You rip my heart out of my chest, squeeze it, bounce of the wall like a tennis ball, burn and shred it, put it back together a...moreDamn you Patrick Ness!!
You rip my heart out of my chest, squeeze it, bounce of the wall like a tennis ball, burn and shred it, put it back together and then shove it back in.
I’m not sure what to do with it now.
One night a monster came to call on Conor just after midnight. The monster looks like the yew tree from his back yard, but all big and scary and, well, walking about. But what the monster really is, is a monster we all deal with, he is the ‘fear of loss’ monster. Not ‘loss’ itself exactly, but the fear of that moment that will change everything. The moment when that loved one you know you could ‘never live without’ is gone…..forever. Now what?
I am not a religious person, but I have a strong belief that the world we see with our eyes is not at all the beginning and the end of it. There is something else, but damned if I know the details. I say this because this book came to me at a time I needed it to. I've had it sitting in my library for a while and when I started it, it was because I just finished a very long book and this one was nice and short (or at least, that's why I thought I picked it up). I had no idea what it was about.
Currently I am dealing with the impending loss of a dear loved one. My dog, Jackson, is almost fourteen and a week ago he became very ill with vomiting and diarrhea (yeah, I know he’s not a person, but hey, he’s my friend). He was hospitalized for four days, getting fluid therapy. The vomiting and diarrhea got better but his blood work came back with troubling numbers involving his liver. He’s most probably has cancer in his liver and there is nothing that is going to change that. He’s going to die…..could be a few months….a year….or tomorrow. But tonight he is doing alright.
I’m faced with this monster, fear of loss, and also the monster that is unique when dealing with a pet, the fear of not knowing when to call it a day. The fear of un-necessary suffering. Since we do have the option to end the suffering of our pets, but not with our human loved ones (this is somehow wrong, in my opinion), some things in this book made more sense when thinking in terms of euthanasia.
“You must speak the truth and you must speak it now, Conor O'Malley. Say it. You must."
Conor shook his head again, his mouth clamped shut tight, but he could feel a burning in his chest, like a fire someone had lit there, a miniature sun, blazing away and burning him from the inside.
“It'll kill me if I do,” he gasped.
"It will kill you if you do not, the monster said. You must say it.”
Boy did this run chills up my spine, since I think this thought a lot these days…..
“And he spoke the words, he spoke the truth. He told the rest of the fourth tale. “I CAN’T STAND IT ANYMORE!” He cried out as the fire raged around him. “I CAN’T STAND KNOWING THAT SHE’LL GO! I JUST WANT IT TO BE OVER! I JUST WANT IT TO BE FINISHED!”
Of course I go back and forth, wrestling on what the right decision for Jackson is, worrying that I’m not going to know what it is and also wanting it to be over…..and feeling horrible for feeling that way. And at the same time knowing that this is completely normal.
“The answer is that it does not matter what you think, the monster said, because your mind will contradict itself a hundred times each day. You wanted her to go at the same time you were desperate for me to save her. Your mind will believe comforting lies while also knowing the painful truths that make those lies necessary. And your mind will punish you for believing both.”
This book is amazing. Really. Go on, read it. Do it. It's relevant to everyone since we all have loss. I've lost a loved one who was young and left tragically. I've lost loved ones who've gone after long illnesses and I've lost one who left very peacefully, yet unexpectedly. This book is relevant to all of these.
“And a part of you wished it would just end, said the monster, even if it meant losing her.”
Jackson only had two more days after all. He took a turn for the worse and I had to end his suffering today 11/1/13 at 4:10 on this cold, gray and rainy afternoon.....fitting.
“What if we had a chance to do it again and again, until we finally did get it right? Wouldn't that be wonderful?”
I believe everyone would l...more“What if we had a chance to do it again and again, until we finally did get it right? Wouldn't that be wonderful?”
I believe everyone would love a chance to go back and change things in their past. Correct mistakes in order to change their life or their loved ones lives for the better. But changing one thing may only lead to a new problem……then you have to go back, change the first mistake, then the second one, and so on. I don’t know about you, but this sounds exhausting to me.
