Me Talk Pretty One Day – David Sedaris

Let me preface this by saying I freaking love David Sedaris. He’s one of those authors whose books I have to buy when I see ones I don’t have. His stories are so relevant that you find yourself wondering if he’s written his essay about you.

With that being said, Me Talk Pretty One Day was not one of my favorites. The first part of the book had me literally cry-laughing, but the second half was meh. I loved reading about his stories from childhood, and he kind of lost me as he went into his meth-addicted phase of one-man stage shows. It’s probably just too close to home for me as I grew up around people with a meth addiction, so others may enjoy the rest of the book more than I did.

This review is pretty short as I don’t have much else to say about the book. It was okay, and I’m just glad this isn’t the first Sedaris that I ever read.

Litsy A to Z Challenge

If you’re on Litsy, then you’ve seen this challenge e v e r y w h e r e. If you’re not, let me familiarize you. The Litsy A to Z challenge is a challenge hosted by fellow Litten, @BookishMarginalia. The idea is to read a book for every letter of the alphabet, with either the title or the author’s last name corresponding to each letter. You could challenge yourself further and only read books written by women, POC, etc.

I chose to just do titles and authors’ last names. Here are my selections:

A. Atonement by Ian McEwen

B. Bone Gap by Laura Ruby

C. Commonwealth by Ann Pratchett

D. Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood by Rebecca Wells

E. Euphoria by Lily King

F. Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe by Fannie Flagg

G. Genuine Fraud by E. Lockhart

H. Hamilton by Ron Chernow

I. I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson

J. Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster

K. Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

L. Love in the Time of Cholera by G. G. Marquez

M. Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie

N. November 9 by Colleen Hoover

O. Outlander by Diana Galbadon

P. The Revenant by Michael Punke

Q. Quidditch Through the Ages by K. Whisp

R. Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton

S. Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd

T. Tiger Lily by Jodi Anderson

U. Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriett Beecher Stowe (I refuse to read Ulysses)

V. Vile Village by Lemony Snicket

W. We Should All be Feminists by Chimamanda Adieche

X. X: A Novel by Shabazz

Y. Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion

Z. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

Ethan Frome – Edith Warton

Happy new year, everyone! Ethan Frome is my first read of 2018, and it is also my re-read for the 2018 Back to the Classics challenge. I first read this book when I was a junior in high school. It was one I remember liking, but it wasn’t one of my favorites. Rather than re-reading one of my favorites such as The Great Gatsby or Catcher in the Rye, I decided to give this one another chance as I wasn’t sure I had fully understood the story at 15 years old.

I’m really glad this is the one I chose.

This is a book that requires some life experience to truly understand the themes. Ethan Frome is a poor man who lives in Starkfield, MA. If you’ve ever experienced a New England winter, you understand the brutality of it. The snow gets so tall that you can quite literally step from the roof of your house onto a mound of snow. Now, imagine being stuck in that in 1911 with no power, no transportation other than a horse and buggy, and a hypochondriac wife.

To be honest, I didn’t remember much of the book from the first time I read it. I don’t know if that’s because it’s been so many years or because it just didn’t leave an impression on my adolescent brain. There are a few twists in the book that I won’t spoil here, but my initial reaction toward Frome during my re-read was that he was, quite frankly, an asshole. How could he think ill thoughts of his sick wife while he takes her cousin as a mistress?

As I got to the end of the book, I realized he’s a victim of circumstance. He’d taken care of his sick mother during his teenage years and, despite the help of his wife, Zeena, his mother had died during a brutal winter only to join the headstones in the Frome graveyard that seemed to taunt Ethan. He never wanted to end up as just another headstone with an engraving that detailed his many years stuck with his wife in that house. He wanted to move to a big city to become an engineer, but poverty and desperation caused him to act on emotional impulses. Now he’s just a man with a limp stuck in the cold winters of Starkfield, MA.

If you haven’t read this classic, I highly recommend it. Edith Warton put together such a volatile story in a short amount of pages. It only took me a couple hours to re-read, and I’m sure it will now have a lasting impression on me. I’m thankful for the back to the classics challenge for inspiring me to read this, and I’m excited to dive into more classics as the year goes on.

I’m Back!

Hey everyone,

I’m so sorry that I haven’t posted in about 5 months. I started this blog last spring as a platform to publish reviews, interact with other readers, and hopefully start a beta-reading service.

At the beginning of June, my mom was diagnosed with stage 3c breast cancer. She’s only 56, and we didn’t know what to expect other than it was going to be hard. I spent weeks going to every doctor appointment, chemo infusion and wig shop with her. Thankfully I had just moved back to Idaho and only lived a mile away, and had nothing but time to spend with her. Needless to say, reading and writing reviews wasn’t a priority anymore. Two days ago, she went in for her surgery and is now in recovery. The doctor found a few positive lymph nodes, so now we’re waiting for the biopsy results to see if she’s cured.

Now that my mom is regaining her health and I’ve fallen into a rhythm at work, I’m ready to start blogging again! Yay! I have to thank a fellow Litsy user, @awishman, for posting the 2018 Back to the Classics Challenge as it was the perfect inspiration to get back on my blog today.

Here’s the link if you’d like to participate: https://karensbooksandchocolate.blogspot.de/2017/12/back-to-classics-2018.html

I’ll also be participating in the TBR challenge: https://roofbeamreader.com/2017/11/07/announcing-the-official-2018-tbr-pile-challenge/

If you’re on Litsy, find me! My handle is @Rachel.Rencher