Saturday, March 31, 2018

Better Than I Thought and Books

Last evening/night turned out better than I thought they would. I'd resigned myself to an early-to-bed-and-hope-I-fall-asleep night, as my head hurt and my stomach was upset. Then I took a generic benadryl-like pill and within 15 minutes, I felt better. I made our Friday night pizza, this time with pesto instead of tomato sauce, and had a pleasant evening. I listened to podcasts--one about books and one about the Japanese artist Hokusai--while I finished a tote bag I'd been working on for weeks, while Bill listened to game 2 of the 2018 Red Sox baseball season on his computer.

I spent a bit of time weaving in ends on the bag today after I sat and read for a while with my morning coffee--which I have in a book-themed mug given to me by a friend. It was a peaceful, pleasant morning, for which I was grateful.

Here is the middle section of my March book list.

Rachel’s Holiday by Marian Keyes
This book is the second novel in the author’s series about the Walsh family, but it could easily be read as a stand-alone novel. As the title indicates, this one revolves around Rachel. She is the middle daughter of five, in her late 20s, and living in New York City, where she shares an apartment with a friend she’s had since childhood. Rachel is very conscious of what is cool and trendy when it comes to places, people, and fashion and wants to be seen wearing the right clothes in the right places with the right people. When she meets Luke, another young Irish person in NY, they immediately hit ot off, but she’s embarrassed by him because he and his friends are not cool enough. In fact, she and her friend used to laugh at the group of them when they’d see them in various places. Nevertheless, they end up in a relationship. Then Rachel wakes up in hopsital having her stomach pumped. She’s inadvertently overdosed on a cocktail of various drugs. Her sister and brother-in-law fly in from Dublin to bring her back to Ireland so she can attend a rehab centre. She is quite sure she just takes drugs for fun and does not have a problem, but when she finds out that her parents have reserved a spot for her in The Cloisters, where some celebrities have been known to go for rehab, she consents and allows herself to be admitted. She expects a nice holiday, complete with tropical fruit buffets, spa treatments, a gym, mud baths, seaweed wraps, and other such relaxing activities. She is, of course, completely unprepared for the reality that awaits her and the people she will be with as she comes to learn about herself, her past, and the reasons she did what she did. Keyes is a wonderful writer who knows how to construct a great story. I was laughing one minute and breathless the next as the story whipped from the moment Rachel meets her roommate, Jackie (spelled Chaquie, because J-A-C-K-I-E is so boring and common) to the group meeting where one of the other people in rehab has to face the wife he physically abused. In between epsiodes at The Cloisters, Rachel thinks back to moments from her past as she slowly accepts that she has a serious, life-threatening problem. I loved this book.

A Country Miscellany by Alice Taylor
I’ve enjoyed Alice Taylor’s accounts of life in rural Ireland ever since the librarian at the Ballinrobe library gave me one of her books one day and said she thought I might enjoy it. I did. I came across this one in the e-book section of the library website and checked it out. This contains memories of her childhood and the people she knew, as well as more current (at the time of writing) anecdotes.

Himself by Jess Kidd
This is a wonderful book. I could not out it down. Well, I did, but only long enough to heat up some supper. I posted about it earlier here.

I hope things are peaceful and pleaant in your neck of the woods, too.

1 comment:

NanaDiana said...

I am jotting your books down with the hopes that I will be able to secure them at the library and actually have some time to read them. I have three books out and am trying to finish them bit by bit.

I hope you and Bill have a pleasant and blessed Easter. xo Diana