Sycamore Row – Book Club

Alright bibliophiles of the interwebs – what did you think of Mr. Grisham’s latest offering “Sycamore Row?”

I’ve come to the conclusion that I’m just not a fan. I was interested in finding out what the outcome of the story would be, so there’s that, but his writing is just so…full of stereotypes. There’s always colorful white characters who flourish and the confused black people who need their guidance. I don’t know, maybe I just wasn’t in the mood for this type of story. The struggling white lawyer, the poor black folks with a whole bunch of freeloading relatives and the sorry black daddy – over all of it. And he misspelled y’all! I thought maybe it was just one typo, but nope, the book repeatedly uses the spelling ya’ll. No. It is a contraction of you all – why did he have the apostrophe behind the a? I’m from California and I know that’s wrong!

So, yeah. I was annoyed the whole time I read the book. Jake got on my nerves. The only thing that saved him for me was the fact that I was picturing M.atthew McConaughey the whole time I was reading (yum!).

I also thought the reason Lettie Lang was left the bulk of Seth Hubbard’s money was kind of obvious. I was hoping for more of a twist.

Anyhoo, I won’t say any more than that right now. I thought the book was okay. If I was grading it, I’d give it a B minus.

Head on over to the comments and let’s get this conversation started. Did you like it? Love it? Thought it was just okay? Who was your favorite character? How was the story development for you? Do tell!

Book Club – Yellow Crocus

Please forgive my failure to post yesterday – work got in the way and then I had to leave early to pay a man $75 to “fix” my water heater by turning it up from A level hot to C level hot.  -_-

Okay, so where were we? Ah yes – our discussion of Yellow Crocus. The story of  Mattie – a slave woman, her children, and Paula Deen. I mean, the family for whom she worked.

I enjoyed this story, was reminded of how limited the rights of women during that time were – enslaved, free, or otherwise – and was pleasantly surprised by the ending.

That’s all I’m going to write for now – WordPress is tripping and underlining everything I type in red. My eyes can’t deal.

Head over to the comments and get to discussing.  I’ll be back!

This Weekend I…

…tried the strawberry Lime A Rita. ‘Twas okay – I’m a bigger fan of the original. Hmm, I just realized that because I tried this drink I won’t make it all the way through April w/o any sugar. Oops.

…came home to a brand new water dispenser sitting in the middle of the kitchen floor. Smoochy is turning into his daddy – I really need him to stop buying every single thing that looks/sounds like a good deal. What in the world made him decide we “need” a water dispenser I don’t know. But it does dispense water hot enough for tea, so there’s that :)

…sold some gold. I felt so bootleg.  Went to the local jewelers and sold enough scrap gold – broken earrings mostly – to cover the cost of having the inside of my engagement ring coated in rhodium. Hopefully this will allow me to wear it. Apparently my odd skin will tolerate 10K and 14K gold, but not 18K. I am so backwards. I now – of course – also have my eye on the prettiest little pair of amethyst earrings. Thinking of gifting them to myself for my birthday!

…told LG I was having my wisdom teeth removed this Friday and she’d be riding the bus home and letting herself in. She’s so excited to a) ride the bus home in the afternoon b) see me act all loopy c) eat whatever she wants  d) stay awake and watch TV until Saturday. Silly girl. Your auntie will be picking you up at around 5 – nice try trying to wild out 8 year old style though!

…painted my nails an aqua color. I think I may look a bit like Smurfette. This color is being relegated to “toenails only” status from here on out. I’m comparing my beloved Seche Vite topcoat to 3 Minute Gel Nails. I can already tell – Seche Vite wins again. My left hand still looks good while the right has a chip, is duller, and had dents because it doesn’t dry as quickly.

…finally watched The Hunger Games. As always, book trumps movie. The movie was okay, but really, I could’ve done without it. Left out so much of the detail that made the book the awesomeness that it was. Don’t think I’ll be hard pressed to see the other two movies whenever they come out.

…dreamed that I cut off my locs. Got to church and one of the ladies I talk to regularly had cut hers off and is now rocking a teeny red ‘fro. So cute!

…hung my yellow blazer back in the closet :)  Thanks for voting y’all! I’ve decided to wear it this week and see how I feel about it after that.

How was your weekend?

 

Ayudame, por favor! (Help me, please!)

