MichiganTrumpet's (Marianne) Fanfare for Books in 2016 #3
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George Bernard Shaw finds a copy of one of his works in a used bookshop and quickly notices it is signed: "To ___, with esteem, G.B. Shaw." Buying the volume, he subsequently returns it to the original owner with an additional inscription: "With renewed esteem, G.B. Shaw."
Hello and Welcome!! My name is Marianne, a 50ish lawyer living and working in the Greater Boston area. I moved here over 30 years ago from Ann Arbor, hence the Username. Mine is an eclectic mix of reading, spanning serious to fluff and both fiction and non-fiction. It is always touch and go if I actually make it to the 75 goal. As I write, I've only just started #75 for 2015!
This is my third year in the 75er group. Last year was a complete bust as to active posting, but I did plenty of lurking keeping track of you all. I hope to be more present in the upcoming year!
I ADORE 75er meet ups! The true highlight of the past year has been meeting up with Caroline (Cameling), Suzanne (Chatterbox), Darryl (Kidzdoc), Jim (magiciansnephew) and Judy (ffortsa)! Look me up if you're in the area!
1. The Hundred Foot Journey by Richard C. Morais
2. The Collector by Anne-Laure Thieblemont
3. French Beauty Solution by Mathilde Thomas
4. Orange is the New Black by Piper Kerman
5. The Maximum Security Book Club by Mikita Brottman
6. H is For Hawk by Helen MacDonald
7. Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson
8. Secrets of Eden by Chris Bohjalian
9. The Photographer's Wife by Suzanne Joinson
10. Prohibition Bakery by Leslie Feinberg and Brooke Siem
11. The Black Calhouns: From Civil War to Civil Rights With One African American Family by Gail Lumet Buckley
12. The Swans of Fifth Avenue by Melanie Benjamin
13. Keep Moving by Dick Van Dyke
14. Splinter the Silence by Val McDermid
15. The Guest Room by Chris Bohjalian
16. The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George
17. The Twelve Tribes of Hattie by Ayana Mathis
18. Landing by Emma Donoghue
19. Life After Life by Kate Atkinson
20. Shylock is My Name by Howard Jacobson
21. The Vegetarian by Han Kang
22. The House We Grew Up In by Lisa Jewell
23. Astray by Emma Donoghue
24. Notes From a Small Island by Bill Bryson
25. Flight of Dreams by Ariel Lawhorn
26. The Big Miss: My Years Coaching Tiger Woods by Hank Haney
27. A God in Ruins by Kate Atkinson
28. Yes, Chef by Marcus Samuelsson
29. Modern Romance: An Investigation by Aziz Ansari
30. House of Thieves by Charles Belfoure
31. Elizabeth and Hazel: Two Women of Little Rock by David Margolick
32. Elizabeth The Queen by Sallie Bedell Smith
33. The Assassination of Margaret Thatcher by Hilary Mantel
34. Lost For Words by Edward St. Aubyn
35. The Road to Little Dribbling by Bill Bryson
36. Meeting Tom Brady: One Man's Quest for Truth, Enlightenment and a Simple Game of Catch With the Patriots Quarterback by Richard J. King
37. Our Man in Charleston: Britain's Secret Agent in the Civil War South by Christopher Dickey
38. Remembrance by Meg Cabot
39. The Never-Open Desert Diner by James Anderson
40. The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd
41. Good Night Mr. Wodehouse by Faith Sullivan
42. What Remains of Me by Alison Gaylin
43. When Paris Went Dark by Ronald C. Rosbottom
44. Why We Came to the City by Kristopher Jansma
45. Lily and the Octopus by Steven Rowley
46. Little Demon in the City of Light by Steven Levingston
47. The Year of the Runaways by Sunjerv Sahota
48. Brighton: A Novel by Michael Harvey
49. The Sandcastle Girls by Chris Bohjalian
50. Only in Naples by Katherine Wilson
51. The Bookman's Tale by Charlie Lovett
52. Belgravia by Julian Fellowes
53. The Versions of Us by Laura Barnett
54. The Noise of Time by Julian Barnes
55. Death Comes For the Archbishop by Willa Cather
56. Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead
57. The Last Days of Night by Graham Moore
58. Partly Cloudy Patriot by Sarah Vowell
59. A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles
60. A Lady Cop Makes Trouble by Amy Stewart
61. All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
62. The Round House by Louise Erdrich
63. Lovers at the Chameleon Club, Paris 1932 by Francine Prose
64. The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion
65. Frog Music by Emma Donoghue
66. Paris: A Love Story by Kati Marton
67. Lies, Damned Lies and History by Jodi Taylor
68. Andrew's Brain by E. L. Doctorow
69. Vinegar Girl by Anne Tyler
70. By Gaslight by Steven Price
71. The Summer Before the War by Helen Simonson
72. Thrice the Brinded Cat Hath Mew'd by Alan Bradley
73. Villa America by Liza Klaussmann
74. Rogue Heroes by Ben MacIntyre
75. Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi
76. The Travelers by Chris Pavone
77. All Things Cease to Appear by Elizabeth Brundage
78. The Madwoman Upstairs by Catherine Lowell
79. Eligible by Curtis Sittenfeld
For everyone who stopped by with a kind word, wave or photograph -- Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! Appreciated way way more than you might ever expect.
