Thursday, April 29, 2010


it's been a busy week!! i promise to have at least one post up this weekend!!!
check back saturady afternoon!!!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Book Review: Still Alice

Lisa Genova's Still Alice is an amazing book that looks at early-onset Alzheimer's and its impact on a family. I felt so many emotions while reading this book, and on several occasions I actually had to stop and put it down. Alzheimer's disease, and really any form of dementia is terrifying. I can't even begin to imagine what it would feel like if it happened to my grandparents-never mind to my parents-or even to myself!

The relationships between members of any family are usually complex, and I felt that Genova really does this justice. I thankfully do not have much close personal experience with Alzheimer's, but I truly felt that Genova gave an accurate account of what it would feel like to watch yourself and/or your loved go through such a painful process with no hope that it will get better.

I know people who have read this book that do have loved ones with Alzheimer's and how it was often difficult to read because they could see similarities between Alice and their own loved ones.

Genova does an excellent job of melding her academic knowledge with storytelling-it feels neither patronizing nor full of jargon. A great read!

Have you read any books that made you think about a situation that you or a loved one were experiencing?

Friday, April 23, 2010

Book Review: Come, Thou Tortoise

I finished Jessica Grant's Come, Thou Tortoise last night. I liked it, especially the beginning and the end. The middle part was so-so. This is probably one of the funnier books I've ever read. Grant uses a lot of word play and I often found myself grinning on the subway, maybe even a few (quiet) chuckles as well. I found Audrey/Oddly's personality and "uniqueness" a bit much at times, and was a bit concerned about reading the tortoise's point of view-but it worked. I thoroughly agree with most of the review over at The Quill and Quire.

(Upon rereading this post I realize it's kind of lame, but, well to be honest with you, it's Friday evening and I have a million other things to do like go and sit on the Simpson's...fold towels...wait for Marcia/wine to get here.....wait for Dave to get home so we can decide what to do for dinner...have dinner...drink wine...wait for Angela and Peggy to get here...drink more wine...and then go to the We Are The Take show tonight.)

Have a GREAT weekend!!!!!!!!!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Children and books

Image from:

I have loved to read for as long as I can remember. I remember being excited to go to the library after school in Junior High and my friends thinking that was weird. My dad was an avid reader and I was always scouring his shelves for something to read-that's where my love of Science Fiction and Fantasy came from-I do enjoy Isaac Asimov!!!

The Star had an article (Children who grow up with books fare better) today on how having books at home impacts children around the world. Not a new idea but interesting nevertheless.

Did you love to read growing up or was it something you developed an appreciation for as an adult?

Sunday, April 18, 2010

The New Quarterly

The New Quarterly is a great magazine about Canadian writers and writing. They also have a great blog. I saw this quote on the blog the other day and I really like it:

"You can't read a blog in the tub. You can't gift wrap a website. Sure, you can scribble in the margins of a pdf...but it's just not the same Nothing beats paper.."

I realize that it could argue that you CAN read a blog in the tub if you brought your laptop and technically if someone gift wrapped your laptop it could open up to a website...but seriously. It's true. Nothing beats paper.

Ummmm well nothing except MY blog...viewed on your laptop in the tub..especially if the laptop was gift wrapped and when you turned it on it went directly to my blog....

Saturday, April 17, 2010

beading time

Here is a bracelet I made from beads I bought in St. Jacob's. It's similar in style to 2 others I've made. I was inspired by the colours I associate with summer and with the fruit we've been buying lately. The background is from some scrapbooky type paper I have. That is all. 50 best books of the decade recently released a list of the Books of the Decade, here are the top ten:

1. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay: A Novel
by Michael Chabon

2.The Assassin's Song
by M.G. Vassanji

3.Bel Canto
by Ann Patchett I've read this one on recommendation from a friend-it was pretty good.

4.Black Bird
by Michel Basilieres

5,Blackstrap Hawco
by Kenneth J. Harvey

6.The Blind Assassin
by Margaret Atwood I think I read this one a loooong time ago-but not 100% sure

7.The Book Of Negroes
by Lawrence Hill BOOK OF MY LIFE

8.Brief Wondrous Life Of Oscar Wao
by Junot Diaz Another recommendation from a friend-glad I read it!

