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A BOOK BY ITS COVER
24 May 2007
I haven't done a meme in awhile (nor has Mary, which is where I usually get them!), so when I found this one, I thought I'd give it a shot.
Do you like to read?
Is the Pope catholic? I've been an inveterate reader ever since I was old enough to read. I practically lived in the library when I was in grammar school, I love book stores. I have single-handedly kept Amazon.com afloat all these years.
What is your favorite book?
That's kind of like saying "which is your favorite kid?" It's impossible to pick just one, but if I absolutely had to pick only one, it would probably be "East of Eden," which I read in high school for the "dirty parts," and read more than once as an adult for the descriptive passages. Then one of my most fun things was reading it in conjunction with Steinbeck's "Journal of a Novel," which is a collection of letters he wrote to his publisher, Pascoval Covici at the time he was writing the book, so you get a feel for what he was thinking when he was writing certain passages or plot points.
Who is your favorite author?
Betcha can't pick just one. I'll pick a handful.
Are you the kind of person who peeks at the end of a book to see how it turns out?
Absolutely not. I want to experience the suspense up until the climax. I be sure to tell people who have already read the book not to tell me how it comes out. It's the same with TV shows. If I TIVO something I've been wanting to watch, I go to great lengths to be sure that I don't find out what happens in a show so I can experience it as it comes along. I hate having the surprise spoiled for me.
Do you hate it when they turn a book into a film?
Let's just say I'm leery. Rarely does a movie live up to the book. Gone with the Wind is a rare exception. Prince of Tides, a book I absolutely loved, was a complete and utter disaster as a film. Well, it was an OK film, but as a film adaptation of the book, it bore such little resemblance that it destroyed the book.
One problem with turning books into movies is that young people are more inclined to see the movie and I fear that fewer and fewer of them are actually reading these days.
Has a book ever changed your life? How?
It was 1986 and Gilbert had just died. I was working at a new job, for The Typing Company. I had only been there about a week when he died and took off two weeks after his death. When I returned, I felt so terribly alone. All of my good friends worked at my previous job and I barely knew the people with whom I was now working. They knew that Gilbert had died and could see how much pain I was in, but we didn't have that sort of supportive relationship yet.
One day the woman (whose name I have, I am ashamed to admit, since forgotten) went out for lunch and when she returned she handed me a book. It was a slim book called "How to Survive the Loss of a Love." I don't know if it changed my life exactly, but it helped me get through the grief of losing Gilbert. It's a book for loss of anything or anybody loved, from something as seemingly inconsequential as a tooth or a job, to the loss of the friends and relatives (whether by death or other distance) that seem to knock us flat.
I judged my progress through grief by how far I could get through the book before I started crying. That book started me on a study of death and grieving and I credit that for helping me to get through and help the family get through the pain of David's death.
Do you tend to borrow books from the library or do you prefer to buy them?
I'd like to say that I support our local library, but the truth is that since it was remodeled decades ago, I've only been inside it once ─ and that was for a meeting, not to borrow a book. The reason is that I read in spurts and while I can finish off a book in a day, sometimes it takes me a month or longer to get through a book and it just seems to work better to actually buy them (or borrow from a friend, which I do occasionally, but rarely).
Which book are you planning on reading next?
I never "plan." It's always something that just comes up. And I'm never reading just one book. At the present, I am reading a Patricia Cornwell, a James Patterson, a Maeve Binchy, and a book called "Molokai," which I started several weeks ago, and one called "The Bla Bla Cafe," which I am reviewing for Senior.net. The one I read at any particular time is the one which is closest to my hand, or which one is in my purse.
Interestingly, I did a book meme last year ─ a different one ─ and it asked sort of the same question: "Which book are you dying to read, but haven't yet." On that list were "Here's Johnny" (about Johnny Carson), and "Teacher Man" (by Frank McCourt). A year later, I still haven't read them!
PHOTO OF THE DAY
"G is for Gorilla Pod"
This is entry #2611