Historical fiction. Cozy mystery. Multiple character perspectives. Murder. Witchcraft. Ghosts. Blackmail. Nazi plots. Chick lit style attractions. This book has EVERYTHING.
A behavioral therapist once told me that we have a tendency to repeat our mistakes over time, and we can’t break that cycle until we recognize WHY we make those mistakes. I ended up listening to this audiobook in the same way I ended up watching Boogie Nights. I heard a description, assumed it was about one thing, and then was very surprised to end up watching porn with my mother. It’s obvious I don’t fully read the description before I checked out Maestra. The first line of the blurb made it sound great for a commute listen – a young English woman working as an assistant in an art gallery….Boom! Downloaded. Sounds like girly fun!
I have many talents and abilities. I’m an OK flute player. I can make a frog puppet out of my fingers. I can do push-ups. I’m usually pretty good at my job. I’m good at setting lots of personal goals. One thing I’m NOT so good at is following through on those goals. I’ll walk into a room and grandly announce that I’m going to paint the room purple, but then I’ll use that money to buy jeggings. Or maybe I’ll change my mind and think that gold paint would look better than purple. I’m a combination of easily distracted and self absorbed that has on two separate occasions resulted in 1. my nearly getting hit by a Ghostbusters replica vehicle and 2. me stepping up to my knee in freshly poured cement.
In 2017 I’m going to do the #unreadbookshelfchallenge proposed by Twitter user @bythesheetstore. She proposes we read at least a book a month to clear our backlog of books we’ve hoarded.
I’ve got a ton – most are partially finished. As I’ve become lazy and am now mostly reading on Kindle or listening to audiobooks, I’m going to focus on analog books. My shelf is an odd mishmash of horrible chick lit, draft romance novels my brother gets from work, top ten bestsellers passed on by my boss, self published stuff my mom has picked up, and cheesy self help books assigned to me by other people. Side note: if someone offers you a self help book, they’re telling you that you need it. So it’s probably not the best idea to yell “BLAAAAHHHH” halfway through and whip it across your bathroom.
If you’re interested in this, you can tag your progress using the #UnreadBookshelfChallenge. Let’s deal with this mess!
Jane Green is insane, and I don’t hate her for it. She’s written approximately one million novels, and I admire that kind of creative output. She also seems well meaning, and I bet she’d be fun to get margarita drunk with. Unfortunately, while I’m sure she’d be lots of fun and very polite, I can’t imagine her coming over to my tiny house in my tiny town, or sitting on my sofa from Goodwill. While I delight in my clever thriftiness, I don’t think Jane could handle it. No, Jane Green seems like she might be fancy, and that’s why I read her books the way some people devour Us Weekly. Pure rubbernecking.
I swear that this time my lack of updates isn’t because I forgot I have a blog. It’s because I’ve had writers’ block for the last year or so, and I’ve had a hard time focusing my attention and energy directly onto any one project for more than a few weeks at a time. It’s been fun to wallow around in dramatic, emotional, existential gloom, but all good things must come to an end. Last week I realized in a panic that NaNoWriMo is about to start again, and I haven’t missed a year since my first successful novel writing in 2013. “Better get started, then, with that research and outlining!” I thought to myself upon waking last week. So I immediately did what any writer does: I logged into Overdrive and downloaded an audiobook. My first rule of NaNoWriMo is always procrastination.
I’m not sure if it’s that my brother is now working for the company that services the Ohio Digital Library’s e-book app and is screwing with my account, or if the makers of OverDrive use some kind of crazy psychic algorithm for book recommendations, but for some reason I’m being presented with an assortment of crazy ass novels every time I log in to choose a new ebook or audiobook. On one occasion I logged in to see two books recommended to me, one was “What’s Going on Down There” and had some youths on the cover looking down towards their crotch areas, and the other was “The Chocolate Wars.” Given that this recommendation popped up on the first day of my period I was understandably spooked, and also a little crampy and hungry for chocolate.
For those of you who live in Ohio, we have a wonderful lending tool called the “Ohio Digital Library.” It’s linked to your local library, and if you have an active account, you can rent digital media through their app. It is wonderful, and although they don’t have every book in the library in electronic format, it’s still a great resource for those of us who need to always be reading, but who are too lazy busy to go to a physical library.
“You must imagine your life,” Alexandra confided to the younger woman. “And then it happens.” – The Witches of Eastwick, by John Updike
The full title of this book, according to Kindle, is “The Witches of Eastwick: a Novel.” What the hell else would it be, a pony, amiright? I was a much younger woman when I first read The Witches of Eastwick, and I decided to revisit it after reading an article on the internet wherein the author claims that John Updike was brilliant and that every word he ever wrote was pure gold.
Every so often I’ll start a blog, and I’ll say something confident and positive, like “I’m going to update this once a week, and it’s going to be dynamic and people will like me!” Then I’ll forget I have a blog, and I’ll leave it alone for approximately three years, at which point someone will ask what happened to my blog. “Oh yeah!” I’ll exclaim, scratching at myself like a simpleton. “I have a blog! I’ll get right on that!” This is exactly what’s happened here. No apologies, my failure to blog is just a character flaw in this digital age. If you think this blog is a random, scattered failure, you should see my Facebook page as well as the rest of my personal life. Anyway….