I'm joining a book club!

Discuss dog books! Anything from training to holistic remedies, or even just dog-related fiction.
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Jen
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I'm joining a book club!

Postby Jen » Fri Jul 22, 2011 12:06 pm

And I'm supposed to show up Monday with the title of a book I want to read. "Light summer fare" is the category.

The only books I have on my "want to read" list right now don't qualify as light, summer fare or are ones that I know they've read already.

What light, summer fare is on your list of recently read books? :D

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Re: I'm joining a book club!

Postby Sabine » Fri Jul 22, 2011 12:45 pm

I re-read Practical Demonkeeping by Christopher Moore while we were in Durango this year. Not sure if that qualifies. rofl
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Re: I'm joining a book club!

Postby SherriA » Fri Jul 22, 2011 1:07 pm

Someone recently recommended The Peach Keeper by Sarah Addison (I think that's the author). I haven't read it yet, but it's on my "summer reading" list.
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Re: I'm joining a book club!

Postby emmas_mom » Fri Jul 22, 2011 6:55 pm

Our book club read Still Alice, by Lisa Genova, and I found it a light but incredibly powerful read. One of the best books I've read in years and years. Everyone in our book club loved it (which is really unusual - we are quite an eclectic group with diverse tastes).
I'm currently reading Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides (based on an ODO-er's recommendation) for the September book club meeting - loving it, but don't think I'd call it light reading.
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Re: I'm joining a book club!

Postby whiteboxerboy » Fri Jul 22, 2011 7:17 pm

My moms cousin was visiting earlier this month. She read The Ape House by Sara Gruen.

I dont know if it's considered light reading but she was really encouraging me to read it. I told her I was afraid it would hard to read - a friend told me the movie Like Water For Elephants ( book by same author) was hard to watch and she had to cover her eyes & almost had to leave the theater.

My moms cousin never did give me a straight answer about whether there was any abuse detailed in the book, but it sounded interesting.

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Re: I'm joining a book club!

Postby Bari » Fri Jul 22, 2011 8:43 pm

It's a good read but there are some disturbing situations.
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Re: I'm joining a book club!

Postby PofiMia » Fri Jul 22, 2011 10:19 pm

Middlesex is one of my favorite in the last 10 years - you'll have to let me know what you think, Emmas_Mom when you've finished. (I agree, I don't think of it as light reading).

What about something by Anne Patchett? She's always a good read, I think. Substantive, but not "dense" - her prose is not cumbersome, but light and easy. She has a new book out. I've read Bel Canto, The Magician's Assistant, Truth & Beauty (non fiction memoir) and The Patron Saint of Liars. Like them all (but most especially Bel Canto).

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Re: I'm joining a book club!

Postby Jen » Fri Jul 22, 2011 10:40 pm

Thanks for all the suggestions! I'll go look 'em up now.

I did already look up Practical Demonkeeping, and it sounds like a contender. Especially with its south of Big Sur small town locale. :)

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Re: I'm joining a book club!

Postby Sabine » Fri Jul 22, 2011 11:37 pm

I enjoyed it a lot - so far I haven't read anything by Christopher Moore that I didn't like though. :) He has a fun, amusing writing style.
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Re: I'm joining a book club!

Postby connie » Sat Jul 23, 2011 5:55 am

A friend of mine just read "Still Alice" and was recommending it to me at dinner last night. I think the author was the subject of a New Yorker profile last year, so I know about the book ...

For light summer reading, I am re-reading the Harry Potter series! I'm on #4, "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire." I love the series, this is not my first re-reading of it ...

I also am reading "The Wave" by Susan Casey -- a former competitive swimmer, she became intrigued with 100-foot waves and wrote a book about them. It's absolutely fascinating. Here's a YouTube clip:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=of1kHz4bp9o

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Re: I'm joining a book club!

Postby Jen » Mon Jul 25, 2011 1:08 pm

Oh, I actually picked up Still Alice at a thrift store this spring and forgot about it, but it's packed away somewhere. I wonder if I can find it by this afternoon.

I think I'm going to contribute either The Peach Keeper or Still Alice for the list of possibilities. :D

Thanks!

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Re: I'm joining a book club!

Postby Moemer » Sat Aug 06, 2011 12:04 pm

Is Still Alice the once about the woman with Alzheimer's? That was a good book.

I'm not very good at light reads. I like the heavy stuff that makes you want to die, or just makes you feel awed and stupid.

I haven't read it, but I hear that Terry Follis's "Best Laid Plans" is a hilarious and really well written book ( http://www.cbc.ca/books/canadareads/201 ... plans.html ) Another great, lighter-than-my-usual book is "Come, Thou Tortoise" by Jessica Grant. This one is pretty quirky.

