The Friday Five: Reading "Stuff"

(Sorry this is going up late. . . family members were trying to make last-minute plans drive those of us with hectic weekends crazy--then dinner took forever to make. Lousy parsnips. Eating went more quickly because the cat asked to have some salmon, too. I trained her to sit; the reward is yummy!)

When my sister was in high school, and I was in college, probably home visiting for the weekend, my sister's boyfriend came to the house to pick her up for a date. She wasn't ready (surprise!), so my parents told him to have a seat.

I guess after my mom had called up the stairs to tell my sister he was waiting, Mom returned to her seat in the family TV room and picked whatever she had been reading back up. Boyfriend shakes his head in a bit of bemusement--and I will never forget this as long as I live--then says,

"Man, every time I come over here, you guys are always reading stuff."

After that comment, we wondered if being a reading family was odd. My parents are frequent readers--more often newspapers, but there is the occasional book if it merits their time. Mom likes mysteries. I remember sometimes my older brother post-college would get a new book and stay up all night reading it. When my sister visits, she brings with her books she has finished, to pass them along to my mom and me.

You may have noticed that I like to talk about books. I like to read them. I like to discover new ones to read. I like to hear about what other people are reading. Nowadays, I work with books--a lot. Heck, someday I want to hear someone say they're reading my books.

So let's do five short takes on books--mine and other people's:

1. What's selling at the bookstore: Twilight Saga, of course. Another big one is the latest in the House of Night series. The creepy-sounding Jodi Picoult one. And the nonfiction people seem to be buying Ultramind (PBS fundraising lately?) and diet cookbooks.

2. What people are asking for at the bookstore: I got asked twice for this one--must've been an NPR appearance or something. It's not out until next week. Funny thing is, it looked familiar to me but I couldn't place it. When I got home and was tossing out magazines, I came across a blurb about it. Could be interesting.

3. What I'm reading: Interesting interviews with fantasy writers (for young adults). Brian Jacques is my favorite so far: "Words are as wild as rocky peaks. They're as smooth as a millpond and as sunny as a day in a meadow. Words are beautiful things. Every word matters."

4. What I'm not reading: Definitely not this weird European "lady parts manifesto." The Marie Claire book club made it sound completely absurd. (I like how the Publisher's Weekly review calls it a "buffet of filth and screwing.") Oh, and I still can't finish Breaking Dawn. Maybe it would be easier to read on the beach?

5. What I want to read: I'd like to check out the House of Night series. I also came across (in a Allure magazine, of all places) this book about manners--the "basic civil behaviors that make society work," and the new ones that spring up when times change.

Have a good weekend--and hey, how about dropping me a comment about what you're reading (or not reading, or wanting to read) lately?


Cullen said…
No requests for the new Maximum Ride book?

My oldest loves that series with every fiber of her being. She hadpre-ordered it through Amazon and it came in yesterday. She is more than halfway through it already.

So, a reading family may not be the norm, but there's nothing wrong with that.
Kate P said…
You know, Cullen, I did have a dad come in with a list of books to get, and that was on it. It's interesting to see that Amazon has it classified as a juvenile/teen book, because at the bookstore where I work, it's in the adult fiction section. Maybe to keep all of Patterson's work together?

Your story about your daughter warmed my little literary heart. :)
Dave E. said…
I finished Imperium, by Ryszard Kapuscinski last week. I should have done a post on it earlier this week, but I wasn't in the mood. Maybe tomorrow. I'm re-reading 1776 while I wait for the next books to show up.
Lizzie said…
I lurve it when you talk books - I go right to the Seattle Public Library site and put all kinds of stuff on hold!
Lindsay said…
I still assert that Twilight & Eclipse were the stronger books in the series. For as long as Breaking Dawn is, I feel like she took her sweet time writing about nothing and then sort of just hurried it along and had way too much happen way too quickly. I don't know. The end really just took an end that I'm not sure was a good idea. I like the book, but I still think it was really weak. She has that problem of going so. slow. and then having stuff happen really quickly. She needs to work on her pacing.

Ugh. No "real" reading for me until I'm out of school. Too much going on. But, I swear, once I'm done, I am hopping back on the book talk wagon. I MISS IT. I can only really talk about stuff I HAVE read, and it depresses me.
Cullen said…
She finished it in two days. She's my little reader. Daughter Number 2 doesn't care for it too much, but she's better read than most her peers.
Anonymous said…
Brian Jacques was always a writer I loved to listen to or read interviews he did but never got into his books. I think it was perhaps timing. By the time his books were big, I was in my historical fiction phase.
The last book I read for pleasure was New Moon over Christmas break. I read it in a day I think. Ive told a few people they should make their children brief supreme court cases for reading speed and comprehension!
I'm doing an independent reading class next quarter so I'll be reading and reading some more!
Kate P said…
Dave--I remember seeing the discussion between you and Sheila about Imperium. Personal accounts can be really enlightening.

Lizzie--what caught your fancy???

Lindsay--Eclipse bored me to tears with those long-winded storytelling episodes, so I was pretty much lost by the time I got to B.D. I know what you mean about no time for "real" reading during school! Hang in there.

Cullen--Daughter #1 sounds like my brother, a real book-devourer. What does Daughter #2 like? Do any of your kids like comics and graphic novels yet? Have your daughters read "Babymouse"?

Archerychic--you are speedy! If I try to go too fast, I start skimming. New Moon is my favorite, for personal reasons--have yet to find someone who agrees.
I found I like YA historical fiction, but adult historical fiction doesn't engage me. Maybe I'm reading the wrong authors. History is not one of my strengths.

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