Wednesday, September 29, 2010

VOTING! & The Lost Symbol - Dan Brown (5)

If you liked The Da Vinci Code, you'll like this. It's set in DC, which I liked because I'm more familiar with the area so I was like, "Oooo! I know that building! I've been there! I've seen.....well no....not that....seriously? Is that even true?"

I'm better at writing about books just as I finish it, but I finished this on Thursday and then was really sick so I never wrote about it, and now I have no real opinions except that it was awesome and some "Oh! That [mega spoiler] part was so crazy! I was so pissed and then...." do you want to know how I felt? No. That'd be like telling you the ending of a Harry Potter book. I'm not that lame.

Anywho so I was real sick and started reading The Other Queen, which is not my favorite Philippa Gregory and I might not finish it because I was bored. Nothing happened and I know how it ends and I hate all the characters because their dumb or doomed. That's probably why I loved The White Queen, because I had never studied that part of the story and I had no idea what was going on.

And I had to return Three Cups of Tea, but I checked out the book, so I might finish that soon, but I already started my first Agatha Christie! And then I got a whole bunch of books from the library! What is a girl to do? I think I'll just catalog my books because I have a zillion.

OMG, I just realized one of the books I checked out today is in large print. I don't think I'll read that one because it looks like someone's shouting at me.

So, you choose! What book should I finish first:
a) Three Cups of Tea - Greg Mortenson & David Oliver Relin
b) A Murder in Three Acts - Agatha Christie
c) The White Queen - Philippa Gregory
d) None of those, pick a new book!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

In Which Jana Has an Epic Journey in Search of Books

Today was a weird day. Woke up at 5:30am when my alarm clock was going to wake me up at 6:30 and, get this, did not fall back asleep. Weird. Went to day two of work as a PA. I listened to some Michael Jackson and other dance-in-your-car worthy tunes. Got in just a few minutes early to work. And then potential disaster struck: I was asked to navigate someone to the monorail platform by the Space Needle so we could switch cameramen because the one at the needle shoot wasn't feeling well so the producers wanted him at the hotel so he could rest asap. Well, I knew how to get to the Space Needle. I'd even, luckily, checked to figure out how to get back on I-5 correctly this morning since I got lost last night. However, I had no idea where the monorail platform was. I was pretty sure I could figure it out, but too scared to tell anyone I wasn't 100% sure. Miraculously, I totally found it without looking too stupid. And found us some quick parking that was of questionable legality but did not get a ticket.

Switched drivers, got back, nothing exciting for awhile. Doot doot dooooo, did some work, had some lunch, drove back to the Center to get the show's anchor so he could do a voice over for the commercial and we totally shop talked. Yeah he was in Second City performing for 7 months. Yeah he's on tv. And yes, he too was afraid of theater kid parties in college and was not one of the cool kids. There is hope yet for my life.

Oh yeah, and at lunch I got to hear stories from the Jerry Springer and Steve Wilco shows.

About now I'm really hoping they never, ever read about how star struck I was at meeting people who have actually worked on things I've heard of. I am so glad I had no idea about any of this before I started talking to them. I would have been so terrified to talk to them.

Fun fact: Jerry Springer is one of the nicest guys ever. Apparently he's a really great neighbor too.

And about now you're probably wondering what on earth this story has to do with books, almost there! I left right at 6 and got truckin' home, listening to some Disney on the way. What a fabulous, fabulous day. The drive is like an hour with the traffic. I was getting closish to home and was debating weather or not to go to the library. If you read last night, I was out of books and wanted some new ones. But then I was thinking about it and I have a ton of books on my shelves that I could read - I could finally organize them all! And pick one! Plus I really wasn't sure I remember how to get to the library. My exit is 179...totally tuned back into the exit numbers at the sign for 178 and was like "oh no!!!! must get over!!!" which I did, and got off the exit, no problem.

