Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Hump of the Week

Day 191...and my mom is immersed in the newest issue of Glimmer Train (all stories, all the time) and various issues of the Christian Science Monitor, because she is actually paying for a year's subscription after being hooked by a 6-month "come on."

"We're reading things here we don't read anywhere else," she says, an excellent point. She means, in print periodicals, acknowledging that this information may be quite accessible on the web, but she's not looking for it there.

I finished Dreamers of the Day, by Mary Doria Russell, and liked it just fine, though wasn't as wowed as I was by The Sparrow, where the cultural anthropology and the departure into the fantastic were perfectly entwined and justified by the science fiction aspect. I don't mind anyone's genre twisting, but I am pulled more by realistic fiction, which engages me in the same complexities and conflicts I see in my own life. Amazingly, this happened in The Sparrow, too, though it was mostly set on another planet, entirely imagined. Thread of Grace had its realistic World War II context, and I was happy to re-learn that history that particular way. Dreamers of the Day was delightful...enlightening...and is done. With me admiring the delivery system more than the place I was delivered to.

Meanwhile, I am immersed in The Cookbook Collector, by Allegra Goodman, and we are deep into computer technology, and IPOs, and rather far from the cookbook collector at the moment, on p. 161. I can say that I really, really liked her book Intuition, and its close look at contemporary science and how it's done, specifically the male/female dilemmas still inherent in it, and that I really, really appreciate this book's elegance as it reveals the technology issues. This is in high contrast to the Stieg Larsson books, which I liked for different reasons, and the way he brandished brand names and made the technology "insider" knowledge separate from me. Goodman makes it intimate instead. More to come on this.

Today's Diane Lockward "chocolate" (poem of the day from What Feeds Us) is a tomato. No, a peach. No a tomato. It's the poem "The Tomato Envies the Peach," and they are both luscious, as, surely, is she.

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