Ursula gets the chance to get it ‘right’ over and over again. She is born on a snowy night in February 1910, but since she is born with no doctor present, and with the umbilical cord around her neck she never breaths a breath. Ursula is born on a snowy night in February 1910; the doctor makes it in time to save the little girl from nearly straggling on her own umbilical cord. Through it all, Ursula lives many lives and dies many deaths. Each time she is reborn in the same life, same date, same circumstances but each time she has a certain amount of recall from former times around and she is able to make choices to avoid catastrophe….but new catastrophes, and new deaths, always crop up and they need a fixing the next time around.
Every time she made the right decision and avoided some horrible fate it I would be so happy and I’d hope that maybe this time would be the last time for Ursula, that she would finally get to rest (even though I didn’t want the book to end), but no, there was always the snow.
This book is just beautiful. Painstakingly researched and sublimely written, Life After Life has found a place on my Favorites shelf. Kate Atkinson wrote about life in WWII England and in WWII Germany in such a human way that I don’t believe I ever really felt, or understood, what it was truly like until I read this book. What it was like to live with the threat of being bombed every single night, horrifying. Or what it was like to live under the rule of a crazy man, loving him and worshiping him as the savior of your country only to realize, too late, who he really was.
I love this book and this quote that I hate to admit hits a little too close to home.
“Ursula craved solitude but she hated loneliness, a conundrum that she couldn’t even begin to solve.” (less)
If a mentally ill person had not been able to get his hands on a gun, the secret service was doing the job that it does today, if doctors didn’t consi...moreIf a mentally ill person had not been able to get his hands on a gun, the secret service was doing the job that it does today, if doctors didn’t consider the science of antisepsis the way the anti science crowd considers climate change today, Ohio would have had a significant president in James A. Garfield.
I had a long review written here that seemed to have grown out of control. I decided I would let you read the book instead, and you should. In short(er) Mr. Garfield grew up poorer than poor. He rose out of it, went to college then into politics. He was an abolitionist and worked with the Underground Railroad. He was against the secession of the southern states and became an accomplished military man. He was intelligent, kind and empathetic, everyone loved him. He proved the Pythagorean Theorem while in congress just for something to do. He became the president of the United States against his will but accepted this challenge without complaint. He never once campaigned for any of his political positions. Unimaginable today.
A delusional man with a gun walked up to President Garfield at a train station one day and shot him in the back. At that time the president was unguarded so as to be easily accessed by the public. Being guarded seemed to be too” royal” for Americans and they believed their president should be accessible to everyone. This was after the assassination of President Lincoln. What the hell.
Doctors poked and prodded the man’s wounds in the most horrifically unsanitary ways; a germ-aphobe would have crapped themselves, twice. Garfield developed raging infections which is what ultimately killed him after 80 days of torture. During that time he never complained. He died due to medical incompetence, he would have survived if doctors had opened their minds a tad and started using Dr. Listers antisepsis practices which were widely accepted throughout Europe, but no, they denied the science. He would have lived if they did nothing; the doctors killed him as much as the assassin did.
He was a great man; I wonder what would have been different if he had finished his presidency? (less)
June is a fourteen year old girl who is kind of on the quirky side. She feels like she doesn’t belong to her time an...moreI enjoyed every bit of this book!
June is a fourteen year old girl who is kind of on the quirky side. She feels like she doesn’t belong to her time and imagines she’s in the middle ages, she wears medieval boots given to her by her uncle Finn. She also has talent for visual art, but she doesn’t quite believe it.
Finn is dying from AIDS when the virus was new and little was known about it. He’s a famous New York artist, and before he dies he wishes to paint a portrait of his nieces, June and Greta. Greta is a sixteen year old who is advanced a grade because she is too smart for her own good, and musically talented. But she’s as mean as a snake to June and takes every opportunity to hurt her sister she can get.
