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snippets from books

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It is always exciting to discover a new author.  The Swimming Pool had a lot of twists and turns and Holly LeCraw kept me guessing; this was a Fast Read and I enjoyed it.

In the crumbling palazzo in Florence where she had grown up, the revered ghosts had been the only men in the house, and her mother and grandmother had been conspicuously incomplete.  They were together only for her, for Marcella.  If only, if only, they frequently said, their bodies said, their very gestures–futile grasping hands, sighs, all speaking of unending lack.  If only the men hadn’t left them–one in war, the other in a car accident, two commonplace stories that struck them as spectacularly tragic.  All the hope in the house had landed on her, on Marcella.  Someday, she would find a man to complete her, and them; it had been her birthright, her only task.  But sometimes Marcella imagined they looked at her with narrowed eyes, as if they doubted her capacity to succeed.

When she had met Anthony, then, right after her mamma died, she had felt weak with relief.  He was so clearly the goal for which her mother and grandmother had prepared her–so handsome, so sure, so fearsomely complete him himself!  Men, the di Pavarese men she had never known, had been wondrous creatures, and it had seemed that Anthony Atkinson could stand with them.  Love had seemed not a matter of comfort, but something much more august.

forget the movie Ghostbusters – Teaser Tuesday

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Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Solving the following riddle will reveal the awful secret behind the universe, assuming you do not go utterly mad in the attempt.  If you already happen to know the awful secret behind the universe, feel free to skip ahead.

John Dies @ the End by David Wong

Teaser Tuesday

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Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading.

Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other Teaser Tuesdays  participants can add the book to their To Read Lists if they like your teasers!

We think, in our youth, we are the center of the universe, but we simply respond, go this way or that by accident, survive or improve by the luck of the draw, with little choice or determination on our part.  Years later, if he had been able to look back, Coop might have attempted to discern or reconsider aspects of his or Claire’s or Anna’s character, but when he had waved back to them, standing in the afternoon sunlight, Anna and Claire were interchangeable, one yellow shirt, one green, and he would not have been able to tell who wore this or that color.

Teaser Tuesday

Posted on

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other Teaser Tuesdays  participants can add the book to their To Read Lists if they like your teasers!

I’ve only read a few pages of Good for the Jews by Debra Spark.  It promises to be a good read.

It made a difference that he had once been here.  To his family, yes, but also to her, a stranger whose life brushed his.

what are you reading?

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Jean Rhys:

Reading makes immigrants of us all.

It takes us away from home,

but more important,

it finds homes for us everywhere.

I just started reading Helen Simonson’s novel Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand and am enchanted.  It is well written.  It is charming and I’m looking forward to each page . . . each chapter (but I doubt I will want the book to end; it is one of  ‘those’ books).

From the jacket:

You are about to travel to Edgecombe St. Mary, a small village in the English countryside filled with rolling hills, thatched cottages, and a cast of characters both hilariously original and as familiar as the members of your own family.

An  excerpt from the book –

It was nice, he supposed, that Jemima’s friends had come to support her.  They had created a little clump in the church, taking over several rows toward the front.  However, he was at a loss to imagine why they had considered it appropriate to bring their children.  One small baby had screamed at random moments during the service and now three children, covered in jam stains, were sitting under the buffet table licking the icing off cupcakes.  When they were done with each cake, they slipped it, naked and dissolving with spit, back onto a platter.

Ford County by John Grisham

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I’ve enjoyed all of John Grisham’s novels (actually I thought that A Time to Kill was his best – but then I’m not a literary critic).

His collection of short stories – Ford County – has provided some very pleasurable reading hours.  There is humor; there is tragedy; there are some very memorable characters in these stories – and I couldn’t wait to get to the next story  – and then the next story – and hated for the stories to end.

Just a snippet:

from Quiet Haven
My first glimpse of Quiet Haven reveals a typical 1960s flat-roof, redbrick run-down building with several wings and the general appearance of a dressed-up little prison where people are sent to quietly spend their final days.  These places were once generally called nursing homes, but now the names have been upgraded to retirement homes and retirement villages and assisted-living centers and other such misnomers.   “Momma’s at the retirement village” sounds more civilized than “We stuck her in a nursing home.”  Momma’s at the same place; now it just sounds better, at least to everyone but Momma.

Teaser Tuesday

Grab your current read. Let the book fall open to a random page. Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12. You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!

I had a mental picture of the kind of eighteen-room shack that would go with a few of the Potter millions, not to mention decorations by Duhaux in the last subphallic symbolism.  But I had no mental picture at all of Terry Lennox loafing around one of the swimming pools in Bermuda shorts and phoning the butler by R/T to ice the champagne and get the grouse atoasting.