Florida Trip

Friday, May 22, 2015

Happy Early Memorial Day and more importantly Towel Day!
The Huz and I are taking a vacation in Florida. 
We will hopefully be fully unplugged from work 
and relaxing this week. I'll be back in June!
Photo by moi.

I Remember Nothing

Thursday, May 21, 2015

I Remember Nothing  
by Nora Ephron

Nora Ephron, screenwriter of “When Harry Met Sally” and “You’ve Got Mail” has written a few memoirs over the years. This one dwells on a few thoughts towards the end of her life. She talks about getting older, how things have changed, etc. Ephron’s meandering essays are steeped in her recognizable sense of humor. 

My favorite part was a list of things she will and won’t miss when she’s gone…

I decided to make my own list (below). What would be on your's?

Wordless Wednesday: New Zealand

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

New Zealand Countryside
More Wordless Wednesday here.
Photo by moi.

Asterios Polyp and Berlin

Monday, May 18, 2015

Asterios Polyp
by David Mazzucchelli

Asterios is an architect who escapes from his life one day when his apartment burns down. We watch his life fall apart in flashbacks. He falls in love and then slowly alienates his wife Hana. We watch him become an auto mechanic and learn about his stillborn twin brother.

This graphic novel didn’t have the same emotional depth as others I’ve read, but it’s one of the most cerebral GNs I’ve found. It discusses the duplicity of a person’s character and highlights the ways we can see the people we love every day and yet not really see them. It’s beautifully told with unique fonts for each characters’ voice.

BOTTOM LINE: Wonderfully drawn and intellectually stimulating.

 A couple quotes I loved from the book...

Berlin: Part 1 
by Jason Lutes

Set in Berlin from September 1928 - May Day 1929, this graphic novel charts the rise of the Third Reich. At times it was hard to follow because there are lots of characters that are drawn in a very similar way. The story deals with the communists in Berlin at that time, the growing Nazi party, and prejudice against Jews. Two of the main characters are a journalist named Kurt Severing and artist, Marthe Muller, who meet by chance on a train. 

BOTTOM LINE: I will definitely read the next segment “Part 2” as the book ends on a cliffhanger. I enjoyed it, especially the historical side, but didn’t love it. 

“One thing I love about this city is the way all of our different worlds rub shoulders every day.”

Images from Asterios Polyp and Berlin

The Two Sisters Bookstore

Friday, May 15, 2015

 I love discovering new bookstores and this one was such a treat. The Two Sisters is nestled in the midst of Richmond, Indiana's historic Depot District. It's packed with shelves of books but still manages to have an open airy feel. There are both used and new books, including some lovely Penguin editions. I could have spent all day wandering through the shop.
Of course I couldn't leave without a few goodies. I found three classics that just had to come home with me. Their prices were really reasonable and I had a hard time keeping it to only three books. I bought a 1924 copy of "When We Were Young" by A.A. Milne, a copy of “Winesburg, Ohio” by Sherwood Anderson and a beautiful edition of Gene Stratton-Porter’s “Michael O’Halloran” because I loved “A Girl of the Limberlost” so much!
There were great little signs identifying each each section of books (above). There was also a huge selection of tea at the front of the shop. 
One of the best parts of the whole shop is hidden in the back in the children's section. There's a Harry Potter nook under the stairs!!! There was a complete set of the books, a photo of Harry, Ron, and Hermione, a Gryffindor scarf and glasses. If I were younger I might have curled up on the little bed with a book!
There were many literary themed gifts in the shop as well, coffee mugs, etc. I loved all the unique details that popped up around each corner. One sign on the fireplace mantle (above) said "Monthly Movie Crush: Benedict Cumberbatch". I mean really, tell me you don't want to be friends with these ladies! I loved everything about the shop and can't wait to visit again.

Photos by moi.


Thursday, May 14, 2015

by Neil Gaiman and Michael Reaves 

I tend to love most of what Gaiman writes, but this one fell a bit flat for me. The concept is fascinating, but the execution was a bit off. The adventure story follows Joseph, a normal boy who walks straight into another world. 

He discovers and entire army of different versions of himself from other worlds. There’s Jerzy: from a world with feathers where women lay eggs, Josef: who is really strong, Jai: who meditates and has a huge vocabulary, Jakon: a wolf girl, Jo: a girl with wings, and J’r’ohoho: a centaur. 

The army trains at a boot camp run by the “old man”. Their goal is to, “Protect the Altiverse and stem the tides of magic and science.” That’s a heavy order for the newly inducted Joseph to wrap his head around.

There are two different groups of bad guys. The Binary, who travel on gravitons, freeze the walkers to use them to fuel their ships. Then there are the HEX folk. They use magic to boil walkers and use their souls to power interplane travel. Both sets of villains were a bit cartoonish. In a lot of ways, this novel reminded me of the Percy Jackson series.

BOTTOM LINE: At times there was just too much going on at once. We bounced back and forth so quickly that it was hard to feel attached to the characters. Apparently it started out as an idea for a TV show and I was left wondering if that might have been a better fit for this particular story. I do think this might be a perfect fit for teenage boys.

"I wanted to spare her what I knew: that reality can splinter like a hammered mirror. That it can happen to anybody."
"Sometimes war is necessary to teach us the value of peace."