Toby is Finn’s boyfriend of nine years who has been hidden away from the sisters by their mother (Finn’s sister) and father because they don’t know him, and don’t wish to get to know him. Toby is also has AIDS and forms a friendship with June after her beloved uncle Finn passes away from the disease. This is not easy for June, because she believed she was the only person close to Finn.
I can relate with Tell the Wolves I’m Home, especially with the character June. I grew up the odd middle child with a popular, smart older sister who was (and is) as mean as a snake. In Greta’s case, it turns out she has a heart. My sister? Not so much, the older she gets the crueler she gets. I make my living as a visual artist, I have a brother who is gay and has been with his partner for fourteen years. I love his partner as much as any brother and I cannot imagine him being hidden away and never knowing him.
How very sad that would be.
This is a very touching, coming of age book. (less)
If you are an American you need to read The Grapes of Wrath. It scares the poop out of me because, my fellow Americans, we are repeating history. If l...moreIf you are an American you need to read The Grapes of Wrath. It scares the poop out of me because, my fellow Americans, we are repeating history. If live anywhere else read it as well as a guide for what not to do.
In the Grapes of Wrath Mr. Steinbeck tells the tale of the first great depression through the Joad family from Oklahoma, who has been displaced from their family farm through no fault of their own. You see, there was a big bad drought which made farming impossible. In those days the family farm fed the family and what they had left over they sold. But when the drought hit the only thing that would grow was cotton, you can’t eat cotton, and that crop sucked the life right out of the soil so no other crop could grow in it for a very long time.
“These things were lost, and crops were reckoned in dollars, and land was valued by principal plus interest, and crops were bought and sold before they were planted. Then crop failure, drought, and flood were no longer little deaths within life, but simple losses of money. And all their love was thinned with money, and all their fierceness dribbled away in interest until they were no longer farmers at all, but little shopkeepers of crops, little manufacturers who must sell before they can make. Then those farmers who were not good shopkeepers lost their land to good shopkeepers. No matter how clever, how loving a man might be with earth and growing things, he could not survive if he were not also a good shopkeeper. And as time went on, the business men had the farms, and the farms grew larger, but there were fewer of them.”
Some guys with a lot of cash came along and bought up all the struggling family farms and leased the land back to the former family farmers and when they couldn’t produce, the new Owners kicked the families out of their homes. Put them on the streets, children and elderly and all……..who cares, right? Poor people are less than.
From California came hand bills, pamphlets promising jobs and urging the homeless to drag their whole lives via barely moving junk heaps to the golden state where grapes grew in bunches by the side of the road. What choice did they have? They drove across deserts and mountains, losing loved ones along the way, they answered those hand bills in droves. What else could they do?
What happened when they got to California? They didn’t get jobs, they got ridicule. They were called Okies and shitheals and were looked down upon. “How can they live like that?” The people with money would ask, as if being poor was a choice. As if they were just lazy and all it would take to get out of poverty was to get a job……but there were no fucking jobs. The owners sent out more handbills then they needed to. Why? Because the more men begging for a job the less the owners would have to pay them. Supply and demand. The greedy sons a bitches wanted to pay as little as possible, and that is exactly what they did. The Okies did not have a union of course.
“And the great owners, who must lose their land in an upheaval, the great owners with access to history, with eyes to read history and to know the great fact: when property accumulates in too few hands it is taken away. And that companion fact: when a majority of the people are hungry and cold they will take by force what they need. And the little screaming fact that sounds through all history: repression works only to strengthen and knit the repressed. The great owners ignored the three cries of history. The land fell into fewer hands, the number of the dispossessed increased, and every effort of the great owners was directed at repression. The money was spent for arms, for gas to protect the great holdings, and spies were sent to catch the murmuring of revolt so that it might be stamped out. The changing economy was ignored, plans for the change ignored; and only means to destroy revolt were considered, while the causes of revolt went on.”
Who are the “great owners” today? The Walton family (of Walmart), six of them, have the same amount of money as the bottom 40% of Americans. That is 124,720,000 people, people. $93 billion…..BILLION and they want more, more money than could be spent in several lifetimes. They don’t need it all, but the rest of America does. Do you think the Walton’s might have an interest in keeping people poor? Go check out who’s in that store at 3am.
