Author Archives: Andi

Do we really have a blog?

Yes, yes we do!!  We are neglecting our poor blog lately due to our crazy lives!!  I have a new job with a commute one hour-one way.  Any time I thought I had to blog and read is left on New Hampshire Ave.  I have not read a book in weeks, maybe months.  I feel like I need an intervention by my literary friends.  Lay in wait outside my office, jump me, throw me in a lounge chair, forcibly wrap one hand around a decaf coffee and duct tape a book in the other.  Maybe that is extreme… just a little… nah!

My head is swirling with ideas for posts. Yet find myself with little to no time to sit and compose.  Any suggestions?  Maybe I could do a James Joyce style and stream of consciousness.  Have Siri record my thoughts as I cruise through the open countryside,  later I can listen to my pearls of wisdom and then type them up at home.  MMMmm?  Possibilities.  Then again you may not want to know what is in my head at 6:00 am!

My dear darling hubby gave me a Kindle Fire HD and a keyboard. Yes, I am a spoiled queen.  He met someone who did all her blogging with it and he thought a portable blogger would fit my lifestyle!  He is the best!!  This is my first post using my spiffy new technology.  Listening to the Frozen soundtrack and little girls voices inside dance class is a good inspiration for writing.  (not tap shoes today!)

I am continuing my audio books during my commute and have heard some good ones and learned quite a bit.  Basketball, baseball, immigration issues, history and much more.  To keep my post brief, I will list the books a brief synopsis and my rating.

The Art of Procrastination by John Perry – A great book for the procrastinators out there, an esteemed club that I am a member.  I related to this one and helped my understand how I work or rather do not work and still succeed. (EMME)

League of Denial by Mark Fainaru-Wada and Steve Fainaru  – A great book to listen to not to read.  This is a loooooong book but fascinating.  The car trip broke it into manageable sections.  A history of the concussion research and the NFL that is very disturbing yet informative.  Based on this book, I have set clear ground rules for my son who is a football player.  A must read for any one that plays, knows someone who plays or is a parent of a child who plays a contact sport to include soccer.  (EMME!)

Becoming Mr. October by Reggie Jackson – This is an autobiography by Reggie Jackson and his rise in baseball.  I enjoyed the book to learn more about the inner workings of a baseball player.  After conversations with my parents about this time in baseball history, I think the memory or the ego of Mr. Jackson faded over time.  Fun listening to his ‘side of the story’.  (EMM)

Showtime by Jeff Pearlman – Great timeline and history of the famous Los Angeles Lakers during the Magic Johnson time.  WOW, is all I can say!  The drugs, sex and basketball.  (EMME)

Rob Delaney: Mother. Wife. Sister. Human. Warrior. Falcon. Yardstick. Turban. Cabbage. by Rob Delaney – Rob Delaney is a comedian who is a recovering alcoholic.  He tells an interesting tale of his life to date with many funny parts.  Yet, I wasn’t intrigued nor amused much. (EM)

The Master of the Mountain: Thomas Jefferson and his Slaves by Henry Wiencek – FANTASTIC history of the running of Monticello and the life of Thomas Jefferson.  Given the topic of this book there is potential to be offensive but Mr. Wiencek weaves a factual history that is well told.  The facts around the politics and economics of slavery and influences on President Jefferson are interwoven to help understand the issues of the day.  Well Done!! (EMME!)

Pure Joy: The dogs we love by Danielle Steel – A horrible book about Danielle Steel and her family’s dogs.  AVOID at all costs.  She is an avid dog lover yet the book is more of a glimpse of Ms. Steel’s rich and privileged life.  I couldn’t stomach it. (e)

Mennonite in a Little Black Dress by Rhonda Janzen – I enjoyed this book from many perspectives.  Ms. Janzen was raised as a Mennonite.  This book follows her life as she distances herself from her faith and circle back to the positives of the faith when she most needs it.  She has a great sense of humor and wonderful writing style.  I learned a lot about the Mennonites history and teachings, too.  (EMM)

In the queue is a biography of the first Hispanic supreme court justice, Nash of Crosby, Stills and Nash tells his story and who knows what more.  I also have found out about podcasts.  This could drastically slow down my audio book progress.  There are so many interesting people out there with so much to say.  My reviews of those will have to wait to any post.  For now…

Grab a book, ANY book and read (or listen!)

P.S.  I really dislike the main character in The American Tragedy, Clyde Griffiths.  Schmuck!  Post to come.

Disturbingly Familiar, Ms. Wolfe

This tome was an interesting one and I believe Heather and I will differ on this one.  We do talk about the books outside of this blog believe it or not.  And we don’t text, although we love the written word, we do old school phone conversations. And yes, I use hands free and talk during the trek home from work.  Using my time as wisely as I can!!

To the Lighthouse by Virginia Wolfe is a story about relationships.  Divided into three sections, in a time continuum.  The first section is written from various points of view through a window.  We are introduced to all the chato-the-lighthouse-coverracters as they look through the window.  I enjoyed this section mainly because it is from the view origin of the mother while reading a book to her youngest son.  The story develops each of the characters in an unique way whether a thoughtful stare, a glance or a pointed look through the window.

Section 2 is a time warp through to the future.  An interesting way to pass time in a literary piece.  The section is fragments of time as if describing a photo album through the years but better.  I did not like this section because the big events in the family, good or bad, were inserted via italicized sentences.  Oh by the way the women you became attached to in the first section oh she died.  Moving on..

Section 3 is finally getting to go to the lighthouse.  This section is when the father finally takes the kids, as young adults, begrudgingly to the lighthouse.

This book resonated with me because of the relationships through the book, in particular those between women and men.  Wolfe delves into each type of relationship, mother/son, husband/wife, lovers, and acquaintances.  I enjoyed reading about them all.  Some of them were disturbingly familiar to friends and family relationships I observed over the years.  I would expand on this notion but in the off chance any one is reading this blog, I may offend.

The tortured relationship between the husband and wife based on love was a wonderful tale of many couples.  Not perfect.  They knew each other extremely well and loved each other for all the imperfections and faults.  The children’s misunderstanding of their parents marriage develops through the story.  Each interpreting glances, phrases and body language differently.  Some of these kids will need therapy, I am sure!!  Their father is a tough character to explain.  He is not the kindest nor the most loving father, this is for sure.  He is a lost soul, in my opinion, in a life that he does not feel is as he planned.  Father is a melancholy, dreamer seeking to hold on to his diminishing prestige.  Mother is, as all mothers through time, trying to hold life for her family together.  Then she dies.  (See, isn’t that awful to just throw it out there? Shiver.)

 Make this one a bedtime book. It’s a great read, but I can close it, turn off the light, and zzzz….

Make this one a bedtime book. It’s a great read, but I can close it, turn off the light, and zzzz….

I liked this tome and give it an EMM… I almost gave it an EMME but the Time Warp section did me in.  I am behind Heather but trying to catch up!  Half way through An American Tragedy.  (I know it won’t be a happy ending just by the title)

Grab a book, any book and READ!!