Anyways, slowly making my way back. Getting a new thread up and started should be a good beginning.
An Important service tip:
If you love movies -- and especially if you plan on seeing 10-12 hours of them in one day -- Please, PLEASE down load the RunPee app!!!
This App tells you exactly when you can run to the bathroom without missing anything!
For instance it will tell you, When So and So says "XXXXX" you have 6 minutes to go to the bathroom. The screen is dark so it doesn't bother everyone around you. It even tells you a synopsis of what you are missing!
What a lifesaver!
Run get Runpee!
The next was a collection of modern ballets called Kaleidoscope. A very different evening from Onegin, but equally enjoyable. Saw a World premiere and a company premiere!
Woot! I loved, loved LOVED the finale!
As many of you might know, WGBH, my local PBS station is the producer of Masterpiece. I have been VERY lucky to meet some of various cast members and other such treats.
This time, I attended an event where e could watch the DA Finale 8 hours BEFORE the rest of the world saw it. As we filed into the theater, they even handed out packets of "Masterpiece" Kleenex for those who might need it.
Afterwards was an Afternoon tea where we could sit and discuss the final episode with 200 of our closest newly made friends and fellow aficionados.
There was also an auction to help raise money for the studio. Lots of great things to bid on in the Silent Auction!
Well .... I just couldn't help myself!
It's all for a good cause, right? Right?
You all are cordially invited to come sip tea out of Lady Mary's tea set any time!!
Tomorrow we're doing a Beacon Hill Kitchen Walking Tour!
Have I said I adore Meet-Ups?
Hope you will now get some time to relax after dealing with the increased caseload.
It is so good to be back!!!
The G.B. Shaw story is also great. And I was just thinking of passing on some autographed books...
Have a great meet up. I hope you have springy weather.
>1 michigantrumpet: Better not to mess with Shaw, eh? My collection contains a fair number of books inscribed to someone else, not always by the author. It does make one wonder...
You have Lady Mary's teaset?? Where's the fainting couch when you need it? Wow...
I like to attend the ballet though I don't go as often as I do to the opera or the symphony. I'm also glad that we have top-notch companies here in Chicago, too.
We had such a mild winter and an early spring and now winter has been trying to make a comeback. I'm getting tired of it.
Great to have you back posting, Marianne. Happy New Thread!
Love that you grabbed Lady Mary's tea set. And for a good cause, too. :-)
Some of GBS's exchanges with Churchill were priceless too.
I suspect spring has finally sprung here in New York - I'm thinking of daring to pack up the cashmere and wool. Maybe the weather gods have been placated enough. My sister Roberta was here for the last few days, from San Antonio, where she has acclimated to a quite different climate.
Jim and I can't wait until July. Looks like everyone's on board.
Now I have another reason to come to Boston to visit. I love tea and to drink it from that tea set ... what a memory.