Let’s also take a look at who is running against President Obama. Mittens is so rich that he doesn’t even know what a doughnut is, and he’s fighting for the Waltons and all of the 1 %. He’s so rich he thinks he is entitled to the office and “us people” do not need to see his tax returns……the nerve of us, move on. We need to sit down, shut up, and stop asking questions because he, being a rich bastard, is an “owner” and we should know our place. Not bloody likely.
“Our people are good people; our people are kind people. Pray God some day kind people won’t all be poor. Pray God some day a kid can eat. And the associations of owners knew that some day the praying would stop.
Because of that I have had a difficult time coming up with this review. This book...morecross posted at Shelfinflicted
I can find no fault with Cloud Atlas.
Because of that I have had a difficult time coming up with this review. This book could have gone all wrong, its premise could have easily tipped this book over the edge into gimmick but David Mitchell pulled this off seamlessly. It blows my mind.
This book is six very different stories, occurring in different time periods that on the surface have nothing to do with each other. Yet they have everything to do with each other.
In 1850, a lawyer crosses the pacific during which he falls seriously ill and is treated by a doctor on board with unusual methods.
In 1931 a young composer of questionable morals works his way into the house of an old, formerly great composer who, due to late stage syphilis has lost his edge. During his time there he writes his masterpiece.
In 1975 an ambitious reporter working for a gossip rag goes after a big story that makes her a target.
Present day, an older gentleman working in publishing finally finds success, after working his entire life, with a book with ties criminal types. He soon finds trouble as well. In an attempt to find a safe place to lie low he ends up in a retirement home against his will.
In the near future, people are cloned and are genetically engineered for slave labor. They are called fabricants, and one fabricant, Sonmi 451 starts to think outside of the box. When she does all hell breaks loose.
Far into the future, we find Zachry living in Hawaii just as people did in the distant past, in tribes and in huts and with zero technology. Language itself is even breaking down. He meets a young woman that shows up on a ship that still has technology.
Zachry’s story is the center of the book and is the only one that is told completely without a break. All the rest are told up to a certain point and then they break and start with the next story in order. Once we hear Zachry’s tale we move backwards and hear the conclusion to the earlier stories to end up where we started, on the ship crossing the Pacific. It’s an onion.
All of these stories could have been written by different authors. You have an historical novel, a crime mystery, a comedy, a sci fi and an apocalyptic novel all mashed up and connected.
I have read most of Augustin Burroughs books and I enjoyed all of them. I know there is controversy about the whether or not his memoirs are truly mem...moreI have read most of Augustin Burroughs books and I enjoyed all of them. I know there is controversy about the whether or not his memoirs are truly memoirs or not, I don’t care. If the book entertains me I don’t care if the author used a creative license here and there on parts of the book, especially if it improves the book, just as long as it’s not a total fabrication. Some of you might think I’m wrong and that’s fine.
So I get this book based on who wrote it. It is a self help book (usually annoying), but knowing the author I knew it would not be typical. It’s not. I was blown away by how much I liked it. I was pleasantly shocked by it. It’s candid, funny, cynical, and heartbreaking. It is not at all about positivity, double rainbows or unicorns that fart glitter, it is a straight forward “this is what happened to me, it sucked, and this is how I survived it.”
The book starts with Augsten in an elevator after a bad break up and looking every bit as unhappy as he was, when he has an unwanted encounter with a “People Person.” She told him “whatever it was it’s not that bad.” And that “all he had to do was smile and he would feel better.” I don’t know about you, but I really don’t like it when someone tells me to “Smile.” What I feel like doing when someone says that to me is to punch them in the throat. Augusten felt similarly, I think what he thought was “Die bitch.”
But he did question why that made him so angry, the lady was just trying to help him. He then immediately saw an article on his computer that stated a study that positive affirmations only work on people who are already positive. It makes things worse for those on the negative side. I thought……duh. So he decided to right a self help book for people like him, he certainly went through enough crap in his life to have enough material.
