I feel like I haven't blogged in a hundred years.
Last week I spent most of my time in the hospital with Vivian, who was dealing with a crazy UTI leading to dehydration. We experienced an ambulance ride and everything. It was an experience. I'm so glad she's better and back home.
She was in the hospital for three nights and I feel like it took another six nights just to catch up on work and home and cuddling with my family.
Veronica also turned 13 the day that Vivian came home and the next night I took four tweenies out to the nail salon so that they could all get acrylic nails that they'll likely break off within a week. As for me, I enjoyed some much needed relaxation with a pedicure and an EYEBROW WAX!!!
That's right, I had my crazy eyebrow hair ripped right off and now look like I'm a functioning member of society again. I told you I would keep you posted on that issue!
I also finished a few books since we last spoke....
Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami
This author was suggested to me here on the blog by my friend Laura, who said that this was one of her husband’s favorites of his books. While I do think I might try another of Murakami’s books, this story about a college kid juggling his feelings between girls (one in a mental institution and one who isn’t but needs to be) didn’t totally do it for me. I can tell, however, that the author himself is strong – so I’m excited to give another of his books a chance.
This was a really odd book to have been reading while stuck in the hospital with Vivian. It was super sexual and some of what’s described is a little nauseating. So it messed with my mind to constantly volley back and forth between nurses asking questions, holding Vivian, worrying about how she’s doing, and then pick back up with my mentally unsound characters engaging in wince-inducing sexual acts.
Not bad, not great. Intriguing. Looking forward to another go with Murakami.
The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd
I feel like I’ve read a lot of fiction books about slavery and I feel so awful and weird saying this, but some of these Southern slavery books are so similar that it feels like a formula. These elements certainly mirrored real life (good black people, crappy white people, lots of beatings, usually some raping, often a white person or two who realize that this is BAD but they can’t really do much about it) but my God the stories are heavy to read over and over unless we’ve got some alteration to the formula. Same with all of these World War 2 novels with people falling in love with Nazis. Ugh, stop falling in love with Nazis! What a bad idea!
Sue Monk Kidd is a wonderful writer and in some passages she’s downright poetic. Her characters are layered and her pace is just right. And yet, The Invention of Wings was just – ok. The black people were mostly pretty awesome, the white people were mostly pretty awful, and a couple of them were able to at least try to speak out against slavery on a larger platform but truly didn’t make much progress (thanks to the patriarchy, of course).
This was another case of – I think I love the author, but this particular book wasn’t my world. Next!
The Age of Light by Whitney Scharer
Now this one I really did like, even though I wasn’t sure it would really be my cup of tea by the premise – which is a mostly fictional take on the romance of Man Ray and Lee Miller. However, it was set in Paris in the 20’s and 30’s, with flash forwards to Lee’s life in the 40’s. She had a really interesting life – really I would say she led many lives, from Vogue model to photographer to fashion writer to war reporter to foodie. Certainly her time in Paris in the 20’s and 30’s was fascinating – specifically as she learned more about the art of photography. I did enjoy following her crazy intense romance with Man Ray. It was sensual and exciting until it was unhealthy and obsessive (which was also kind of exciting).
This author really knows how to set a scene. She certainly didn’t cut corners when it came to describing all of the various photographs and artwork that the readers must see in their mind’s eye to fully appreciate this book. So well done! I recommend, if you’re looking for something lighter (for example, if you’re coming off of a book about slavery) but that still has some substance.
I’m flying through a nonfiction/self-help (sorta?) book on my phone right now that you’re going to love.
Mom of four, wife of one. By day I fund-raise with coffee, by night I read with wine and chocolate.