Real life has interfered with my life as well. Work load gets heavier and heavier and the relationship with my new supervisor is dicey. I checked and I can retire anytime this fall, so I think I will do so. In the meantime I am looking for another job. I am thinking that any place within the confines of the Louisiana Purchase sounds good.
l>R Caroline, Me, my husband John, Suzanne, Mark, Edd (Caroline's husband) and Sue, (Mark's wife.)
I hope that spring manages to hang on for awhile. This almost winter one day followed by almost summer the next is getting old.
14. Splinter the Silence by Val McDermid
Val McDermid rachets up the suspense in this, the ninth book of the Tony Hill and Carol Jordan Series. Former DCI Carol Jordan is slowly acclimating herself to civilian life by renovating a barn and attending sleepy dinner parties at remote country houses. A drink driving arrest on the way home from a dreary such supper threatens Jordan's equilibrium and possible liberty. She calls upon her friend, forsenic psychologist Tony Hill, to bail her out. Hill sees the rescue in far more expansive terms. To keep Jordan's mind occupied while awaiting arraignment, Hill sets her the task of looking into some recent deaths. Strong feminist women, subject to internet bullying, have fallen apart and commit suicide. Horrific to contemplate, could these deaths be something even more sinister? A can't-be-refused offer to rejoin the police forces soon follows. Other familiar faces join in to form a team and the case (and the book) are off and running.
I've not read the previous eight in this series, so don't know how this one compares. I had relatively little trouble reading this one as a stand alone tale. The first couple of chapters went slowly until I learned the various characters. (Regular readers won't have that disadvantage.) After that the pages just turned themselves. I loved the characters -- especially computer guru Stacey Chen. The relationship between Hill and Jordan was very engaging.
Hope all's well there in Minnesotaland.
15. The Guest Room by Chris Bohjalian
Human trafficking and exploitation are at the forefront as a bachelor party goes horribly murderously wrong. Richard Chapman thinks he is clever in hosting his neer-do-well brother's party at his suburban home. A few drinks, some strippers brought in by the best man -- if it's at the house, they can't get into much trouble, right? The beautiful strippers are in actuality young women trafficked to the US from Eastern Europe. Within hours, two hulking handlers are bleeding out on the floor and the women are on the run. As the police and media attention mounts, Richard may lose everything in his charmed life: beautiful wife and daughter, stylish home, reputation and well-paying job in the City. The story changes perspectives between Richard, his wife and daughter, the groom-to-be and other men that night, and -- most evocatively and affectingly, Alexandra, who is running for her life.
Bohjalian never shies away from the tough topic and human trafficking and sexual exploitation is a difficult one. If you are squeamish, this may not be the book for you. Some passages and chapters were emotionally challenging to read. Bohjalian handles it all sensitively and with a focus on portraying its tragic and far-reaching consequences.
Readers, like me, may have been intrigued by the premise of a Book Apothecary whose owner can prescribe the right tome to brighten a middle-ager's cynicism with the world, or cure the homesick, or ease heartbreak. For over twenty years, our intrepid bookseller, Monsieur Perdu, has sealed off himself, his emotions and half of his apartment, over the loss of his beloved Manon, who abandoned him with a "Dear Jean" letter as yet still unread. In this numb state, he is nevertheless sensitive to the emotional travails of all visitors to his book barge and can recommend books for every complaint. A beautiful and kindly divorcee encourages him to read Manon's letter, which sends him on a careening barge ride through France.
I was drawn, hoping for a celebration of readers, bookish pursuits and the power of words to heal and enliven. To some extent I was disappointed. The book certainly started that way. The ending becomes far more with a deep meditation on loss, grief and redemption. Far less satisfying is an endless, and seemingly pointless barge trip. I'm still befuddled by scenes of a Tango Hall and a dying doe. Ultimately, I was reminded of Voltaire's Candide, who after his travels and troubles, discovers that what he truly needed and sought was in his own garden all the time.