Here’s a list of the chapters.
How to ride an elevator How to feel like shit How to find love How to be fat How to be thin How to feel sorry for yourself How to be confident How to fail How to get the job How to shatter shame How to see the truth behind the truth How to end your life How to remain unhealed Why having it all is not How to get over your addiction to the past How to be a good mental patient How to make yourself uncomfortable (and why you should) How to finish your drink How to hold on to your dream (or maybe not) How to identify love by knowing what it is not How to live unhappily ever after How to feel less regret How to stop being afraid of your anger How to be sick How to lose someone you love How to let a child die How to change the world by yourself This is why (less)
The first time I read The Stand I was home sick from school with some illness, the German measles I think. Maybe not a good time to be reading a book...moreThe first time I read The Stand I was home sick from school with some illness, the German measles I think. Maybe not a good time to be reading a book about a super flu, but I was young and not so bright.
This had to have been in 1981 or so, because that’s the year MTV debuted, back then they played music videos on Music Television and probably had about ten or so they kept playing over and over. Well, I’m on the pull out couch in the family room with MTV playing (it made me feel better to see the guys from Journey), and reading The Stand, half listening to MTV when this (very 80's)video I hadn't seen before comes on.
This was very surreal. I was feverish and the words I was reading like “The walkin’ dude” and “Trashcan Man” were coming out of the TV machine. It was very strange……as strange as The Alarms hair. Did you notice the painting of the flower he did looks just like the hair. Amazing…….I kind of like the painting.
I loved the book and it has been one my favorites list ever since. I always wanted to re-read it, but it was so darn long, and there are so many books out there to read. Thirty years later they release the audio version and I was excited, not only to revisit the book but to hear it on audio,(yay) and I was not disappointed. The Stand still remains on my favorites list. But since it had been so long since I first read it, I forgot most of it. It was like a whole new book.
The government develops a biological weapon, a super flu (project Blue) , nick named Captain Tripps, that is inadvertently released and kills 99% of the human population along with most of the dogs and horses. The cats survive (they always do). Here I have to ask the question, why would a government develop such a weapon when It kills most everybody…….even the guys on your side, and you?
The people who survive start to have crazy dreams. One is about a very old African American women, Mother Abigail, in Nebraska who calls on the people to come see her and then to travel to Boulder Colorado. The other is a nightmare about a mysterious fella named Randell Flagg, aka The Walkin’ Dude or the Dark Man who draws them to Los Vegas. Randell is not just bad; he is pure evil, while Mother Abigail is the instrument of God. The survivors pick their side, and there is a good old fashion show down between good and evil. What could go wrong?
King develops strong, memorable characters in this book. He also writes horrifyingly memorable scenes like a trip through the Lincoln Tunnel in New York, dark and stuffed to the brim with rotting corpses. That is not one of the things I forgot.
A few minor things bugged me in this version. Stephen went back later on and added pages to the book that were cut by the publishers, which I am happy with. But, in an attempt to update the book, he moved the time period up from 1980 to 1990. This made a few things awkward, such as a scene about the shootings at Kent State University. The reasons for the shooting were changed from being about war protest to protesting the detainment they were under because of the flu. This worked in the original version because it was closer in time period of the shootings at KSU. Being set in the 90’s it made no sense.
Also, King was in love with the word “pillion”, it means to ride behind the driver of a motorcycle. He used it as much as he could. He also described people’s knee joints popping when squatting, or getting up from a squat, many times. One time would have been just fine.
Love the book. Now I’m off to buy hand sanitizer. (less)
My dream Democratic presidential ticket for 2016 would include Rachel Maddow. I’m thinking if Joe Biden doesn’t want to do it (and I don’t think he do...moreMy dream Democratic presidential ticket for 2016 would include Rachel Maddow. I’m thinking if Joe Biden doesn’t want to do it (and I don’t think he does) then Al Franken, John Stewart or Stephen Colbert should be the other half. That would be an entertaining and smart duo to run the country. Maybe Colbert would be the smartest pick since his satire is so genius it might fool a few on the right to vote for him.