I have a tablet and an iPhone.  I have installed the K.indle app on both of them.  How do I get rid of books I no longer want?  I’ve gone to the A.mazon website and “managed my K.indle” by deleting the books.  But they’re still showing up on both my phone and tablet.

While it’s inconvenient to have all these books I’m finished with on my devices, I’m willing to overlook this.  But A.pple is now sending me nice/nasty emails letting me know I’m almost out of space on the cloud and to either delete some stuff or buy more space.  I don’t want to buy space for stuff I don’t want.  Duh!

Anybody know how I can get these books that I’m finished with off my cloud space????

Thank you in advance!  Happy Tuesday :)

Everybody, Everybody Get Your Read On!

Drum roll please…our first book club book of 2013 is The Racketeer by John Grisham as suggested by TIH.

Let’s plan to discuss on Monday, February 11.  Cool?  Cool.

If there’s a book you’d like to read and discuss with the group, just let me know and we’ll put it in the rotation.  And by rotation I mean it’ll be our next book :)
Just remember, no Z.ane, etc.

Happy Monday and Happy Reading!

 

Book Club – The Story of Beautiful Girl

Well, what did y’all think of our latest read?

I thought it was okay.  I went into this book with no expectations, but still managed to be disappointed by the time I finished.  It was just so sad all around and the last 3 or 4 chapters were rushed – I thought the author could’ve done a better job with the way she “distributed” her story.  We got a lot of details in the beginning of the book and by the end, it seemed like she was tired of writing and wrapped it up as quickly as possible.

The book did give me pause when I realized that this fictionalized story could very well have happened.  The treatment of non-neuronormative (look at me being all PC) people has come a long way in this society though no doubt, there’s plenty of room for improvement in the way those with challenges are treated – both inside and outside of facilities and group homes.  And poor Homan – outside of his hearing loss, there was nothing wrong with him and yet he’d been institutionalized because no one took time to properly assess his status.

Anyhow, I borrowed a few questions from the guide at the back of the book.  Feel free to answer any/all of these or just let your thoughts flow free.  As always, I’ll be back throughout the course of the day to read y’alls comments and to add more of my own.

1.  What did you learn that you didn’t already know about the history of people with disabilities and the ways they were routinely treated by society?

2.  Martha’s former students provide her with support for the first several years of Julia’s life. Was there a teacher in your life who meant as much to you as Martha meant to her students?

3.  Why do you think Martha took on the incredible responsibility of raising another woman’s child instead of contacting proper authorities? What would you have done in her place?

4.  Homan is up against incredible odds in making his way in the world, especially once his uncle Blue dies. Discuss the way that race, impairment, illiteracy, and institutionalization play a part in how he interacts with the world and how the world reacts to him.

Anywho, let’s get into it – what did you think?

Backyard Boogie Oogie Oogie

This post has nothing to do with backyards or boogies.  But Mac 10 has been running through my head for the last few days so I thought I’d share!

“Straight from Inglewood and you know that it’s all good!”  Okay, moving along…

  • Our next book club read will be The Story of Beautiful Girl by Rachel Simon.  We’ll discuss on Monday, October 22.
  • Remember those 8 pounds the doctor suggested I lose?  5 of them are gone!  Woo hoo and all that jazz!
  • Speaking of shedding excess poundage.  I got caught up y’all.  Caught up in all of the tweets and blog stories and feelings of success & exhilaration and so I have…drum-roll please…signed up for Couch to 5K.  It’s with the Y, so childcare is not an issue.  Starting next week, I’ll be running.  Have mercy.
  • There are two older women in my office who are, to put it bluntly, bitchy.  My friend who is the director of operations for the office wants to call a staff meeting to straighten them out.  Uh, how are you going to tell these women who are pushing 60 that they need to be kinder, gentler people?  Those old biddies are not trying to hear that!
  • My brother called me and told me he was bored with life in general.  I told him to concentrate on doing something for others and/or taking a class or two to explore something he’s interested in.  When I get bored like that I go back to school.  Or have a child.  How do you cope when you feel restless with your life?
  • If you think I’ve gone and purchased a dress for my brother’s wedding?  You’d be wrong.  Why am I playing like this wedding isn’t in three weeks?!?
  • I’ve been playing with eye makeup so I can get all glam for the wedding.  My eye makeup, when I wear it, is usually a brown shadow and a bit of mascara. This morning I went for a darker, more dramatic look.  LG told me I looked like I had a black eye.  Or was very tired.  #SmokeyEyeFail
  • Speaking of my pint-sized beauty adviser, that chick ran by me this morning and there I stood – in a cloud of funk!  Ma’am! What are you doing in the bathtub?  Or rather, what are you not doing?!? Tonight, I’m watching the festivities ’cause she is too old to be missing hot spots and smelling like onions and outdoors.