I so wanted to love this book chronicling the Great Migration through the lens of Hattie and her many offspring. Hattie, her mother and sisters fled Georgia for the North in 1925. Landing in Philadelphia, Hattie faces the oncoming turmoil of multiple decades (ending in 1980) with varying degrees of dignity, resignation and anger. The author seems quite taken with the BIG IDEA tackling racism, sexism, infidelity, pedophilia, homosexuality, schizophrenia and poverty in successive chapters. Any of these topics would be sufficient fodder for a splendid book. Each topic gets a nod before we fly off onto the next one. Mathis is a promising and evocative writer who handles dialogue particularly well. Her introductory chapter is by far the best -- Hattie's deep love for her infant twin children is palpable. I was quite affected by her desperation over their worsening health. I look forward to reading her next effort -- if she hasn't used up all her ideas in this debut effort.
I didn't dislike either Paris Bookshop or Twelve Tribes of Hattie at all. Both are authors of great promise and I found much to love. The premise of Bookshop and the literary discussions were enough to keep me going and I loved the deeper discussions towards the end about grief, forgiveness and redemption. The episodic short-story-collection nature of Tribes allowed me to move on quickly to the stories that resonated most, but made me wish for more development in others. Neither, though, were hit out the ballpark for me.
A charming romance starting with a 'Meet Cute' aboard a transatlantic Canada-to Ireland flight. Museum curator and flight attendant go from the first rush of delight and discovery to the agonies of a long distance romance. I adored Donaghue's characterization of Jude and Sile. We alternate from one to the other, sharing in visits, telephone calls and emails. Anyo9ne who has live through a LDR will recognize the meaning (and misunderstanding) which can go into a simple email or telephone call, and the anticipation of long awaited reunions. I was rooting for the two women from the start.
Emma Donaghue is perhaps most familiar for "Room", which was turned into an Academy Award nominated Best Picture film. I was a huge fan of that book, in particular her ability to bring to life a tilted world through the eyes of a five year old boy. Like that book, "Landing" lives as much in the minds of the protagonists as in any action-paced plotting. I'm a big fan and look forward to more from this author.
Could easily be one of my top reads for the year! I loved the premise and literary device of Ursula's many lives, putting to lie the oft-quoted meme of 'In Life There Are No Do-Overs.' At first Ursula doesn't even survive infancy, only to come back to die on a childhood trip to the beach, or from exposure to disease, or the Blitz, or ...
Many of us ponder the "What ifs": What if I'd been a little later to buy that lottery ticket? What if I'd gone through that light just four cars earlier? In 'Life After Life', Atkinson deftly examines how a varying decision or action leads to very different results for our heroine. Her plotting is imaginative and the prose arresting and beautiful. To me, the characterizations of Ursula, her family, friends, and lovers were the true highpoint. I hated to say good-bye to any of them.
I've been excited by the concept of the Hogarth Shakespeare Collection in which respected authors reimagine the Bard's works in modern retelling. The editors of the series have been quite imaginative in their assignments, including Judaic-navelgazer Howard Jacobson for The Merchant of Venice. Wealthy Strulovich, bereft of wife and friends, and rattling about a large home with a rebellious daughter, befriends devout and shabby Shylock after a chance encounter in a cemetery. E-mail snooping, offended honor over said daughter's dalliance with a Gentile and forced circumcision are all the order of the day.
Mr. Jacobson and I did not part as friends after my reading of his Booker Prize winning "The Finkler Question". I reconsidered when the interesting concept and hearty review of a respected friend led me to "Shylock is My Name." Alas, my same reservations remain. No question -- the man can write an exquisite sentence. However, his characters -- especially the women -- are thinly portrayed cardboard. This was particularly galling as I so appreciate the Portia and Beatrice of the purportedly unenlightened 400 year old original. As with Finkler, we are treated to Strulovich and Shylock's MANY lengthy philosophical discussions over modern Judaism and Jewish identity. (Strulovich must be desperately lonely to sustain a friendship with such a tedious man.) If this is your sort of thing, I heartily recommend the book. I've no doubt Jacobson would find I'm not the reader for him. Conversely I'll be perfectly comfortable saying he's not the writer for me.
The George and the Mathis I can wait on.
I, too, LOVED Life After Life. My book group is going to read it this summer, so I'll get to read it again; I'll be interested to see how it is on the second read. I suspect it will only improve.
