Friday, November 6, 2009
My Latest Reads
Ever since I discovered that Goodwill is a good source for cheap books, I've been reading up a storm. These books are not on the current best-seller list, but they've been satisfying reads just the same. Having already read Isabel Allende's The House of the Spirits, I was pleased to find a copy of her 2002 best seller, Portrait in Sepia. It is a fascinating period piece that takes place in post-goldrush/anti-Chinese San Franscisco and Chile. Social climbing and sabotage were popular and practiced with enthusiasm. Prejudices were as appalling then as they are now although fewer were spared from its stigma. Margaret Sayers Peden did an excellent job of translating from Spanish to English. This book was so enthralling that I read it in record time -- didn't want to put it down! For a break from such sordid affairs, I picked up a book that I totally judged by its cover. Putting on the Ritz was written in 1991 by Joe Keenan. I laughed out loud so many times, Spouse thought I was losing my mind. It is almost disgracefully funny with witticisms that remind me of Cole Porter or Oscar Wilde. It's a contemporary story involving every NYC stereotype you can imagine in a bit of a slapstick situation. A quick read and very amusing! Last night I finished Drifting written by Stephanie Gertler in 2003. The novel reads almost like several stories in one book. The main character, Claire, grew up with her father after her mother walked out on them when Claire was a toddler. All her life, she held onto confused and angry feelings about that fact. She found the love of her life, had two children and got on with her life . . . until. Claire and her husband have just become empty-nesters and own a bed and breakfast in Drifting, CT. They're about to close it for the season when a bedraggled man and his blind daughter show up. Reminded of her own personal history she encourages them to stay. From there, interesting twists and turns lead to a surprise ending.