Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Far from the madding porch...

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intro-Far From the Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy

When Farmer Oak smiled, the corners of his mouth spread till they were within an unimportant distance of his ears, his eyes were reduced to chinks, and diverging wrinkles appeared round them, extending upon his countenance like the rays in a rudimentary sketch of the rising sun.

What do you think, continue reading or pass?

I have been enjoying some classic books lately. I read this years and years ago and remember how much I loved it. I plan on reading this soon. I am visiting my southern living children for the next two months. I already feel like I am falling behind on my reading, blogging and sleeping. Busy kids...
Reading The Precious One by Marrissa de Los Santos, listening to The Shipping News by Annie Proulx, watching season two of Orange is the New Black.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

How is it Tuesday again already on the porch...

First Chapter first paragraph Tuesday Intros hosted by Diane at Bibliophilebythesea-Thanks Diane!

The Shipping News by Annie Proulx

Here is an account of a few years in the life of Quoyle, born in Brooklyn and raised in a shuffle of dreary upstate towns. Hive-spangled, gut roaring with gas and cramp, he survived childhood; at the state university, hand clapped over his chin, he camouflaged torment with smiles and silence. Stumbled through his twenties and into his thirties learning to separate his feelings from his life, counting on nothing. He ate prodigiously, like a ham knuckle, buttered spuds.

What do you think--keep reading or pass. I am a few chapters in. I love Proulx writing style. I came across the movie with the same title. It was so good I had to find the book. I am freezing in Upper Michigan. Annie Proulx is making me feel the cold in New Foundland.

My niece, who lives on the same road my camp is on, took these pics of our fresh snow.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

First Chapter...

First Paragraph Tuesday Intros

Angela's Ashes by Frank McCourt

My father and mother should have stayed in New York where they met and married and where I was born. Instead, they returned to Ireland when I was four, my brother, Malachy, three, the twins, Oliver and Eugene, barely one, and my sister, Margaret, dead and gone.
When I look back on my childhood I wonder how I survived at all. It was,  of course, a miserable childhood: the happy childhood is hardly worth your while. Worse than the ordinary miserable childhood is the miserable Irish childhood, and worse yet is the miserable Irish Catholic childhood.

I am already hooked. This book has been on my TBR forever and now it satisfies the autobiography requirement in the PopSugar Reading Challenge 2016.

I'm sad to say I heard that Abe Vigoda really died today. He was an old favorite from Barney Miller, a 70's sitcom. His death has been reported so many times that he had a Twitter feed that simply said "I'm alive." Every day....RIP Mr. Vigoda.
My twelve year old granddaughter is wearing my sister-in-laws aunts wedding dress from the 1930s. It fit her perfectly.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Reflections on the way life used to be...

I am musing on aging today. With much trauma. It really bothers me when people who were part of the boomer generation take their last bow, literally. That Eagle, Leslie Gore, Ann Meara, Maureen O'Hara, Natalie Cole. These are a few of the people I listened to on the radio and whose records I bought. I watched them in movies and on TV. They are gone and they are around my age. I feel like they were a part of my life. The Beach Boys 50th anniversary is this year. They look older than they did when I was in high school. AARP magazine covers are being taken over by the new 50 year olds. Ah, but I was so much older then, I'm younger than that, now...or something like that.( Bob Dylan MyBack Pages) He, B.D., was on the cover of AARP not so long ago. I have to think of something to blog for my 65th year. That birthday is not too far off.

I am listening to The Orphan Master's Son by Adam Johnson. It is a devastating story. North Korean humans and dogs do not have it easy...
Saw Dirty Grandpa with my hubby. He loved it. I think it was just  slapstick.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Tuesday Intro...The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros-The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven by Sherman Alexie

Too hot to sleep so I walked down to the Third Avenue 7-11 for a Creamsicle and the company of a graveyard-shift cashier. I know that game. I worked graveyard for a Seattle 7-11 and got robbed once too often. The last time the bastard locked me in the cooler. He even took my money and my basketball shoes.

I read Sherman Alexie's The Absolutely True Diary of a Part Time Indian as an "Indigenous Culture" book for the Book Riot Read Harder Challenge. I was so moved by the story of Arnold Spirit, a courageous kid from the Rez. I am pushing for every one I know to read this book.
The paragraph I posted is the first of just one of the stories in Alexie's collection of stories.

                                                             No more training wheels

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Making a list on the porch...

                                          Look closely and you will see angels in the snow!

Today was a football on TV Sunday. I don't really watch it but it is a perfect excuse to veg on the couch and pour over lists of books on my computer. 100 Best Books of the Decade So Far, 100 Books to Read before you Die, 20 Books to Read in 2016. I could go on and on. There are so many lists. After much hard work on the couch with blankets and pillows and blueberry cheese cake bars and one cup of coffee, I have chose the books I want to read in 2016 or at least before I die.

White Teeth by Zadie Smith, Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk, The Corrections by Jonathon Franzen, The Known World by Jones, Gilead by Robinson, My Brilliant Friend, The Grapes of Wrath by Steinbeck, Beloved by Toni Morrison, The Outsiders, The Things They Carried, The Secret History by Donna Tartt, The Epicures Lament by Kate Christensen and The Road by Cormac McCarthy.

These books turned up on many lists and recommendations. I just finished reading The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz. This book deserved every award it was given. It is so affecting emotionally. I am now listening to Drown by the same author. Fresh, lewd, direct, sly, sweet and honest, the words used to describe Diaz's voice by a reviewer are just right.
I am also reading Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee. I'll let you know how that works out...