Sunday, April 3, 2011

Sunday Salon - Baseball, Snow and Abandoned Books

We've had a weird week here in Maine: March went out like the proverbial lamb - temps were in the 40's, sun was shining, we could see little shoots of bulbs peeking out of the emerging mud and most of the snow had melted.

Then April came roaring in like a lion, with winds of up to 45 mph, heavy wet snow pulling down tree limbs and power lines, and dumping over 6" here in town. Thank goodness for our new internet which kept working even when our satellite TV didn't so we could track where the storm was heading, and so we could watch the opening day of another Red Sox season--too bad they lost.

As quickly as it came in, it whooshed on through giving us now a pleasant weekend. I took the opportunity while housebound to catch up on some reviews, read some other books enough to know they weren't for me (more on that in a minute) and do a little work on my cross-stitching. My poor Blue Heron may never be birthed at the rate I'm going on this project, although I now have several audio books beckoning and that should spur me on. And now that we're getting close to Easter, big time choir rehearsals are going several times a week--today included.

Anyway, during the past week, I had two books that I was really excited to read that turned out to be disappointments: The Tiger's Wife by Tea Obreht and Crack In the Edge of the World by Simon Winchester.

The Tiger's Wife has received a LOT of buzz, and everyone who has managed to finish it is raving about it. For me though, I just could not get into a very convoluted combination of past/present stories - some fantasy, some seemed to be oral history, and it just didn't work for me. I have sent it back to the library for now (I read about100 pages) so that the 37 people on the waiting list can have their chance. I may come back to it later, but this type of fiction has never been something I've really gotten excited about, and this one didn't change my mind. I can see where her writing is judged lyrical - she can certainly paint word pictures. They just aren't pictures that appeal to me. Please don't let me put you off if fairy tales and a Balkan setting are for you. You will probably enjoy it.

Now for Winchester's book: This one is subtitled "America and the Great California Earthquake of 1906".  Quite timely I thought, and settled down to read about the big earthquake.  Well, I got to page 240 and STILL hadn't gotten to the earthquake.  I had, instead, completed a graduate level course on plate tectonics, continental shift, modern day geology, etc etc etc.  Not a bad treatise if that's what I was looking for, but I'm afraid to spend any more time on this scientific tome.  It's way more information that I was prepared to digest.  I tried it in print and in audio- and found both fascinating but way too esoteric for me to handle at this point in my life.
Again, this is not a bad book, it's well researched and for someone looking for this kind of information, I'm sure it's a great read.  For me.....  Maybe later...For now...back to the library. 

Now let's get back to stitchin'....


  1. Don't blame you for abandoning the earthquake book. We learn enough about it on TV from realnews events! Happy spring!

  2. Tina, I did finish The Tiger's Wife but struggled with it. While I could appreciate the writing (talented author), I had trouble with the delivery and realism.

  3. Ooh, that earthquake book sounds like something I'd zone out reading...

    The Tiger's Wife hadn't grabbed me, and now I can pass it by.

    Thanks for sharing.


  4. I was SO upset we didn't get any of that snow...really.


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