Category Archives: Challenge

One True Thing

Thoughts by Anna Quindlen, Delta 1994, 289 pages

Challenge: 20 books of Summer, What’s in a Name / “ONE” Category

Genre/Theme: Contemporary Lit / Child-Parent Relationships

Type/Source: Tradeback/Gift from a friend

What It’s About: Ellen is young and ambitious, making her father proud. But then her Mom gets sick and her father basically orders her to quit her job – her career – her life to move home and care for Mom. She does but she does it to prove a point to her dad more than because she even slightly wants to do it.

But her Mom is the smartest and the bestest of them all. Ellen has to figure it out the hard way.

Your father was better at it. Much better,” she looked at me and added, “I’m sorry.”

That’s all right, I said, a little mystified because I was not sure what the apology was for. For so long I thought about myself as a girl who walked away from her mother’s life, that it would be a long time before I would start to think about the other part of the bargain, how easily she’d let me go.

Thoughts: Wow – what a story! Heart-wrenching. Not only does Mom die a horrible death by cancer but then Ellen is accused of murdering her. She spends a night in jail because . . . apparently Dear Dad didn’t even know about the arrest. The trial, the aftermath, the reconnection. Just wow.

I loved it.

Thank you Trish of Love Laughter Insanity for sending this book to me in 2012.

Rating: __5__slices of pie. Cherry once and pumpkin twice!

I cooked and cleaned and read; I simmered casseroles and made pies.

 

What’s in a Name host site: Carolina Book Nook

 

Copyright © 2007-2021. Care’s Books and Pie also known as and originally created as Care’s Online Book Club. All rights reserved. This post was originally posted by Care. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

The Smart One and the Pretty One

Thoughts by Claire LaZebnik, 5 Spot/Hachette Book Group 2008, 288 pages

Challenge: 20 books of Summer

Genre/Theme: Fun Fiction/Sisters

Type/Source: Tradeback/Gift from a friend

What It’s About: Two sisters are reunited to take care of their mother’s health challenge and both grow up a bit while learning to appreciate each other.

Thoughts: Wow – that sentence above hurt me to write! Let’s see, let me start over.

The PRETTY-SISTER is irresponsible and unconcerned, loves fashion, has moved home from NYC back to LA and escorts Mom to chemotherapy as she battles a “minor case of breast cancer” (WTF?!)

The SMART-SISTER is overly responsible, hates all things girly, is consumed by being the consummate attorney. Smartie puts Pretty on a budget buying-ban; Pretty fixes sis up with an old family friend. Mayhem ensues.

OK, I do tend to overuse the “mayhem ensues”, I get it. I’ll stop. (no I won’t.) Pretty-Sister realizes she needs to be better with her finances and Smarty-Sis realizes that fashion *CAN* be fun.

It was a light and sexy read and I was glad to escape into the pages after too many months of reading more whacky or serious (or both) so I am happy to finally get to this.

But what happens with Mom? What happens to dud NYC-boy and his mom? A few loose ends, for me.

Thank you Lisa from Omaha for “winning” this book to me in 2009. LOL! 2009…

Rating: __4___slices of pie. I didn’t note any pie mentions. Might have to demote it to 3 slices…

 

What’s in a Name host site: Carolina Book Nook

 

Copyright © 2007-2021. Care’s Books and Pie also known as and originally created as Care’s Online Book Club. All rights reserved. This post was originally posted by Care. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

The Three Musketeers

Thoughts by Alexander Dumas, Bantam Classics 1984 (orig 1844), 635 pages

Audiobook 23 hours 32 minutes, narrated by John Lee

Challenge: Classics Club Spin #26

Genre/Theme: “Cloak and Sword” story / Adventure

Type/Source: Paperback and Audiobook / Purchased in 2009 at Borders, Audible

What It’s About: This was a lot of fun and I enjoyed meeting the main characters; fighting for the King and against the scheming Cardinal and his guards, as well as wooing all the ladies. It had a lot of humor. It did seem long and tedious, at times, though.

Thoughts: Not nearly as good at The Count of Monte Cristo but still dashing and adventurous.

