Monday, November 05, 2007

Ode to Bookish-ness


Every time I stand at the checkout counter in the libary I get the same feeling I had when I was a little girl: those little bubbles of excitement and thoughts of getting home and ignoring everything else while I dive headfirst into the book bag. Now that I'm older I have other experiences that can compare like: Mommy's about to go shopping, or having time for an afternoon nap, or suddenly remembering there are double chocolate cookies in the freezer that my kids (who are in bed in this daydream of mine) don't know about or....well, that's a pretty good one so I'll leave it at that. Books and I have shared this nerdy little love fest since I was too young to realize that it was Black Beauty instead of Black Cutey. My dad used to read the first sentence from one of its pages and then I would happily recite the rest of the page. I read "Heidi" in kindergarten and afterward would horrifyingly announce this to anyone who would listen. The adult me wants to pick a fight with that snobby little 6-year-old. The point being that I just love a good book! I snuggle into my library nerdiness like a warm blanket whenever I enter that happy building of books. And more, in case you want to hear it: I even like looking up books in the catalog system; I love my little treasure hunt to find them on the shelves; I love that double-chocolate-cookie-in-the-freezer feeling when I find one I've wanted and it gets to come home with me. I love having a big stack of them waiting for me at home or in the car, waiting with their secrets and their dreams and their places I haven't been. (A long time ago Celia enlightened me on the usefulness of a good book for passing the minutes during annoyingly bad traffic which I've been brave enough to try on occasion but only in CA where the traffic warrants it.) I love that a book can beat out a movie anyday, and I really like movies!


So, I made a hurried trip late this afternoon down to my humble little 50s style library. I'm on a quest to find a good one for book club, so I have a little over a week to read these...


Candidates:
1) River of Gold by Victor Villasenor.

Loved it but it's been awhile since I read it, so I'm not sure if it's going to win the honor. It gets points for "earthiness" as Erin called it. Translate: sex and swearing. That wins points with me since, though I seek not after these things, I do seek for a book club that won't lapse into the prudish trap of those from my past. We'll see.....

2) A World Lit Only By Fire by William Manchester.

Can't say enough great things about it. Just need to review the others before making a decision. A great look at the medieval world, Catholic church, etc. Entertaining and reader-friendly even though it sounds dry. A must read.
3) Life is So Good by George Dawson and Richard Glaubman.
Haven't read it, but it's a biography about a man who died at age 103 and started school at age 98.
4) Left to Tell by Immaculee Ilibagiza.
About a lady who evaded getting killed in the Rwanda violence and her story. Haven't read it yet.


Lots of books, so little time. I know there are more. I am fighting the urge to add more to the list and I may swap some out for others. But, we wouldn't want scary, neglectful mommy to visit too often. Unfortunately, that means I stay up late. Really late.

9 comments:

Nortorious said...

Is there a non-fiction requirement for your book club? If you have mostly women in your book club, you might check out 'Female Chauvinist Pigs.' I'm in love with that book because a liberal (read non LDS, shock!) woman attacks raunch and the rise of pornography in today's culture. Plus, there are reading group questions in the back and it's only 150 pages.

brittany said...

hi! I'm happy to find you! I'm making dinner, so I'm going to come back when I can really catch up:)

but in response to your question about the camera, I love my canon digital rebel. It's pricey, but I haven't regreted it for a second. I would say go for it!

Paige said...

I totally agree with you about a good book, but really, do you cuddle up with a good book about Rwanda? Your list is educated but in need of a little Jennifer Weiner.

I left you another little comment on celia's judy blume post.

janelle said...

Paige, I haven't read the Rwanda book yet. Erin liked it. We'll see. The list does look a little on the heavy side. I thought about Everyone Worth Knowing by Lauren Weisberger. Just not sure how it would go down with the group. We read Briget Jones and that was so funny.

Courtney said...

I had no idea we had the library thing in common! And after all these years! I, too, love to look for a book in the catalog and then go find it on the shelf! So many Monday nights growing up our fam would go to the Contra Costa County Library as our FHE and then get Thrifty's ice cream afterwards! Ah, the memories. I know that feeling of bringing home a stack of books! Someday I hope to grow up like my mom and be a librarian.

Courtney said...

P.S. I am interested in the books you have listed and will try to check them out. I'm also interested in Nor's recommendation--I love it when people take a stand. And I'm so sick of raunch, etc.

Lindsey Smith said...

When I was in third grade I read Charlottes Web. When the book ended, so did charlotte! I cried my eight year old heart out! Books can end in death? They allow that? Even to this day, if the book ends in a less than satisfactory manner, I find myself coming up with the "real ending." On occasion I get slightly confused in our book club, as I try to recall the authors version of how his/her work ended. Has anyone seen Kate and Alex?

Ali said...

HI Janis...i just found your blog. I didn't know the link..only knew how to get to it from Celia's and her link to you was broken. Needless to say it has been fixed and here I am. Still going to visit me on Tues? I hope so. I try to keep myself as booked out at possible so i don't have to face dead time...oh my life. What has become of it. Where do you want to go to lunch? Do you want to go to that fabric store also? Maybe a movie??? I love going to movies mid day. Call me.

Celia Fae said...

Jan, I loved the first two books, but I can't say that I've read them recently. I might be too stupid. I actually have the World Lit Only By Fire on my nightstand to reread but it is getting pushed out by trashier endeavors.

I haven't read either of the last two, but it sounds like you have a pretty decent book club. I'm jealous.