Jump to content


This site uses cookies. By using this site, you agree to accept cookies, unless you've opted out. (US government web page with instructions to opt out: http://www.usa.gov/optout-instructions.shtml)

What are you reading this winter?On my vacation reading list


  • Please log in to reply
53 replies to this topic

#46 balletmom2

balletmom2

    New Member

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 7 posts

Posted 25 February 2004 - 10:37 AM

When you mentioned Reading Lolita in Tehran, it reminded me of another book, also autobiographical: Dreams of Trespass. It is a wonderful book written about the author's childhood in a harem in, if I recall correctly, Morocco. It is a relatively easy read, but thoughtful and enlightening.

#47 fendrock

fendrock

    Senior Member

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPip
  • 123 posts

Posted 25 February 2004 - 11:21 AM

I'm reading "Testament of Youth," an autobiography by Vera Brittain, who worked as a volunteer nurse during World War I.

I also recently read a very interesting article in the March issue of The Atlantic, "How Serfdom Saved the Women's Movement -- Dispatches from the Nanny Wars."

Thinking of this article, I was highly entertained by a quote from Vera Brittain's book, especially as she considered herself a feminist. She has just arrived home from London late at night, and is highly miffed because:

Though the three maids had been unoccupied all evening, not one of them offered to help me unpack or to get me a cup of tea.



#48 Treefrog

Treefrog

    Silver Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 639 posts

Posted 25 February 2004 - 11:29 AM

I often feel the same way. It is SO hard to get good help these days. :rolleyes: :grinning:

#49 vagansmom

vagansmom

    Silver Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 543 posts

Posted 26 February 2004 - 04:43 PM

Tutumaker, Reading Lolita in Tehran was just highly recommended to me by a good friend. It's on my March vacation reading list because I fear that, right now, I wouldn't have the kind of focused concentration it requires. I'm looking forward to it though.

Treefrog and BW, I suspect that Unless is a book that will grab you emotionally when your children are leaving home. We are reading it for our staff book club this month at school. So far, those of us whose children are moving on in life - making their own choices away from home - have deeply responded to this novel whereas those of us with younger children have not. One woman, a little older than the rest of us, has said that she felt even more deeply affected by it than she'd expected.

Most of our book club group are in my shoes - with kids who are in transition in their lives - and we are, all of us, anxious and hopeful and sometimes saddened - by their choices. We've all agreed that this book is far deeper than it appears.

But I don't know if it would've touched me so deeply two years ago, or even one year ago, for that matter because my family's lives weren't in so much transition at the time, although I knew it was coming. I do wish I could've had a conversation with Ms. Shields about it. She was ill, and probably knew she wouldn't live long, at the time of its writing. That makes her topic even more poignant.

#50 Treefrog

Treefrog

    Silver Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 639 posts

Posted 26 February 2004 - 05:56 PM

I haven't yet finished Unless, but I realized today that I am growing fonder of the book. The more I get into it, the more fascinated I am with Reta's character and her psychology. I think perhaps this is because Reta reveals more of herself. She is so guarded and emotionally removed at the beginning. I see exactly what you mean about how it might resonate more with someone whose child(ren) are more in transition.

#51 TutuMaker

TutuMaker

    Member

  • Member
  • PipPip
  • 50 posts

Posted 27 February 2004 - 09:08 AM

Unless is next on my list of books to read. I am going to look at it in more of a self-centered way, how my life and transitions effect my mom. In the past year my father died, and I have filed for divorce of my husband of 14 years. My mom has never been so supportive in my life, even when I was going through the acceptable transitions, college, career, marriage, children etc. I believe she knew my marriage was very unhealthy, but did not want to say anything to alienate me from my spouse. The older I get, now approaching 50 rather rapidly, the more my mother has given me emotional support. Hopefully this book will help me examine my mother's feelings, so I can be ready for my own emotional roller coaster with my own two daughters. :blushing:

#52 BW

BW

    Platinum Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,048 posts

Posted 27 February 2004 - 11:31 AM

Tutumaker, did you mean to type "Unless" rather than "Undefined"? I just did a search via Amazon for "Undefined" and didn't come up with anything.

I can completely understand what you're saying vagansmom about the difference one's point of view makes in reading this particular book - Unless. I guess it's really always that way, but for those of us with children who are getting ready to spread their wings and move on, I can see how it would be more poignant. Yet, in the case of this story, so far anyway, I see it as more of a story of loss - loss of control. loss of love, loss of understanding...all of which can resonate even with those of us who still have our offspring at home.

And, Treefrog, I agree I'm liking it better evening by evening.

#53 TutuMaker

TutuMaker

    Member

  • Member
  • PipPip
  • 50 posts

Posted 27 February 2004 - 11:36 AM

Yes, BW! Ooops! :blushing:

#54 vagansmom

vagansmom

    Silver Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 543 posts

Posted 12 March 2004 - 12:10 PM

I am in the midst of Reading Lolita in Tehran and will heartily second Tutumaker's recommendation to read this book. Besides making me want to go back and read much of my high school literature, this book also carries in its pages a very poignant story of women's lives in Iran these days.

I am two thirds of the way through Women of the Silk. I have mixed feelings about this book. Basically I think that the author shows promise as a writer but isn't quite there. I almost feel as though she needed to make the book at least twice as long as it is. Too much is glossed over ala TV docudrama style. Much is mentioned of the special relationship between two of the main characters in the first third of the book but little of it is depicted.

It's a shame, I think, because the author, Gail Tsukiyama, writes in a very pleasing style and the subject, the women who lived and worked together at the silk trade in the early 1900's in China, is such an intriguing one. I'm very frustrated, though, by what's left unwritten. It isn't a matter of being deliberately teased; it's almost as if the author were given a word limit and didn't do a good job editing to make the story tighter.

Next week I begin Carol Shields' The Republic of Love and also Swann. I hope I love them as much as her other books.


0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users


Help support Ballet Alert! and Ballet Talk for Dancers year round by using this search box for your amazon.com purchases (adblockers may block display):