Rating: Rounding up to 4 slices of pie. No pie mentioned.

I talked friends into renting the 1973 movie starring all sorts of big stars! and it was… also not as good as the Count of Monte Cristo movie. But I’m glad to have watched it. The movie really emphasized the campiness and humor.

 

Charleton Heston! Raquel Welch!! among others…. Link to IMDB.com

 

Copyright © 2007-2021. Care’s Books and Pie also known as and originally created as Care’s Online Book Club. All rights reserved. This post was originally posted by Care. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

The People in the Trees

Thoughts by Hanya Yanagihara, Doubleday 2013, 512 pages

Challenge: TOB Favorites (coming this fall)

Genre/Theme: Contemporary Lit

Type/Source: eBook / Kindle-Amazon

What It’s About: Inspired by true events and real people, this story is told via edited memoirs of a Nobel Prize-winning doctor whose first ‘job’ out of Harvard Med was with an expedition to a previously undiscovered peoples living in the jungles of a tiny Micronesian island. What he discovers and how his life travels from there is one heck of an unsettling tale.

… by twelve incompetents (one juror, as I recall, was a tollbooth clerk, another a dog-washer),

These memoirs are written while he is in prison for sexually abusing one, or more, of his 43 children. He had on subsequent visits over many years, adopted all of these kids from the island community he originally encountered on that fateful trip. The one resulting in his being first to publish findings of physical longevity attributed to eating a previously unknown variety of turtle. Eventually, the island life is destroyed; the community in shambles, the turtle extinct and no fountain-of-youth elixir.

 At night I dreamed of green, great floating blobs of it, morphing gently from one shade to the next, and in the mornings I woke feeling beaten and exhausted. During the day my thoughts returned to visions of deserts, of cities, of hard surfaces: of glass and concrete.

Thoughts: The last few paragraphs will kick you in the gut. You know it is coming, but the when and what and how is gobsmacking. Yet. Not? We were given all the clues, by the monster himself. I will only say that I found the guy a monster, an ogre, an egotistical misogynistic remorseless abhorrent individual.

So, the writing. She is successful at world-building, character-development, tone, pace, all that stuff. I really did almost give up because I just knew it was bleak but my curiosity won out.

Rating: Four slices of pie. Leech Pie

Owen and I were gathering a bucket of leeches that we planned to bake into a pie and then give to Ida, the part-time cook, a sour woman we both hated. My mother was dangling her feet in the stream.

 

 

What’s in a Name – Category Botanical

Copyright © 2007-2021. Care’s Books and Pie also known as and originally created as Care’s Online Book Club. All rights reserved. This post was originally posted by Care. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Poetry 2021 Edition 1

Poetry Goal 2021:  to read a poem* every day.

Collection # 1 A Village Life by Louise Glück; Farrar, Straus and Giroux 2009, 72 pages

Burning Leaves

. . .

How fast it all goes, how fast the smoke clears.

And where the pile of leaves was,

an emptiness that suddenly seems vast.

+ .  .  .

My thoughts: Something so evocative and fierce yet somber, almost resigned. Life expectations from youth on. Humans survive, but do they truly live?

Fives slices of pie. No pie mentioned.

Collection # 2 A Bound Woman is a Dangerous Thing by DaMaris B. Hill, Bloomsbury Publishing 2019, 172 pages

Study the Master (an echo poem for Ms. Clifton)

i do as you say,

study the masters.

i glean close.

your handiwork of words,

the discipline you command.

All that is huge and hinged with hope

are pressed into me.

.

+ .  .  .

 

*Or more. I’m not tracking, I’m just reading. I’m not limiting this experience to one poem a day – that is only the minimum.

pierating

Copyright © 2007-2021. Care’s Books and Pie aka Care’s Online Book Club. All rights reserved. This post was originally posted by Care from Care’s Online Book Club.  It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

What’s in a Name Challenge 2021 Sign Up Post

The What’s in a Name 6-Category Reading Challenge is hosted by Andrea at Carolina Book Nook. The image below will link to the Challenge Sign up Page.

