The Gift of Friendship is a collection of blog posts from various authors, speakers, and bloggers on the topic of friendship. Centered around topics lThe Gift of Friendship is a collection of blog posts from various authors, speakers, and bloggers on the topic of friendship. Centered around topics like “Building Community,” “It Takes a Friend to Be a Friend,” “Friendship on Purpose,” and “Vulnerability,” each essay Camp gathered follows the typical Blog formula: easy to read, a few lines of self-deprecating humor, and a quick message. None of it gets too deeply, but much of it makes you smile. And none of them will take you more than five minutes to read.
Reading this compilation made me arrive at three realizations: 1) I have a handful of really great, really deep, and really true friendships; 2) This may not be as common as I originally thought; 3) I don’t really like this Blog format of a book. I found myself and my circle of friends in a few of the pages. I was reminded to tell two of my closest friends how deeply connected to them I am and how grateful I am that they know me so well and still choose for some crazy reason to keep coming back to me. And how amazing it was to spend the weekend in their company . . . all alone, no kids, no husbands, just these beautiful women and a few others from our circle. Those are gifts you find in some corners of your world, and Camp calls you to remember them and cherish them.
I didn’t love this book. It was fine. Good, even, in some parts. But I feel richer for the friendships, not for the words I read in the book. Except for the nuggets Camp included in between some of the essays. She quoted Scripture (which is always good, even in this case where it sometimes seemed a stretch to fit the topic), and she quoted other books on friendship. The C. S. Lewis quotes she included from The Four Loves are the real gems in this book. And while I probably won’t pick up The Gift of Friendship to read again, I will definitely be borrowing The Four Loves. From a friend.
Disclaimer: I received this book from Revell through the Revell Reads Blog Tour program in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review. I am disclosing this in accordance with FTC guidelines. ...more
I love Mary Oliver! Her poetry is a beautiful intersect of nature and life and the written word. Some of my favorite poems and phrases are hers. ThisI love Mary Oliver! Her poetry is a beautiful intersect of nature and life and the written word. Some of my favorite poems and phrases are hers. This collection of verses all building one, 50-page poem do not disappoint!...more
Our book club has been struggling this summer, both with our reading and with our getting together to discuss what we're reading. As a result, we're gOur book club has been struggling this summer, both with our reading and with our getting together to discuss what we're reading. As a result, we're going to meet this week to discuss our June and August books. We're skipping our July book, which was maybe a little depressing to add to a summer month. Anyway, thankfully our August book is the Mindy Kaling autobiography. Easy enough.
And fluffy. And only mildly funny.
I'll confess to being a bit disappointed. I don't know really what I was expecting, except maybe some wipe the tears from my eyes laughter and hilarity. I didn't get that. The book is certainly light and easy to read. It will be even easier to discuss, I'm sure.
Kaling is a good writer. She turns a phrase nicely from time to time, and her descriptions of herself are candid. I appreciate that she doesn't try to make herself more amazing than she already is (which is pretty amazing, if she does say so herself). There are certainly moments when I laughed out loud. Those came in her description of one-night stands, the "Irish" exit, and the pictures on her Blackberry.
The subtitle of this book is perhaps the most descriptive title I've ever seen in a book. Sometimes when I'm reading a book I will read almost the entire book before I understand where the title originated. Other times it is only on reflection days later. With this it was clear from the beginning--Kaling is simply sharing 200 or so pages of her concerns about growing up, friendships, work, boys and men, and fashion. I'm not saying that's a bad thing. I'm just saying that sometimes it's funny, and sometimes it isn't. But all of it made me like her more and wish that we were friends. My concerns are pretty random and only mildly funny too. ...more
Dominick Dunne has got to be one of the most interesting men who have ever lived. Somehow he seemed to have a face or a personality or something aboutDominick Dunne has got to be one of the most interesting men who have ever lived. Somehow he seemed to have a face or a personality or something about him that led people to trust him and share secrets with him. He took those secrets--and honored the secret tellers when they were honest or fair--and wrote gripping fiction and compelling nonfiction. I used to love reading what he wrote for Vanity Fair and was sad when he passed away. Surely we had lost a great story teller who knew how to make nonfiction read like fiction and fiction carry the true weight of nonfiction. Brilliant.
Justice: Crimes, Trials, and Punishments is nonfiction. In it, Dunne recounts his own daughter's murder, which drew him in to telling the stories of victims and their families while exposing the lengths that defendents and their lawyers will go to to keep guilty men (and women) out of prison. Dunne also includes his essays on several popular trials of the '90s and early 2000s: the Menendez brothers, O.J. Simpson, and the murder of Martha Moxley and subsequent arrest--25 years later and in part because of Dunne's digging--of Michael Skakel.
There are also chapters dedicated to other murders and trials that are less familiar, except to those who have read some of Dunne's fiction. This was perhaps my favorite part of the book. It was "fun" (if one can say that regarding reading about murders and justifications) to read the true story behind some of the Dunne novels I have enjoyed over the years. He really changes remarkably little and somehow managed to avoid lawsuits even while building more than a few enemies among the rich and powerful. I wish I could have sat in a room with him for even a short time . . . I bet the conversation would have been fascinating.
Overall, I really liked this book. Why the three stars instead of four or five? I guess it's still too soon for me to read 10 chapters about O.J. Simpson. The trial truly was a debacle of justice, with the murders of two innocent people getting swept under the rug of pretending that a police officer's racism was a worse crime. Those 137 pages left me disgusted and hurt and angry all over again. It also left me grateful that he was caught in the Vegas robbery and is finally serving time. I find it ironic that for robbery he is serving a minimum of 9 years, with a maximum of 33 years, while he served no time for murdering two people. Yeah, it's still too soon. ...more