants." I started listening to this one, which was good. I listened to the first 2/3 of the book and book read the last third. By that time, I liked the story well enough to sit with it alone. For September, we're reading "The Housekeeper and the Professor." This was not available as an audio book, and I've read a few pages into it. And for October, we're doing "The Art of Racing in the Rain." I took a peek into the pages, hey it had a dog's picture on it, I couldn't resist. Oh, my stars and garters—I loved it from the beginning, and wound up finishing it before anything else. I cannot wait to hear the discussion on this one! And after finishing reading it, I'm now listening to its audio version while sewing. It's like having someone read aloud a letter from a friend. I like it all over again."The car goes where the eyes go."

Another twist in recent weeks is the addition of using my iPad to read eBooks! I checked out three titles from our Metropolitan Library System. Titles may be available immediately or put on reserve. And once I've downloaded my book, I have to read fast because they're available for only seven days at a time. And while the library (free) versions read via OverDrive, they are not searchable. I downloaded a couple of freebies from iBooks (public domain/classics), and like the search feature. I haven't purchased any through Kindle or Nook accounts, but that's always an option. I would buy "The Art of Racing in the Rain" to enjoy again. Another lady in our group and I were showing the others our iPads/eBooks and the 'Seesters' bought iPads the very next day! (I'm so proud of them!)

Gwen had just finished reading "Olive Kitteridge," and spoke very highly of it. So, what's it about? Uh, depression and suicide. Oh, uh…joy! But I trust her judgement. After all, she loved "The Art of Racing in the Rain" as much as I. After checking out the eBook, I first started reading it on my iPad. I also reserved the print book because I suspected I would not finish it in seven days. Gwen would ask periodically, how was I liking Olive (did she mean the book or the character?). At the beginning, I was drawn in by the book's writing style and tone much more than by the character, Olive. She'd ask again several days later when I was finding Olive more interesting. As of yesterday, I was more able to identify with Olive because she found small brownies just too tiny to serve. Oh, this woman knows my soul! I finished the book a little earlier today and liked it. I'm reflecting a bit on some of the ideas and characters and wonder if my thoughts will change. One thread running through these recent reads are observations about aging/mortality, or I'm just noticing/identifying them more.

I want to get another post uploaded soon about my current sewing undertaking, as well as the current BOM—maybe even something about my birthday, or getting my first speeding ticket in 30 years!

*Seesters: A clue about families—their members are each like a spin art picture. You can drip and drizzle the same colors on many different canvases and after they're spun, they'll all turn out a little differently. (Observation from an 'only' and an 'adopted only,' at that.)

1 comment:

  1. Enjoyed this post, Ann! Made me smile. Love that you found a way to multitask and enjoy the books. And you actually made me WANT to read The Art of Racing in the Rain! Now just to figure out how to check it out on my Nook and actually do it. Or maybe listen to it while I work on another Christmas stocking. Hmmm . . . you got me thinking.