Monday, April 12, 2021

Still Here

 Reading LUSTER, which has to have some of the best reviews of a debut novel I have ever seen. It is the story of a young Black woman who gets drawn into a white family who've adopted a Black child. The writing is extremely sharp, you feel like every word has been honed--perhaps too much at times. But I certainly am in awe of such a prodigy. On her cover picture, she looks about 25. It is not my kind of book exactly. Do you feel like you have a particular kind of book that is likely to speak to you? Maybe she is just too young but Rebecca was very young and that books speaks to me. Maybe she is too much of this time and place. I am not sure but although I certainly admire Leilani's use of the language and her complex thoughts, it is not a book that draws me in. 

Enjoying Happy Hour, a five-hour Japanese movie on Kanopy. They have broken it into three parts and it concerns four 37 year old women in Japan in 2015.I get Kanopy through my library as well as Hoopla.

Finish Shtisel, which I really enjoyed and they were kind enough to provide some happy endings. Also watched This is a Robbery, a 4-part doc on Netflix about the robbery of the Isabel Gardner Museum in the nineties. Somewhat overly long. Three parts probably would have been better. Also the magnificent Ken Burns doc on Ernest Hemingway.

Also plugging away at the Mike Nichols bio, which is very well done. 

We celebrated Josh's birthday this weekend. Nice to be together without masks since we all have had our shots. Interesting learning how gym was conducted in Kevin's virtual school. Virtual gym turns out to be his Mom filming him doing various things like sit-ups and playing catch. How much this generation is losing with this pandemic going on and on. Half of Michigan has just given up on any sort of social distancing. And you can guess who they voted for. 

How about you?


Steve A Oerkfitz said...

Just finished Not Dark Yet, the new Peter Robinson novel. Good but not one of his best. Reread Michael Swanwick's Stations of the Tide. One of my favorite SF novels. Just started The Free by Willy Vlautin.
Really enjoyed the Hemingway documentary. Other than that most of my tv viewing has been watching the Tigers struggling again. It's going to be a strong season.
I can get Kanopy on my computer but not my tv unless I get a firestick.
Otherwise a pretty dull week although a couple og 80 degree days earlier in the week allowed me to spend time outside was nice.
Glad you got to spend time with your family.

Steve A Oerkfitz said...

I meant long season. I need to proof read better before I post.

pattinase (abbott) said...

My roku only cost $29. I use it for all of the streaming channels. You could also stream Hoopla from the library through it.
Megan is going to be talking to Vlautin virtually this week about his new novel. I will post it when I find out where.

Jeff Meyerson said...

I agree with Steve on the Robinson book. I hope he is finally ready to move on from the trafficking story he's been obsessed with for the last several books. Also read Lee Goldberg's BONE CANYON and collections by C. J. Box and Antonya Nelson. I like her writing.

We're enjoying season three of SHTISEL very much too. But we're spacing them out so as not to finish too quickly. Finished the disappointingly silly Danish EQUINOX, which I don't recommend, and what turned out to be only half a season of the excellent French LUPIN, which left things in a cliffhanger, with the second half coming later this year. Started HANNA (we saw the movie several years ago) and latest BROKENWOOD MYSTERIES on Amazon/Acorn/Britbox (too lazy to check which is which), and now that we finished LEWIS and MORSE we've started John Thaw's contemporaneous series KAVANAGH QC. He's a former working class boy from Manchester turned barrister in London. A young Ewen McGregor (playing a college student) is accused of raping Alison Steadman in the first show, which also has other familiar faces - Lisa Harrow as Thaw's wife, Anna Chancellor as his assistant, etc. The series ran from 1995 to 2001, roughly the period of the final "season" of Morse, where they did one full length show a year. Also watching ATLANTIC CROSSING on PBS, quite tense so far, and Burns's HEMINGWAY, which is as excellent as I'd hoped (and expected).

Weather has been up and down but it looks like a cool, rainy week for the most part. Last week was nice and warm enough for us to eat out (outside in restaurants) twice.

Margot Kinberg said...

I'm sorry to hear you aren't more drawn in to Lister, Patti. I keep hearing such great things about it and I was wondering if I should read it. I hope you start to enjoy it more.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I remember seeing the first season of KAVANAGH the year we lived in Manchester. Have to go back to it. Yes, AC seemed promising.
Probably me, Margot. Writing that is too polished often grates on me.

George said...

We're still catching up on snail mail, email, and programs that were DVRed while we spent a week in Ohio visiting Diane's sister last week.

Loved Ken Burns' HEMINGWAY. Western NY basked under an April sun that gave us TWO 80 degree days! Plenty of people were out and about in the nice weather, most wearing masks.

