Saturday, September 18, 2010


Okay, so I just deleted the sentence I was originally going to start this post with, the sentence that talked about what a truly pathetic blogger I am again proving to be. But really, what's the freakin' point of spelling out my inadequacies again, right? Yes, I'm scatterbrained, and I haven't finished a single book in over a week, and homeschooling is already kicking my rather ample ass this school-year so I can't even guess when I might next finish one...oops, I just said I wasn't going to point out my inadequacies, didn't I? Well, I only listed a few...believe me, I could go on for hours if I set my mind to it.

So, if I haven't finished a book, what the hell am I going to talk about? I have read several Poe short stories, but I'm afraid I've got some miserable sinus issues going on, and I fear if I try to write about them now, I'll be even less coherent than is normally the case. Yep, so I guess it's more blame. That library sale I mentioned at the beginning of the week...I sort of lost self-control. (Oh alright--one needs to actually have something to lose it, but let's not get technical here.) Fourteen books came home with me. (A total of 22 books between Rich and me--for only $ felt almost criminal.) And some of them come attached with blame...

 *The Foreshadowing by Marcus Sedgwick. Sort of hate admitting this, but I really don't have a good reason for buying this one. The description sounds like something I could possibly enjoy...or not. Sounds like a sort of mixture of historical fiction and fantasy. I've never read anything by Sedgwick, though I already have one of his books on my shelf. *sigh* Seriously, about the best defense I can muster is that it was cheap. Oh, and it was for a good cause, right?

*Armageddon Summer by Jane Yolen and Bruce Coville. Now the description on this one really did catch my notice. Another YA selection, this one revolving around the religious mania of the families of a couple of teens. Sounds like it's one of those stories that could be really good or really bad, depending on how it's told. But it *is* Jane Yolen, and the little I've read by her, I've adored. And Bruce Coville is from Syracuse, which is just down the road a piece. Yeah...I'm really stretching it for excuses here, aren't I? Should I fall back on the "it was cheap" one maybe? 

*Pretty Birds by Scott Simon. I picked this up because I saw the author was Scott Simon--and I thought, "Could this possibly be the Scott Simon of NPR fame?" Well, yes indeed it was. That alone probably would have led me to buy it, just because I like the fella. But on top of that, the story sounded good...what I could glean from the nearly nonexistent description on the cover anyway. Best I can tell, it's the story of a teenage girl living in Sarajevo during the war.

*King Rat by China Mieville. I've yet to read any of his books, but I have a feeling I'm really going to like them. But to be perfection honest, this likely won't be the first I try--I *really* want to read Un Lun Dun...

 *Prodigal Summer by Barbara Kingsolver. And here we come to some blame. It's Chris's incredible love of her Animal, Vegetable, Miracle that even made me pick this book up off the table. Oh my, and once I picked it up and read the back, I was a goner. "...a hymn to wildness that celebrates the prodigal spirit of human nature, and of nature itself." Sorry, Chris. POINT FOR CHRIS.

*Epic by Conor Kostick. I've had this book stored away in the back of my brain for quite some time--ever since Becky first reviewed it. My first thought when reading her review was that it sounded like it might make a good book to read if I homeschool Gray in middle school. And as that is still a possibility, and simply because it sounds like an interesting book, when I saw it on the table, I snatched it right up. POINT FOR BECKY.

*Misery by Stephen King. The fact that I had to buy this book is evidence of my tendency towards fickleness. Because I used to own this book. From the time I was in high school, I bought all of King's books. But at age 33, while pregnant with Annie, I decided that I didn't need so many books crowding up our apartment. I sold all the Stephen King books I had, save The Stand. (I blame it on that whole nesting phenomenon.) So anyway, the last few years, I've been trying to reacquire all these hardbacks from library sales, etc.

*Three Days by Donna Jo Napoli. Best I can tell, and I could certainly be wrong, this isn't one of her fairy tell retellings. But it sounds good...a sort of suspense thriller for middle graders from the looks of it.

*The Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood. I shouldn't have bought this book. Really, I shouldn't have. I'm never going to read it. Margaret Atwood scares the ever-living you-know-what out of me. The reason I did was because Eva loves it so much. But of course, Atwood doesn't scare her. Nothing scares her. Yeah, 'cause she's like a hundred quadzillion times smarter than me. *sigh* Well, at least you shall look lovely sitting on my shelves, dear book. POINT FOR EVA.

*Big Fish by Daniel Wallace. Yep, this is an easy one--Ana's fault, all the way. POINT FOR ANA.

*Possession by A.S. Byatt. I skipped down the pile to grab this next one, since it's also Ana's fault. I used to be every bit as afraid of Byatt as I was of Atwood...but Ana went to great lengths to get me past that. And I shall be forever grateful. of these days...I'm really going to put my new-found faith in myself into practice and tackle this book. One day. POINT FOR ANA.