My reaction to Shylock Is My Name was similar to yours. I thought this was more a philosophical treatise on the place of Jews in modern society than it was a novel. And, really, I can only handle discussions of circumcision in limited amounts. I think, like you, that Jacobson is not for me. I will pass on The Finkler Question.
I hope you're having a wonderful weekend, filled with some great reading.
I have Guest Room saved on audio. Did you know Bohjalian was one of the first authors at Booktopia. Very engaging guy.
The mixed LT response to Little Paris Bookshop has prevented me from giving it a shot.
Love the Atkinson and the follow-up is excellent too. Maybe even better.
Have a great weekend, Marianne.
If you liked that Val McDermid -- read more!!! She has written some truly excellent thrillers, including some standalone books.
Just go there and fill out the registration form and print your free pass. The free pass will allow you to collect free, or low cost, books from the publishers. Please take advantage of this offer. It is well worth the time and effort to go to the convention center and get free books. We (Caro, Marianne, Susanne, and husbands) all had a great time in Boston at the ALA Mid-Winter conference, and tons of books were collected.
We had such a great time there. Especially meeting you, Benita! I hope people take advantage of this and go. I've been working my way through the book haul from there. Just finished The Never-Open Desert Diner and loved it!
Hope all's well!
>70 msf59: >71 msf59: I love that Bohjalian is a big supporter of Booktopia. I'm a big fan of his. Not all of his books work for me, but when he's hitting on all cylinders -- watch out!
The Little Paris Bookshop didn't turn out to be the book i thought it would be. I had anticipated more about books, reading, etc. The beginning and end were high points. I got bogged down a bit in the middle.
I've read three by Emma Donaghue now. All completely different and all very engaging. I'm hoping to get to Frog Music later this summer. My library has it on audiobook.
>72 LovingLit: Howdy Megan! How's your crowd down under? I was surprised that more people weren't as excited about Runpee! What a great App!
>74 benitastrnad: >80 benitastrnad: >81 benitastrnad: We were just talking about the January ALA and how much fun we had meeting you. Was so tempted by the Florida ALA, but Summer got booked up so fast!
You'll have to tell us all about it. Especially interested to learn if you've met up with any more LTers. Have a great time.
Everyone else, if you haven't gone, it's a blast. Plus FREE books! And LibraryThing gives you a free pass! What more could you want?
>75 Berly: Thanks, Kim! I truly liked Life After Life a lot. I adore LT Meet-Ups! I have a few more pictures I'll have to post sometime soon!
>77 laytonwoman3rd: Oh Linda! Thanks so much for your kind comments, m'dear. I suspect I'm not his 'target' audience. Which is fine. We understand this and will just give a polite nod in each other's direction before moving on if we ever cross paths again.
>78 witchyrichy: I'm not one to cast stones, Karen. Love that you stopped by. Come by any time!
>83 DianaNL: Lovely Diana. Am enjoying the warmer weather and sunshine, but a little sad the days are already getting shorter.
>84 Berly: Eagerly awaiting your thoughts on that one!
A stunning tale of YEONG-HYE, a young Korean wife and sister, who quietly one day disavows meat and empties her refrigerator of any trace of it. This small independent spark is seen as an affront to her husband, family and Korean society. YEONG-HYE is largely voiceless. Her story is told through the perceptions and renditions of three narrators in a triptych of tales. The first is her middle management, unremarkable husband, who has chosen her as his wife largely because he deems her even more unremarkable than he. He is puzzled by her refusal to eat flesh and threatened by her unwillingness to explain why. His portion of the book culminates with a frightful scene at a family gathering in which YEONG-HYE is confronted for her intransigence. The second section concerns her filmmaker brother-in law whose heyday may have already passed him by. He fixates on a birthmark on YEONG-HYE’s back and how her painted nude body might figure into an “art” (read: lightly pornographic) film. The final third of the book is told from the perspective of YEONG-HYE’s sister who struggles to care for the now institutionalized vegetarian.
