I read, constantly. I write up my reviews in the way that I read my books, in short stacks of four…
Lentil Underground: Renegade Farmers and the Future of Food in America – This book was so interesting – even though it was an intensive study of crop rotation and organic farming. I really fell into the narrative and rooted for these farmers, who are trying to change the face of farming in America. I was so charmed by their story, I went our and bought some French Green Lentils and Baby Beluga Lentils to support their farming. Have you ever cooked lentils? I haven’t. I found these recipes on Pinterest I want to start with though: One Pot Chicken Drumsticks with Lentils, The “Best” Marinated Lentils, and Mushroom, Lentil, & Lemon Salad.
Flow My Tears, the Policeman Said – This is one of those Philip K. Dick classics I bought ages ago & set aside. WHY. He’s seriously one of my favorites, and I just need to sit down and read everything because it’s so brilliant. This one exceeded my expectations. Imagine a top celebrity waking up one day and no one knows him, his fame is gone, and his past is seemingly erased. It is a beautifully crafted piece of paranoid fiction that examines identity, racism, and the police state, with strong biblical overtures.
If you’re thinking the name Philip K. Dick sounds familiar – several of his works have been turned into movies & shows – The Minority Report, Total Recall, Paycheck, Imposter, Screamers, A Scanner Darkly, The Man in the High Castle, Next, and Blade Runner, to name a few…
Lolita – ***Modern Mrs. Darcy 2018 Challenge Pick – “read a banned book”*** SO MANY MIXED FEELINGS. So, I had a hard time picking a book for the MMD challenge from the banned book list, because I had read so many of them already. I settled on Lolita, because I thought it would make me genuinely uncomfortable…I wasn’t wrong.
If I had written a review every few chapters, you would have had something wildly different to read – because my opinion was all over the place while I was reading it. It was so scattered I think I have to resort to bullet points with my thoughts.
- Pedophilia – gross. Never OK. If I dwelt too much on that I would’ve thrown the book out the window. I spent the first few chapters wondering if the author ever went to prison – because it all seemed a little too accurate. Made me feel dirty even reading it. #timetogoboilmyself
- OK – I realized if I could divorce myself from that aspect – this guy could WRITE. He spun out anticipation in a way that would have been irresistible – if the object of his affections wasn’t a 12 year old girl.
- The moment they got together, the book completely changed. It was just sad. You could see how empty they both were. How meaningless it all was.
- I started wishing that I had been told to read this book at 12 myself. It sure would’ve kept me from EVER developing a crush on a teacher or older person. EVER.
- By the end of the book I was completely drawn in by the writing, the insanity, the sadness, the emptiness of it all. There was a great line (referring to a later boyfriend) – “He just broke my heart. You almost broke my life.” YOU ALMOST BROKE MY LIFE… that line will haunt me for a while.
Shocked to report that I think I actually liked this book – which sounds so strange, considering the subject matter. However – it really made me think, and I love that.
Uncommon Type: Some Stories – Written by (and on Audible narrated by) Tom Hanks. This collection of short stories was the perfect follow up to Lolita – in that it was smart, funny, and completely shook the darkness off. I absolutely recommend this on audio, listening to Tom Hanks read his own work was a real treat! All 17 stories feature typewriters – and he wrote the whole book on typewriters. *neat interview below*
There was a great story about the death of print and the advent of digital media. The fictional columnist wrote an elegant farewell to type, then duplicated it by typing the same piece into his phone to publish it digitally (with the auto corrects left intact). The results were so hilarious and disastrous I almost fell out of my chair laughing!
Thanks for reading! My next short stack will include: Around the World with Auntie Mame by Patrick Dennis; Louder than Words by Benjamin K. Bergen; Talking to CRAZY by Mark Goulston MD; and The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper by Phaedra Patrick.