Review: Dust Bowl Girls by Lydia Reeder

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“The Boys in the Boat meets A League of Their Own

The Story:

In the late 1920’s and early 1930’s the fabled dust bowl was ruining farming in Oklahoma. Incomes were sometimes non-existent. But young women had one interesting outlet for their frustrations: Basketball. A young woman named Mildred “Babe” Didrickson was taking the nation by storm at that time by putting the ball threw the hoop with alarming regularity. But Babe was not the only outstanding basketball player of her day. This book tells the story of the Lady Cardinals of Oklahoma Presbyterian College–a tiny church school and Junior College engaged more in “acculturating” Native American children than in producing star athletes. In fact, the basketball players had to help out at lunch time mentoring Native American children in table manners! We’ll leave that embarrassment for another day. At it’s time it was an acceptable thing to do.

Doll Harris, Coral Worley, Lucille Thurman, Hazel “Vick” Vickers, twins Lera and Vera Dunford, Toka Lee Fields, Alice Hamilton, Ginny Hamilton, Teny Lampson, Buena Harris, Juanita “Bo-Peep” Lassiter , Susie Lorance, Monk Mitchell, Allene West and LaHoma Lassiter had names far more colorful than the country surrounding them in Southeastern Oklahoma. They had only a tiny upstairs gym so they practiced at dawn at a neighboring college. They often had paid jobs, all had to attend church, chapel and Bible Study, and all were there first and foremost to get an education and a better life that that of their farming and ranching parents.

Led by Psychology professor turned coach, Sam Babb, this team would make history playing the more genteel “girls” basketball of the era. 6 players with assigned zones to play in kept the game much, much slower than today’s version. To avoid exhaustion the quarters were of shorter duration than the men’s game, too.  Unlike Michelle Obama, first lady Lou Hoover thought basketball a detriment to a young lady’s moral and physical development and led the group trying to ban the sport. Her committee got most of “girl’s” athletics at the college level demoted to demeaning intramurals and play-dates with other schools–as it mostly still was when was in elementary school 40 years later. It took Title IX to change all of that in the 1970s.

Given the climate of women’s sports then, the college tournament was really an Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) tournament that mixed a few high school teams, some college teams and the commercial and industrial league teams like the Golden Cyclones that Babe Didrikson played for. These women had jobs (or in some cases just an income) to play and represented their company on the basketball court. In an era before television and when every home was still just aspiring to own a radio, these teams–and their male counterparts– were popular. They barnstormed playing whatever teams they could find and arrange a game with.

Babe was the show-stopping star. The Michael Jordan of the commercial leagues. She was a love her or hate her figure. Very mannish in her looks, according to the standards of the day, she lost a lot of my respect after I read the story told in the book of her spitting out the window and keeping track of hits while at a job interview. Yuck. When the ladies of OPC came to town for the tournament no one expected anyone but Babe to be cutting down nets in triumph. You can guess the result.

What I Loved:

I loved that like so many female athletes still today, these women were in college first and foremost to get an education and make a life for themselves. Even though a paid option (and a handsomely paying one at that in many cases) was available to them for sports, they chose to study. While none was presented as overly religious, all followed the rules of behavior set by their coach, their school and society at the time.

The coach, an attractive young professor in a day and age when dating students was seen as normal, kept a boundary that enforced his role as leader and mentor. He did not take advantage of an obvious crush by a star player. He stayed faithful to his own chosen girl friend who was not affiliated with the college.

While this book is set at a Presbyterian College, nothing was said about faith–neither for, nor against. (The book is from a secular press). The girls were recruited as good basketball players. Church attendance and faith were taken as a normal and expected, as were good manners and polite speech. Parents were obeyed as was the coach and all the rules. Girls exhibited unease at breaking a rule about eating sugary foods!!!

What I Disliked:

Nothing.

There was one tiny sentence that made me fear encroaching political correctness, but, happily, it was said in traditional innocence and nothing more. This is a suitable read-aloud of any child interested in sports though young children might be bored as there were no slam dunks  or anything that makes modern NBA and NCAA play so exciting.

It should make a fun movie–I can’t wait to see who will be cast, but I hope they are unknowns or small college basketball players–like so many were in Hoosiers.

You can read more about the author (Basketball coach Sam Babb’s great-niece) and about the Dust Bowl Girls at the author’s website: http://lydiareeder.com/

Rating: 4 solid stars

Dust Bowl Girls: The Inspiring Story of the Team That Barnstormed Its Way to Basketball Glory by Lydia Reeder

Quote at the start of the post is from the back cover of the book and is unattributed.

