Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Coffee & Kung Fu--#72 finished

A good book but not great.  Interesting characters and interesting story but not enough there to really grab me.  Lots of people in the story making bad decision including the main character.  Some sad stuff happens too.  Eventually she decides to chuck it and move to Hong Kong & join a friend there that had decided the same thing a couple weeks earlier.  Main character leaves behind a ticket for friend/guy she met but really doesn't know--but seems to have a connection.  Probably another bad decision but ends on that note.  An okay read but nothing that makes me want to find other books by author.

I have posted it on PBS & there are 9 copies ahead of it so probably not moving anytime soon.  Probably last book finished for this year, so 72 is a nice number.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

The Chris Farley Show--#71 finished

An interesting biography, it is basically clipped together quotes from the people that knew Chris Farley talking about the different times in his life.  Friends, family and co-workers, etc, interesting read and certainly interesting life.  Since it is just the quotes, each person kind of steps back & explains themselves on what is going on, there is not an overall writer really doing this.  Of course at times seems like a lot is going unsaid as well.  Interesting but not sure if it is the best method for a biography.

As far as his life, it is too bad Chris couldn't control his addictions to alcohol and then drugs.  It was mentioned that he might have been happier with a simpler life--married with kids to support, rather than single and crazy comedian lifestyle.  Since he couldn't control his life as it was, not sure he could have if his life was different either.  Just too bad his life ended so soon.

There are 3 WL for it and I will be posting it soon, probably in next few weeks.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Secret Daughter--#70 finished

The rest of the title is, A Mixed-Race Daughter and the Mother Who Gave Her Away, a memoir.  The daughter June Cross wrote the book.  A powerful book that shows racism at such an individual and personal sense.  In the 1954 June Cross was born, her mother was white and her father was black.  They were not married and lived between New York and Atlantic City.  He was an entertainer and she worked various jobs to keep the rent paid because his work had slipped off by that time.  The mom Norma had a child previously right out of high school and the father was gone.  This son was being raised by her mother.  By age 4 June could not "pass" as white and Norma would be ostracized for having a black child.  A black family in Atlantic City they stayed with, agreed to raise June basically as their own.  Norma eventually marries Larry Storch of F Troop fame but has to keep June a secret for fear of again upsetting people and hurting Larry's career.  June as a child is forced to call them Aunt & Uncle at various times and then her adopted parents.  They stayed in touch & brought June to Hollywood in summers but she could never be a complete part to their family.

June is successful through school and Aunt Peggy raises her well.  June gets into Harvard and goes through the struggles there.  She becomes a reporter and eventually a producer of documentaries for Frontline.  She makes a documentary about her life and breaks open all the secrets.  Interesting life for her mom that she learns about then.  A very good read.  I thought interesting that obviously she struggled and was hurt about her situation but did overcome this.  Also thought that if abortion was legal and affordable, June probably would not have been here to tell this story and makes you think of all that is missing now because of abortion.  The flip side is that Norma would have been free to pursue her life unencumbered by a mixed race child and her 2 other children--older son that grandma raised and younger daughter that was given up for adoption.  A life of struggle is better than no life at all.

I will be posting it on PBS, I am the 10th person on PBS to have this book, so it is a big traveler.  I will wait till after Christmas though, I am trying to avoid the post office at this time of the year.  There are currently no copies on the system so pretty sure it will move probably quickly.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

P is for Peril--#69 finished

Next in the series and another good one.  Little different in that there is not a nice wrap up at the end, so not too sure who the murderer actually is at this point.  Hope it is further explained down the road in the next novels but obviously can't say at this point.  Kinsey investigates a missing person and finds out he has plenty of things going wrong and plenty of issues in his life that a murder, suicide or skipped town & in hiding are all possibilities.  Fun sorting it all out but the ending leaves you wanting for some more concrete answers, hope further info/explanation is coming down the road.

I will be keeping this one like all the books in the series so far.  Might try to start next one in this series in next few weeks to keep rolling on it.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

O is for Outlaw--#68 finished

The next in the Kinsey Millhone series and another good one.  Her ex-husband is shot & she is at first considered a suspect.  She has to delve into this and back to what caused her marriage to end.  While it was likely to end anyway, her then husband was accused of beating a guy outside a bar that caused the guy's previous head injury to kill him.  Husband wanted Kinsey to give an alibi/lie for him and she walked out then.  Him getting shot makes her re-investigate this & his shooting and she finds the ex was also re-investigating things and she follows his leads.  She figures it out & bad guy dies in end and ex never recovers from shooting and dies never coming out of coma.  Not one of my favorites but does give some insight into her earlier life along with the usual sharp detective work.

This is a keeper series for me so will not be posting it.  I am probably going to start right away on next in series, saw I had only read N this year and figured I really need to read more to get current on this series.

The Art of Non-Conformity--#67 finished

Not my normal book to read, a kind of self help/re-think your life kind of book.  Had some interesting thoughts & ideas for people to break out and do something different.  It encourages the reader to step away from comfortable and try to decide what you really want out of life & to go get it.  Book seemed to focus on the big changes one can make and seems to brush aside obligations, not so easy for many to do but he mentions that as well.  An okay read and good reminder that generally speaking things do work out to some degree and it is okay to try things.  I am not at a place to try big changes but even smaller changes can be good.

There are either 60 some or maybe 80 some WL for this book so I will be posting at some point.  Previous owner wrote in the back of the book on a blank page but this is okay with PBS just got to let next person know.  I actually finished this a couple days ago back in Nov but just now getting it logged in.