UPDATED Jan 13, 2021 – see PURPLE FONT BELOW…

In 2021, choose 6 books that have titles that contain a:
(Click on the links for more examples and info)

  • One/1  – Anna Quindlen’s One True Thing
  • Doubled word – I have two options here:   Apologize, APOLOGIZE by Elizabeth Kelly or The Smart One and the Pretty One by Claire Lazebnik
  • Reference to outer space  – Walter Kirn’s Up in the Air 
  • Possessive noun – I hope to read BOTH of these: The Children’s Book by A.S.Byatt and The Children’s Bible by Lydia Millet

                                             and 

  • Botanical word – I own 2 books with “garden” in the title: The Paper Garden by Molly Peacock or Alan Drew’s Gardens of Water
  • Article of clothing – I have NO IDEA! please help. I couldn’t even figure out how to search by gr tbr to give me suggestions.

I will be reading Pauli Murray’s Proud Shoes for the Article of Clothing category…  psbypm

This is one of my favorite challenges because it gets me to go through my own shelves and I am reminded of or re-find possibilities of some great reads!

More choices possible on my list in goodreads.

pieratingsml

Copyright © 2007-2020. Care’s Online Book Club aka Care’s Books and Pie. All rights reserved. This post was originally posted by Care from Care’s Online Book Club aka BkClubCare.  It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Poetry 2020 Edition 9

Poetry Goal 2020:  to read a poem* every day.

 

Collection # 17 Night by Etel Adnan, Nightboat Books 2016, 53 pages

. . .

My own disappearance

followed a cloud

that found me

sitting in a garden.

 

Tunnels reproduce the patterns of arteries.

There’s a worm in the heart

that’s feeding on its allowance.

+ .  .  .

 

 

Collection # 18 The Thin Wall by Martha Rhodes, University of Pittsburgh Press 2017, 56 pages

no title

My job is to extract your soul and usher it 
along to where today we find, north of north,
a strip of sand wide as wide, a branch of river,
leaf deep. Nothing surrounds or meets us here.
My pleasure—your contentment, your acceptance
of eternity, here—that I have chosen right by you.

 

 

 

*Or more. I’m not tracking, I’m just reading. I’m not limiting this experience to one poem a day – that is only the minimum.

pierating

Copyright © 2007-2020. Care’s Books and Pie aka Care’s Online Book Club. All rights reserved. This post was originally posted by Care from Care’s Online Book Club.  It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

We Ride Upon Sticks

Thoughts by Quan Barry, Random House Audio 2020, 14 hours 44 minutes

Narrated by Isabel Keating

Challenge: Possible TOB Long List to Short (Gamble)
Genre: YA
Type/Source: Audiobook/Library
 Why I read this now:  Available at Library 

MOTIVATION for READING: Tournament of Books 2021 Hopeful

WHAT’s it ABOUT:  A Girls HS Field Hockey Team who make a pact with the darkside in order to win State. This takes place and draws heavily on the Salem Witch Trials history.

THOUGHTS: This was a fun listen. Humor was delightful and I was often chortling or laughing or exclaiming, “oh my!” Good stuff.

However, it was a bit too long. I was invested but ready for it to be done.

The poetry collection I opened when almost finished with this audiobook references the Salem Witch Trials. [The Thin Wall by Martha Rhodes]

RATING:  Four slices of pie.

Pie actually had a few mentions – a mother of a team member enters a pie in the county fair, is one.

pierating

Copyright © 2007-2020. Care’s Online Book Club. All rights reserved. This post was originally posted by Care from Care’s Online Book Club.  It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Poetry 2020 Edition 8

Poetry Goal 2020:  to read a poem* every day.

 

Collection # 15 Dark Testament by Pauli Murray, LiveRight Publishing 2018 (orig 1970), 100 pages

Words

. . .

 

We are spendthrift with words,

we squander them,

toss them like pennies in the air — arrogant words,

angry words, cruel words, comradely words,

shy words tiptoeing from mouth to ear.

 

But the slowly wrought words

of love and the thunderous words

of heartbreak — these we hoard.”