Six Degrees of Separation: Fever Pitch

 

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This month’s Six Degrees of Separation Chain starts with Nick Hornby’s memoir Fever Pitch–a book I haven’t read.

Here’s the blurb from Amazon:  In America, it is soccer. But in Great Britain, it is the real football. No pads, no prayers, no prisoners. And that’s before the players even take the field.

Nick Hornby has been a football fan since the moment he was conceived. Call it predestiny. Or call it preschool. Fever Pitch is his tribute to a lifelong obsession. Part autobiography, part comedy, part incisive analysis of insanity, Hornby’s award-winning memoir captures the fever pitch of fandom—its agony and ecstasy, its community, its defining role in thousands of young men’s coming-of-age stories. Fever Pitch is one for the home team. But above all, it is one for everyone who knows what it really means to have a losing season.  Link

Soccer is a sport I tolerate fairly well. It’s simply and they keep the commercials to a minimum by not allowing tv time-outs. That said I’ve not read any soccer books. So, I’ll go with the title–Fever Pitch. Only that is difficult, too. Are we pitching a baseball or pitching woo? Pitching a fit or pitching a tent? Malarial fever or dengue fever? Football-football or soccer? Reaching a fever pitch or being pitched out the door? Perfect pitch or an elevator pitch.  All of them? None of them? Here’s goes.

  1. Fever Pitch–a baseball….

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I’m a life-long Cubs fan, but this book is great. You don’t even have to like sports to enjoy it. Presidential and First Lady historian Doris Kearns Goodwin’s memoir of the Brooklyn of her youth, the Brooklyn of the Dodgers and Ebbets Field.  Wait Till Next Year.

2. Pitch a Tent…Get a Fever

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Another Presidential Historian, Candice Millard, has written a superb account of Theodore Roosevelt and son Kermit’s epic adventure–an adventure that darned near killed T.R. It is like reading an Indian Jones adventure! Charting the course of the Amazon in pre-war 1914 was not a job for the faint-hearted. Larger-than-life Bull Moose, Teddy Roosevelt took on the challenge but only just lived to tell. River of Doubt.

3. Malarial Fever

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This was a fun read. As a returned Peace Corps Volunteer, the title immediately caught my eye. Happily the story did not disappoint. First Comes Love, Then Comes Malaria….

4. Pitching a Fit…or Not

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French kids don’t pitch fits … even at dinner. They eat their rocket salad with tangy mustard vinegrette. No one has heard of Ranch [dressing]. Not sure if the lessons in this book work in suburban America–at least not the parts I’ve been in, but I’m assured French kids simply get on with with their after-dinner salad like seasoned gourmands. Bringing Up Bebe.

5. Pitching Some Woo

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As recently as my childhood it was still illegal for black and white to marry in many states. This book tells the story of how the Supreme Court decided such laws were wrong. I’m anxious to read it. Love Wins.

6. Perfect Pitch

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This beautiful picture book tells the story of famed operatic contralto Marian Anderson–who caused “Marian Fever” in Europe according to one book review. Famously denied the use of Constitution Hall in Washington, D.C. by the Daughters of the American Revolution, Ms. Anderson’s fame became immortal when first lady Eleanor Roosevelt arranged for a larger venue for Ms Anderson’s concert: The Mall stretch from the Lincoln Memorial, which was the stage, to Capital Hill. When Marian Sang.

Six Degrees of Separation is a monthly meme now hosted by Books Are My Favorite And Best.

Twitter hastag #6Degrees

Top 5 Wednesday: Fictional Jobs I’d Love

Fictional Jobs You’d Want to Have

 

One

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Just about anything in Jed Bartlett’s White House staff

 

Two

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Librarian at Hogwarts. These kids need some serious Bibliographic Instruction. But, there’s a spell you can use that teaches it. I just want to play with flying books.

 

Three

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Librarian for for the Larrabee Company–either version. I’d keep Linus up-to-date on important Deals and Mergers, identify target companies and other cool stuff.

Four

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An employee of any rank at Marks & Co.

Five

 

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A researcher and writer for the WPA West Virginia Guide

The Guides were real, but I’d want to work with the characters in this novel.

Top 5 Wednesday is a group on Goodreads.com  Why not join?

