I really enjoyed this book. Stein gives us an oral history of some of the high flyers she knew growing up, including her own family, the Jack Warners,I really enjoyed this book. Stein gives us an oral history of some of the high flyers she knew growing up, including her own family, the Jack Warners, a nut job named Janet Garland - not real familiar with her family, Jennifer Jones and her family, including husbands Robert Walker, David O. Selznick and Norton Simon and a bunch of messed up kids. The startling thing was that I did not realize that Kristina Vandenheuvel was her daughter.
The rich don't like it known that there is a lunatic in the family so Janet Garland 's family hired male nurses to take care of her. I am wondering if the reason to bring this one in was to discuss two of the male nurses, also artists, and Jean later lived with one of them.
Interesting story of a free-lance writer, published primarily (I think) with The New Yorker. Anyway, he found out that there was an explorer y★★★ 1\2.
Interesting story of a free-lance writer, published primarily (I think) with The New Yorker. Anyway, he found out that there was an explorer years ago who found a "lost city" (a/k/a white city) in the jungles of Honduras. He wants to go find it, too. He has this guy's diary. He knows a guy who knows his way around down there and gets him to accompany him. He has a wife and young child and yet he goes roaring off to the unknown jungle. And spends much of his time groaning to himself about why is he out here.
But, on the whole, it was fairly interesting. ...more
I'm glad I listened to it as opposed to as opposed to reading a physical book or even an e-book. I probably would have thrown them across the room , eI'm glad I listened to it as opposed to as opposed to reading a physical book or even an e-book. I probably would have thrown them across the room , either physically or mentally (I'd not have wanted to break my e-reader). It is fairly repetitive. As others have noted, it is sometimes an insult to women. Hard to believe it is written by a woman.
Admittedly, these women came from a different era. Reminiscent of Donna Reed on the Donna Reed Show or Barbara Billingsley on Leave It to Beaver - vacuuming in heels and pearls. One point is NASA's archaic view of women/wives. To them they are arm candy and to be separated as much as possible, apparently, from their astronaut-husbands. Also they make sure these women live in a closed society. They all live near each other and don't seem to know many "regular" people.
The majority wound up divorce. Partly the astronauts, per this book, were encouraged to have trysts/affairs in Cocoa Beach while the wives were stashed near Houston, Texas. Fly home for the weekend and what the wives don't know won't hurt them. Most of these are the ones who wound up divorced.
Can't say I really recommend it. But if you must, support your local library. I guess my rating is ★★ 1\2.
However, if you know little or nothing about the Gemini and Apollo programs this might be slightly informative....more
A very enjoyable read. Also very informative. I thought Charles King did a magnificent job here. A history of Istanbul and Turkey against the backdropA very enjoyable read. Also very informative. I thought Charles King did a magnificent job here. A history of Istanbul and Turkey against the backdrop of the Pera Palace, a marvelous hotel which has had its ups and downs over the years. From the fall of the Ottoman Empire through World War I I. I was surprised to read that the priest working to save the Jews was the future Pope John XXIII, who I know made a big impression on most of my generation, with his big push toward ecumicalism....more
Most excellent. This was the audio edition which I listened to via Overdrive. Both at the beginning and the end the authors speak, as does the subjectMost excellent. This was the audio edition which I listened to via Overdrive. Both at the beginning and the end the authors speak, as does the subject, Huguette Clark (her quotes are also heard throughout the book). Cousin Paul Newell had three conversations with his tante Huguette which were recorded and included in this book. The recordings were made when she was 93 (she lived to 105). She has a thin, but strong, elderly voice. Alert, up to date on current events.
Much of this book is spent covering her father, W. A. Clark, known as copper king of Montana. His riches were diverse. He couldn't get the Congress to help him build a railroad so he paid for it himself and so he wasn't responsible to anyone. The story is included that he could make the train wait for him, whether he was running one or two hours late. Who were they going to complain to? He was a self-made man and this was very much his attitude throughout life. He found out early on that he didn't like working for others.
I guess it is up to each reader to decide about Huguette. Half her family (most of whom had never met her) thought she was mentally ill or deficient. What else could explain her giving so much money away. People probably did take advantage of her but she also appears to have been generous. Also, it didn't really seem like money was that important to her. So art galleries and charitable organizations couldn't understand why she wouldn't just give them more money. They just needed to come up with a better plan.
Her representatives fought for years to get her to make a will. When she did, it is questionable whether unfue pressure was put on her as there were a number of irregularities involved in the signing of it. Beneficiaries are not supposed to be involved yet there were several there.
After her death, the family and charities who'd been left out in the cold decided to contest the will. We still don't know the answer. I'll be waiting to find out, just like everybody else.
It was a very enjoyable listen, it saw me halfway across the country. My only complaint involved what must have been a reading of tables. That can get a little boring. That would be better reading than it was listening. ...more
Interesting essay released as a kindle single. Has proceeds going to the Brady Fund.
He admits to being an owner of multiple handguns but says that itInteresting essay released as a kindle single. Has proceeds going to the Brady Fund.
He admits to being an owner of multiple handguns but says that it is time for reasonable gun control. He went so far as to remove one of his titles, Rage, from publication because several youthful mass killers or wannabe killers committed their acts or, in at least one case, decided he didn't want to go through with his act, with a copy of his book in their pockets. He determined it to be an accelerant and apparently decided he wanted no part of that.
My only complaint was he got James Cagney all wrong. In several places he refers to Cagney in The Public Enemy. Cagney was in The Public Enemy however the scene he is referring to ("top of the world, ma!") was from White Heat. Both excelent films about gangsters.
At one point he proposes that those of us who watch MSNBC should switch (or be forced) to Fox News, and those who watch Fox News switch (again, with force, if necessary) to MSNBC. Once the initial insanity subsides, the new audience will force those networks to move further to the center by virtue of our vitriolic e-mails to the new news we are watching.
This is real short and a fairly quick read. And brings a little sanity to the discussion. ...more
Who knew that Wilson was such a racist (per the author)? I'm going to have to look for a decent book onKind of long but good company on a long drive.
Who knew that Wilson was such a racist (per the author)? I'm going to have to look for a decent book on him. Although he didn't seem to say much about Wilson and his stroke and who was determining policy while he was incapacitated.
And what about Helen Keller? A Socialist? Okay, I could have picked up her book, The Story of My Life, yesterday but figured I could get it on the kindle or at the library. Or, has that been censored too?
I loved John Garrity (or is it Garity? ) said about why he didn't have anything in about the plagues. "I didn't know about them. "
But after a while I began to wonder if some of this wasn't just sour grapes because his textbook wasn't selected. ...more
Much as I liked John Berendt's book, and I kind of liked the movie - or maybe I just liked Kevin Spacey - I thought I would like this book. AnFinally.
Much as I liked John Berendt's book, and I kind of liked the movie - or maybe I just liked Kevin Spacey - I thought I would like this book. And I guess I kind of did like parts of it. The problem was that this book just dragged. Although she didn't put in the transcripts from each of the four trials, it dragged as if she did. Actually I might have enjoyed it more if there had been transcripts. But it just drags out each detail in each of the trials.
The first half of the book was much more interesting. More about the real story (I don't know if it is actually the"real" story) of Savannah and events leading up to Mr. Hansford's death and the Jim Williams story. Not quite the same as I recall in Berendt's book.