Then I realized: I had no idea where I was. I got off an exit too early. But, no big deal, right? I can totally find my way through to my apartment. I'd been navigating Seattle and Seatac all day, how bad is Mountlake Terrace? Got totally lost. And then found the library! And was like: sweet. Getting some books. Then I'll just get back on the freeway and go home. So I was looking through the catalog and was like...shoot...I have no idea what I want to I decided to just browse the shelves. So I browsed, and found a promising book, I See You Everywhere, but it wasn't the book, so I kept browsing. And what did I find? There was one Philippa Gregory book left. And it was one I hadn't read! It wasn't The Red Queen, but it was The Other Queen, which I also wanted to read at some point. Score! And then I was like, "But I really wanted to read something more action-y next," so I kept looking a little longer. And guess what I found? The Lost Symbol, the other book I was hoping to get from the library.

What a perfectly marvelous day. But then I got slightly lost on the way home. I had been too lazy to plug my ipod back in and listen to exciting tunes, so I left it on NPR. They were talking about some news, and I was sort of paying attention but mostly lost and frustrated, and I kept hearing that they wanted people to text/email and say where they were while they were listening. They were stationed in England. They mentioned 3 or 4 people who sent stuff in. And one of them was the Kitsap Sun! I was totally in that paper! Yet another sign that I am going to one day be totally famous. Hahaha. But seriously. I know that paper. And they were mentioned on NPR. Ok that's not really cool, I should probably eat dinner before trying to tell any stories because I think my filter turns back on eventually.

And then, full circle, disaster strikes. While walking up the stairs to my apartment I found a SPIDER had built a web across the stairwell!!!!! It was like...a foot above my head...but I tested the air under it with a book or something and the web it was DEFINITELY NOT SAFE TO GO UNDER! So I went back down the stairs, miraculously found a stick right near the bottom of the stairs, and successfully evaded the spider.


Wednesday, September 15, 2010

The Virgin Blue - Tracy Chevalier (4.8)

Oh dear it's been awhile! In my defense, I have actually managed to procure a job, which starts next week because I had a three day job planned for this week, and I had some auditions to prep for. The real reason behind the delay is that I just didn't have any books I felt like reading and preferred to watch Netflix. Instant watch is both a blessing and a curse to those with lots of time on their hands. Or those who don't have the self control to turn it off even though its past their bedtime.

Enough excuses. I loved this book. I thought I might, because I've liked Tracy in the past, but the premise reminded me of a favorite book from when I was 10 or 11, and I am a grown up now, so that was a turn-off. (If you don't know me, or tongue-in-cheek doesn't transfer over the internet: note that I still love Harry Potter and don't think I'm a pretentious snob, however much I wish I was.) Here is how the back starts, "Meet Ella Turner and Isabelle du Moulin - two women born centuries apart, yet tied together by a haunting family legacy," ...snore? But then at the very bottom it says, "A beautifully crafted story shot with vivid colors," and the cover was so pretty that I just decided, "Why not? The library closes in 10 minutes and I have nothing else to read." Well, The Times (London) was right, it was beautiful, and I loved every page of it. Whoever wrote the blurb should re-write it.

Actually, I'm not sure I liked it as much when I first started reading it...but it gets good and it ends fabulously. It's one of those books that always makes me feel so connected to my fellow women. It has that feeling of the secret mystery of being a woman that I always love in a book. The Red Tent had a similar feeling, and so did The Color Purple. I loved those books too. You should read them. The Color Purple first, it was better. And shorter. But if you're a sucker for historical fiction, The Red Tent is super good.

The Virgin Blue is the third Tracy Chevalier I've read, and I think it's my favorite of them all, then The Lady and the Unicorn, and then Girl with a Pearl Earring. However, that is the order I read them, from most to least recent, so they very well may be equally good and I just like the most recent best. If you like Philippa Gregory, but a bit more poetic, less sexy, and without any (for this novel) historical fact, you'd definitely like this. Oh, and there's some magic. Sort of. And we all know I'm a sucker for all things magical.

In the CD player: Three Cups of Tea
Next to read: ....good question! Obviously I need to stop by the library again. I have another Margaret Atwood, but I'm feeling something different. Although I'd totally read The Red Queen if I can get it from the library.
Also awaiting others returning them to the library:  The Lost Symbol - it'll be my first Dan Brown since high school! I got a little too into him and read like...all of his books that were out right after The Da Vinci Code, and I felt like he was trying a little too hard to be Michael Crichton, so I stuck to the original.
Maybe I'll read the sequel to The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, I know I have that somewhere...