Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Books read on vacation

I'm back to the harsh reality of real life after being on an eleven day Panama Canal cruise. The trip was phenomenal and I loved every minute of it. No cooking or cleaning, no laundry or toilet scrubbing. No alarm clocks or dog hair. It was blissful. While others tanned their skin into jerky under the bright Caribbean sun, I was in my room with a book and a cup of coffee. Luxury to me is uninterrupted reading of good books.
Angela's Ashes was one of my favorite books ever. So I was thrilled when I found an abandoned copy of Frank McCourt's sequel, Teacher Man. The book is tracks his experiences as a highschool teacher. During my school years, I had a small group of teachers who inspired and encouraged me but outstanding teachers are few and far between. How I would have loved to have been in a classroom taught by Mr. McCourt! Have you read it? Please do pick up a copy. Be inspired by his love of the english language and his tales from the world of teaching.
A Life Less Convenient: Letters to My Ex by Jennifer Clare Burke is about the authors struggle with lupus. The book is a raw and gritty account of her experiences via emails sent to various exes. Its not a long book, you can read it in a day. I knew it would be hard to read- after all, she has a disease that's debilitating and harsh. I wish she would take this short collection and spin it into a longer book.
I never knew much about Marie Antoinette other than chanting her name in the mirror at slumber parties, waiting for her to show up, all bloody and headless. My friend loaned me The Hidden Diary of Marie Antoinette by Carolly Erickson and I whipped through it. From the first page I was hooked. Sometimes its nice to change pace and read something you might not pick up ordinarily. This is a fictional account of her life but based on real life events.
I want to read more about Marie Antoinette who died unfairly in a most cruel way. I was completely transported to another time while reading this.
Kristin Harmel has a new novel out called The Blonde Theory and I will be interviewing her soon. I can tell you that this is a totally fun slice of entertainment with some laughs in it. A good book from beginning to end that moves along quickly.
Last but not least is The Spinster Sisters by Stacey Ballis. I've interviewed Stacey before and she's great and smart and fun. She's an author who goes deep into her characters. Characters are fleshed out, dialogue is real and for those of you who don't like "chick-lit" I urge you to give Stacey's books a whirl. I enjoyed the premise of this book and the conflicts in it, very good job Stacey!
And, thanks so much for your messages and words of encouragement with my...what do I call it? Possible breast cancer, I suppose. Please continue with the breast exams and keeping an eye on your body and urging your friends and mothers to do the same. It's really strange and scary that something can be brewing in your body and you just don't know it's there. What can we do do educate each other and help ourselves stay strong and healthy? I'll be keeping you posted.


Blogger Manic Mom said...
Hope you had a great vaca. Haven't caught up with you for a while, and was concerned about your possible breast scare.

Steph @ 6:20 PM  
Blogger Allison Winn Scotch said...
Cindy-I'm glad to see you are back posting...I was worried. Please keep us updated. @ 7:26 PM  
Blogger Catherine said...
Glad you're back! I missed you! - - And I'm glad to hear you liked the Marie Antoinette book.

Kiss Kiss...
Catherine @ 6:47 PM  
Anonymous Matthew said...
Panama cruise...Lucky :)

Hope you had a great vacation! @ 3:29 AM  
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