*The Housekeeper and the Professor by Yoko Ogawa. If I'm not off target here, there were several people who enjoyed this book, but it was really Amanda who got me to put this one on my wish list. And I immediately added it to my PaperbackSwap wish list, but even though it's been a while I was nowhere near getting my hands on it that way. So I was quite happy to see it stacked among the books on the library sale tables. POINT FOR AMANDA.

*The Monsters of Templeton by Lauren Groff. I have no idea whatsoever why I bought this book. True story.

*Ordinary Ghosts by Eireann Corrigan. The title just grabbed me as I was looking through the YA tables. And the blurb sounded interesting. A bit vague, but that's okay--don't want to know too much going in, after all.

And while that finishes up the list of books from the library sale, it doesn't quite finish up all the books that made their way in this week. Just three additional ones to mention:

*The Best Bad Luck I Ever Had by Kristin Levine. A very lovely surprise which arrived in the mail a couple days ago. From my dear friend Pat, who had read it and thought that the kids and I might enjoy it. Thank you again! I can't wait for us to get to it. :)

*The Group by Mary McCarthy. My number finally came up for this one on PaperbackSwap. And I'm sure I don't need to tell you who gets the blame here, do I? Yep-- POINT FOR ANA.

*Room by Emma Donoghue. Chris made this one absolutely frickin' possible for me to resist! Impossible. Started reading it right in the store last night and despite the fact that I haven't yet gotten far, I am already hooked! POINT FOR CHRIS.

Now, if I could just finish a book...


  1. Ooh Possession! My very favorite book ever! And I'm so glad you found the Yoko Ogawa book. I really need to read another of hers soon.

  2. Man, you must have a HUGE TBR pile with all the books that are coming in. :) Mine is big, but I don't really add to it anymore... So... I feel like I do good. lol Enjoy your new books!

  3. DEBI! You had better say about ten positive things about yourself to balance out that first paragraph. If you're a pathetic blogger, I'm horrible, since I keep taking extending blogging breaks. AND I've gone over two weeks in a row without finishing a book this summer too. So whatever. :p

    I hope your sinuses let up soon: my mom & sis both suffer from them, and they're awful!

    I've only read Blind Assassin & Possession, but I loved them both!!! I'm NOT smarter than you...and poetry scares me to death. And Philip Roth and authors like him make me slink into a dark corner. lol I loved Blind Assassin for the story and the characters, so I think you'd enjoy it too. :)

    The rest of the pile sounds like fun!

  4. The Group by Mary McCarthy.. she was the sister of Kevin McCarthy who just passed away!! That was quite a contraversial book back in its day! Enjoy all those wonderful books!!!!!!

  5. The Foreshadowing, is an excellent read I loved it when I read it a couple of years ago. (Not that I need much encouragement to enjoy Sedgwick's writing!)

  6. I LOVE Possession! So much, in fact, that I've read it several times. That, after starting and putting it down, several more times before I got into it. Don't give up, I think you'll love it, too!

    You getting rid of all your Stephen King books reminds me of when I got rid of all my Robert B. Parker books. "He's not a classic author," I thought, "and how much can I store around here anyway?" Well, now that he's dead he's on his way to being classic, and I would have loved those first editions I once owned. Anyway...

    No need to be harsh on yourself. Anyone who homeschools is a wonder in my book. (I so wish I would have with my son, it just wasn't an option as I had to earn our living with his father's passing.)

  7. Hang in there! My job and sinuses are kicking my ass, too. I haven't finished a book in almost TWO MONTHS. This realization was almost enough to make me vomit. However, I'm cutting myself some slack. I am always involved with books somehow, even if I'm not actively reviewing as many as I'd like.

    LOOVE that stack! Love!

  8. You better just delete that first paragraph!!! \/ <-----that's an angry face!!

    Aside from that first paragraph, I just smiled the whole way through this post!! LOVED it!! Oh and you know what?? I have a copy of Prodigal Summer here too! We can read it together whenever you want if you want :) And I'm just SO SO sO thrilled that you're reading Room!!! I still just can't tell you how happy that makes me!

  9. I am attempting to ignore your criticisms of yourself in the first time I will have to reprimand, so don't let it happen again!!!

    I read Prodigal Summer a while ago for book club - it is a good one. I also thought I had read Blind Assassin, but as I tried to remember it, I am not so sure. I may have to come visit and borrow your copy ! :)

  10. Um, can you please post another updated picture of your library? I'm sure I've missed one here or there, but for me it's been a long time...I've got to see if you're resorting to double-stacking on those shelves! :P

    Do you know that I've been having some strange desire to read The Stand lately? I have never read a Stephen King book and never planned to because I scare so easily, but all your talk has me so curious. Just have to find a copy. Though I've been trying to weed out my shelves, too. Scott says all the shelves must go so my compromise is to stop double stacking so they aren't so "pullable" from the shelves.