January 14, 2011

November 2009

Looking forward to Thanksgiving dinner but are afraid of awkward silences around the table?  Have no fear my friends!  Simply bring up healthcare in America and you'll have yourself a lively discussion like no other!  Or if you feel your family's a bit on the dysfunctional side, pick up a copy of Carrie Fisher's Wishful Drinking and count your blessings.  She's a riot and definitely "coming to dinner".

Wishful Drinking - Carrie Fisher
My Father's Tears - John Updike
Knockemstiff - Donald Ray Pollack
The View from Castle Rock - Alice Munro
The Healing of America - TR Reid
Transition - Iain M. Banks
The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
Photos from Jane's trip to the Bronte home and cemetery.
Artic Chill - Arnaldur Indridason
Books by Hakan Nesser:  Woman with Birthmark, Mind's Eye, The Return, Bookman's Point
Henning Mankell and the Wallender series
The Best of Mystery:  63 Short Stories chosen by Alfred Hitchcock
Diana Gabaldon and the Outlander series
Edgar Sawtelle keeps coming up in conversation
Cold Mountain - Anthony Minghella
Da Vinci Code Special Illustrated Edition - Dan Brown
Botany of Desire - Michael Pollan
Animal Vegetable Miracle - Barbara Kingsolver
Lost Symbol - Dan Brown
Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
Leadership - Rudy Giuliani

Mary Lou from Maryland emailed this:

For fans of John MacDonald’s Travis Magee series, I’ve discovered a somewhat similar series set in Florida – the Randy Wayne White novels featuring marine biologist Doc Ford. 
            Captiva   (1996)
            Dark Light (2006)
            Hunter’s Moon (2007)

Elizabeth Peters, Borrower of the Night  (1973) – Vicky Bliss series
Elizabeth Peters, Silhouette in Scarlet (1983) – Vicky Bliss series

Farley Mowat, Never Cry Wolf (1963) - delightful rereading.

That led me by association to reread MFK Fisher’s How to Cook a Wolf (1942), a highly entertaining and delightfully written discussion of frugal cooking in the Great Depression.  Now waiting for my attention:
            With Bold Knife and Fork (1968 ?)
            Sister Age (1964)

Louise Ure, The Fault Tree (2007) – a mystery with a very unusual protagonist, a blind, female auto mechanic. 

Roger Welsh, It’s Not the End of the Earth, But You Can See It from Here:  Tales of the Great Plains.  (1990)  Very funny sketches, set in rural Nebraska with something of the character of Lake Wobegon. 

James Muirden, Shakespeare Well-Versed (2004) – Humorous plot summaries of each of the plays in often outrageous rhyme.

Harold Bloom, Shakespeare: The Invention of the Human (1998).  This is the most readable literary criticism you’ll ever find, even though it’s by a premier Shakespearian scholar.  Insightful discussions of our most famous literary characters. 

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