Everyone should read this book. It’s a non partisan commentary, it takes to task the presidency itself and how it has changed from what the founders envisioned it to be. And it’s really fucking scary.
Let’s start off with the invasion of Granada, Operation Urgent Fury, (good God, does that mean I’m in a big damn hurry to be angry) in 1983. At that time I was way too deep in a fog of Aqua Net to be politically aware. I have a vague memory of it happening but the details were fuzzy. Apparently Ronald Reagan, during World War II, was in the military but was too near sighted to actually fight in it. He was given the job of “playing” a soldier in training films (produced by the military) and never left the studio back lot he had been working on since before he joined. He played a gung-ho-rata-tat-tat-shoot-em-up-bang-bang-gotcha soldier, and he liked it. When he got to the White House (early Alzheimer’s sadly was likely affecting him) he had that deep seeded need to be that macho cowboy soldier and wanted to get those Commies. In Granada he saw some Commies (possible-maybe-someday Commies) a military coup ousted a revolutionary government and became a bit touchy and unstable, ripe for Commies.
Regan new that he would never get congress to Ok a strike on Granada (because it was nutty) , so he did an end run around congress, went ahead with it, and told them it was happening when it was too late. Tip O’Neal was rightly pissed. From the very start of this nation no one person could declare war on another country. Congress has to OK such actions. But Regan didn’t think the president should bow down to congress, so he basically gave them the middle finger. This set a dangerous precedent.
Then there was Iran-Contra, where Reagan tried to get the ok from congress to take action to free hostages in Iran. Congress cut funding to the operation. Unable to take no for an answer, Regan decided to solicit other countries for money. One way of getting cash was by selling weapons, which he did to any country (no matter how sketchy) that would pay, like Saudi Arabia and Iran. WTF? He got caught and “communicated” his way out of the mess. Shocking.
Since, all of the following presidents have used their executive power to make war, against the founding fathers express instructions that no one person should be able to take the country into war. All (the current president does love his drones). It’s just too easy and no president wanted to give up that ability.
Currently the way we go to war (and it’s been perpetual for some time now) is insulated from the general public, unless you are a family member of a soldier. Troops are re deployed over and over, this has been devastating on their emotional health. In the first five years of the Iraq war the suicide rate of military personnel doubled. In the last ten years we have lost more troops to suicide then in combat. Something is wrong here. The Reserves are not used as reserves anymore, they are no longer civilian soldiers, and they are called up to war just as often as the regular military. We use contractors extensively. There are currently more contractors in Afghanistan then US military. They are not bound by the military for their conduct, they are paid better then the troops and we never hear of their deaths. It doesn’t affect us, so we don’t yell about it much.
Nuclear Bombs………you do not want to go into that particular stinky restroom, peeeeuuuuu.
-We have lost track of 11 nuclear bombs, and we keep track better than most countries. Yikes. Currently there is a nuclear bomb buried in a swampy field in Goldsboro North Carolina, it was too swampy to dig it out so they just left it there. Yay. Currently we have aging bombs in silos that we no longer remember how to fix properly, some have wing fungus.
It’s amazing to me each day we get through without becoming a giant smoking crater.
Here is the end of the epilogue which sums the whole thing up nicely.