This book is the winner of the Man Booker International Award. Kang’s writing is spare and direct but packs a lot of punch. There has been a lot written as to the influence of how Korean cultural sensitivities towards food (and meat) differ from Western sensibilities. I know little about that and am somewhat suspicious when I read other’s position on this. To me the book is far more about how we treat the “other”, those who are different. YEONG-HYE’s small act of personal defiance comes at great cost as she is set upon by her husband, family and then society. Even under the guise of caring – lovingly, romantically, or medically – YEONG-HYE is instead subjected to increasingly brutal and violent acts of violation. At its most intense points, the book also shows YEONG-HYE’s withdrawal from the world in surprisingly lyrical fashion. Not for the squeamish, but those who stick with the book will be rewarded with an affecting tale of honesty and emotion.
>93 BLBera: Most kind, Beth. It's not an easy read given some difficult situations. It is one that has stuck with me for a good while.
>94 vancouverdeb: Thanks, Deborah. Just finished Good Night Mr. Wodehouse and quite enjoyed it. Haven't had much chance to get to Vinegar Girl as yet. Life keeps intruding.
>95 EBT1002: So jealous over your access to Powell's, Ellen. We have great bookstores here, but ... Powell's!!
SIX boxes? That's way more than Boston, I think! Nicely done! And you got to meet five authors! Fantastic. Not surprised they are good speakers. One of the late night talk show hosts (wish I could remember who) said that he loves having authors on his show because they are (not surprisingly) such good storytellers.
But, I am a bit jealous about ALA, too.
Home for the next two months and ready to dig into reading. Sorry about The Little Paris Bookshop. It's on the shelf but maybe I'll wait until later.
I think I had only 4 boxes at Boston. It was much easier to mail them from the Post Office that was close to the Sheraton Downtown. That Post Office is so convenient that I forget how hard it is to get to some of them in other cities.
We will be attending another Meet Up tomorrow night but on the other coast. Looking forward to it.
Hope all is well with you, my friend.
Only the cab driver. I was so impressed by him that I gave him a hundred dollar bill and told him to keep the twenty as a tip. He was as good as the cab driver in Las Vegas.
>104 benitastrnad: and >106 benitastrnad: A great cabbie can make all the difference at times like that!! I'm duly impressed with how quickly the books got there, Benita, Now if they can only be read in an equally speedy time period!!
>105 PaulCranswick: How lovely, Paul! Thank you for remembering our own particular holiday. I suppose this means I should look up your national holidays, too! Is there any one which is similarly to our July 4th?
>107 Berly: Thanks for The Vegetarian plaudits, Kim. Ooohh! Powell's!! *drool*
Cameling (Caroline) and her husband Edd joined John and I at the local PBS station for a preview of a documentary called "The Boys of '36". It is based upon Daniel James Brown's bestselling The Boys in the Boat about the '36 Olympic rowing team. There was a showing of the entire documentary -- FANTASTIC with incredible film footage. This was followed by a Q&A with the filmmakers and Daniel James Brown himself. The evening was topped off by getting signed copies by the author.
We highly recommend the documentary, which is going to be shown on August 6th just in time for the Summer Olympics. And of course, we also recommend you support your local PBS station.
We felt lucky to have such a splendid evening, rendered even more special by the presence of our good LT friends!
Caroline with Daniel James Brown:
Me with Daniel James Brown:
So nice to see you getting together with Caro. I wish we were closer. Sad face...
This past weekend, a group of LTers met in the Berkshires for a weekend of fun and merriment! Joining me and and John were Caroline (Cameling) and her husband, Edd, Judy (ffortsa) and Jim (magiciansnephew) and their good friends, Rich and Kate. It was a lively crew and the laughs and good conversation never ended!
We met at Edith Wharton's estate, The Mount, for lunch on the terrace, followed by an expertly narrated tour of the home. I'd called ahead to find out which docent's tour would be most suitable for this literary crowd and dear Cecily was more than up to the task. Lively, incredibly learned and very informative. I think we may have another LTer on our hands after we explained from whence we came.
After the requisite stop at the bookstore(!!!) we took a stroll through the gardens, before heading on to Williamstown.
If you are ever anywhere close to Lenox, Massachusetts, a stop at this home of one of America's leading authors is a true MUST SEE! (And ask for Cecily!)