Review: Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders, audio version

 

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In the immediate aftermath of Willie Lincolns death, Abraham Lincoln, presiding over both a country and house divided by the Civil War and by his wife’s mental iillness, becomes nearly unhinged with grief. He visits his sons temporary grave in the Carroll Mausoleum at a local cemetery (his body to be taken back to Illinois when the Lincolns, presumably, return after the presidency). This is the second child the Lincoln’s have lost–son Eddie died many years earlier. Son Robert is off at Harvard with a paid substitute fighting in the war in his place. Youngest son Tad, is left with the grieving parents.

While Lincoln’s maniacal grief and his visit to Willie’s tomb are the overt subject of this book, it is really more about society in general and about different views of morality and religion, heaven and hell. The “souls” buried around Willie come to life telling their story. From the unfortunate man who died about to consummate his marriage to an extremely abused Mulatto girl, to all other types of people in between–this is a story populated with the dead. They tell their stories of living, dying and accepting their death and their decent or ascent into the afterlife.

 

What I Loved

Regardless of any opinion on the story, this is an extremely creative approach to story telling–especially when done for the audio version. Just as there are numerous characters and quotes from even more sources than characters, each is individually voiced. A quote is read by one one performer, it’s attribution by another. This makes for an extremely engaging performance out of something that could have been very awkward.

Saunders writing is well deserving of its many accolades. The story is vivid to the point of the reader becoming effortlessly emersed in the world of the book. The portrayal of Lincoln’s visit to Willie, of removing his coffin from the tomb and opening it, nearly put me in tears. It was so vividly and emotionally told. The recounting, though occasionally disturbing (and rightfully so in this case) of the lives of slaves and the vehemence of hatred of some of the Southerners really brought the era and war to life. It made me have an even great distaste in my mouth and ache in my heart for each Confederate flag I see in the course of a day out where I live. It was unsettling–as it should be.

The creativity of the storytelling and the masterful use of language on the whole will earn this book a few major awards, I am sure.

 

What I Disliked

 

The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.” (Ecc. 1:9 KJV)

I disliked the story itself, though. Why it was necessary to bludgeon readers with modern day political correctness I do not know. There is nothing new about homosexuality, about discrimination in any form, about rape, about prostitution, about drinking, about drug addiction, about pedophilia. An abundance of the world’s population goes an entire lifetime without any of these touching them (many live out their lives in total ignorance–for good or bad–of any of these things), yet this is the bulk of what the ghosts or souls tell us about. The abundance of profanity used to differences in class or sexual attitudes was really overwhelming. Profane adjectives and sex talk by ghosts has a very limited appeal to me. I’m sure this was well-intentioned as a way to make the reader feel the same pull of injustice in today’s world as we feel toward the horror of slavery in past times. But it was grossly overdone.

Verdict

4 Stars and, in spite of my own dislikes, I highly recommend it for the originality of the storytelling.

 

Review: I Almost Forgot You by Terry McMillan

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I fell in love with Terry McMillan’s writing with her best-seller Waiting to Exhale and then with How Stella Got Her Groove back. Then life went on. I got into reading mostly non-fiction for a many years. The last 8  years I’ve had 2.5 hours in the car on weekdays so fiction has become a lifeline. This week I became very happily reacquainted with Ms. McMillan’s work thru her newest novel, I Almost Forgot About You.

The Story

Georgia Young, a few minor changes aside, could be me. She’s mid-50s, in a romantic wasteland and bored silly with her perfectly respectable profession as an Optometrist. Her nest is empty, she has delightful, exhausting grandchildren, and a mother who still loves her, nice co-workers, decent neighbors and two long-time close friends. But lately she’s wanted to make some changes. So, she starts by making a list of the men she loved and thinks she’ll look them up on Facebook and tell then Thank You for the part they once played in her happiness. She also decides to sell her house and take a long train journey to think what to do after optometry. If you are saying that’s a really good set-up for a really good novel, you’re right!

What I Loved

I loved the warmth of this book. The love of mothers and daughters and the love that grows between old friends. I loved that nobody got raped or molested or robbed. I even loved the swearing and the sex talk because it was totally natural–it occurred either in Georgia’s own thoughts or with her oldest friends since college. Maybe your friends don’t cuss, and that’s ok, but some people do. This was just natural.

What I Didn’t Like

In truth–not much. I loved the story. But could they have included the recipe for those take out Salt and Pepper Prawns or for Georgia’s stuffed avocados?

