Thursday, January 23, 2014

Yes, on occasion I do read...

Okay, so I have been doing a few other things other than watching Chuck. I’ve also read two books this month – one that took me two weeks to read and one that I read in a day.

Mary Poppins, She Wrote; the Life of P.L.Travers by Valerie Lawson was the first book I read this year. I’d seen Saving Mr. Banks (twice!) and wanted to read the book behind it. Partly to see how much the movie got right and partly to know more about Mrs. Travers. With the Walt Disney Company as the money behind the movie, I was a little worried they’d slant it to their side. Let’s face it, in the movie she’s not a very pleasant person. Yes, she comes around at the end, but was that the truth?

Mostly, yes. Mrs. Travers wasn’t a very nice person. She was vain, self-centered and always demanding respect as if it were her right rather than earning it the old-fashioned way. Biography is hard to write: in this book it is sometimes hard to separate the author from the subject. Lawson does a good job of defending Mrs. Travers while at the same time including her warts.

Still, the book took me a while to read because I kept getting impatient with Pamela. I wanted to shake her, give her the scolding she needed but never got.

And she changed her mind – often. She told stories for a living…and for her own amusement, apparently. She did like the movie made from her books, then, with a different group of people, she didn’t. Her opinions depended on who she was with.

Okay, enough of P.L.Travers. It’s a good read of a very unpleasant person. ‘Nuff said.

The Snow Child I read in a day. Written by Eowyn Ivey (either her parents were Tolkien geeks or she is!), the story is part-fantasy, part Alaskan adventure. The early chapters reminded me of Mrs. Mike by Benedict and Nancy Freeman. But then it takes a sharp right turn into mystery that borders on the fantastical and the story moves swiftly to its conclusion. In fact, I didn’t want to put it down (hence the devouring in a day).

So, one month almost over and I’ve binge-watched an entire TV series (all five seasons) and read two books.

Now to get back to writing…


PS. I usually link the author's names to their websites but I couldn't find a site for Ms. Lawson. But that, perhaps, is a post for a different day.

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