Tag Archives: Reading

My non-existent experience with Updike

I’m slightly embarrassed to admit that I’ve only read one book by John Updike, and one short story. The book was The Witches of Eastwick and I read it after seeing the movie twice. I saw the movie twice by accident — sort of. Dean and I saw it and then some friends wanted to see it so we saw it again. So I read the book — but I don’t recall why.  Perhaps so I could say I read a book by John Updike?

The short story I read was A&P. I remember liking it. I read it in college, I think. My son recently had to read in for his high school freshman English class.

I knew about Updike from a young age, however. My mom had a book of his called Couples. It had sex in it and I’d skim the book to find the parts with sex. I tried to read it from the beginning, but it was boring to me otherwise. (this may have been after sixth grade though)

When I was in the sixth grade an author came to our class to tell us about being an author. His name is Larry Woiwode. (his sister was my student teacher that year). I’ve not read any of his books either, although I have most of them. He called John Updike his friend when he visited our class. I knew who Updike was by then, but perhaps Woiwode’s mentioning him made me more aware of him. [Although now that I think about it I was in 6th grade in 1968 when Couples was published — but perhaps I’d heard of the author before somehow.]

A friend of mine really liked John Updike. She liked his Rabbit novels. I didn’t even try to like them.

So. Perhaps I’ll try to read another book by Updike in honor of his passing. Or perhaps I’ll read a Woiwode book instead.

Oh wait — Updike wrote a sequel to The Witches of Eastwick. There. Decision made.

Not loving Love in the Time of Cholera

I’m seriously considering quitting book group. I’ve not been into the past couple of books we’ve read and because of that I don’t read. I feel that I need to be reading the book group selection so I read nothing.

I’ve got a pile of books to read and want to just dive into those. Maybe I should just go to book group and pretend I read the book, but really have read others.

This time it’s Love in the Time of Cholera. It’s not that I don’t like it. The book is well written and could hold my interest if I wanted to read it. I just am not interested. Luckily the next book is going to be a book I’ve already read so I can concentrate on my pile.

Because we are not a strict book group (I know someone who kicks people out of her group if members don’t read the books) I won’t quit. I like the people and need an excuse to get away from the house with other women one night a month.

Ok then, that settled. Off to find the modern version of cliff notes on Love in the Time of Cholera.

My Daughter, the Critic

Clare and I went out to dinner last night mostly because I was to lazy to cook for just the two of us (the guys went skiing), but also because we’d not been out of the house for something fun in a few days. I’m not sure if Clare considers dinner with mom fun, but she seemed to have a good time.

P4130055.JPGClare talked mostly about reading – her passion. Once again she thanked me for fostering a love of reading in her, which always tickles me, and she talked about what she loved didn’t like about books.

She loves it when the author manages to describe how people look without seeming to describe anything. She hates it when an author uses worn out metaphors and similies to make points in books.

She thinks Stepanie Meyer’s vampire trilogy is poorly written (even worse than the Harry Potter books, she said) but wants to read the second and third books anyway.  I liked what I read of Twilight, but I always was a sucker for vampire stories and gothic type novels.

She has the same kinds of opinions about films, but perhaps not so hypercritical.

I’m quite proud of how she’s turned out so far. Her love of reading will take her places – on a couple of levels. She’s not too bad in math either – last night she even figured out the tip for me.