Thursday, April 12, 2007

So many books, so much time, what the heck is a meme?

I've been reading again. There tends to be a lot of that around here in March and early April, as Steve uses the Lenten season to extricate himself from the steady diet of This Old House, America's Next Top Chef, and West Wing reruns we gorge on during the long days of winter ("So what if we've seen Norm and Tom install a forced-air heating system in the remodeled craftsman bungalow three times already?" he tells me. "Who knows when we might need to do something like that ourselves???") So for the month of March the TV goes off, and we train our eyes to move from left to right across the page once again.

Right now, I'm reading a book with the most brilliant title/cover concept ever. Cracks me up - the Tiffany blue, the extended finger (although I'm pretty sure you can't actually do that with your third finger).

Last week I finished a book that absolutely baffled me. It didn't resolve. The premise was good - a collapsed relationship between a mother and daughter who never recovered from the mysterious disappearance of their husband/father, a pilot who may or may not have been shot down when flying in dangerous airspace. Great stuff to work with. But the characters were so patently unlikeable - Mom was a defeated, hopeless nag; daughter was an angry, tatooed rebel with no underlying soft side; Dad had clearly been a selfish cad who put his own adventures and pleasure ahead of anyone else in his life - that I wasn't sure that bringing these people back together would be anything short of a train wreck. And the closing chapters lost me, as the author's increasingly vague illusions to who new people might or might not be, and what might or might not be happening left me wondering if pages had been torn out of the book.

I checked out the author's website once I finished, to see if perhaps I'd stumbled into the middle of some larger literary project. This girl has skulls on her website. It didn't take long for me to figure out that readers like me (who own everything Jane Austin ever wrote and freely admit that "How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days" is one of my favorite movies) are not her target demographic. Fair enough. I'm not terribly street smart, but I know better than to mess with grown women who decorate with skulls.

For more book reviews, check out my book log.

What have you all (for some reason I can't say "ya'll" until the weather warms up) been reading?

***Late breaking blog confession: So after finishing this post, I was trolling around the blog sphere catching up on all I've missed from my online friends. My favorite Texan commented Monday that I'd missed a lot of great Memes while I was gone. Which forces me to finally confess: I have no idea what "Meme" stands for. Or what I missed. Or what questions I'm supposed to answer? I think it has something to do with one of Stacy's minions inviting Sarakastic to the Ukrainian-American Heritage Ball, but beyond that, I'm lost...


Stacy said...

Well all but one of the books I read this year are reviewed on my blog, but the most recent one I read (and haven't reviewed yet) was Sandra Kring's "The Book of Bright Ideas" which was amazing. Everyone I know will be getting a copy for Christmas.

Beck said...

I haven't been reading anything! (aside from rereading old mysteries, which does NOT count.) I want to go to the library this weekend SO much!

Stacy said...

So, I guess no one knows what "meme" stands for, and no one wants to admit to it.

Well, I just cheated and Googled it so you can look either here:

or here:

LEstes65 said...

Stacy - thank you for validating that most people don't know what "meme" means. I thought it was just my not-being-a-cool-writer-chick thing showing.