Dah! Goodreads ate my review. I tore through this book like an ultramarathoner thirsty for the thrill of the endurance running high. It made me want tDah! Goodreads ate my review. I tore through this book like an ultramarathoner thirsty for the thrill of the endurance running high. It made me want to run barefoot through the woods and brought back fond memories of my days training for cross-country races. I loved the focus on running for the joy of it. Running for love. The book was fascinating, and caused me to veer off on mini personal research missions the whole time I was reading it.
Only downside was that it's written by a writer for men's health magazines, so it read like - no surprise - a long form article in Outdoors or Men's Health. Those always strike me as swashbuckling and macho, which I find annoying. And I wish this book had taught me more about the Tarahumara and the issues (poverty, encroaching drug trade, environmental impacts?) their culture faces today. ...more
I read a satirical article about this book before I actually read the book:http://the-toast.net/2015/02/24/get-r.... Approaching the book from this hiI read a satirical article about this book before I actually read the book:http://the-toast.net/2015/02/24/get-r.... Approaching the book from this hilarious perspective made me enjoy it fully. It's not often, I don't think, that a person can become rich and famous worldwide for capitalizing on their mental illness (OCD, at the very least).
On the one hand, the personification of objects and the materialism inherent in Kondo's approach to keeping only those possessions that "spark joy" drove me bonkers. I'm not sure we should get any "joy" from things. Shouldn't that come from other people? Connection with God? Nature? I think her monasticism in this regard is misguided. On the other hand, I definitely approve of owning less and purging belongings. I'm 100% on board with that.
So I'll try some of her advice. I've already revolutionized my clothes drawers with her folding method, so she's not all bad....more
I lost myself in this little book and devoured it in the course of one flight from ATL to LAX. It's definitely a quick read, since I was able to complI lost myself in this little book and devoured it in the course of one flight from ATL to LAX. It's definitely a quick read, since I was able to complete it while also occupying a 2 year old on the airplane.
To me it read more like a memoir than a "love story." The main character describes everything from her point of view and has a blind spot for her unique privilege (as my book club buddy put it, not just for her status as an American, but also as a wealthy and very well-connected American). I did not dislike this aspect necessarily, and I think it made good fodder for discussion. The language is lyrical and lovely and made me remember, fondly, my own first love story.
At the end, SPOILER ALERT, I was left wondering what exactly went wrong. What happened to the duo when they went their own ways? How long did their heartache last? Was Ade able to look back on this relationship like the narrator? As similarly formative, and with so much fondness? ...more
This book is a no-holds barred examination of the author's experience as an adoptee meeting her adoptive family after years of growing up in a closedThis book is a no-holds barred examination of the author's experience as an adoptee meeting her adoptive family after years of growing up in a closed adoption in a happy childhood with her adoptive parents. It's not a rosy picture. It's quite raw. I guess that's what I liked about the book, and what made it great for book group discussion.
Because the book is a memoir, the reader only gets the author's perspective and her take on what others might have been feeling. As an outsider, I felt I saw several alternative explanations for some of the strife and difficulty that developed between McCaffrey and her birth family. Where she seemed to jump to conclusions about her birth family's unwillingness to raise questions, or their seeming anti-feminism, I saw basic class differences, and a yearning to be close (on her birth mother's part at least). To me, it seemed likely that this was coupled with the obvious pain of giving up a baby and seeing in her accomplishments, perhaps, a sense of regret over what she, as a mother, would not have been able to give her.
There was also this undertone of exasperation. For instance, the author is frustrated by the holiday gifts she gets from her birth mom because they invariably arrive while she is out of town. And she is annoyed by the beers her birth mom brings to a family dinner because it is being held at a vacation rental, and she (McCaffrey) will have to leave the place the next day, making the beer somehow wasteful. [Beer doesn't go to waste. Leave it for the next guests. Or just discard it. Why is that an issue?] The way she described being needled by these - to me, seemingly small problems - made me question her reliability as a narrator.
In any event, even though the book really made me quite sad, it inspired spirited discussion, and some degree of introspection about parenting on my part, so I recommend....more
Not a fun book to read, but Krakauer is, as usual an exhaustive researcher and a solid writer. Based on how he tears into the prosecutors in Missoula,Not a fun book to read, but Krakauer is, as usual an exhaustive researcher and a solid writer. Based on how he tears into the prosecutors in Missoula, I'm not in the least bit surprised that they threatened to sue him for this and that the book has been divisive within that community. ...more