Of all the literary genres, humor has the shortest shelf life--except for Archy and Mehitabel, that is. First published in 1916,...moreGoodreads description:
Of all the literary genres, humor has the shortest shelf life--except for Archy and Mehitabel, that is. First published in 1916, it is a classic of American literature. Archy is a cockroach, inside whom resides the soul of a free-verse poet; he communicates with Don Marquis by leaping upon the keys of the columnist's typewriter. In poems of varying length, Archy pithily describes his wee world, the main fixture of which is Mehitabel, a devil-may-care alley cat. (less)
Dear Dave McKean, How do you make your pictures? I admire your combination of collage and computer manipulation to achieve an otherworldly, fragmented...moreDear Dave McKean, How do you make your pictures? I admire your combination of collage and computer manipulation to achieve an otherworldly, fragmented effect. I like that you let proportion and perspective slip to fit the needs of a spooky story - or is that just to give yourself your own twisted style? I am envious both of your prolific work and of your longtime association with Neil Gaiman. Thus I am following humbly in your footsteps, but far behind, and not really with binoculars for spying on Neil. Your faraway fan, Becky(less)
Evan told me to read this book; it is an adult book categorized as a "novel in pictures." It's even more interesting to me now that I am taking a prin...moreEvan told me to read this book; it is an adult book categorized as a "novel in pictures." It's even more interesting to me now that I am taking a printmaking class (the illustrations are aquatints and I'm learning that technique!).
The story itself is bizarre and surreal (woman gives birth to a cat) -- yet another interesting twist on visual storytelling (see also: The Arrival; Principles of Uncertainty; The Invention of Hugo Cabret). I haven't yet read "The Time Traveller's Wife," but if it's as good as everyone says, then I pretty much want to be Audrey Niffenegger.
From the author bio: "Miss Niffenegger is currently at work on her second novel, but she's a very slow writer, easily distracted by her cats and the lure of libraries and airplanes." (less)
I asked for reading recommendations at Genoa MS and 2/3 of the boys held up this book. That's right, they had it with them at school. And it was not a...moreI asked for reading recommendations at Genoa MS and 2/3 of the boys held up this book. That's right, they had it with them at school. And it was not assigned.
But wow, it took me a long time to sit down and finish this one! All in all, I liked it a lot. It was my first Mike Lupica book and I can see why he's popular; he tells much of the story with snappy dialogue and works up a lot of suspense for the game scenes (the final Big Game, although it resolves more than just the winning team, is 20 pages long, but I barely noticed). The best-friend character, Manny, is unfailingly funny. The sense of place, and feeling like an outsider, is vivid. And some of the longer sentences have a momentum all their own that makes me think this would be great on audio:
"Now Michael went into his full windup, his El Grande windup, leg high, his ball and his head tucked briefly behind his glove, before he threw a fastball past E-Scope that made the older boy not only miss, but put very colorful swear words together, in a way Michael had never heard before, not even living in the Bronx, where you could walk past an open window in the summer and feel as if you'd discovered the capital of swearing."
Plus, the book is about more than just baseball: when Michael Arroyo's pitching talent gets too good to be true, the other coaches demand that he prove he's not too old for Little League. The only problem is, he came over on a boat from Cuba and can't get ahold of his birth certificate without his father. And his father died last May, which is a secret, since his brother Carlos is not yet old enough to be a legal guardian.
-- A totally random chapter from Carlos' point of view. What?? You can't throw that in 3/4 of the way through the book!
-- Some corny efforts to be hip which are dated the minute they are written: "she popped up like one of those little pop-up messages he'd see at Manny's when Manny would make him watch a music video on MTV."
"Sometimes Michael thought the two most quiet places in the world were the pitcher's mound and the apartment at night before he put the Yankees game on."
"[Good:] days like this didn't wipe out a hundred bad days for Tony Gibbs, just carried him to the next good one."
"He could sell sand in the desert."
(About people who are resentful) "It's like they take poison and then hope for the other person to die."
"They hadn't lost the game, the Clips had just won it."
"You really are due for a happy ending one of these days."(less)
This book is worth all the acclaim it's gotten. Although I didn't choose it for this purpose, it was a good book to read while travelling, since one o...moreThis book is worth all the acclaim it's gotten. Although I didn't choose it for this purpose, it was a good book to read while travelling, since one of its main themes is displacement and adjustment. On both my flights, my seatmates were on their way to or from India -- an interesting coincidence -- or do you just tend to notice things more when they are in the forefront of your mind?
Favorite quotes, among many:
"Ghosh shook his head. 'You are still young. Free,' he said, spreading his hands apart for emphasis. 'Do yourself a favor. Before it's too late, without thinking about it too much first, pack a pillow and a blanket and see as much of the world as you can. You will not regret it. One day it will be too late.'" -p. 16
"For being a foreigner, Ashima is beginning to realize, is a sort of lifelong pregnancy -- a perpetual wait, a constant burden, a continuous feeling out of sorts. It is an ongoing responsibility, a parenthesis in what had once been ordinary life, only to discover that that previous life has vanished, replaced by something more complicated and demanding." -p. 49
"In so many ways, his family's life feels like a string of accidents...They were things for which it was impossible to prepare but which one spent a lifetime looking back at, trying to accept, interpret, comprehend. Things that should never have happened, that seemed out of place and wrong, these were what prevailed, what endured, in the end." -p. 286-287(less)
What happened to my review of this? Goodreads must have eaten it! Anyway, this is a lovely adaptation with some stunning double-page wordless spreads....moreWhat happened to my review of this? Goodreads must have eaten it! Anyway, this is a lovely adaptation with some stunning double-page wordless spreads. Lovely gift for a fairy-tale fan.(less)
Lovely and lyrical -- FLB takes on Psyche and other characters from Greek mythology in this verse novel.
"The sun turned the water to...moreLovely and lyrical -- FLB takes on Psyche and other characters from Greek mythology in this verse novel.
"The sun turned the water to aluminum foil"
"The light is rose gold at dawn, like blown glass in the morning, like watermelon when the sun sets on the city."
"Still, I told myself, I will keep trying Until I am too old to want to be immortal"
"When I was uncomfortable I pretended I was in a storybook"
"hydrangea -- with pennies buried at the roots to make them the right color" (really? cool!)
"I looked like someone whose father had almost killed her whose lovers had almost destroyed her whose mother had tried to save her had saved her as much as a mother can whose daughter had saved her by being born and then left her to save herself"