Les Semaines

May 30, 2004

what I'm thinking and doing § what I'm listening to § what I'm reading
what I'm writing § retrospective: old journal

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The Swinging Bachelorette

Okay, I admit it. I hit the wall on Friday and miss Jim and want him back home. I was doing great until then, enjoying the freedom of the house, hving a good time with friends, getting a little work done on all sorts of things, when I was sitting at work and it hit me like a wall that it was time for Jim to come home. Oddly enough, he was sending me email at the same time.

He's on the mainland now, despite problems with the ferries delaying them a day and half. It's good to know he's on the continent right now. I think at this point he's probably in Williams Lake at our friend's Diane and Harold's place. Harold, whom I've known since first-year university.

Meanwhile, I'm still living the life of the bachelorette, living in silence except when I'm playing music I want to play, making my own messes and tidying them up, getting all the cats' attentions, goofing off with friends and eating more food Jim doesn't like (barbecued ribs from Otis's, yum).

last week's thinking and doing § next week's thinking and doing

Listening

Making my slow way through the stack of cds that have accumulated for review for The Ectophiles' Guide since I left for Turkey, I came across a wonderful disc by Mudville. It hooked me right away with its inventive music and captivating vocals. Delicious music.

last week's listening § next week's listening

Reading

I re-read Mansfield Park because I just saw the movie and thought that the character of Fanny protrayed in the movie didn't match well with my recollection from my long-ago reading of the novel. I think this is the third time I've read it. It's the story of a young girl from a poor branch of her family who is brought up by her aunt's well-to-do family on their estate. It's full of Austen's strong characters and delicate portrayal of the nuances of their interactions and the maneuverings of romantic and familial relationships in that milieu. Fanny was clever, but just as shrinking as I remember--far more than the movie portrayed her. Sad to know how shallow I am: I rather enjoyed the sharper and more witty Fanny portrayed in the movie rather more than the Fanny of the book.

Carnelia Funke's children's/young adult's novel Inkheart has at its heart a wonderful magical idea: that certain people have the magical ability to make people and things switch places with stories that they read aloud. Meggie is a young girl whose mother has long ago disappeared, and when her father is threatened by a strange-looking man named Dustfinger that the evil Capricorn is about to find her, she discovers her father has a huge secret--and a book he's hiding from her. I loved the ideas here, but overall the story could have had a lot more energy.

Dia Calhoun's White Midnight is a young adult fantasy novel about a rather Fanny-esque heroine: a girl who is frightened of everything. The only strong positive attribute she seems to have is a deep love and connection with the land. When her parents basially sell her to the landowner as a wife ofr his monstrous son she learns her own strengths. An interesting tale but not quite as absorbing as it could have been.

Libba Bray's young adult novel A Great and Terrible Beauty was not at all disappointing. It was one of those books it's easy to get lost in. Gemma is a young, rebellious, and very real sixteen-year-old living in India at the end of the 19th century. She wants to go to London and argues with her mother about it and they get separated, when she has a vision of her mother's killing herself to avoid destruction by some evil kind of thing. It turns out her vision is true and her mother is dead. Soon she finds herself in England at a boarding school and life there is not what she imagined. There are the usual horrible battles over popularity, but Gemma discovers that she has strange powers, and discovers there's a mystery about two girls who died in a fire a generation before--when in one of her visions she finds the diary of one of the girls and now she has it at the school. Oh, and there is also a gorgeous young man warning her not to explore her visions any farther. A fascinating and rich tale.

last week's reading § next week's reading

Writing

A good session at the coffee shop but otherwise not too much. Gearing up for Clarion is taking my extra brain power.

last week's writing § next week's writing

Retrospective: old journal

Still on hiatus.

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