A little bit about books, a little bit about life.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Book Club BBQ

The Great Gatsby.....and the Totally Lit Bookclub

We met last night, at my house, for our book club Totally Literature...(or Lit for short), and it's funny because while I took a few pictures, I didn't see a book in any of them.
I saw food...and I saw wine. And I saw friends having a nice time. But we really, really did talk about the book. Quite a lot.

The Great Gatsby.
Check out the potato salad, (made by Cindy) in honor of "Daisy".

That was the only theme of the night....except for perhaps, the decadent (not), extravagant (not), indulgent (not), profuse (not), BBQ.

Many thanks to fellow book clubbers, Kathy and April, for coming early to help me put the ka-bobs on the skewers.
It isn't the ka-bobs themselves that are hard to do (a little meat, a little marinade), it's the skewering of them.
(I think I'm making up words as I go along here...skewering?)
I would have still been "ka-bobbing" this morning, if not for their help.

Ah, my point? Book Club.
As always, it is fun to hear everyone's opinion of the book. Sometimes they vary slightly and sometimes there is a huge difference, but we always enjoy the points of view.
It's early...6:00 a.m.
my brilliant blogging ability is "still asleep". My words are not flowing from my mind to my fingertips this morning. sorry. :~)
We ate and talked and then we kept talking and talking and talking---about the book of course.
I think towards the end of our discussion, we came to the conclusion... because some of us had a hard time understanding why "Gatsby" was one of the "Great American Novels".... that for it's time, it was a very controversial book. Something new, a shocking social commentary of the very rich. And F. Scott Fitzgerald was one of the first post ( oh what was it? I've taken literature classes for heaven's sake... I just can't think this morning) Postmodernism... no, maybe that's not right....
But he is considered one of the "Lost Generation" those American Authors, or rather "literary notables" to quote Ernest Hemingway, who lived abroad, in Paris, after WWI, and wrote very, very depressing novels. But very, very worth reading.
In some ironic way.....looking back now.... I think Fitzgerald's novel of Gatsby is a bit autobiographical. Only a bit. (and its' sad, when you think about it), the partying, the drinking, the wastefulness, the flaunting of money, the women.... and then at the end of his life, (Fitzgerald's) the obituaries were condescending and very few people attended his funeral...he was 44 years old.

It was a nice evening. A nice book talk.... it got darker and while you can't tell in the pictures, I had to get a flashlight to be able to see my notes on the book...and then we'd pass it around...just like a campfire group!
There is nothing nicer than talking about books with friends. And eating with friends. And laughing with friends.
We did it all last night.....at the Totally Lit Book Club meeting.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Classics Bookclub

I just signed up --- well, not really signed up, but committed to --- the Classics Bookclub. I'm in. I'm all about it.
I'm wondering where in the world I put my "Pride and Predj..." (where is spell check when I need it?). It's probably under the bed. Honestly, it was on my nightstand for well over a year.
I've never read it, but have watched the PBS version with Colin Firth as Mr. Darcy.
I'm excited and so glad that I don't have to read it by "next" Tuesday.... the 6th.

BTW.... for those of you who have seen more than one version of it on TV, at the movies, on DVD...
Who is your favorite Mr. Darcy?

What's on your Nightstand?

I'm new at blogging... not so new at reading and/or cooking and/or wondering about the meaning of life. LOL
so, quite by accident, I came across this site "5 minutes for books" and there was this question/logo/whatever you call it...( I did say I was new to all this didn't I? I really should check into all this stuff before I dive right in. I hate being the newkid on the block who doesn't know what she is doing. )
What's on my nightstand?

It's a challenge! Or an invitation... to join in and blog about what's on your nightstand. So, I did. Or I am. (check it out, it's really fun!)

So...what's on my Nightstand?

well..... literally this:

After seeing the movie "Prince Caspian" last month, I went home and got all my "Narnia" books out of the closet and set them on my nightstand.
I lovingly glanced thru each one before setting it aside. (on top of "Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver, which I've been meaning to read, but haven't yet.).
My husband sat in bed beside me with a bemused look on his face. He couldn't figure me out. He is not a "real" reader (only having taken it up in the past few years, as he said I've been pushing books on him--what else was he to do), so he has no love of books from his childhood. No sense of wonder and awe, about a book that "took him away". It makes me sad to think about.
But anyway, he thought it funny, that I treated them as old friends. He doesn't understand how much I loved them!!