“And finally there’s the Gordian knot of executive power. It needs a sword something fierce. The glory of war success will always attach itself to the president, so presidents are always be prey to the temptation to make war. That’s a generic truth of power, and all the more reason to take the decision making about war out of the hands of the executive. It is not one man’s responsibility. The “Imperial Presidency” malarkey that was invented to save Ronald Reagan’s neck in Iran-Contra, and that has played as high art throughout the career of Richard Cheney, is a radical departure from previous views of presidential power, and should be taught and understood that way. This is not a partisan thing. Constitutionalists left and right have equal reason to worry over the lost constraint of the executive. Republicans and Democrats alike have options to vote people into congress who are determined to stop with the chickenshitery and assert the legislators constitutional purgatives on war and peace. It would make a difference, and help reel us back towards balance and normalcy. None of this is impossible. This isn’t bigger than us. Decisions about national security are ours to make. And the good news is this isn’t rocket science, we don’t have to reinvent fogbank here, we just have to revive that old idea of America is a deliberately peaceable nation. That’s not simply our inheritance, it’s our responsibility.” (less)
“Once upon a time, an angel and a devil fell in love and dared to imagine a new way of living—one without massacres and torn throats and bonfires of t...more“Once upon a time, an angel and a devil fell in love and dared to imagine a new way of living—one without massacres and torn throats and bonfires of the fallen, without revenants or bastard armies or children ripped from their mothers’ arms to take their turn in the killing and dying.
Once, the lovers lay entwined in the moon’s secret temple and dreamed of a world that was a like a jewel-box without a jewel—a paradise waiting for them to find it and fill it with their happiness.
This was not that world.”
Laini Taylor, you're good.....you're dark, but good. You write books with prettiest words portraying some of the darkest things I've read.
Days of Blood & Starlight lives up to it's predecessor Daughter of Smoke & Bone, which was not easy given how darn good it is.
Karou was mystery to herself and others, then one day she breaks a wishbone which she holds at one end while Akiva, a seraphim (who she loves), holds the other. Magically filled with all her memories of her past life, once broken she remembers everything. She now knows who, and what she is/was. She's Madrigal, a chimera, with the power to resurrect.
Karou makes some terrible monsters with purpose to make war on the seraphim, an enemy of the Chimera. The two have been at war with one another for as long as anyone can remember. Akiva and Madrigal had loved one another once, hope the two peoples could someday be at peace. It didn't end well.
A couple of quotes I liked.....
“Take up a weapon and you become an instrument with as pure a purpose as the weapon itself: to find arteries and open them, limbs and sever them; to take what is alive and deliver it unto death.”
“She had said she didn’t feel fear, but it was a lie; this was her fear: being left alone. Because of one thing she was certain, and it was that she could never love, not like that. Trust a stranger with her flesh? The closeness, the quiet. She couldn’t imagine it. Breathing someone else’s breath as they breathed yours, touching someone, opening for them? The vulnerability of it made her flush. It would mean submission, letting down her guard, and she wouldn’t. Ever. Just the thought made her feel small and weak as a child...”
and the Pretty Funny
“Anyone who would wear all white like that clearly had issues. Just looking at him made her wish she had a paintball gun, but hell, you couldn’t pack for every eventuality.”
If you are feeling kind of crappy, like your life sucks and it couldn't get any worse, pick up a copy of Knockemstiff and give it a read. Soon you wil...moreIf you are feeling kind of crappy, like your life sucks and it couldn't get any worse, pick up a copy of Knockemstiff and give it a read. Soon you will be saying to yourself "Hmmm, well at least I'm not a crackhead, huffer, morbidly obesse whore, alcoholic or steroid user........I just can't stand my boss". (unless you are any of those things......my apologies.)
"I woke up thinking I'd pissed the bed again, but it was just the sticky spot from where Sandy and Me fucked the night before. Those kind of things happen when you drink like I do-you shit your pants in the Wal-mart, you end up living off some crackhead and her poor parents. I raised the blankets up just a tad, traced my finger over the blue KNOCKEMSTIFF, OHIO tattoo Sandy had etched on her skinny ass like a road sign. Why some people need ink to remember where they are from will always be a mystery to me."
Yep. That's how one of the short stories in this book, Holler starts out. All eighteen start out like this, shockingly yet beautifully. Wait until you read the first sentence of Dynamite Hole, I wouldn't dream of spoiling that little gem for you here. I read it while waiting to order at a restaurant, I'm not sure how long the waitress was standing there before I came out of my shock and realized she was standing there waiting for my response. I looked up at her and managed a "huh?"