Diane invited two of our friends (who we haven't seen in a year) over to lunch. All of us have been vaccinated so we decided the time was right for such an event. So far, so good.

But Covid-19 is spiking in Western NY among young people who haven't been vaccinated. Worrisome...

pattinase (abbott) said...

Michigan is the worst spot in the nation. Hoping it's not a trend.

Rick Robinson said...

Days are reaching low 60s now, still 30s at night, and dry. We may have to turn on the irrigation soon. Watched Hemingway with enjoyment, and as I was already dipping into his short stories I continue to do so. I read a Lee Child book, 61 HOURS, a Reacher novel. The first of them I'd read, and I didn't think much of it. Way too long at 500+ pages, and the ending was a non-ending, unless the reader is to believe he killed his main character, which he must not have, as there are more in the series. Don't see what all the fuss is about at all.

Much better was the second Bryant & May book by Christopher Fowler, The Water Room. I'm reading the third in the series, Seventy-Seven Clocks now.

Covid numbers are spiking everywhere, it seems, and we're glad we are vaccinated, but, fools being fools, we still keep trips away from home to a minimum, double mask and distance always. Barbara shops once a week, and yesterday I drove to get a pizza, but that's it. The anti-vacsers are idiots, in my opinion. The pandemic isn't going away any time soon. I hope you stay well and safe.

TracyK said...

My husband and I got our second shots on Friday. He felt very bad on Saturday but Sunday he was better. I was tired and a bit achy over the weekend but nothing worse. Now if my son could get a vaccination soon I could be more relaxed.

We finished WOLF HALL this weekend. It was very good but too many characters I could not keep track of. We watched THE CLOCKS adaptation with David Suchet, and only have two more of those left to watch (after I read the books).

I am reading several books at once, unusual for me. SOHO OVER SUNSET by Gladys Mitchell as a month long read along. Also POST CAPTAIN by Patrick O'Brian and EX LIBRIS by Anne Fadiman. I am loving the short essays in EX LIBRIS, I wish it was twice as long.

pattinase (abbott) said...

OOh, was just able to get the audio version of EX LIBRIS from my library. I was getting tired of listening to Steve Martin.
Yes, it is a good thing we can be outside now because inside, even with the shots, seems a little dicey until Michigan straighten itself out.

Jeff Meyerson said...

George and I both like Anne Fadiman's books, EX LIBRIS included.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Am not crazy about the reader on the audiobook. She makes her seem like a snob. Sigh. Will look for print version.

Todd Mason said...

Am indulging in books again, as I will apparent have to subscribe to magazines, not the worst fate except Dejoyless continues to attempt to destroy the Post Office from within while the current admin doesn't try too hard to dislodge him (they have a lot on their plate, to be sure, but Biden, ever the fan of the concretized metaphor, sure as hell doesn't need to waste more money and further other evils with continuing with the border "walls", among other bad ideas), since British-owned B&N isn't interested in having them much anymore. After magazines featuring fiction, my next level of staples are jazz magazines, the smarter sort of general-interest magazines (HARPER"S, etc....most annoying that THE AMERICAN SCHOLAR seems to be on the chopping block, along with THE PROGRESSIVE...maybe I can bestir my lethargy and write another article for them again after a quarter-century), and even the UK magazine I bought most often there, SIGHT AND SOUND.

Due to an apparent congestion in my left eardrum, went deaf in my left ear for several days. Slowly regaining hearing there, but the constant tinnitus is its own kind of fun. Sound are dampened and tinny as they vie with the eardrum hum and whine on the left. Most problematic when getting my J/J&J short last Weds...crowded basketball court full of chatter.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Have had tinnitus for 20 years and it is no fun.

Gerard Saylor said...

I don't think I've heard of Willy Vlauting before. I started an older Stuart Neville novel, FINAL SILENCE, and have also been listening to 7 1/2 DEATHS OF EVELYN HARDCASTLE. I started EVELYN HARDCASTLE on a whim and was going to quit but the book became much better. I had not known the story is more of a sci-fi/fantasy mystery than a English drawing room set-up.

Boy #1 and I visited U of MN on Monday. MN offers in-person tours for admitted students and Boy #1 seemed to enjoy the limited parts of the campus available. We drove around the area and he even wanted to visit the St. Paul campus and walk around.

I ran across THE HEART, SHE HOLLER on HBO. Three seasons of 10-15 minute episodes that ran on ADULT SWIM. A mix of David Lynch, horror, and gross-out comedy. Fun but cringey. I've slowly been watching THE TERROR on Hulu. I greatly enjoyed the novel but the adaptation has not always held me.

Todd Mason said...

Patti, what causes yours? I have mild tinnitus whenever I use a blender or when my heart is pounding, but this is constant and loud in two tones. It'll be fun to have this end, if possible.