How would I define a perfect day? Lying in bed reading all day and finishing a great book as the sun is setting. That was today and I couldn’t be more happy with the book which was my company, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society.
It’s a funny title, for a fun, historical, interesting, and captivating book written by Mary Ann Shaffer and completed by her niece Annie Barrows after Shaffer faced health issues. The novel follows letters to and from Juliet Ashton, a writer from London, who becomes enchanted with the Island of Guernsey in the English Channel after it’s occupation by Germany in World War II.
Anyway, my mother was the one to recommend this book to me, so here is the letter (okay, well.. email) I wrote to her about the book:
“I just finished reading The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. I called to tell you I finished it, but there was no answer and I am happy there wasn’t. It forces me to write a letter. Keep in mind I may be in a sort of mania, since I am slightly sick and spent the whole day in bed blowing my nose and reading.
this is the bed i read in all day. really, i just like to show off my canopy whenever i have an excuse.
“Oh reading! This book rekindled my love of it. Lately as I have been reading I’ve fallen flat. I finished On the Road yesterday and I loved it. It was brilliant. It was a book about being transient, but I looked at the time he was writing of as unattainable to me. I read it while I rode the subway stopping mid-sentence to look up and remind myself of my location. My location within the same America Kerouac explored, but he experienced America in a way I will never be able to (although I doubt I will stop trying anytime soon.)
“The Guernsey Literary Society was less about location, less about going. It was about finding people you love and care about and learning about them and with them. Their location on a beautiful island constantly smelling fresh salty air was merely a happy coincidence. What brought them together was books and a desire to communicate, which is a thing our society never let’s go.
this isn’t from guernsey, but it’s a house on an island. i took it on a trip to canada this summer and while i was reading i thought back to it.
“One unrelated point: Isn’t it interesting that On the Road and The Guernsey Literary Potato Peel Society are discussing a time only five or six years apart. I could not imagine two more opposite perspectives on the world. Anyway, I thought the book was tons of fun. I love you and every book you recommend very much.”
After editing that ‘letter’ and putting pictures in I realize how lazy it is to simply reuse a letter and plop it into a blog post, but the world is full of lazier things, I suppose. In conclusion, read this book, or read any book, or just spend a whole day reading. It’s very restorative. Tomorrow I have to return to the real world and find another book to read on the subway.
So, Kerry over at the Tragic Whale put up a Tragic Whale Story that I suggested. When I suggested it to her it was just a super boring concept and she turned it into the coolest and funniest story ever. She even put my favorite books on the cover! Here is the first two pages.
Kendra’s Library… A Tragic Whale Story
Like any intelligent whale, Kendra was always looking for ways to expand her knowledge and better herself. And what better way than to petition for a library in her town?!
To read the rest (do it cause my favorite joke is with the third picture) go here.
While at a flea market last week, I saw the books being sorted into the category “More Interesting Women”. In my mind I automatically made the label say “more interesting women than YOU”. So what female characters do I find more interesting than myself. Well, lets begin…
5. When Everything Changed
This collection of real women’s stories written and collected by Gail Collins is the perfect example of a book full of interesting women. The first story features a woman wearing pants in a courtroom. Can you get more bad ass?
4. I Capture the Castle
This novel by Dodie Smith tells the story of a young girl, Cassandra, as she develops her writing skills in a diary she keeps. Like any young girl she complains of her boring life, but she lives in a castle, making her life way cooler than mine.
3. The Color Purple
Lesbians in the 1930s. Woah! That’s interesting.
In this biography Nancy Milford tells the life of Zelda Fitzgerald. She was the inspiration for almost every female character F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote, so it makes sense that she is super interesting. And reading about Zelda’s transformation from Southern beauty to sad schizophrenic is both unfortunate and engrossing. I have not finished this book yet, but with 75% done I know she is cooler than me.
1. The Women’s Room
I think this book has to be my number one because every woman explored in this book had a story that explains so much about women and their evolution over time. It was remarkable how Marilyn French would delve into minor characters so deeply, telling full back stories that are impossible to forget. Even the most minor character are more interesting than myself.
Well those are the books I could come up with. Have any more to add? Tell me what they are.
My brother has a kindle and although I see the appeal, I am dragging my feet on new technology. I like many of the premises of e-readers: I don’t want to kill a thousand trees, straining my eyes is probably bad for my health, and lugging books around is just dreadful. But there are larger points that influence this issue. Books are super cool looking.
And I don’t want to sell my soul to Amazon. No fancy e-reader can change that.
So you would assume the world of old-looking books was safe from the overbearing Amazon? But no! I was devastated when my mom informed me yesterday that Abebooks was bought by Amazon in 2008. The charm of my books has been purchased by the gigantic warrior woman. So I am trying thriftbooks.com. Their site has a nice color scheme and they’re not owned by Amazon, so they MUST be good. Where does everyone else buy their books?