Upon the 700th read of the day, one must conclude that perhaps she thinks this is the Internet.
My dad sent me, “A Lion’s Tale: Around the World in Spandex,” the Chris Jericho story yesterday, and I’m halfway through it already. He’s in Mexico, doing his time as a luchador. It’s a surprisingly nonchalant tale of what it takes to make yourself a wrestler — A LOT, it seems like so far.
“It’s a lot easier to make people hate you than it is to make them like you.”
Advice on being a good guy in a heel’s world…
First, NO ROBOT HAS EVER BEEN THAT AGREEABLE.
Second, if one is to run a book club, one should work on one’s reading comprehension. It’s not an art book called “Big Girl Paints.”
Photobomb courtesy of tiny bookworm.
The Liberry Jam Book Club is back from furlough! This week: My Friend the Starfinder, by George Ella Lyon; Yum, by SAMi; Zoe and Robot, by Ryan Sias; and Big Girl Panties, by Fran Manushkin.
Zoe and Robot is set up like a graphic novel, which is…novel for a kids’ book, and Yum with its flippy cutouts has been the favorite so far. The Starfinder is beautiful and poetic, with trippy, chaotic illustrations.
See also: When you’ve checked out a “New Release” and you know if you don’t start and finish it THIS WEEKEND before it’s due to go back, you’ll never see it again because once you set it free, it belongs to the waiting list.
Once upon a HURRY.
I would wager that reading books primarily on your phone is like a 19th-century-chapbook, Dickensian workhouse for your eyes. Eyes that are quite practically that old, themselves.
So I made like Ben Franklin. So much better — especially since I’m coming to terms with the fact that High Reading Season has begun. The flannel jammies have been rescued from the back of the drawer, which are mandatory uniformery under gray, leaking skies.
To combat that, I’m in the middle of J. Maarten Troost’s latest South Pacific adventure, and a line up in the wings that may actually put me at half goal this year.
Half is better than none, I suppose. After all, it’s the books that got small…
I finished it. When I found myself up at 2:00 a.m., reaching for my app, it needed to be done sooner than later. That’s one thing all of Rainbow Rowell’s books have in common — they keep you swiping the pages.
The trouble with swipey pages though, is that the countdown is fake. There are 20 swipes of credits and “also bys” and the end that make you think you have a lot more story left than you do.
And it sort of ended like there should have been more. Which very well could be very cleverly designed into a book all about fan fiction. It felt like it left a hook just for that. Here are these characters, here’s this relationship, and here’s all of this stuff they didn’t do. What is summer going to be like? How does their relationship…progress? All of that.
I have to admit, as much as I loved the book, I skimmed the fic chapter openers. I KNOW. They were metaphors and advanced the main story and all that — but I just wasn’t as into Simon and Baz, as Levi and Cath. It could be that whole fantasy worlds take some warming up to — it’s hard to just drop into them.
I did have a notion about halfway through, that maybe the book I was reading WAS Cath’s fiction assignment, and she was the unreliable narrator. It would have made sense, with all of the “fic” segments MLA annotated like they were. (MLA? APA? Grad school was a long time ago.)
In any ending, if Cath did exist IRL, she might excel at NaNoWriMo (with the right idea and someone cheer coaching her on). The volume she churned out was inspiring.
I might give it a go this year. Not during November, it’s too packed with Franksgiving, but October. Make big plans, and see what shakes out in the end.
I’ve found the characters, now I just need to go live in their world. After all, that’s how it works, isn’t it?
In which we’ll note the board book, Daddy, Papa, and Me is in circulation at a military post library. Somehow that seems like a bigger sign that DADT is over than benefits, even. And it’s a great book — just normative. Not heteronormative, not homonormative, just NORMAL. They cook and play and build stuff and it’s lovely.
We will also note a grand addition to the Liberry Jam Book Club — a secret reading tent.
And yes, I have spent the most time in it so far.
40 Uses For a Grandpa, by Harriet Ziefert; Dive In, by April Jones Prince; Daddy, Papa, and Me, by Lesléa Newman; Penny and Her Marble, by Kevin Henkes.
Penny and Her Marble is a little age-forward — there are chapters — but we are Kevin Henkes completeists, so it came home. It’s heavier on the lesson and the repetitive language/shorter sentence structure designed for learning readers, with less emphasis on the personality and cleverness we love so much, but enjoyable all the same.
The debates and definitions have been posited, the differences between nerds, dorks, and geeks — this draws a big circle around the whole Venn.
"To really be a nerd, she’d decided, you had to prefer fictional worlds to the real one."
Because a fictional world doesn’t have to have wizards or warp zones or wrestlers. It doesn’t have to have a plot or setting — a fictional world could be the inside of a computer or the underside of a truck.
If you have some place you can lose yourself, you’re a nerd.
It’s a satisfying thought. As satisfying as the notion that somebody’s real world is another’s fantasy. Reality TV. Blogs. And the idea that, while there are writers out there who can invent a whole universe out of a few synapses and some pencil lead, a whole lot more write about the real. You’re getting lost then, in someone else’s neighborhood.
A delicious circuit, that — lending your “You Are Here” to help someone else get lost.
And in the end, we find out we’re all nerds.
This week’s Liberry Jam Book Club selections. I think I’m going to need some of my library scientist friends to explain the children’s shelving system to me, it’s subject-matter based it seems, and then by alphabet?
Maybe we could see about also segregating the rhyming books so one does not get tricked into too many of them.
Miss Lina’s Ballerinas and the Prince, by Grace Maccarone; Orange Pear Apple Bear, by Emily Gravett; Cat Comes Too, by Hazel Hutchins; Meeow and the Pots and Pans by Sebastian Braun.
She picks out the board books and the big books on the shelves she can reach — I pick out the ones at my level with illustrations that catch my interest. Miss Lina’s Ballerinas was picked initially because she’s very into the intro to Bunheads (RIP), but it’s actually lovely (apart from the unfortunate font). Richly painted sketches full of motion, and charming couplet rhymes. The Pear Bears pictures I could see putting in a frame — and I don’t wonder that the bulk of the world’s watercolors live in children’s books.
Good. We’ll be seeing lots of them, then.