Tuesday, September 29, 2009

High on Arrival

This month’s read is a tell-all tale by popular A-lister Mackenzie Phillips. In this epic biography Ms. Phillips dishes all the dirt on family, addiction, and the pressures of growing up in the brilliant bright lights of Hollywood. A lot of people are asking, "Mackenzie, why write a biography now while you are in the prime of your life and the peak of your career? Why not wait till you can look back on a life full of achievement and accolades?" Well, perhaps she already has a life full of achievement. Perhaps she needed to heal old wounds with some cathartic writing. Or perhaps she needed a paycheck to buy some of that crack she claims to no longer be taking. I'll leave that for you, the readers and members of the esteemed Finer Things Book Club, to judge.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Contracted at birth?

"....in order to make a man or a boy covet a thing, it is only necessary to make the thing difficult to attain."

When I first read this book, as a kid.. I stopped and in my adolescent thinking realized.. "that is true" How come? Still today as an adult I struggle with this silly, yet very strong aspect of our society. For example.. Adam and I have been addicted to this website lately. Whiskeymilitia.com It is one of those great deal sites, where something is sold at a ridiculously low price until it is gone. If you miss out you are s.o.l. It makes you feel like you have to take advantage because the same item won't be available tomorrow. You can't get it again, it is unattainable, Act now. Really, who is the fool. Yes, Me (and Adam).

Tom got those boys to whitewash the fence for him, plus earn boyhood riches for it, ie.. apple, an arrow, other things I can't remember. how? why? You have to admit you all have it too!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Relax, this is an easy one

Tom Sawyer, By Mark Twain

All righty folks.. Sorry about the delay, I have been out of town for a wedding and some good ol' family time.

This book is easy to read, easy to get, and I haven't read since I was about 12. So that said... Let's just read it at any pace. Hopefully I will get myself together enough to post a couple of discussion topics throughout the month (that is almost half over, oh my). Happy reading.

Monday, August 11, 2008

And We're Back...Right?

Um. I hope no one hates me – I have really dropped the book-club ball the last two months. But I'm back! And I've missed y'all. A huge thank you to Lindy, who was our last discussion leader. I loved Peace Like a River. It dealt with some serious subjects but in a way that brought resolution and hope. I like resolution and hope. So, way to go, Lindy!

As to the future, I think it would be better for all concerned – really just better for me – if we treat my dropping the ball as an unspoken agreement to take a summer recess. That will help me to shift some of the guilt that has taken up a determined residence on my shoulder and we can pick things up again in September, rested and relaxed and ready to go. That said, and with the assumption that everyone is still interested in doing this, I've gone to the hat for the September reading assignment and come back with Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain, which means that Shana will be our discussion leader. I think this will be a great way to start our Fall Finer Things Semester. So, enjoy the rest of your summer recess and we'll see you in September!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

The Old Wrap Up

I just knew that Jape was bad news! Why in the world would Davy take up with him? Although I do appreciate that he didn't want to leave his "daughter" with him.

Did you guys enjoy it? Did anyone read it? I don't even mind if no one else read it, because this gave me a good excuse to have a little fun reading this month.

I thinks it's interesting that both Jape and Davy are murderers, but Davy comes off relatively sympathetic and like a vigilante fighting for the greater good. Jape, on the other hand, seems like a creepy disgusting man who may just be symbolic of the devil himself.

I know that in some ways this book didn't provide a lot of closure with respect to the plot (how could Jape just get away with that!), but I feel like I got closure knowing that these kids were going to be cared for by Roxanna. I know that Jeremiah enjoyed a night with his whole family before he died. I know that Sara, another motherless child like Roxanna and the Land kids, but without the guidance and love of a caring father, finds love and acceptance. And I guess I got some closure knowing that Davy continues to roam free. And of course that Sunny Sundown finds peace.

Although my husband will only refer to this book as "Pee in a River" (clearly he is not a member of the Finer Things Book Club, because no one appreciating the finer things would be so crude) I do think it was a wonderful example of finding peace during turmoil.

If anyone had the chance to read it, let me know what you thought.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Half-Way Point

I hope you guys are enjoying this book as much as I am. I'll admit I didn't realize it was going to have such strong religious undertones, but nonetheless I am loving Engar's writing style. He is really a great story teller.

I have found a couple of things particularly interesting thus far:

1) When Jeremiah has a traumatic experience and is saved by a miracle he decides against finishing medical school and becoming a menial laborer. I have been thinking about how these two things are connected. A doctor is a noble profession focused on helping and healing others. It's not like he used to be an adult film executive who decided to give up a life of crime and adultery. I wonder if he was just looking for a simpler profession that would allow him to spend more time with his family. Either way, it has reiterated to me that I can never understand how another person thinks!

2) Reuben adores and respects each member of his family, but they all are decidedly different with different and conflicting ideals. I think this creates some of the conflict in the book--how can the same person who is in awe of his saintlike father and the miracles that he has seen as his hands give unwaivering support to the actions of his brother who, although with arguably noble intentions, provoked two thugs to break into his house so he could shoot them?

3) From a legal perspective (many of us went to law school so I'm sure you can appreciate this) it seems like a pretty weak case for murder. Even if Davy escalated the conflict by breaking the windows in Finch's car, they still broke into his house in the middle of the night with a baseball bat. Obviously the legal theory behind him being charged with murder isn't at issue in the book, but I'm surprised that the DA would go for it, and that the jury would buy a murder conviction.

These are just a few of my observations on the first half on the book. Let me know any thing you guys have come across. Enjoy the rest of the book and I'll see you in a few weeks!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Peace Like A River

And I'm officially the boss again! I'm glad because it actually motivated me to go out and find the book this time--they had it available at the local library, but my mom's card was expired so instead of going down to the library and renewing it, I spent $13 at Borders. If only we were in my home library town. I could have renewed my library card in no time.

My copy of this book is just over 300 pages. Let's try to get through the first 149 pages, to the Chapter entitled "At War With this Whole World," by mid-month (Goosey's birthday, if you will), and then finish it up by the end of the June. I started it this afternoon and so far I'm really enjoying it.

Happy Reading everyone!