Contemporary Realistic Fiction by Bridget

Posted in Uncategorized at 12:38 pm by Bridget

I love vampires, paranormal, magical realism, Greek myths, dystopia, etc. as much as the next guy, but I’m a little concerned that this flood right now is going to create a wicked backlash. In a few years the realistic “problem novel” will be resuscitated and I will be forced to read all books about sad girls who cry.

I like having a mix of novels available–a little paranormal here, something fun and realistic there, and even an occasional book about sad girls who cry. (Note: I’m using the word “realistic” loosely to describe novels without paranormal or fantasy elements as I remember long discussions in college that lasted whole semesters on “What’s Real?’ and am not going to get into that now. Possibly a later blog post).

There are a few contemporary realistic fiction standouts right now like Will Grayson, Will Grayson that Janet mentioned earlier. Another novel that’s on the realistic end of the spectrum and is super fun and most likely won’t make you cry is fabulous Portland author Suzanne Young’s The Naughty List. There are spying gadgets (which i love, more spies please!) and romance and sneaking. What more could you ask for, really?

Any other realistic fiction options out there that people recommend?



Meow by Bridget

Posted in Uncategorized at 4:54 pm by Bridget

images.cgiOne more book rec on the supernatural spectrolitaritrum and then I will switch to something realistic-ish for a change, but I have to mention White Cat by the super awesome Holly Black because it haunted me, wiggling its way into my psyche and FORCING me to read it! It’s compelling. But dark, v. v. dark. And I’m pretty sure I have experienced the bizarre blowback sensation she describes when you aren’t sure which body parts are which and if they are quite in the right places and numbers. Not due to anything as exciting as magic or curses though. Sadly. Unless my oncologist is using secret tricks on me I don’t know about.

I read White Cat on the beach so I wanted to mention it before summer is over and the beach is cold. Of course, if your beach is the Oregon Coast or icy old Lake Michigan, it’s probably already cold and might require a sweater or two. Not that White Cat is particularly beachy in any way, but I read it there so you might want to too.

It’s about grifters, con-artists, magic, crime and getting kicked out of boarding school. Like The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks meets, um, I don’t know… something scary with possible mob connections?



Supernatural Summer Reads by Bridget

Posted in Uncategorized at 1:01 pm by Bridget

I’ve got a couple of book recommendations on opposite ends of the paranormal/supernatural spectrum.


Aries Rising by Bonnie Hearn Hill is sort of a supernatural light book–if you like books with just a touch of mysticism but aren’t interested in all-out paranormal, this is the book for you! The story is all intertwined with astrology tidbits and very fun–a nice summer read. Janet kindly shared her copy that she picked up at PLA which is great because sadly Multnomah County Library doesn’t have a copy in the system so if you live in Portland and are interested, you’re going to have to buy it. It looks like the second book Taurus Eyes is out already, so if you like it, you can keep going!

On the other end of the spectrum is Demon’s Lexicon by Sarah Rees Brennan. This is paranormal and a bit dark (there are lots of knives and swords and things). Yet also funny and addictive with hot guys. Suzanne Young recommended it on her blog and has all sorts of gushy interesting things to say about it (thanks Suzanne!). So click through to her site to hear more about it. This book also has a sequel out The Demon’s Covenant which you will most likely want to pick up when you get hooked on the first one.




Skinny Jeans and Eclipse, THE MOVIE by Bridget

Posted in Uncategorized at 2:26 pm by Bridget

humptydI am not a fan of the skinny jean. The skinny jean was a look made popular by that inimitable fashion icon Humpty Dumpty. He was one of the first to put together (possibly with the help of all the king’s horses and all the king’s men) the black magic and physics involved in the skinny jean. Only through much struggle were they able to create a pant that gives a person such a dramatic tiny-legged, ginormous arse look.

Elipse, the movie, was rampant with skinny jeans. Bella’s pants were an unpleasant distraction from the otherwise visually stunning movie filled with lots of guys without shirts on.

Other than the distraction of the pants, I quite liked Eclipse, the Movie. There was plenty of action, and, of course, all of those guys without shirts  on. They even strayed from the Bella Would Do Anything for Love storyline and put in a few bits about independence and how she wants to be changed for her and not for Edward.

My favorite parts of the movie were the snatches of humor that popped up now and then.

Random bits quoted from memory, not verbatim, in no particular older  –

“Where I’m from getting married is how you say, ‘I love you.’” “Where I’m from, getting married at my age is how you say, ‘I got knocked up.’” (Edward to Bella, Bella to Edward)

“Doesn’t he own any shirts?” (Edward about Jacob)

“You know I’m hotter than you.” (Jacob to Edward)

“I’m starting to like him better now.” (Bella’s dad after she’s informed him that Edward is “Old School” and that she’s a virgin)

Also, pretty much anything the dad says or does had me laughing.

I thought these little chunklets of funny broke up the trauma-drama nicely.

Has anyone else seen the movie?


photo taken by nellyfus


And so it goes on… by Bridget

Posted in Uncategorized at 12:27 pm by Bridget

Thanks for the great suggestion in the comments, Janet! I hit a spot of luck and they had Polly Horvath’s Northward to the Moon (the sequel to My One Hundred Adventures) at my dinky little neighborhood library so I was able to read it over the weekend and keep my travel/Bohemian lifestyle/planning/finding yourself theme going. I’m a Polly Horvath fan. I love her off-beat characters and storytelling style and this book delivers on both counts. Northward to the Moon has both a love for adventure and how uncomfortable that can actually be along with a sense of home. Strangely enough, the poet mom is the one who seems the most rooted in the idea of home, despite her dreamy qualities.

One of the ideas in the book that appeals to me is this “navel of the universe” idea. How there seems to be one place for a person that just feels like the middle with everything else sort of floating around outside of it. An art history professor that I took a Renaissance art class from at UW-Madison talked about how Rome was the navel for her even though she lived in Madison (and may have even argued that it was the navel of the universe PERIOD and that everyone should feel that way).

The navel concept is so striking to me because I live in Portland, OR and am completely and madly in love with Portland and everyone here and, right now at any rate, can’t imagine leaving to move somewhere else. Yet I have that navel feel for Madison, WI. We lived in Madison for a good eight years after moving back after college so maybe it’s only a length of time thing, but there’s something about Madison being more or less in the mid-section of this country/continent and having so many of the best people in the world in it (in my humble opinion) that gives it a navlishness for me.

Also, you only have to inch a bit in one way or the other time zone-wise instead of being a full THREE HOURS apart as we are now from the east coast.

Which is important.

But Portland – the flowers, the soft damp air, the green, the culture and fabulous people. I’m hooked, but my navel appears to be taken. Portland is going to have to take another valuable body part.

Any other suggestions for books to add to my travel/Bohemian lifestyle/planning/finding yourself theme?

Or suggestions for a new theme that you’ve found yourself accidentally or on purpose reading all in row or always wished that you had?

Look for a joint blog post coming soon as Janet is headed out this way for PLA. We might even blog from the Tarts bakery while snacking on mini cookies.


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