I Almost Forgot About You by Terry McMillan.

Now all rise for the Shoop-shoop song (i.e. Exhale)–this book made me want to  re-read and re-watch Waiting to Exhale–her biggest seller.

Review: Heavenly Horse Stories

 

I’ve posted before about my childhood love of horses! I was fortunate that for most of my childhood we owned or had ready access to horses. So, when I saw this little book come up for review in a professional publication I contribute to, I grabbed it. I wrote the professional review and sent it off. Today I’m offering a personal review.

Review

Rebecca Ondov has a wealth of experience leading trail rides and doing other work with horses. Her newest book, Heavenly Horse Stories, is part memoir, part devotional. Each story has a related scripture and prayer. The stories range from the edge-of-your-seat terrifying fall on her horse Czar to the sweeter story of being out with horses and seeing 22 rainbows in one glance! While this can be read straight thru as a good collection of out West horse stories, I liked it best as a daily devotional. It called to mind all the horses in my life. Heavenly Horse Stories by Rebecca Ondov.

Verdict

Four Stars

A Few of Rebecca Ondov’s Other Books

 

Horse Book and Diary for Girls

 

 

Links to buy these books (I do not get any money from this!) Great Horse Stories for Girls and My Horse Diary for Girls (Note: Amazon does not seem to carry this–I’ve linked elsewhere)

 

Illustrated Horse Story Gift Book

Also a lovely gift-edition of other horse stories, beautifully published with paintings of horses.

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Photo Source

I can’t think of a single horse lover too jaded about religion to not enjoy this author’s books. If they aren’t into devotions or the Christian faith they will still thoroughly enjoy the first-hand accounts of horses, mules, trail riding, the great American West, outdoor life, and the joy that animals bring to our lives. Below is a video from  the author’s YouTube channel that gives you a little taste of this life.

 

 

 

Do you have a favorite horse book, film or memory? Leave me a comment with your story or a link to your post. I love to hear what others enjoy–especially when it relates to animals.

 

Friday Faves: My World Right Now

 

What’s Making Me Giggle

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I stood at the display in the public library reading this and laughing. I keep thinking of it and giggling all week. I’ll never look at some of the iconic Little Golden Books the same, ever again!  Everything I Need To Know I Learned From a Little Golden Book by  Diane Muldrow

 

 

Which Brings to Mind My Favorite Little Golden Book

No surprise that it’s a kitty book! I loved that it had real people–photos, not drawings. I still have it in a box somewhere. My kids couldn’t relate to the little girl–her clothes were “too old-fashioned” ouch! But they DID know the kittens by name and, like me, probably still do. I’m glad we all loved it and look forward to sharing it, someday, with a third generation.

What I’m Looking Forward To This Weekend

A rare day out with old friends who live a few hours away! Cincinnati’s favorite pizza provides a place about half-way for each of us and  is just an excuse to sit and talk and laugh. They love traditional pizza (I do, too) with sausage, peppers, onions and extra cheese. I love La Rosa’s thin flatbread Florentine pizza! It’s all good though–all of their pizza is great! Check out the menu. When we all get together, ice cream is usually involved as well, but we’ll have to see what’s available at the location where we are meeting. Cincinnati is blessed to have Greater’s Ice Cream though. But we’re meeting near the city, not in it.

New Food Obsession

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These Steakhouse Tater Tots are GREAT! But what’s even better is the Seasoning Mix for them! You could easily make this healthier with baked, seasoned fries or wedges to go with the dip. The dip is easy to lighten as well. (I cheated and used Ranch Dressing and chopped up some sliced jalapenos from a jar).

Newest Fascination–An Very Unusual Job

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The Mall of America is advertising for a Writer in Residence. What a hoot! A top spot for people watching and you’d be paid to do it!  For their 25th Anniversary the Mall is hiring a writer to “live deliberately” and “be immersed” in the life of the mall. NPR Story here. What a hoot! I visited the Mall in  the late 90’s. Camp Snoopy  and the people watching were the coolest parts to me. I’m not much of a shopper.

What were your Faves this week? Leave me a comment or a link–I love to see what people are fixed upon at the moment.

Review: Selection Day by Aravind Adiga: Reading Around the World: India

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Cricket is a sport no American understands unless, like the late William F. Buckley or Ted and Bobby Kennedy, they were forced to attend a British public (private) school. So, it’s no surprise that a book on cricket was hidden under a cover design that mimics other recent successful diverse or international novels while the rest of the world was given cricket on the cover.