And that’s it!  Should be a nice, relaxing weekend.  LG wants to go to a dinosaur exhibit so I’m going to make that happen.  Hopefully I’ll remember to go buy a dress for the wedding, and the rest of the weekend will be spent in my armchair reading while Smoochy watches every football game in the U.S. of A.

Hope your weekend is absolutely wonderful ~ enjoy!!

 

Book Club – The Grace of Silence

So. Y’all had me really scared to read this book.  I was thinking it was going to be the most horrid of the horrid.  I liked it.

I am a sucker for memoirs.  I like to think it is because I’m nosy as all get out delightfully inquisitive and enjoy reading about other people’s journeys through this wonderful life.  Do I think this was the best written memoir I’ve ever read?  Nope.  Did that surprise me slightly?  Sure did.  I was expecting a different read from Michelle Norris, but now that I think about it, I’m not certain why.  Just because I enjoy her on NPR doesn’t mean that she’s automatically going to be a supremely gifted writer.  But I think that she did a good job and I don’t regret reading this book at all.

I’ll tell you what – her response to learning about her father’s one night in jail could’ve knocked me over with a feather.  I realize that I  have no right to tell anyone else how they should react to something, but come on lady.  Finding out your father was accidentally shot in the leg and spent a night in jail is not as worthy of collapsing on the floor in a heap and remaining paralyzed for 2 hours as oh say, finding out your father killed someone in a bar fight or something along those lines…I actually went back and read that part 2 3 times because I was certain that I’d missed something.  I had not.

My favorite quote from the book was:  “Blacks often feel the dispiriting burden of being perceived willy-nilly as representing an entire race.  The idea made my head hurt, and it still does if I dwell on it too much.”  Yes! Yes! Yes!

Anyhoo lovelies, I know many of you do not share my feelings about the book – head on over to the comments and let’s get this discussion rolling.

Any suggestions for our next book which I think will be the last one for 2012.  Unless y’all think we can read and discuss two more books in the midst of all the activity and bustle that the holidays bring?  Let me know!

My Name Is Butterfly

Well? What are your thoughts on our latest read?

I thought this book was really well written. Most of the characters were very “real” to me and I could picture each one as I read.  I think I’ve mentioned this before – if I’m interested in the characters’ and their lives I consider the book (regardless of subject matter) a success.

Speaking of subject matter I really appreciated Ms. McFadden’s handling of the topic of female sex slavery. The book could’ve been a whole lot more graphic and disturbing – thankfully it was not. I think she broached the subject respectfully without cleaning it up too much – if that makes sense.

So what did y’all think of Abebe, of her family, of their trials, of this book?  I will say I thought the Grandmother was a bit stereotypical – evil, domineering mother-in-law – she had not one single redeeming quality which was too bad.  I prefer characters to be a little more realistic – I don’t think most people are “all good” or “all bad” rather a mix with strong tendencies toward one or the other.

Anyhoo, the floor is open – head over to the comments and discuss…

Book Club – My Name Is Butterfly

So…we haven’t book clubbed in a while (thanks Irendi for the nudge!) and since I just bought a book for the low-low of .99 + tax via Amazon/Kindle I figured why not make it our next book?

I don’t even know what this book is about, no one has recommended it, etc., etc. it was just a spur-of-the-moment purchase.

So grab yourself a copy and get to reading.  I believe this book is only available as an e-book, but no worries – if you don’t have a tablet/reader/gadget you can always download the Kindle app onto your desk/laptop and read it from there.  I’ve heard reading on a desktop can help the work day fly by…

The book is:  My Name is Butterfly

The author is:  Bernice McFadden

The price (as I type this) is:  99 cents

The discussion date is:  Monday, June 11

Happy Reading!  Happy Weekend!