Friday, March 25, 2005

The Ha-Ha by Dave King

I read this book quickly during the first two days of spring break. It is very sad. The narrator is a mute who was injured in Vietnam. He is charged with taking care of his old girfriend's nine year old son while she goes to rehab. The theme seems to be that family is any group of people who care about and care for each other.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Me and Emma by Elizabeth Flock

This book was compared to The Secret Life of Bees which is a book I really love. The narrator is an eight year old girl who lives with her sister, Emma, their mother and their abusive stepfather. The voice of the narrator is so innocent and naive, even though her troubles are not.

Monday, March 14, 2005

Plan B: Further Thoughts on Faith by Anne LaMott

I love Anne LaMott and I was counting down the days until this book was available. I was not disappointed. Her prose is so lovely, but her subjects are very down to earth. She writes a lot in this book about raising her son as a single mother. Since I was so inspired by her pieces when my son was very young, I really connected to her struggles with the teenage "animal". She is harsh in her criticsm on Bush and frank with her thoughts about faith. I cried several times while reading this book. I love Anne LaMott.

Friday, March 11, 2005

Master Butchers Singing Club by Louise Erdrich

This was our book club selection for this month. I really like Louise Erdrich's work, so I was happy to read this book. David and I started listening to the audio in the car and it was REALLY slow. I read the first half of the book and did not think much of it. About half way through, the book picked up and I ended up liking it a lot. I think it is about contentment. The main character is a woman whose overcomes an alcoholic father, a homosexual man who poses as her husband and then the master butcher, whose sons she helps to raise after the death of his wife.

Baker Towers by Jennifer Haigh

Now playing in the ipod while I run, which I am not doing much since Winter just won't quit in Northeast Ohio. This is a beautiful story of a family in a mining town after WWII. The language is almost too lovely to listen to. I want to see these words on the page.

Sunday, March 06, 2005

The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud by Ben Sherwood

This book sounded like a fun read, but it took me by surprise. It was more like a Nicholas Sparks novel than what I expected. Charlie had died once in a car accident which killed his brother, but the fireman on the scene brought him back to life. Now as an adult, Charlie works at the cemetery where his brother's spirit still lives. The plot twists when he meets Tess, a woman who may or may not be a spirit. I will be recommending this one to female students. It even had a little bit of a Lovely Bones feel to it. And the best part was it reminded me of an e. e. cummings poem I knew once upon a time.

dive for dreams

dive for dreams
or a slogan may topple you
(trees are their roots
and wind is wind)
trust your heart
if the seas catch fire
(and live by love
though the stars walk backward)
honour the past
but welcome the future
(and dance your death
away at the wedding)
never mind a world
with its villains or heroes
(for good likes girls
and tomorrow and the earth)
in spite of everything
which breathes and moves, since Doom
(with white longest hands
neating each crease)
will smooth entirely our minds
-before leaving my room
i turn, and (stooping
through the morning) kiss
this pillow, dear
where our heads lived and were.

silently if, out of not knowable

silently if, out of not knowable
night's utmost nothing,wanders a little guess
(only which is this world)more my life does
not leap than with the mystery your smile
sings or if(spiralling as luminous
they climb oblivion)voices who are dreams,
less into heaven certainly earth swims
than each my deeper death becomes your kiss
losing through you what seemed myself,i find
selves unimaginably mine;beyond
sorrow's own joys and hoping's very fears
yours is the light by which my spirit's born:
yours is the darkness of my soul's return
-you are my sun,my moon,and all my stars

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Little Children by Tom Perrotta

We had a snow day today. Yippee!!! So I woke up and finished the last hundred pages of Little Children. It was a fun book about suburban playground moms and former jock dads. I really liked the part where the book group in the novel is discussing Madame Bovary. Near the end, I thought the book was going to end tragically, but luckily it did not. I enjoyed this read.