You know, it’s often said that Indians have two real religions, the cinema – Bollywood – and cricket. It’s the equivalent of sort of baseball, basketball, football and Christmas put together. The question is not why cricket. The question is how you can escape cricket in India.                      (Aravind Adiga on NPR)

One of the strangest legacies of British colonialism is cricket. Many countries in the British Commonwealth (i.e. former Empire) play cricket–though Canada isn’t one of them. India has made cricket, as the quote above says, into a religion–a national obsession, like hockey in Canada or the NBA in America. Never mind in the bygone days of the Raj, Indians would only have been allowed into the Cricket Club as waiters or cleaners. Today it is truly their game.

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Photo source

The Good

Happily, you don’t have to understand a thing about cricket to read the book. Other than understanding that it goes on for ever and that a Century is a good thing to earn for your team, you can just lalalala thru any action. The focus isn’t so much on the game as on the behind-the-scenes.

Radha and Maju Kumar are the sons of an itinerant chutney salesman living in a poor area of Mumbai, India. Cricket is the fast track to prosperity for all of them and their father has raised them to be the best. (Think NBA straight from high school and you have an idea how this will go.) His peculiar methods of “training” his sons include examining their genitalia and regulating their diet. Both boys have done little in life except go to school and then practice cricket. “Selection Day” is like the NFL or NBA draft. Since no one has the insanity of college-to-pros that the USA has, the selection is for “junior” teams. So imagine being drafted in Middle School for, say, the Junior Detroit Pistons, or the Junior Dallas Cowboys. You get the idea.

The talent is there. Getting selected is another story–a story of corruption. (Think inner city basketball players being recruited by excellent suburban schools and helped to move). The Chutney Salesman (the father) goes all out to get his sons into sponsorship that will lead to selection. But Tommy Sir, as he’s known, isn’t the most scrupulous guy around. He sponsors the boys then, in a way, pits them against each other. The result is ugly.

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I found the story of corruption in cricket very interesting. I’ve read a few things on cricket for one of my novels and found that not everyone likes the way televised cricket especially is going. It can be played in “pajamas” as the newly allowed bright-colored uniforms are mockingly called (like tennis, once upon a Wimbledon, cricket has historically been played in long white trousers and white shirts with team blazers, caps and tennis-style sweaters only betraying team colors). Critics say it’s being made over into baseball for television. In fact, baseball, is teased about in the story.

Oh, my Darling, my Cricket. Phixed and Phucked (p. 143)

But with two teenage boys and an odd father, you know there’s more to the story. In addition to Radha’s desire to study chemistry and be a CSI investigator like those on his favorite imported t.v. show, there are is the story of another boy. Enter wealthier, suburban cricketer, J.A. His life is worlds away from that of the brothers–in more ways than just economically. The coming-of-age part of the story centers around his homosexuality and the sexual coming-of-age of the brothers–especially Manthu.

The Bad

After about midway I found the novel disappointing in many ways. Coming-of-age stories are a favorite of mine and this one, with the added element of taboo sexual preference should have been interesting. Sadly, this part of the story didn’t go well. J.A. is not the most likable of characters. Exploration of sexuality is a normal and expected part of growing up. J.A. though was spoiled and manipulative. I disliked the boys’ father, loathed Tommy Sir and didn’t really like the way this part of the story went.

Conclusion

I enjoyed the look into Indiana life and into the country’s obsession for cricket. I love any book that shows normal, daily life in another country and this part of the book did not disappoint. I could feel, smell, taste India the way Adiga portrayed it. It makes me want to visit the country even more. I will definitely read more from this author.

Verdict: Three Stars

You can read a transcript of the author’s NPR interview here.

Review: Wildwater Walking Club Back on Track by Claire Cook

Author Claire Cook

Claire Cook is a role model of mine. She’s an author who writes best selling books, but who didn’t start writing till after she was a Mom of teens. She wrote her first book in her minivan while waiting for her kiddo at early-morning swim team practice. Her book Never Too Late: Your Road Map to Reinvention helped give me the courage to start writing again, too. Then there’s her book The Wildwater Walking Club (book one now). I loved it. Loved it so much, in fact, that I contacted the publisher and did a give-away on my old blog. I’ve recommended the book far and wide. Finally, Claire is part of what is hopefully a trend of successful authors turning to self-publishing. In short, she really inspires me!

