Readerly Rambles:25 April 2016

Readathon was this past weekend and I had an awesome time even though there were a few glitches in my weekend. Atticus started running a high fever on Friday (we took him to the doctor today and he diagnosed it as a viral cold) and Sam and Atticus both have pinkeye. Also, this is the week prior to final exams so I worked a 10.5 hour shift on Sunday and didn’t get home until well after 11pm. I did get quite a bit of reading done and co-hosted for three hours on Saturday. I read from 8am – the starting time – until noon, cohosted, and then read from 3pm until 5pm. Then I had a brief break, picked up Chinese takeout, played with the kids, and then started reading again around 8:30pm. I finally threw in the towel around midnight. In the morning I opted to nap and lounge around with the family instead of reading.

I did get a tremendous amount of reading done! How about some mini-reviews?

A Lost Lady by Willa Cather: Willa, girl, you and I are not getting along. I freaking hated this book. There were some really lovely descriptions of nature, but Willa Cather’s portrayal of women makes me batty. Like in My Antonia, there is a teen boy enamoured with the female protagonist and he grows up to be a pretentious, condescending twat. Mrs. Forrester is younger than her husband, beautiful, and lively. There’s a throbbing, smashing me over the head “Otherness” about her. She is just so bright and lively and cannot be contained. Too bad she makes unethical choices … tsk.. tsk… but then later in life ends up okay with the right man to guide her and keep her in line. I CANNOT EVEN.

American Housewife: Stories by Helen Ellis: This short story collection was witty and wry. I really loved “The Wainscotting War” and “Dumpster Diving with Celebrities,” but a few of the stories were more like really brief monologues and simply didn’t have the same writing chops. I will certainly be checking out more Helen Ellis stories.

Ariel by Sylvia Plath: Ummmm… do I really need to review this? Obviously it was just as fabulous as the other 20 times I’ve read Ariel. I am working on a poetry post for next week where I’ll talk about some more specific things related to Plath and her goshdarn beautiful writing.

Are You My Mother? by Alison Bechdel: I really loved Fun Home, so I was excited to get my hands on this memoir about Bechdel’s mother. There were times the psychoanalyst parts were a bit dry, but the sections where Bechdel is wrestling with memories and difficulties regarding her mother is achingly beautiful. I may have cried a bit and took screenshots to send my therapist.

Bitch Planet, volume 1 by Kelly Sue DeConnick: OH MY FREAKING GAWD THIS IS THE BEST THING EVER. It is like The Handmaid’s Tale meets Mad Max Fury Road meets an L7 concert. READ IT NOWWWWWWW!

Lumberjanes, volume 1 by Noelle Stevenson: This comic about some spunky and adorable girl scout-types was winsome. I wish there had been a little more character development in the beginning to help me keep the characters straight, but I’m eager to pick up the next volume.

Those are all the books I finished during readathon; pretty good, huh?

I have one more book that I started during readathon and I haven’t finished it yet. How to be a Heroine by Samantha Ellis is amazing! Ellis discusses the “heroines” from literature who helped shape her as a young woman. This one will be getting a separate review with my own list of heroines.

Great readathon and I cannot wait until October 22nd for the autumn readathon! I’m wondering if I could get some bookish gals together and get a cabin so we can all read together and break for bookish shenanigans. hummmm…….



  1. Have you read Death Comes for the Archbishop by Willa Cather? It’s extremely different from her other books, and honestly the only one I’ve really loved.

    Glad you were able to participate despite all those hiccups!

  2. Pinkeye! Terrible! I used to get pinkeye all the time as a kid, and I hated it — both because I had to have eyedrops and mainly because I couldn’t wear my contact lenses while having pinkeye and I had to wear my stupid horrible back-up glasses instead. UGH. I hope the kidlets are recovered soon!

  3. So sorry to hear about Sam and Atticus, but glad you were able to get a lot of reading in. (And, glad to hear I’m not the only one who has struggled with Cather.)

    Man, oh, man – we need to find that cabin!! Somewhere between Texas and the east coast and we can all road trip to the middle… I’ll bring the “door prizes”…I have a ton of stuff in my closet leftover from a readathon my daughters’ book club was supposed to have last year that got cancelled at the last minute. Sounds like a dream vacation… 🙂

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