9.Caesar: Life of a Colossus
by Adrian Goldsworthy

10.The Cellist of Sarajevo
by Steven Galloway This is the book for my bookclub meeting in May!

How many of these have you read (either the top ten or any books on the list)?

how many have you read?

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Greetings and apologies

1. I think it would be awesome if people greeted each other using the following format:

"Hey (insert name here), I'm currently reading (insert name of book here), I think it's (insert feeling here)".

"Hey Sara, I'm currently reading The Gargoyle and I think it's AWESOME!"

This example works exceptionally well if you great me because well, that's my name and because The Gargoyle is in fact, AWESOME

2. Sorry to everyone at work that had to deal with me today. I was headachey, grumpy, and complainy in general. In short I was a grumpy pants. And i didn't even make an attempt to pretend otherwise. Sorry. My dad's advice during our random email chats today was (and i quote): "If you're grumpy and you know it, have a drink."

Thanks dad.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Book review: The Lovely Bones

Wow. I just finished Alice Sebold's The Lovely Bones. An incredibly well-written book. I really liked Sebold's concept of heaven. But, wow, what an emotional ride. I pretty much felt "upset" the entire time I was reading this book. I can only imagine what it would be like to read this if you knew someone who went missing...

I definitely thought this was a good book, would I recommend it...not sure.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Saddest book EVER

I just started The Lovely Bones (Alice Sebold)today. I was waiting for a friend to pick me up at the subway station and though I was going to lose it. Seriously!! This is the most heart-wrenching book I have ever read-and I'm only on page72!It's almost as bad as watching P.S. I Love You. which I did for the second and final time last night. I must have cried-and I don't mean small tear running down my cheek-at least 6 times!

For those of you that read and/or saw the movie The Lovely Bones-how did you get through it!?!?!

Thrity Umrigar's novel The Space Between Us was really quite good. I won't say too much about it because i will be discussing it with my book club later this week. The issues of family, class, service, and loyalty were dealt with so honestly-this was quite a powerful book. I can't think of another book that left me appreciating the circumstances of both the servant and the mistress, as well as their relationship with each other, in quite the same way.

This book was definitely special.

What books have touched you in a special way?

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Book Review: Wicked

I LOVED THIS BOOK!!!!!!!!!!!

I was totally in the mood for a fantasy-ish novel after reading Lev Grossman's The Magicians-and this was the perfect book!!
Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West was an interesting look into a well-known story (The Wizard of OZ!!). I look forward to reading the sequel: Son of a Witch, although I have at least 2 other books to read first!

Many people know Wicked because of the musical and I was EXTREMELY EXCITED to find out that it will be in Toronto in the fall!! I will definitely be going!!

Next up: April's book club novel---> The Space Between Us by Thrity Umrigar

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Canada's 100 Greatest Books

I just came across this new project to create a book listing Canada's 100 Greatest Books on facebook today! They are asking CANADIANS to email ( their top 10 Canadian books written by "Canadian authors and that involve Canada in some capacity" (fiction and non-fiction). They also have a blog:

Here are MY top 10 Canadian books in no particular order:

1. Anne of Green Gables – L.M. Montgomery (All of the Anne books really)
2. The Book of Negroes - Lawrence Hill
3. The Summer Tree - Guy Gavriel Kay
4. The Nine Lives of Charlotte Taylor - Sally Armstrong
5. The Gargoyle - Andrew Davidson (not sure if it counts because I'm not sure if/how it involves Canada but I LOVE this book!)
6. Good To A Fault - Marina Endicott
7. Late Nights on Air - Elizabeth Hay
8. Down to This: Squalor and Splendour in a Big-City Shantytown – Shaughnessy Bishop-Stall
9. The Girls - Lori Lansens
10. Love You Forever - Robert Munsch (Again-not sure if it counts)

What are your top CANADIAN books??

Sunday, April 4, 2010

happy easter!!

Happy Easter everyone!!! Here are a few pictures of our weekend! Dave's mom Doris and Ed came to visit. This is what we did:

Spadina wave deck
The Elora Gorge

West Montrose covered bridge-the last covered bridge in Ontario

Built an inukshuk at the brick works in the don valley

Flowers on behalf of my parents (mom)

Necklace and bracelet Doris designed and I made

Haven't done much reading this weekend :)