That evening found us at the Mezze Bistro for a delicious meal, drink and more conversation!
Clockwise around table from lower left:Caroline, Judy, Kate, John, Edd, Jim, Rich and me.
Later, a few of us retreated to a local bar called Hops and Vines -- where the incomparable, Marisa Tomei sat with her chums a few feet away. More on her later ...
That morning found us at the glorious Clark Art Museum -- a perfect little jewel box nestled next to Mount Greylock.
We took in the special exhibit "Nudes from the Prado", took in some of the permanent collection (including Judy's doppelganger), and lounged next to the reflecting pool before a quick lunch at the cafe.
Obie Award-winner James Macdonald directs this sci-fi comedy thriller by Irish playwright Michael West. A visionary in the field of artificial intelligence, Frank (Brían F. O’Byrne) has built a humandroid to preserve his wife Lily’s (Laila Robins) memory — because she is losing hers. But when he is ousted from the company he founded, he must race to save his life’s work. As Frank scrambles to protect his property, his legacy and the technology he invented, the play examines how far we will go to preserve what we love.
We loved the acting. In addition to Byrne and Robbins, Carson Elrod and Sue Jean Kim were excellent.
Obie Award-winner Trip Cullman directs Academy Award-winner Marisa Tomei in this new production of Pulitzer Prize-winner Tennessee Williams’ intoxicating comedy, which won the Tony Award for Best Play in 1951. After retreating in grief, widow Serafina (Tomei) revives and rejoins the world when the hot-blooded trucker Alvaro (Christopher Abbott) arrives at her doorstep. Passion, gossip, music and mystery fill the air in this steamy Gulf Coast town, where possibility and promise ignite.
Besides some perplexing staging with a huge flock of pink plastic flamingos, we were blown away this play and Tomei in particular. WOW!
L>R John, Marianne, Jim, Judy, Rich, Kate, Caroline, Edd
We ended the night at the Cabaret. Certainly full of great (albeit loud) music, hosted by James Naughton and Becky Ann Baker. Production numbers by the apprenctice group were interspersed with great songs from some of the stars in the area. Several of us were blown away by a very energetic cover of Chocolate Jesus by Lo Lampert.
No pictures alas, but I was able to download another version of the same song by her on YouTube.
Edd, John, Caro and I strolled through some little shops in Williamstown's tiny downtown.
Caro and I had *just* enough energy to catch the exhibits at the Williams College Art Museum, including conning our way into the Director's offices to see some lovely Maurice Prendergast works.
Before driving back we managed a latelunch/early dinner at a Mexican eatery (Coyote Flaco)-- complete with a pitcher of margaritas! Thank heavens Edd was doing the driving.
Can't wait until we see everyone again!! (The Boston Book Festival is in mid-October. Just sayin' ...)
Did I mention I love Meet Ups?
And hooray for the Clark Art Museum & The Rose Tattoo. A perfect getaway.
>121 msf59: Yes, please come back for another visit! Any time, Mark! The Mount, the Clark, Williamstown -- all within easy driving distance of your favorite VT bookstore!
>122 laytonwoman3rd: "Boiks" -- love that Linda! The Mount continues to improve. I'm heading back the end of the month for a "Back Stairs" tour. Should be fun!
>127 scaifea:. It has been a whirlwind Summer, Amber! The meet-up was fantastic. And we learned that our very own Magiciansnephew had been an intern at the Williamstown Theater Festival at one time. Heard all sorts of interesting stories.
>116 michigantrumpet: I would love to see Marisa Tomei in this place. It looks like a different role than she usually plays.
I am going out to visit my cousins and we were going to spend my short vacation picking and preserving blackberries. However, the cool summer has caused the blackberries to not cooperate. They are not ready and most likely will not be ripe when I am out there, so we will do something else for the four days I am there.
I got my broken window replaced today. It took over two months to do so and I got lucky that there wasn't a major series of heavy thunderstorms during that time. Instead, I have had to contend with a major heat wave. It has been so hot down here that the adhesive on the tape would liquify and cause the plastic covering the window to slide off. Every day for the last two weeks I have had to spend time putting the plastic back up and taping it. I went through three big rolls of duct tape. Thankfully that is over. Now all I have to do is clean up the pieces of glass.