 

The Book

All of that to say I can’t give this book a great review. Three stars would be stretching it, I’m afraid. I hate saying that. But, honestly? It was like reading a guide to a river cruise–or listening to your aunt and uncle at dinner the night they got back from their cruise.

Noreen,  Tess and Rosie are neighbors at that awkward age–of being ready for a change now that kids–or the chance of having them–is over and their parents are either dead or not yet impaired enough to need constant care. So, their solution? Take a river cruise in France. Ideas for the art teacher with a grant (Tess), for the lavender farm owner (Rosie) and for the career changer (Noreen) are bound to come up on a cruise! The premise is really good, but….

The Parts I Liked

I liked that Noreen was moving on after her buy-out and I especially loved that her boyfriend, Rick, was struggling because it was an accurate description of what happens to so many people after a buy-out, an early retirement or even after being fired. I liked the fixation he developed with Pokeman Go! –like someone who becomes too invested in watching all X-seasons of a show rather than getting up trying again for a new job. That was good. But…..

I loved Noreen starting her Health Counseling Coach training with a real mix of believable emotions. But…..

The Bad

In addition to the cruise catalog stuff, the same three ladies who were fun and real in the first book were, well,…..blah this time around. Not bad, just not the bubbly,  fun group they were in book one. In the first outing, these were ladies anyone would enjoy having as friends and neighbors, but now they just didn’t have an spark. This was hard because I really liked them in book one.

Then there was Joy. Joy was just a bad idea. Joy should have been cut. That whole story line was too childish for words. Joy alone took an entire star away from the book’s rating.

Finally if I’d heard the phrase “How should/could/would that look” one more time I’d have thrown the Kindle across the room. UGH. Even a rank beginner of a counselor should have more than one phrase like that.

Verdict

Because I admire Claire Cook I’m giving it 3 stars. In my rating system that means not a bad book, just an average one. Every one has off days and if you write long enough you have an off book. I’m hoping this is the “off” book and that the series perks up and finds its old vitality in book three.

Top Five Wednesday: Books t0 Get You Out of a Slump

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1. The One About College Professors

 

What happens when a 60’s Berkley prof trades places with his counterpart in a provincal British University? They swap houses, jobs and….wives? Funny book.  Philip Swallow and Morris Zap are unforgettable and forever linked with my time at Indiana University. The book was recommended by a professor I liked and it did not, and still upon re-reading, does not disappoint. It seems the individual volumes of David Lodge’s Campus Trilogy are out-of-print so I’m linking to the one volume of this trilogy. I had no idea until today that there was a trilogy–so happy me! Changing Places–Book One of the Campus Trilogy by David Lodge.

2. The One With Too Much Family

 

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This is a great send-up of Old New York Knickerbocker families set in the early 1960’s. When the family gathers for Christmas a disasterous chain of events is put into motion causing a happy marriage to split. What makes it so amusing is the telling is done in first person by 11 year old son Kerry. Yes, there are a few less than p.c. elements that are typical of its era. But Patrick Dennis at his best is not to be missed. One of my favorite books ever and an annual re-read. The Joyous Season by Patrick Dennis.

 

 

3. The One With That President’s Wife

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Ok, it’s not really HER–this is fiction. But, this is a get-sunk-into novel. The kind you keep refilling the tub and the gin glass.  I savored every word of this! The family compound for vacations, the baseball–all of it. Loved it. American Wife by Curtis Sitenfeld (Curtis is a woman, fyi, like most I thought a man had written it. Sorry, Curtis).

 

 

 

4. The One With the Secret

 

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I have fallen in love with Liane Moriarty’s books! I know I’ll get thru them all. This one has it all–a secret the wife shouldn’t have found out, consequences for all of this action and more. A suburban life, as suffocating and perfect as it can be, is ripped open to the light of day. The Husband’s Secret by Liane Moriarity The only thing I didn’t like was the cover!

 

 

 

5. The YA One With a Holmes-ian twist

 

 

This is a shameless plug for book two of what seems to be a great new series featuring descendants of Sherlock Holmes and his trusted friend, Dr. Watson. Charlotte Holmes and Jamie Watson meet in boarding school and go on to solve murders with the panache of their ancient relatives. To read more about book one of this trilogy–and a nice selection of quotes check out this post from last year.

 

Top 5 Wednesday comes from the Group of that name on Goodreads.com Join it and play along! You can do a traditional blog post or a video post.