For the "heavy, winter fare" coming up in a couple of months, I'd recommend Swing Low by Miriam Toews (or any of her other books, which aren't quite as horrific, but still have those elements. "Swing Low" is a first-person account of her father's life and mental illness/dementia), anything by Anne Marie MacDonald, or anything by Alice Sebold. (But note, if anyone in the group is a survivor of abuse, these books might trigger them. It's not at all sensationalized violence, just very deep, real, and intimate stories that weave in violence/abuse)
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Re: I'm joining a book club!

Postby Moemer » Sat Aug 06, 2011 12:04 pm

I guess I'm a little late on this thread!! lol
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Re: I'm joining a book club!

Postby emmas_mom » Sun Aug 07, 2011 10:51 am

[quote=PofiMia]Middlesex is one of my favorite in the last 10 years - you'll have to let me know what you think, Emmas_Mom when you've finished. (I agree, I don't think of it as light reading).
[/quote]

Well, I finished reading it at 2 AM the other morning, and I'm curious to hear what my book club members will say about it. I found the first couple of chapters a bit of a struggle, and likely wouldn't have continued if I hadn't needed to read it for the bookclub (I have a policy of not reading any book that doesn't hook me in the first chapter - so many books, so little time!). But I'm glad I did keep reading, because by the end of "book one" (the first few chapters), I was totally hooked. Sped through the next many chapters and had to force myself to put it down from time to time. However, I found the last section disappointing (once the narrator moved to contemporary times and there was no more about the previous generations) - however, this may be due to my own background in gender and sexualities (I used to teach this stuff at university) so felt more like I was reviewing material I already knew.

I was irritated by the name of the brother (Chapter Eleven)and a few other little annoying, unnecessary twists that I felt could have just as easily been left out, but other than that I considered it a good read.

We have a couple of quite 'proper ladies' in our bookclub group, who also tend to be quite naive when it comes to stuff about sexualities, so I can't wait to hear their reactions to the last part of the book.
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Re: I'm joining a book club!

Postby PofiMia » Tue Aug 16, 2011 7:46 am

What I found really compelling about Middlesex, in addition to the gender and sexuality exploration at its core, was how vivid the characters and place all seem. The family and their foibles, secrets, bonds and dysfunctions, all seemed so richly textured to me. I almost feel like they were acquaintances rather than characters in a book - I knew so much about them and not all of it propelled the story forward.

The same with place - Detroit - it's history and character also seem so vibrant and full to me. A co-worker (who is a black gay male originally from Detroit)has borrowed it and is totally absorbed by the story of Detroit; he cites the accuracy of fact, but also feel of it.

It did lose a little of the flavor at the end in the contemporary story, but it gave some sense of closure and or peace and settling for the central character.

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Re: I'm joining a book club!

Postby emmas_mom » Tue Aug 16, 2011 9:12 pm

[quote=PofiMia]What I found really compelling about Middlesex, in addition to the gender and sexuality exploration at its core, was how vivid the characters and place all seem. The family and their foibles, secrets, bonds and dysfunctions, all seemed so richly textured to me. I almost feel like they were acquaintances rather than characters in a book - I knew so much about them and not all of it propelled the story forward. ...
[/quote]

I agree - I had to keep reminding myself that it was fiction, not biographical, because the characters, place, and historical perspective were so well done.

Changing the subject, I just finished reading "Flowers for Algernon" by Daniel Keyes. My daughter recommended it, so I was a bit skeptical as our tastes differ considerably, but it was a great read.

Can't remember if I mentioned it already, but another great read is Mao's Last Dancer, an autobiography by Li Cunxin. Again, I didn't really expect to like it as I'm not into autobiographies, but it was really good!
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Re: I'm joining a book club!

Postby PofiMia » Thu Aug 18, 2011 8:21 pm

I'll have to look at Mao's Last Dancer - I've been thinking a lot about the Chinese Cultural Revolution(s) lately after watching My Fair Concubine - such a vivid portrayal of those changes.

I read Flowers for Algernon about 30 or so years ago in highschool - really should try it again. I remember the main plot, but not the detail.

I just read Walking Ollie, Winning the Love of a Difficult Dog - sort of like Marley and Me in that it is a memoir about a couple who adopt a rescue lurcher and really don't entirely know what they are doing. But not as idiotic - shows more of a desire and willingness to begin to understand things from Ollie's perspective and that is a turning point. Ollie was the subject of a blog of the same name, but suddenly broke a leg and was found to have osteosarcoma about 2 years ago. The author, Stephen Foster, was a supporter of Lurcher Link and had recently been a celebrity judge at a fun fair event they had to raise money, but in June he was reported missing by his partner and found to have drowned in the river. Very mysterious and sad. There is a second book about Dylan, the lurcher they adopt to be Ollie's companion and it has a very sad epilogue in this later edition about the loss of Ollie. Not ready to read it yet.

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Re: I'm joining a book club!

Postby Amanda » Thu Aug 18, 2011 10:31 pm

I saw the movie Mao's Last Dancer. It was very good. I bet the book is even better.

I also read Flowers for Algernon a long time ago. Either in 8th grade or in high school at some point. I remember liking it, but being annoyed at having to dissect it for class. :)


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