In answer to your earlier question way up at >108 michigantrumpet:. Not really unless you counted St. George's Day but that would apply just to England. This is 23 April and celebrates the Patron Saint of England but it is not even a holiday in England. I suppose the Brexit referendum day (23 June) has been ridiculously terms British Independence Day by the Brexiteers, but I don't see it catching on.
And of course there is my birthday................
Have a great weekend. xx
>133 drneutron: Hello, Jim! Me, too!
>134 charl08: Howdy Charlotte. For those of us in the Western 'burbs, a trip to the Berkshires is even easier and less stress filled than driving to either the Cape or NH. It might not be quite as easy from your neck of the woods. It is well worth the trip, though!
Thrilled the window is FINALLY fixed. How worrisome. What a relief to have it taken care of. I love blackberry preserves. What a shame the weather may not be cooperating. Although the latest heatwave may help?
Huszzah for seeing Karen and Ellen! Would love a F2F with those two!
>138 brodiew2: Brodie! Welcome to my humble abode! I like anyone who shows some O'Byrne and Tomei love -- But someone who posts Williams Powell/Myrna Loy pics on their thread it my can of 75er!!! Please come back anytime!
>140 PaulCranswick: Paul -- We're card-carrying members of the Caro fan club, too. I don't think we need a specific day to celebrate the special person you are -- no need to wait for a Holiday!
>141 witchyrichy: Hello back, Karen! Sounds like a lovely vacation, preaching the gospel that is LibraryThing!
Thanks for the Jo Lampert link - I enjoyed that.
I love that Jo Lampert clip. She was even MORE energetic at the Cabaret. Wow!
I once went to a Conference in which the presenter asked for anyone who did NOT come from a dysfunctional family to raise their hand. No one did. Even assuming that into each family a little rain must fall, in The House We Grew Up In, the Bird family suffers torrents of family issues. Sexual antics, death, grief, mental illness, neglect, desertion, infidelity and hoarding all make appearances. Flitting between Easter 1981 and the near present, this tale draw us into the world that exists behind a relatively lovely and calm façade.
This was a pick by my book club, garnering several raves. Most interesting was which character each club member felt most drawn to – the perfectionist older daughter, the mother with a need to clutch onto her memories as much as her belongings, the long-suffering husband who breaks out in a spectacular way, the contrarian son out to shock his family, the shy younger daughter looking to find her voice. My response was rather more muted. I liked the book enough, but it just didn’t send me over the top. For those fearful of the potentially dark overtones, the dysfunction does have its lighthearted moments.
Next up - the Boston Book Festival, October 15th. Who's in?
I won't be in Boston for the book festival because I will be going to the Kentuck Art Festival here in Tuscaloosa. I have invited my niece to spend the weekend with me so that we can go to this event together. I hope to attend the Southern Festival of the Book with her as well.
Good to see both you and Caro looking well.
>62 michigantrumpet: this book has been popping up since I got given it for my birthday recently. I thought I had never heard of it, but then I realise I have seen it here on LT, only with different covers. I wan that sold on the idea of the plot when my friend outlined it to me, but I may have to read it seeing as it was a present.
I wish you a lovely start into the new week.
Wouldn't it be nice if 2017 was a year of peace and goodwill.
A year where people set aside their religious and racial differences.
A year where intolerance is given short shrift.
A year where hatred is replaced by, at the very least, respect.
A year where those in need are not looked upon as a burden but as a blessing.
A year where the commonality of man and woman rises up against those who would seek to subvert and divide.
A year without bombs, or shootings, or beheadings, or rape, or abuse, or spite.
Festive Greetings and a few wishes from Malaysia!
To all my friends here at Library Thing, I want you to know how much I value you and how much I wish you a very happy holiday, whatever one you celebrate, and the very best of New Years!
Looking forward to your continued company in 2017.
Happy New Year, Marianne
from my hometown Zürich, Switzerland
Please come join me over at my new 20107 thread!