This blogger asks us 3 questions:
WHAT have you finished reading?
WHAT are you reading now?
WHAT will you read next?
One thing in this novel that interested me and kept my attention was its examination of public schools vs private ones. It also includes: social media, the value of therapy, bullying, and parenting issues.
One family has younger kids, and others have junior high age children, so most angles of modern school life are covered. Two of the mothers, whose stories are presented in Are We There Yet?, are sisters. In one family we see the relationships between mother and junior high age daughter, and the same mother and her mother, then the granddaughter and grandmother.
Alice Sloan is “one of those mothers who can’t control her kids. She is Teddy’s mom. Meredith is Sadie’s mom, and Nadia is Donovan’s (the “bad kid”) mom. Throughout the book, Nadia constantly measures herself by other’s standards. The author writes of the day to day interactions of these three women, heading each chapter with the featured woman’s name. Sometimes the kids’ names head up a chapter; regardless, It is not hard to keep track of who belongs to whom, thanks to the author’s skill.
The mystery of who is drawing penis graffiti all over the town underlies the conversations and intertwining relationships, and family secrets also abound. It is a darned good read.
This imaginary foray into Royal Life was published in 2007 to very little fuss and folderol in the publishing world. It begins when Queen Elizabeth stumbles upon the local book mobile parked at the palace’s kitchen door. Realizing her “error,” she checks out a book, which seems the “polite thing to do.” Norman, an ordinary kitchen hand is sitting in the bookmobile, reading avidly. Her Majesty is impressed with him and his reading skills and promotes him to the position of aide to The Queen. By the time Elizabeth II discovers the joys of reading and the books Norman recommends (often written by homosexual authors) she begins to carry books in her ever-present purse to “assign” to individuals who answer her seemingly-innocent questions of “Have you read So- and-So? with “No, Your Highness.”
Bennet’s self-deprecating humor turns these mere 120 pages into a “touching, thoughtful, hilarious, exquisitely written” heck of a read.
My students introduced me to John Green’s books, and my Third Tuesday Book Club read The Fault Is in Our Stars, which we enjoyed a great deal. We agreed that the label YA makes good reading for older people as well. This story has family drama and deals mainly with relationships as well.
We meet Aza; her best friend, Daisy; and Davis and Noah, billionaire Russell Pickett’s sons. Aza’s therapist, Dr.Singe plays a secondary, but very important role. Aza has mental issues , often “spiraling into her own thoughts,” which she does in the story. Her relationship with her mother is also an integral part of the story. Pre-occupied with her digestive tract and whether she has Clostridum difficile (C diff, for short), she can barely function at school. Her obsessions are magnified because she “keeps things in,” so people won’t “think she is crazy.”
When the boy’s father suddenly and mysteriously disappears, Daisy and Aza get caught up in a scheme to find him and collect the reward money to help Daisy enter college in the fall, something her parents can neither afford or think is important.
To say that what happens is “crazy” would be inappropriate, in light of the serious, empathetic look at mental illness this novel presents. But as Aza spirals out and the boys wonder why their father left without explaining, the action takes on a frantic, unreal pace. The ending is satisfactory, but it is arrived at by many twists and turns. The author is a genius.
Wide Sargasso Sea for the Classics Club, which I need to finish soon to stay on schedule.
Two Part Invention, another book of the Crosswick Journals for the project.
THAT’S WHAT I’M UP TO THIS WEEK WHILE SWAMPED WIT READING STUDENTS’ “ESSAY #1′ s”.
Have a good reading weekend. I’ll be frantically grading. LOL