 

 

 

Collection # 16 3 New York Poets: Charles North & Tony Towle & Paul Violi edited by Andrew McCarron, Station Hill 2015, 302 pages

. . .

You see,

most of us do not use our backs properly,

they float unused in the body’s sea,

retreat like flights of steps into the earth,

or mount like birds and hurtle through space

in a universe of

misuse —

 

+ .  .  .   (Tony Towle’s Autobiography)

OK, so this collection is…  interesting. And very WHITE. And white MALE. huh.  And it read like that. I really must admit, in some ways, most ways, I just didn’t get it.  Some of the poetry was cool; some fun word play, thought-provoking imagery, etc and blahblahblah? But the descriptions of the interviews attempting to connect the poet’s lives to their head games to the work to their art?  Fell flat to me. I suppose that is my disconnect with Andrew McCarron. Kudos to him and it’s not necessarily an uninteresting project but I must admit, I’m not the best audience for this.

I spent most of my time when reading the poems wishing for a cool postcard to write that snippet to send to a friend. Postcard Poetry!

This round goes to Murray. 

And me for really enjoying my poetry project!

 

 

*Or more. I’m not tracking, I’m just reading. I’m not limiting this experience to one poem a day – that is only the minimum.

pierating

Copyright © 2007-2020. Care’s Books and Pie aka Care’s Online Book Club. All rights reserved. This post was originally posted by Care from Care’s Online Book Club.  It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Tender is the Night

Thoughts by F.Scott Fitzgerald, 1934, 356 pages

Challenge:  Classics Club Spin
Genre: Classic
Type/Source: ebook, library
 Why I read this now:  SPIN!   

MOTIVATION for READING: I had read somewhere that this was his best work. I may have read that wrong. Could be it is still a topic of debate.

WHAT’s it ABOUT:  LOTS going on in this book and to be honest, I didn’t give it my full attention (which might mean that I actually failed to finish. Shame on me! I am still counting it as read…)

Dick Diver is married. He and his wife make a lovely much-admired couple and live in an amazingly glamorous spot on the French Riviera leading a glamorous life. But really, he is a psychoanalyst married to a former patient (named Nicole, who seems perfectly lovely in the first half) and is now attracted (the Dick dude) to a cute young glamorous up&coming actress who throws herself at him. But really, I didn’t get much farther than that. I love that history shocks me – that WHAT?!          WHY young ladies don’t throw themselves at happily married men they meet on the beach AND admire the wives and yet still throw themselves at the husband anyway AND TELL THEIR OWN MOTHER?!  in the late 1920s?!  did they? Do they?

I would have never. (Told my mother.)

I put the book down and ten days later when I had the time and mindspace to jump back in, I found out that it was a 14 day library ebook loan and I FAILED. Oooops. It expired.

So I spent a few hours watching YouTube BookTube videos and caught myself up on the plot of what I missed.

Dick and Nicole’s marriage implodes. He does end up sleeping with the young actress apparently but the book takes a turn and shares how Dick and Nicole met in the first place; then Nicole sleeps with a friend, — apparently, they talk it out “LIKE ADULTS” (whatever that might mean) and it ends ambiguously with Dick being an alcoholic and Nicole hopefully have her HEA. I heard it had an ambiguous ending.

OK, maybe I kept zoning out on the less than 10 minute BookTube reviews. Sue me.

THOUGHTS: This book does seem to have CARE PIE written ALL OVER IT! But no, nope. I just didn’t quite get into that must-finish-keep-reading-it’s-past-my-bedtime-don’t-care state which I was wanting.

Should I have audiobooked it?!

oH yEA.  I will watch the movie. Hopefully sooner than later. Casting looks suspect in my distant future viewpoint yet the pretties and the settings look like it just might deliver.  Jason Robards, Jennifer Jones, Joan Fontaine?! and Jill St John. Adapted to the 1960s and made in 1962. Sign. me. up.

RATING:  Three slices of pie.

 

 

 

pierating

Copyright © 2007-2020. Care’s Online Book Club. All rights reserved. This post was originally posted by Care from Care’s Online Book Club.  It should not be reproduced without express written permission.