12 April 2009

Sunday Salon: Tackling a Chunkster; Outgrowing Magazines

I haven't done much reading since the last time I posted to the Sunday Salon. There is a chunkster of a book on my bedside table that is slowing my progress. The book is A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth. I chose it as my next book from the 1001 Books list. I feel guilty reading anything else when I have that book staring me in the face every day, but I still haven't started it. With over 1700 pages, it is too heavy to carry in my purse. Yet, if I leave it for reading at home, I may not finish it before I have to return it to the library. A quandary, to be sure.

So what have I been doing instead? I've been reading magazines that I've gotten through free subscriptions. I never gave much thought to the idea of outgrowing a magazine until I started reading Cosmo again. As a married woman, there is very little for me in this magazine. Cosmo is all about seduction and little tricks that men use to fool women or vice-versa. When I was a teenager, I felt sophisticated reading Cosmo. Now I just feel like I am beyond it. I hate to admit it, but I guess I am more the Woman's Day type.

READ: I read Frindle by Andrew Clements. Books aimed at middle-schoolers and above are a refreshing change of pace from time to time. This one is about a kid who makes up a new word for a writing instrument to see if he can get other people to use it. If you had a favorite teacher in school, then I would recommend reading this one.

LISTENED: I listened to two books this week. One was Denis Leary's Why We Suck. The only way I will even consider a book by a comedian is if it is the audio book version read by the comedian himself. I've tried reading books by comedians and it just doesn't translate well for me if I can't hear the comedian's voice. Luckily this one was read by Leary himself. I'll tell you now that there are several bits that will offend people; I skipped those and listened to his stories about growing up, which are priceless. The only non-family story I liked was about Oprah.

The other book I listened was Michael Pollan's In Defense of Food. I know, I am late to the party on this one :-). I tried reading this book once before, and I am glad I gave it a second try. Pollan has convinced me more than any other book that I should try to eat less processed food. I am a major junk-food junkie so that is a big deal for me. I would love to recommend this book to some of my friends, but I'm afraid most of them would find it dry.

The Pollan book was my first audio book downloaded using Overdrive. The selection of books that capture my fancy isn't huge, but it is nice to have the option. I typically run out of stuff to listen to on Wednesday or Thursday, and we don't make our library run until Monday. Now I can download something on Thursday night. Maybe I'll even try listening to mysteries, which my library seems to have a lot of.

UP NEXT: Besides A Suitable Boy, I also have Twilight on audio, but I can't bring myself to start it. There are some trends that I eagerly follow, and then there are others that make me run in the other direction; Twilight is the latter. Even my daughter M, who loves to read and embraces all of her friends' suggestions, couldn't get past the first chapter. However, my other daughter C1 loved it. I guess I'll have to read it eventually as part of my Good Mommy duties.

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