Thursday, October 18, 2007

Book report - audio and visual

I'm a commuter now (20 minutes each way, so dont weep for me, but still, that's 40 sort of idle minutes a day) so I've been listening to books on tape. So far, I've heard most of two, and I'm part way through a third.

Dont Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight
. I did not actually hear ALL of this, because I read a bunch of stuff about it online and decided to get the book with the pictures in it. Yes, I am 8 years old. However, after hearing about 3/4 of it, I can recommend it, but for the stout of heart. Such a great story about being a child, and being a child in wartime. Unexpectedly funny. And also horrible and heartbreaking a lot of the time. She has a remarkable lack of bitterness about what was really a lot of deprivation and horror in her childhood - - she just tells it like it it.
And the audiobook is really masterfully done - the actress who reads it is, um, a good actress.

Jane and the Prisoner of Wool House
by Stephanie Barron. I think I would've loved this a lot more if the tapes from the library hadn't been all intermittantly wobbly. Worse than having it all the time wobbly, it turns out, because you keep thinking that the wobblies are going to end if you can just grit your teeth for another minute. It was a cute like those books are, but it turns out, I was really wanting something with a little more meat on its bones, if you know what I mean. So I got...

Beloved! Read by Toni Morrison Hergoddessyself. Which keeps making me late for things since I keep sitting in the car to listen to "just a little more...." Oh! So awful and so wonderful and every word so beautifully, perfectly chosen. Well, you know. Since I'm the last person in America to read, or hear, or whatever this book. But just in case I'm not, run don't walk. So good.

I'm also reading sometimes.

For fun reading, I did that "walk swiftly through the fiction section and pick up something that looks interesting" technique at the library, and came up with a funny (both peculiar and ha ha) little book - Radical Prunings: A Novel of Advice from the Contessa of Compost, the conceit of which is that it is advice letters about gardening, which provide a window into the world of an eccentric, cranky woman making her own kind of family with the people who gather around her. There's nothing profound about it, but I can recommend it (maybe for next summer at the beach, or tomorrow ! if you're WS) if you enjoy silliness like: "Orchid flowers imitate some other things, such as the larger, more attractive insects, with bristling wings, sturdy little legs as thin as copper filaments, pudenda, etc. I once read that some orchids are so desperate to be pollinated that they will literally throw themselves at a passing insect. Ladies, haven't we all?"

For work reading:
Read Tell it Like It Is in an insomniac tear a couple of weeks ago (reads more like a dissertation than I was hoping, and nothing you didn't know already, but let me know if you want to borrow it);
Currently carrying around Tribal Church and not finding as many free moments to read it as I'd like (30 pages in, though, I can tell you already that it's genius. But you knew that);
And poking my way slowly (by which I mean, leaving it lying it around, picking it up and opening it at random to read a few a pages once or twice a day - can that method even be CALLED "reading a book?") through How to be an Open-Minded Christian Without Losing Your Faith (recommended by a church member, and I think would be easier to swallow for some of my church folks than some other progressive Christian writings that resonate a little more with me personally. It's got short, helpful sections on dealing with all kinds of questions that seem to come up between Christians Who Differ. ).

I'm thinking of getting I Refuse to Lead A Dying Church. Anyone read that?

1 comment:

Wyldth1ng said...

Are audio books good, I have never listened to one. Doesn't make it harder to understand what's going on?