lady_schrapnell: (Bell)
Guess it only works if you know there IS a book of that name, and furthermore, that I've just read it and loved it, despite the shameless willingness to use the title for my own self-centred purposes...

So. Older Daughter moved out on Tuesday, and in keeping with Ode* family traditions, we had one minor crisis after another (including dying computers eating her latest story-in-progress, usual agent/landlord nonsense, dead phone (mine) eating increasingly desperate texts from her and serious glitches getting money to the landlord) before she went. All eventually sorted and I would so have made it through her getting into the taxi without crying had she not got sad first. All right, admittedly she FIRST said 'I'm going to miss Bell so much - I'm not sure I want to go now!' (Bell being our hound, for newer readers - userpic in honour of this moment). But I could have lost it much worse, and was well touched by getting a text from her en route saying 'I love ya! So many emotions vying for precedence!' Never let Them convince you that mobile phones have left all Young People unable to write anything other than textese... And I've been to visit already, and that was fun, and they're all happy and I'm sure that the landlord will get heat in soon. Even though the house is to be razed in May...

So again. I must be evolving into a higher life-form, right? The kind of life-form that has pretty much handled one of life's challenging struggles. And handled it okay, on the whole.

With that anything-but-neat segue, I come to Robin Brande's book. Finally.

Behind a cut for the sake of anyone who's automatically uninterested in a YA novel about a girl brought up in a fundamentalist Christian family/Church struggling to find her own beliefs - about evolution, obviously, but also about what Christianity means to her. But you'll miss a wonderful book which treats this with subtlety, humour and intelligence. the promised cut )

If you don't want to try the book, you can check out Robin Brande's blog - a great read. (Be warned though! I've ordered five books - only one available and ordered from the library - from just a few weeks' reading.) (You'll be hearing more about at least one of them shortly, now the Great Migration is mostly accomplished.)

*Younger Daughter invented this from among the many possible initials of her last name and middle name (which is my last name) and stuck it after her first name to create an email address, which I thought both elegant and poetic. So I've gakked it. Thanks C-ode!
lady_schrapnell: (Default)
Think I was better company stressed out about the end-of-course essay and whiney... (Or whiney about that.) I've posted a few (boring and bad-quality) pics on flickr of the knitting adventures of recent days. I'm trying to view my now almost-a-cardigan in a very detached way, as a learning process - indeed, as all about the learning and the process, and not about the product. I was all set to frog the whole thing, had just got into a frogging place mentally, when Older Daughter (who would NOT say something soothing she didn't believe) told me she liked it. So I'll probably finish it, wear it until I spill the first splosh of tea on it, try over-dying it... and then felt it for a tea-cozy or hot-water bottle or something. Despite my angst over this WIP, knitting is still playing a good part in keeping me marginally on the sane side.

Recently finished Maureen Johnson's The Bermudez Triangle, and wish I were feeling a bit more inspired to say good things about good books. It was a little bit slow to grip me, which may just have been my Devilish love (that's a book title, not an italicized self-descriptive adjective). Then I stayed up way too late the next night to finish it, so I compensated. Could have been a bit standard chick-lit, with the three long-time friends, each with her quirkiness and slightly off-kilter family set-up - and especially Nina - the super-organized, studious and ambitious one. But it isn't - and not just because one of the summer romances is between Mel and Avery. (Not a spoiler, as it tells this on the inside cover.) Two quick quotes just to show the light touch with the humour. (Indenting will return to Lady Schrapnell when things are a little less hectic. Or when full brain-capacity returns.) First is Mel alone in her room...

"I'm gay", she told her reflection.
The girl she saw staring back at her looked puzzled.
"I'm a lesbian", she tried again. Somehow she drew out the word in such a way it sounded French. She tried it more slowly. She put the emphasis on every syllable in turn - LES-bi-an, les-BI-an, les-bi-AN.
Nope. The girl in the mirror still wasn't buying it.
"You, Melanie Forrest", she said firmly. "You are a lesbian."
This caused her to involuntarily raise her eyebrows and move back. She'd actually startled herself.

Okay, so I was rooting for one person to end up with another person and she didn't, but the second person's going to be okay. One of those who doesn't realise their own huge attractiveness until later, but it'll work out for him. And that was part of the attractiveness of the book - things were messy, people weren't all sorted by the end and even the ones who were dealing beautifully with one aspect of life might not do so well in another. All, of course, with that great humour.

Second is an email to Nina from her bf.

"Anyway, a few lesbians that I know were there, so I went over and explained your situation. Most of them were pretty mad on your behalf because they thought Mel and Avery should have told you instead of making out at the mall. The girls here thought they were trying to get caught, which in their opinion was really lame. So, the lesbians of Portland are totally with you."

Thanks go again to [ profile] sartorias for her recommendation of Devilish, which served as my introduction to Maureen Johnson. (Not that others hadn't been talking about her, but that rec got me ordering, and I'm very grateful.) Still have Girl at Sea here to read too.


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April 2009

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