But I see now that I'm missing #3. Which means I'll have to go open the book closet door and try to find it. I wouldn't want it to be lost. And really....in my book closet (one of many, but this being the "saved" for my grandchildren book closet) it would be easy to get lost.

I have just finished "The Great Gatsby" (it was on my nightstand yesterday) which we will be discussing at our bookclub tomorrow night. I'm really glad I read it, as I am one of the few who wasn't required to read it in highshool lit class.
When you read a classic, or I should say, when I read a classic, it takes me a chapter or two to really get into the rhythm of the language and how they wrote. But once I'm there, I really enjoy it.
It was an interesting book.... we read it as a preface to our August book "The Double Bind" by Christopher Bohjalian, as we've heard he alludes to the Great Gatsby in his book. It's also funny, that when you read a book, a classic, that then you are so aware of all the references to that book in your everyday life. Things you've probably never noticed before.
The other book I've just finished is "The Book Thief" by Markus Zusak. A GREAT READ. If you haven't read it, you must. It wasn't something I would have picked up, but it was for another book club (I only belong to four)

and then my list of read books this summer is:
Death on Demand by Carolyn Hart
In the Bleak Midwinter by Julia Spencer Fleming
Sleep Towards Heaven
The Book of Joe
My Sister's Keeper
The Girls
Blind Spot
The Art of Racing in the Rain

But summer is only half over..... there is more waiting to be read.....

I can't wait till next month.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Genre Challenge

I am going to take up the "Genre Challenge" ...... anyone else?
check it out at


I am new at this blogging, but I read a lot and I like to discuss it and write about it.
I will do ALL of the Challenge. I will a book from every genre.
It should be fun!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Not Thursday but worth mentioning

I know it's not "Thursday", it's Sunday, but I've been away for a wedding. My daugther in law sent these "first lines" ....and I'm going to post them here because not everyone will read the comments.
It's interesting how the "Booking Thru Thursday" question, continues on in book clubs and discussions outside of the blog.

Loved these books....

I like,
"If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you'll probably want to know is where I was born, and what my lousy childhood was like, and how my parents were occupied and all before they had me, and all that David Copperfield kind of crap, but I don't feel like going into it, if you want to know the truth."
From the Catcher in the Rye.


"I am doomed to remember a boy with a wrecked voice-- not because if his voice, or because he was the smallest person I ever knew, or even because he was the instrument of my mother's death, but because he is the reason I believe in God: I am Christian because of Owen Meany.
-A Prayer for Owen Meany.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Booking thru Thursdays

What are your favourite first sentences from books? Is there a book that you liked specially because of its first sentence? Or a book, perhaps that you didn’t like but still remember simply because of the first line?

I have a secret... I can't think of any!! Normally, I would rush to my bookshelf and pull out a couple of great books, and make like I knew these great beginning lines all along, but (second secret) I'm at work (no worries about getting caught, I'm the boss), and there is no bookshelf full of books waiting for me here.
Just off the top of my head, it would have to be the classic "It was a dark and stormy night..."

Hey...what can I say? This is all new to me...forgive me.
I'll catch on... I'm usually a fast learner.

Day 2

Day two of the FF book blogging adventure.
Just finished "The Book Thief" in time for tonight's book club meeting. (we're having Indian food... ??? ... but it will be good) And so fun to get together with other bookies. Bookies? no, that doesn't sound right.
I am switching between 2 blogs. One, a food blog, where we do call each other "foodies".
So, here in my BRAND NEW book blog.... we are.... Lovers of books?

Just a little big about me, in case anyone's paying attention...
I just got appointed to our local Library Board. yay!
I "used" to be a children's librarian---not accredited (and not a great speller LOL), we live in a very small town, but I loved and was good at it, nonetheless.

Okay...that's it for now. My blog just looked so....empty.

I'm still checking out things....book sites, blogs and groups I need to belong to.
Any suggestions?

Wednesday, July 23, 2008


Well, I guess I can't have it all. In one spot that is... one "blogspot". So, here is the launching of the Friday Friends Book Blog.