Monday, January 23, 2006

On the Pile

Finished: Marley and Me. A sweet story about a dog and his human family. But it proves the truism that no one is as interested in our children or our pets as we are. As much of a dog lover as I am, even I got bored of reading about Marley’s astraphobia, his insatiable appetite, his penchant for destruction, and his general disobedience. The first few anecdotes were amusing, but after about 100 pages, they became repetitive in a Katie Holmes kind of way (He’s wacky! He’s wild! He’s amazing!). Grogan himself must have realized this, because Marley all but disappears in the middle third of the book and towards the end, the story abruptly and repeatedly fast forwards several years at a time, often without much warning or contextual clues. Once again, a good book ruined by length.

Currently Reading: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader and A Short History of Myth. Both by writers who appreciate the beauty of brevity.

On Deck: TBD

Added to the Pile:
* Elements of Style by Wendy Wasserstein
* L’America by Martha McPhee
* The Man of My Dreams by Curtis Sittenfeld

A couple months ago, I saw a notice in Elle magazine* for readers to be on a book jury: Each month, a different jury reads three books and picks their favorite. The jurors' comments and rankings are published in the magazine. Seeing an opportunity to bypass that silly resolution about not buying any books, I immediately applied. And was selected! So I received the above three books this weekend. I’m currently feeling very happy to have new books and very special to have new books that won’t even be published until April (the little things---like getting a book marked “review copy”---make me oh-so-happy).

I only have three weeks to read the three books and send in my comments, so The Odyssey and The Penelopiad may have to wait until mid-February (sorry, Mike).

In the meantime, my library privileges have been suspended because the library thinks I have a book that I think I returned. Unfortunately, the library is probably right. Although I’ve done a good search in my apartment and car and can’t find the book. Hmmmmm . . .

*Not sure if they are still recruiting, but here’s where to go.

3 Comments:

At 3:38 PM , Blogger Frema said...

Congratulations! Being sought after for your literary wit and insight is always a good thing.

 
At 4:45 PM , Blogger Bearette24 said...

I never got around to applying to that, but thanks for the tip! I guess I have my hands full with chicklitbooks.com reviews anyway. Gotta love free books.

Sorry about the library. They did that to me once in 2000, but I knew I returned it. (I put it in a return bin.) They believed me, fortunately. But now I always return it to a live person.

I didn't know Curtis had a new book out! I'll have to check it out.

I think she alienated most female writers when she trashed Melissa Bank's book and chick lit in general in the New York Times, implying that chick lit writers are sluts. Jennifer Weiner wrote a response on her blog. It was a real brouhaha, but it seems to have died down.

 
At 6:28 AM , Blogger Liz said...

Lisa- that's great! Tell us when your comments will be published.

So does Marley die at the end of the book? I checked it out but did not read it for fear of the ending...

 

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