I am an Ohioan, born and raised in the North/central part of the state. I moved around the state before I moved out of it entirely and around the country. After fourteen years of being a vagabond I ended up back where I started. I thought I knew pretty much everything there was to know about Ohio, but I had never heard of a town by the name of Knockemstiff, I would have remembered that. It's 167 miles directly to the south, after reading this book I think I'll take care to keep clear of it.
I enjoyed this book completely, I was very impressed. I recommend it anyone who is feeling sorry for themselves.
Several things drew me to this book. First, the Coen brothers decided to do an adaptation of this book and second, some good friends wrote some fantas...moreSeveral things drew me to this book. First, the Coen brothers decided to do an adaptation of this book and second, some good friends wrote some fantastic reviews of it.
Because they did such a good job of telling what the book was about, I won't go into much detail, but I will talk a little bit about something I observed about the main character Mattie Ross.
Mattie Ross makes the decision, at the age of fourteen, to avenge her fathers murder. She hires "Rooster" Cogburn, a federal marshal with true grit to hunt down the man who shot her father to death. Unbeknown to Rooster, she plans, and does go with him and a Texas ranger LaBoeuf on the manhunt into the Cherokee nation.
This is probably the best portrait of a person with Asperger's syndrome I have come across. Mattie is single minded, she will succeed in whatever she sets her mind to. She's poor on the social skills. Unemotional to a fault, she barely gets upset when falls down a pit with snakes for cripes sake. The only time she even sheds a tear is when she gets spanked (physical touch), but is stoic when viewing her father's body.
Now I have only seen clips of the original movie, but I have seen the Coen brothers version and I have to say Hallie in the newer version hits the unemotional character dead on. From what I have seen of the John Wayne movie, that actress is way emotional.
Mattie is one of the best written characters I have read.
I love this book. I love this book. I. Love. This. Book.
I have had it for a long time and I pick it up every so often and find myself flipping back an...moreI love this book. I love this book. I. Love. This. Book.
I have had it for a long time and I pick it up every so often and find myself flipping back and forth through the pages, and before I know it an hour has past. The poetry and illustrations are a perfect mix. Alone Rumi can be overwhelming, but with images it is much easier to absorb.
I have lived on the lip of insanity, Wanting to know reasons, knocking on a door.
I've been knocking from the inside!
Rumi lived in Turkey in the mid thirteenth century, yet his writings stand the test of time. It seems to me that life, and what we all want and need as human beings never changes.
I love this one....
Not Christian or Jew or Muslin, Not Hindu, Buddhist, Sufi, or Zen. Not any religion or cultural system.
I am not from the east or the west, not out of the ocean or up from the ground, not natural or ethereal, not composed of elements at all. I do not exist.
Am not an entity in this world or the next. Did not descend from Adam and Eve or any origin story. My place is the placeless, a trace of the traceless. Neither body or soul.
I belong to the beloved, have seen the two worlds as one and that one call to and know.
First, last, outer inner, only that breath breathing.
Hear are my thoughts in order as I was reading this book....
2. Crap...now I'm a vegatarian!
3. I can never have my favorite Mongolian C...moreHear are my thoughts in order as I was reading this book....
2. Crap...now I'm a vegatarian!
3. I can never have my favorite Mongolian Chicken from Mings again (snif).
Yes in that order. I have not eaten meat since half way through this book. Will it stick? I hope so.
Not only the mind numbing crulety of the factory farms (which is plenty), and the enviormental damage they cause, but the shear crap they feed the animals did it for me. H1N1....factory farms. traced back to a hog farm in one of the Carolinas. They feed them antibiotics in every meal. That is how the resistant strains of bacteria are born......now they are using Cipro, which the medical community screamed out against. But the farm lobbies were stronger.
most chickens and turkeys can't naturally reproduce anymore.....What? They have been so geneticly altered that they can't reproduce....eeww! They can't even walk.
The author made the statement that if this was 60 years ago he would probably eat meat. But things have changed with factory farming for the worse. People want really cheap meat....well you get what you pay for.(less)