Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Erin Could Only Be More Awesome If She Wrote the Book Herself

Book Friend Erin is winning big these days.  And I am not talking about the adorable baby she just birthed and practically named after my baby.  (Hi, baby Lane!)  She lent me The Storyteller by Jodi Picoult her second awesome lend in a row.

I had no idea what this book was about and frankly am kind of tired of Picoult but just grabbed it since Erin lent it to me.  The Storyteller is probably my favorite Picoult book.  (My Sister’s Keeper is still a big winner in my… um, book.)  The ending is a stunner.  I mean just wow.  Totally on-brand for Picoult and also for the Bookworm.

Unbeknownst to me this book had a Holocaust theme.  I usually don’t like fictitious Holocaust stories as much since there are so many incredible real stories out there, but Picoult did her homework.  Did I mention wow?

I feel comfortable giving this much praise to Erin since I can 100% guarantee that she hasn’t read this blog in years.  Note the plural there people.  Years.  And it’s probably been even longer since she took the time to make fun of it.  A third and final wow.

Fresh from the oven Baby Lane and me.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Baby Announced As Editor In Chief of Largely Silent Blog

My kid is starting to have opinions.  They are:

- A whispered “yah” – usually referring to raisins or cheese.
- A somewhat screeching “ehhh” – usually just a general ‘you aren’t getting me’ communication.
- “no, no, no, no…” a common response to the suggestion of putting a shirt on.
Obviously this diva has opinions.

Therefore, she pretty much has the skills to take over as Editor-in-Chief of Richmond’s Best Kept Secret Blog, since that’s pretty much the ranking system I apply to books.

This week I read Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline and give it a whispered “yah.”  I thoroughly enjoyed this quick read, lent to me by my Book Friend & also Real Friend Erin.  I needed this kind of chick lit, having almost forgotten what it’s like to hurry through my evening workload to get my precious reading time in.  Let’s add some volume to that “yah.” 

Monday, May 12, 2014

You Waited Two Months For a Conspiracy Theory If That’s What This Even Is

Since the last time a blog was posted to the internet and no one was there to read it, I have read two books:

The Bakers Daughter by Sarah McCoy – Excellent/WWII-y
The Orphan Master’s Son by Adam Johnson – Slow read / Pulitzer Prize / Ugh

Now I am 99 pages into Hyperbole and a Half by Allie Brosh (which has been recommended to me by several people).

AN ASIDE  (which will eventually go somewhere, I promise)

I kept a diary as a kid.  At first I started every entry as “Dear Diary” in a specific handwriting which wasn’t mine.  I believe the ‘i’ was dotted with a heart and that I stole this idea from the Babysitters Club books. 

Later, I started addressing my diary as ‘Kitty,’ which was blatantly stolen from Anne Frank.  That’s right, I STOLE FROM ANNE FRANK.   So that’s pretty bad.

But after 99 pages of Hyperbole and a Half  (which is about 5 pages of a normal book because of insane illustrations) I am afraid that writer Allie Brosh stole my book friend Kristin.  Her language and tone is exactly EXACTLY how she talks.  If I were Kristin I would drop everything and call the Richmond City Police immediately, who I am pretty sure has a 24/7 ‘no case is too big or too small’ literature division and report this crime.

Ok, Kristin did lend me the book so that could affect my wild accusations, but still.  There are turns of phrase that are outright stolen, and Kristin says she didn’t write this book.


I think my friend Kristin wrote a book full of weird pictures and now calls herself “Allie Brosh” when we are outside of work.  Kind of a weird name choice since I am Allison, but maybe that makes it doubly secret.  I am on to you, Kristin/Allie!

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Here is the Very Little I Have to Say About Me & Sports

One million years ago, I used to play tennis. 

Wait, that sounds more official and sporty than it really was. 

One million years ago I bought a tennis racket from Target and sometimes used to hit balls around.  I even took tennis lessons with friends so we could all play Doubles Troubles.  We never really progressed beyond being really excited if our serves miraculously landed in the right box on the other side of the court, but it was fun.

I was reminded of these fun, sweaty evenings after work while reading The Tennis Partner by by Abraham Verghese.  (Same author who wrote the much more awesome Epic Novel Cutting for Stone.)  My personal tennis experience contains a lot less drug addiction, but it was fun to think to be reminded of how much fun tennis is, and that I need to make a point to play sometime in the next ten years if possible.

I like Verghese’s writing style and would read pretty much anything he wrote besides the probably many actual medical journal-type things he has written.  I’d rather read about tennis and shooting up cocaine.  (Which as a mom I now feel compelled to point out sounds like a very bad idea.)

Quick recap:  do play tennis, do read The Tennis Partner, do not do cocaine.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Well, Well, Well Look What the Blog Dragged In

I am sick.  I have lost my voice entirely, which has led to comments such as:

“No smart ass comments from you?  What shall we do?” – boss
“I think Mother Nature may be trying to tell you something.” – creative director

You know what, screw those guys.  I can still be cutting on my online book blog that no one knows about.  That will show them!

My illness has coincided with finishing Blue Asylum by Kathy Hepinstall.  I bought this book without knowing anything about it after hearing Kathy speak at Mike Hughes’ funeral.  She was hilarious and I love funny ladies.  Her blog is awesome too.  So her book took me by total surprise because it wasn’t just her personality come to life on the page like a quickly spouted blog post (referring to mine, not hers.  Like I said, hers is good.)  It was a real book.  With carefully crafted sentences, an interesting plot… the whole 9 yards.  She is an advertising copywriter and she is quippy… but she is a real writer.

I can tell that literary people would find this a good book because each sentence is so well crafted.  A simple-minded lady like myself for some reason felt it was a tad slow.  But it was a unique story of an insane asylum during the Civil War – can’t say that’s a topic that’s been exhausted.  Definitely a solid read,  and I am only somewhat jealous of all these people I am one-degree from are writing books and good blogs.  Dammit.